Sunday, December 27

Amazing Gifts

We had a Merry Christmas and hope you did, too! :)

Christmas Eve was spent with Johnny's family. Colby got lots of clothes, a few toys, and some books. He even got dressed up like Santa. (But you already saw that!)

Christmas was spent here at home with my family-- my parents, Jeff, Chris, Matt, Stephie, and Nikki all came up for the day. Again, Colby got lots of clothes, toys, and books.

We got some really special gifts as well.

Let's see... with photos:

Johnny's Aunt JoJo got us Colby and Connor Ornaments:

My mom and Dad got us ornaments from Colby. (Apprently Colby asked Grammy to get them last time she visited):

I love turtles so my parents go me a Colby/Mommy turtle combo. He's riding turtle-back.

My parents go us an ornament with our whole family:

My parents got Colby a "Baby's First Christmas" ornament:

Chris and Stephie got us a cool engraved family ornament:
Back: (Family is the best gift there is)


Johnny's parents got us a Connor ornament:

Johnny bought me a Connor ornament: (It says "Tis a gift to be a mom")

Johnny bought another Connor ornament:

Johnny bought a Colby ornament:

Johnny bought a family ornament:

Then we also made Connor and Colby ornaments: (So this wasn't really a "gift"... but I was already taking pictures and decided to include them. :) We did gift matching ones to our parents as well.)

Perhaps one of the coolest gifts was the book we got from my brother Jeff and his wife. I was dying to read it all day, but knew I'd start crying so Johnny and I had to wait until everyone left before pulling it out. We were up well past 1am reading it.

Cover of the Book. Jeff drew the turtles and then Nikki colored them.

The dedication page:

All About Connor. And the poem that Johnny read at his funeral.

All About Colby. I'm not sure where the poem came from, but I really liked it.

A page for me and Johnny to write on.

My parent's words to Colby, Connor, and me and Johnny.

Johnny's parent's words to the 4 of us.

Jeff and Nikki's words to the 4 of us.

Chris and Stephie's words to us.

Matt's words to us.

Danny's words to the boys.

An example of the Colby Chronicles.

Another example. Jeff pulled out 1 photo from each Chronicle and made that the background of the two adjoining pages. Then he also pulled out one line from each of the Chronicles and placed that on the left hand page.

At the end Jeff, with the help of Johnny, asked my family and friends to write some words. Only a few friends, 1 of Johnny's aunts, and my aunt/uncle, and both cousins all wrote something. The people who took the time to write will definitely always hold a special place in our hearts. This is Sarah's page.

The end.

I hope those pages are large enough to enlarge and look at because the book is truly incredible.

Saturday, December 26

Merry Christmas!

I hope everyone had an amazing Christmas!

I know ours was great.  

I got the most amazing present today... since Colby was 1 week old I had been writing and emailing "Colby Chronicles" to family and some friends.  The Chronicles included information such as Colby's days old, weight, meds, and then a blurb about the day.  I also included pictures every day.  I did this as a chronicle for Colby when he's bigger but also to keep family informed so Johnny and I wouldn't have to answer the same questions every single day.

Well, my brother kept all of the 109 Chronicles for Colby's time in the hospital and put them together in an amazing book.  Not only that, but he sought out my immediate family, Johnny's immediate family, and some friends to write letters to me, Johnny, Colby, and Connor.  He also included the words that Johnny and I both spoke at Connor's funeral.  It is the most touching, amazing gift I have ever received.  I wish I could explain it all better... maybe a photo or two (another day) will do it justice.  Suffice to say, it is amazing.  :)

Wednesday, December 23


I haven't been writing much because I've been updating the family blog more instead.  Feel free to visit...  

I keep that blog for my family and friends-- many who do NOT know what we went through infertility/IVF/miscarriage wise (and therefore do NOT know about this blog), so if you do comment, please don't mention any of "that" stuff.  :)  Sounds silly, I know, but there are some people I just do NOT want to get into it with.

Sunday, December 20

Christmas Cards

This year I was excited to make photo cards.  I love Christmas, so when we found our we were pregnant in February that was one of my thoughts- that I could take photos of my adorable 2 month old baby and send it out.  

Then we found out we were having twins and it became photos of my adorable 2 month old BABIES.  

When I started thinking of Christmas cards in November I was stuck in a dilemma.  I wasn't sure how I wanted to work it.  Part of me really knew that I needed to include Connor in some way.  I wanted a small little clipart of an angel for Connor in the corner of the card, but it's impossible to customize snapfish cards in that way and it didn't feel right to put a picture of Connor on a vent on the card and certainly not a photo of him after he passed away.  So, instead, I thought of writing "Love, Johnny, Stacey, Colby, and our Angel Connor".  But, honestly, I was a little worried about making people uncomfortable and I didn't want to open myself up to unwanted comments from relatives telling me that it was "weird" if I did that.  (Yes, some would have no problem telling me that)  Instead I went with "Love, The J's" because by default Connor was included, I felt better, and comments weren't a part of it.  Who knew it would be so complicated?

Looking back I think I should have gone with my gut and added Connor's name, but I'm glad I didn't just neglect him completely.  

Recently we had a relative call and ask if they could include Connor in their family Christmas letter.  We were touched that they wanted to include him, so said yes.  I was a little upset when I saw the letter yesterday... it looked like this.  The number was a footnote, because they always use footnotes in their letter...

Jen's cousin Johnny in Boston and his wife Stacey welcomed a new sun Colby. 11

10 We didn't expect a Rahim Z, but think his name is awesome.
11 Colby's twin brother Conner was only with us for a few days before being summoned to heaven.
12 Every letter drafted by a lawyer needs one.

The sentiment was nice I suppose, but why did they have to make Connor a footnote?  It felt like they were making him out as some little insignificance.  (I added the above and below footnotes to show how silly they are meant to be.)  And notice the spelling?  Yup.

Friday, December 18

2 or 5?

Yesterday marked what should have been 2 months for Colby.  Tomorrow is his actually 5 month birthday.  


(How bizarre is it that he turns 5 months only 2 days after he should have been 2 months??)

People always say after they have babies (or at least the people on "A Baby Story" do) that they can't remember what life was before their child was born.  

I don't agree.  I DO remember what life was like before the boys.  I remember the lazy weekends, going to bed when I wanted, waking up late in the morning... all that stuff.  I remember it.  But would I EVER take it back?  NO WAY.  What I have now is So.Much.Better.  Hands down.

But what I am having a really hard time remembering?  Colby's time in the NICU.  It's funny.  We spent the hardest 3.5 months EVER in the NICU.  He had so many tests and needles and doctors and nurses, but I can't really remember it quite clearly.  I know the things happened, but I have to really think about it to remember.  

If you look at Colby, he DOESN'T look like a sick baby or that he was ever a sick baby.  He is a rolly, polly, ball of love.  There is no evidence of that NICU time, of the needles or tests.  (Except for 3,000 pictures- no exaggeration- and a small scar on his face from where he managed to gouge himself with his fingernails one day.)  He is no worse for the wear and for that I am SO incredibly thankful.  

Monday, December 7

4 month visit

Today Colby had his 4 month doctors appointment.

He weighed in at 11lbs 10oz and measured 22.5 inches. Along with his head circumference he is right around the 50th percentile for his corrected age (1.5 months).

Today was a rough appointment with 5 injections. He got Hep. B (he's 2 months behind on the Hep B schedule because he got his first dose at 2 months instead of birth, so he gets it at 2 months, 4 months, and 8 months) his pentacel (contains diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, haemophilus influenzae type b, and polio), pneumococcal conjugate, and synagis. It really was only 4 different vaccinations, but the dose for the synagis is too large to be put in at one time, so that was broken down into 2 different injections. This was sad for the little guy because it is a pretty painful injection and he got it 2 times! And they didn't double team him, so it was 5 different pokes 5 different times. AND he has to get synagis every month until April. :( He was supposed to get a blood draw done too to check his red blood cells, electrolytes, and potassium, but we felt too bad to do that do him too. Instead we will head back to the doctors on Thursday after Children's to get the blood done.

I'll tell you one thing, our little guy is definitely one tough cookie!!

On the bright side, the little guy learned to suck his thumb today!! He's still not too sure how to control his other fingers or how to keep it in his mouth, but this is a pretty big developmental milestone for body awareness in our little guy!

Happy to see Daddy when Daddy got home.

Very serious at the doctors office.

I tried to get the bandaids on his thighs, but they are little flesh colored circles so they are hard to see. On the plus side, they were really easy to get off because they didn't stick remarkably well.

And just because he's cute.

Sunday, December 6

Photo shoot!

I take way too many pictures.

But you would too if you saw this...

Saturday, December 5

1 Month!

Tonight Johnny and I went out for a date.  :)  We went to see New Moon and out to dinner.  My parents babysat so it wasn't too nerve wracking.  (Colby is 4 + months old and it was hard leaving him-- and I know that is laughable because he spent the first 3.5 months in the NICU, but I digress.)  

So, the movie.  First off, I LOVE the books.  Love them.  I put off reading them as long as possible because I didn't want to be pulled into the fan hype.  But, alas, last Thanksgiving I gave in because people wouldn't stop talking about them.  And pulled in I was.  Anyways... I'm always disappointed when I read a book before the movie.  (Yes, I'm the one who ALWAYS says "The book was WAY better!")  So of course the book was better and totally expected.  But... Jacob... good stuff.  :)  Leaving it there!

Anyways, back to the baby.  Yesterday Colby had his pulmonology appointment.  He's still on Lasix, but we have been given permission/instructions to start weaning him off.  We were told that he looks and sounds amazing.  Next week we have to bring him back to Children's for a hip ultrasound and a kidney ultrasound.  Then hopefully we'll be done with Children's until his next pulmonology appointment in over a month.  They weighed and measured him.  He weighed in at 11lbs 7oz.  (Yes, that is indeed 9lbs 4oz up from birth!!)  He only measured at 21 inches.  Apparently he hasn't grown since he left the hospital 1 month ago.

And I totally just realized that it has been exactly 1 month since Colby left the hospital.  1 month!!!!  It has already gone by SO quickly.  I know it is very cliche, but I cannot imagine or really remember life without him.  He's such a lovey bug.  :)

Tuesday, December 1

135 days and I Am The Mom

Today Colby is 19 weeks 2 days old.  That's 135 days old.  That's over 1/3 of a year.  How does time go so fast?  

This time last year Johnny and I were still making our way though the miscarriage.  Waiting it out to see where to go next, when the next cycle would start.  

This year?  We're on our toes waiting for Colby to tell us what to do next.

It's really amazing how much a year can change you.  I'm waiting off doing my yearly review for the new year (2010??), but I just get stunned thinking about the changes of the past year.  There have been ups and there have been downs, but we made it through (perhaps with a few scars, but we made it).  

But it's been worth it because I have this face looking back at me:

On another note, a general plea to everyone: family, friends, and random people we come across in our travels...

I am Colby's mom.  I am responsible for him.  His care is up to me and up to Johnny.  That's it.

I may be a new mom, but we have been through a lot to get here.  Colby didn't just land on our doorstep as a big surprise.  We worked for him.  We want to raise him.  

I've always worked with kids.  From the time I was 14 I have babysat, worked in day cares, taught, and learned about child development.  I know how to raise a child, so I can handle him.  I know what to do and when to do it.  

Please remember that and let us raise him in our own way.  You may not agree, but please let us have our time.  We have worked so hard for Colby that we want to be the ones to raise him.  We appreciate your love, but we want to be responsible so please remember that.   If we need advice, we will ask, otherwise, we have things under control the way that we want it.

Also, please remember that we are the parents.  Please ask us before you do things with Colby when we're around.  This means please ask us before you change him, feed him, pick him up, unbuckle him from his car seat, etc.  We're not doing this to be a pain, but because we know what we're working for.  We know if he hasn't slept all day, if he has just been changed, if he needs to eat... we're responsible for him and, while we know you want to help, you would help us most by asking us and treating us as adults and Colby's parents.

Thank you for your care,
Colby's mom