Wednesday, May 29, 2013

unexpected



Blame it on the "Baby Blues" messed up hormones.....or maybe just life..but I have been feeling down lately....down on myself.  Its an emotion that I am certain most parents feel one time or another and especially mothers. 

The feeling of being inadequate.......its capable of robbing you of so much.  Your self confidence, your self worth.....your joy. 

I wasn't too surprised when Parklen started to show a return of his symptoms....Ive grown used to it, it takes a lot to shock me when it comes to that little boy.  So when he woke up Tuesday morning with golf ball size lymph nodes through out his neck, head and even one on his face...I already knew deep down that I would be leaving town.  I started to fret right as I put the first thing into our suitcase.  I was flooded with feelings.....feelings that said, "I cannot handle this."  I cannot count the trips I have made over that past five years....its too too many.  I should be able to "handle" them with out a hitch.  Truthfully, when it comes down to it.....even though I feel like I cant....I do.

I have mastered the carrying of suitcases and a sick child while walking through the hospital.....This trip I have managed to teach myself to push a stroller, carry a five year old, a cup of coffee and pull a suitcase behind us....all at once.  Ive got this right?  I still doubt myself.

I doubt my judgment occasionally....wondering if I really need to drive down here all the dang time.....

Today, as Parklen's main doc (who came in on his day off yesterday and today to meet us) and I were speaking about the treatment of this latest outbreak of his disease.....I asked him if he worries about Parklen.  He looked at me, straight faced and said, "no, because you are his mom"  He went on to explain that he felt I was one of the main reasons why Parklen has made it this far and that God gave me to Parklen. "I trust your judgment on Parklen more than anyone else's"  I needed to hear that so badly. 

I have learned that you cannot rely on people for your happiness in this life, that God is all that can fill that hole......I have also learned, that when you are feeling down, God may put the right person in your path to lift your spirits. 

I have a very different normal......my life goes from watching my boys play outside to packing a suitcase for Denver at the drop of a hat.  I have to rely on getting here on my own most of the time.....as anyone who has had a spouse in grad school knows....its almost as though you don't have one......

So we had to come down a week early....unexpectedly.....for a no good reason.... but, here we are.  His doctor said we came just in time and saved Parklen from a hospitalization and severe episode of his ALPS......I can be thankful for that. 

I can be thankful that even though I am juggling my two youngest kids in this big city by myself....it isn't for nothing.....one day, hopefully sooner than later....these trips wont be needed....
One day, my norm will be different.....
one day..................

For today though, I am thankful.....
for those who truly support me, my family and our precious Parklen.
For the love of God that fills the void of loneliness....
For truth speaking doctors who believe in us......
For good medicine....
For beautiful babies......

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

A birthday......

Earlier this month we celebrated the birth of Parklen.......(I am WAY behind on posts and photos)

His birthday is always very emotional for me, as is the case with each child's birthday that we celebrate....but a little more so with Parklen than the rest.  I believe that the extreme cases of health and crisis that have followed this boy are what makes each May 5th something so emotional. 

Every year I vividly recall his first hospital visit.....every year I perfectly vision each illness, surgery and procedure he has had.  Every time I voice the words, "Happy Birthday Parklen." the tears well up.  I have said it many times before......but it is important that I never forget.....there was a time when we were unsure of the duration this young mans life would have.  There were moments when we were nearly convinced that he would not be with us for long......

So, when Parklen turns five.....its a big deal.....in so many many ways. 

This year was the first time he wasn't the baby........he is now a five year old BIG brother.....a job that he takes very seriously, and loves very much. 

It was crazy around the time of his birthday.....I had just given birth to his sister.....and we were preparing for a trip down to Denver for treatments.....I could have easily forgone the party....but come one, I would never do such a thing.

So we celebrated him on his actual birthday with candles, a movie and dinner......and then a week later celebrated with his friends!

If I haven't mentioned it before....let me tell you that Parklen is completely obsessed with Lego Batman......its a video game he has beat all by himself (you can blame weeks and weeks of extreme illness and the inability to get up at all for that one)  He carries the tiny Lego batman figures around with him......talks about little else.  So of course "Lego Batman" was the perfect party choice.

It was the least amount of effort I have ever put into a party for the boys....I was tired, really really tired.....that's life.  But, he still felt special and him and his friends still had a ton of fun!

 Yes I know.....bats don't really have tails.......but..........

 Parky and his friends had to use squirt guns to free a tiny batman from a huge block of ice.......
                                                           Got him......

 I made this cake.....instead of doing a bunch of decorating I ordered the edible pic off of Amazon

 The batman brothers.....let me just say, the boys have decided to grow their hair out...something that they are given control of......and it is driving Devan insane.....I am truly surprised that he hasn't shaved their heads in the middle of the night as they sleep......The fact that it makes him so crazy, is probably the deciding factor to the boys to keep on growing......

 And with that.....we have a five year old Parklen........where does the time go?!?!?!?!?

A fifth birthday is the perfect oppurtunity to be thankful for his medical treatment....for his doctors, nurses, medicine......the perfect oppurtunity to remember that he is nothing more than an incredible gift from God!!!  A perfect chance to say Thank you for our special miracle who has defied odds, beaten expectations and warmed so many hearts......

Heres to you, our stubborn, amazing, strong, brave, handsome, funny, loud, crazy and special boy.

We love you always Parky!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

The story of her............

So so much has happened in the lives of the Henderson's as of late......so so much. 

We have celebrated a birthday....are currently in Denver for treatments, and of course.....we welcomed a baby.

Because I didn't have the blog back when we had the boys, I have been working on writing their birth stories to share......but, because this one is the most fresh in my mind, I am sharing it first.

There have been many, many lessons learned in my life......some were hard, some.....not so much.  Of all the things that God has chosen to teach, there is one that I refuse to accept, so I end up being taught it time and time again.......  This lesson, is that I cannot plan everything.....that things are not in MY control.

My entire pregnancy was different this time, from the word GO.  With the boys, I knew I was pregnant instantly, I had planned for them....they were not a surprise.  Not so this go 'round.  In fact, only six months before discovering the news....we made the decision to have no more children and got rid of the loads of baby stuff I had held on to over the years......then, surprise.

I lost tons of weight throughout this pregnancy, due to horrible morning sickness...(morning, noon and night sickness really)  I spent time twice in the hospital with Parklen, once in the ICU while being pregnant.  We had health scare after health scare with Parky and all the stress took its toll......

So when it came close to delivery.....everything I had known was changed.  The boys both came at 37 weeks, they both came easy.....and quick.  So why wouldn't she?  right..........

I began having contractions on a Monday......after my doctors appointment.  Devan and I loaded the car, made arrangements for the boys and began to wait.....wait for the contractions to become regular and timed close together......My mom and my sister were over to care for the boys, and the whole crowd of us sat and waited......and then, we waited.  The day passed and I was still pregnant.....still having contractions but not getting to the point of heading to the hospital.  We went to bed, Devan sleeping in his jeans just in case......me not sleeping much at all.  Nerves and excitement, mixed with frustration and confusion at the fact that things were not progressing as I had known in the past. 

Morning came....still contractions were random.  I sent Devan off to class, thinking for sure that his absence would put me into serious labor.  Nope.  After class, we decided to head to the hospital to check things out.......

I was in labor....it was just different.  I was admitted and things were beginning to become interesting.  I let my family know....and my best girlfriends.  One very special friend of mine headed up from my home town to capture it all in photograph form.  Here we go.......

We all sat in the room, my friend, my youngest sister and my love.....talking and chatting between contractions.  Moments of laughter, followed by moments of silence and I felt the contractions and they all watched the screen and proclaimed, "that was a big one."

After some time, they concluded that I wasn't moving further on my own and started an IV of Pitosin.  Yuck.  I had never had it with the boys, never needed it.....they were out and in the world within a couple of hours. 

I had had two children drug free......a personal choice I had made long ago....for many reasons.  I had never considered getting the epidural with this one either....until they started the contraction inducing and intensifying drug.  Let me say, the thought was in the front of my mind.  I looked at Devan, he at me....and he told me, "you can do this babe."  and I did.......no epidural. 

As the contractions intensified, I spent the time between trying to suck in the moment......attempting to store the memories forever in my mind.  I would close my eyes for the contractions and then open them to see Devan running back and forth to replace the cold rags on my head and neck.....holding my hand and watching the monitor....I could tell he was getting nervous, as the boys were so different.  I could see my young sister, concern on her face, matched with confusion with her lack of understanding of the whole birth process.  I can see a vison of my beautiful friend, behind her camera....snagging shots and sending me winks and smiles......words of encouragement flowing from her mouth....I can remember thinking how blessed I was for such a great friend, a great husband...a great family.

Then the moment came......it was time.  I let them know that the baby was ready and they called the doc.  It had been less than 5 hours since I had checked in...but the longest of the three children.  My doctor was there in less than 4 minutes........and less than five minutes after that.....we had a baby.


I can hear the sounds, I can feel my husbands hand on my shoulder......I can see my doctors face, and hear him proclaim..."this baby has a lot of hair."  With my last push I turned to Devan and asked, "is it really a girl?"  (part of me always expected a third boy)  and it was......




They placed her directly on my chest......crying and beautiful.  I could not hold back the tears.  I had a daughter.....a third blessing to our family, an unexpected miracle.....something unplanned and yet so perfect......she was here.



I stared at her a bit before they swept her away to be cleaned and weighed and such......my heart was about to burst.  I felt such an abundance of joy and thankfulness.  I was glad that my life plan took and unplanned turn.  I was thankful for the addition.  I was blessed and there was no doubt.


I watched as Devan caught his first glimpse of his daughter as he held her in his arms....I knew in that moment that he would never be the same. 




The boys were brought up to be introduced to their sister......they were a little bit overwhelmed and had only one word for any question asked......"Good"  The family and friends came, they met the new bug.....and they too fell in love.




When I think back to the moments leading up to our daughter's birth I begin to cry....every time.  God knew exactly what He was doing when he brought her into our lives.....and I believe that it is more than safe to say that the Henderson's are forever changed.