Monday, June 22, 2009

20 Weeks 6 Days

20 weeks 6 days is the day in the pregnancy with Joshua and Caleb that they were born. They came silently into this world. There were no cries or whimpers. Just silence. Today I am 20 weeks and 6 days pregnant with Dotson. Something about knowing this point in the pregnancy was coming has been hard. It was a bit of a difficult morning for me but my extremely loving husband made himself late to work so that he could listen to the baby on the Doppler with me and so we could spend a few minutes praying for strength and a healthy baby. Dotson has been good to me today. He’s made himself known on several occasions. I guess it’s been his way of saying “momma, don’t worry about me…I’m just fine…see I’m dancing.” I feel so much joy every time I feel his movements (even the ones where it feels like he is kicking my cervix with some sort of constant rhythm making me feel like I have to pee at about the same intervals).

I am just overwhelmed with joy about this little boy and getting through today will put as at the 21 week mark, a mark we never reached with Joshua and Caleb. I guess my point to all this is really for all the other mommy’s with babies they never got to hear cry. This day was harder than others, in fact this whole week has been a little scarier for me than the rest but the joy that it has been far outweighs the difficult parts. I praise God everyday for this little boy that continues to grow inside of me and I thank Him for every second that I get with Dotson. My hope is in the fact that I will get to watch this little boy grow into a man that loves and serves the Lord with my husband by my side but my faith and trust are in God because He has shown me over and over that He will carry me through whatever tomorrow brings.

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Headstone Installed... Classroom Uninstalled

Joshua and Caleb's grave site has had nothing more than the little cross I made marking it for quite a while now. We've had the headstone in our possession since December but we had to wait for the ground to thaw to put it in. We are blessed with an amazing family that has been there for us every step of the way and getting their headstone erected was no exception. On June 16th, Wayne, his dad, step-dad, and my dad set out to get the concrete foundation poured. John, Wayne's step-dad was kind of the brains behind the operation but everyone worked really hard...while I did little more than stand there and watch. They all pitched in and got it poured and I have to say that it looked more professional than the professional ones. I'm not just saying that because it's for my really did look better than many of the others.
The following weekend was a VERY busy one. Again everything we set out to accomplish was achieved only through the help of our amazing family. It started out in my classroom. My home away from home for the last 4.5 years. It was time to get it cleaned out for the next teacher to take over. Clearly I was unable to move much so my parents, Wayne, my brother and his wife all pitched in. They were great. They knocked out about two full days work in about 4 hours. We were way ahead of schedule. Now I may never find the things I packed away until I unpack the boxes someday if I find another classroom to call home but they are packed and it is a big weight off my shoulders. It was kind of sad to leave my classroom all empty and to look across the hall and know that I would never get to see Barrett (one of the teachers on my team) looking back at me with a classroom full of kids again. The reason behind my leaving is what makes it all easier to swallow. I guess the point is that change is just hard and this was no exception. I've been through a miscarriage and the loss of my perfect boys, Joshua and Caleb, yet it was time to take a leap of faith and do what is best for my husband and Dotson.

After we left my classroom Ben, my brother, and Wayne and I headed to the cemetery. Ben had the headstone in the back of his truck, thanks to the help of many hands at Moss Glass in Anderson (plug plug). Wayne and Ben managed to get the headstone unload and put on the foundation perfectly. It is more beautiful than I had imagined and MUCH taller than I had pictured. I am so grateful for all the hard work that made it possible.
Looking out into the cemetery at all the headstones I think Joshua and Caleb's really stands out. Thanks to West Memorials we were able to get everything we wanted on it and in a font that was different from the typical block lettering you see on most headstones. I am just so pleased with how it turned out!
click here for more pictures
I love that the cemetery where we have the boys buried is lenient when it comes to their rules. I don't know how many cemeteries out there would be willing to let the family dig the grave by hand, pour the foundation, and install the headstone without any professional help but they did. Well we didn't really ask but we knew the rules so we figured as long as we followed them it would be fine. The family that runs it is really laid back. It really has proved to be the right choice for a final resting place for the boys even though it isn't quite as close as I'd like it to be.

So again, I want to say a huge thank you to all the wonderful people in our lives. So many people chipped in with the purchasing of the headstone and the installation of it, not to mention the support they've shown us. We are blessed beyond belief!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Dotson Update 17 Weeks 1 Day

We went for more "Brandi time:-)" on May 27th.  It was another fabulous day of hearing that perfect heartbeat and seeing that perfect little boy on the screen.  It's odd to me that now when I see the screen the first thing I notice is the visible heartbeat, yet somehow at the last ultrasound with Joshua and Caleb I didn't notice that there wasn't a heartbeat.  I guess I've learned a lot since then.  My eyes are glued to it now.  

His heartbeat was 150 bpm and he was measuring 17 weeks 4 days.  
He looked perfect.  I'm starting to be able to see my placenta on the ultrasound now.  It's clearly getting bigger.  It is in the front so it acutally seems to make it harder to see the baby on the ultrasound but it is functioning perfectly so I'll take it.  

I go back for a regular visit on Wednesday, 6/10/09.  This is a normal visit for everyone.  This is when she will measure everything and I'll see the doctor again.  Sometimes I find myself worried but I think it is because we are getting close to the point in the pregnancy where I lost the boys.  We found out Joshua and Caleb were gone at 20 weeks 5 days and delievered them at 20 weeks 6 days.  That point in this pregnancy is getting much closer.  Now I know there is no "safe" zone but that was our end zone last time so I guess that is what I'll forever look forward to getting past.  I struggled a little with week 18 too though.  One of the moms that I've talked to online who lost her little boy around the time I lost Joshua and Caleb had a second loss at 18 weeks.  She lost another boy.  Something about her 18 week mark bothered me.  I guess just the fact that she has gone through this loss twice is hard to comprehend.  I pray that we aren't faced with that pain but I know God would see us through it if we were.  

I'll keep you posted after our next appointment.