Sunday, February 28, 2016

Don't Buy White Furniture!

The best advice given to us that we've never followed and continue to resist, "don't buy white furniture." And by white furniture I assume everyone includes area rugs in this category. It seems the older our boys become, the more we think we are out of the phase of where this statement doesn't apply to us anymore. So as I sit here dressing Levi from his bath, I look at our beautiful white area rug that covers the wood floors of the bedroom and see the largest brown stain from this child removing his diaper early one morning on my watch as I attempted to catch a few extra zzz's.. Word to all of you new parents, take the advice - "Don't buy white furniture (or area rugs)."

I believe the last we left off on our journey, we were waiting a date for Rhett's MRI procedure.. That happened, two Friday's ago. In a series of the longest two days we traveled an hour each way both Thursday and Friday of that week to meet with the doctors, anesthesiologists and hospital staff. MRI's for babies and toddlers are difficult procedures, the child must be sedated then put to sleep and then the MRI can begin.. In total, Rhett had 4 MRI's. The experience was as wonderful as the experience could be, the staff was wonderful and treated us as family - something we desperately needed. The weekend happened and this past Tuesday we received a call from the Neurologist with the results...

Rhett has some abnormalities with the white matter in his brain. It was a very lengthy conversation, much of which neither of us have understood and we have refrained from Dr Google due to the worst possible scenario being the first thing we have read. The light in all of this, Rhett's Neurologist is on staff at UMC in Jackson, MS with access to a team of colleagues with much experience in Pediatrics. We should receive a call on Monday (leap day) with a plan of action, what comes next, and what we should do to make life work better for all of us. We had an emotional moment today, thankfully we were prayed over by new friends at a church we began attending recently - and while I don't push religion on anyone, I am very thankful that we were exactly where God wanted us to be today.. And I hope that everyone who has prayed for our family will continue to do so.

The following day we visited our Pediatrician for Rhett's regularly scheduled check in and his past due 6 month shots (no we intentionally didn't miss them, he just wasn't in the best of health to receive them until now). This trip included the news that Rhett is being referred to a ENT for tubes in both ears. We make the journey to see him tomorrow as well.

The best news of all with Rhett, he has begun sitting for periods at a time without support! While we can not walk away from him yet, it is the progress we have been needing to see to stay motivated. He also broke his first tooth today! And last night, he sat in a regular restaurant high chair unsupported! Much to be excited about. Physical therapy is definitely working with Rhett, he isn't thrilled during the actual therapy but is relatively happy with himself and his new abilities.

Today has continued to be a learning day with Noah. The more we believe he will learn that rules are rules, the more he continues to defy them. For him to be 5 years old this week coming, he sure acts about 30 with his smart mouth. None the less, he does have many moments of love and affection that aren't making up for his disrespect, but they come close to washing it all out. Any advice from parents of young boys (or girls) on how to out of the box discipline would be much appreciated. He did enjoy a fun day with his cousins today. He must be super tired, he didn't put up a fight when we put him to sleep tonight. Goodness he is growing fast. We are planning a trip to the Zoo in New Orleans for his birthday Wednesday, it's all he has talked about for as long as I can remember!

Levi also had his shots this week! And he continues to sleep in our bed at night. Much to my delight but not my wife's. HA HA. It seems every night one of the kids sneak into my bed, and I can handle it.. Cause Daddy's only have their boys for a little while, then you become "Dad's". Levi has also been testing the waters and boundaries. Thankfully its normally with food or toys.. He hasn't gotten too out of control in other aspects of his life.

I will finally say goodnight to everyone who is reading this blog. I honestly have had many of you reach out to me for updates and you have asked me to continue writing. I felt discouraged with putting hands to keyboard but I do want to make a record of where we stand each week and hope this will provide us the ability to look back on life in years to come when we have overcome all of our trials. (I will also say, Levi and his Mommy are behind me.. She is reading a children's book word for word and he is repeating each word after her, very sweet moment for them that I'm witnessing.)

I also hope each of you enjoy the photo's, as I've finally learned to insert them! :)

Monday, February 8, 2016

Life is hard. Unfair.

Life is hard. Unfair. It always seems the more we try to get ahead the further behind we become. I don't know  why good people always are given a more challenging hand than others but it sucks. Period.

I can't say that we have ever been more stressed out as a unit than my wife and I both are tonight.. Our dog died today. She has been with us for four years and the last 40 hours of so of our lives have been one constant hurt after another, praying, pleading to keep her alive. But as life happens we had to say goodbye. I know it doesn't seem like our world should be falling down around us over our dog passing away, but her death is the straw that is breaking the camels back.

I can't say that this week has been filled with any good news, numerous bad things are happening all around us and the devil has came at us in so many forms.
I will positively say Rhett's ear infections seem to be going away, he is much happier! Noah and Levi both have been handfuls for everyone. We can not seem to get Levi to bed at night, Noah has continued his defiance. And Mary + Jake continue to try to be positive as we continue into the unknown.

We are asking for prayers. Prayers for comfort in the loss of our Lexie. Prayers for Rhett's neurologist appointment on Thursday to bring positive results, that our baby isn't going to live a life of complexities. And prayers that we find structure and patience to continue to see the good in life and to accept that all things happening in our lives are to make us a stronger family.

I want to be a positive person, to bring positive news to my family and friends.. But I'm so sad. I'm selfish. I want my wife and kids to have their cake and eat it too. I want my child to not have a life filled with accommodations. I'd love to complain that my dog tracked mud through my dining room because the kids let her in the back door.  And I want to wake up knowing something (or someone) isn't always out to get us.

Monday, February 1, 2016

Somewhere around 1:00am our day began.. Not like an "oh I'm fully awake lets rule the world today" began, but a "why is my baby screaming uncontrollably" began.. Perhaps I need to back up for a quick moment.

Last night our day ended fighting first with Levi, then Levi + Noah, then Levi again to sleep. Man if I would've gotten the memo that by this point in the game I wouldn't be sleeping all night through I think I would've.. Actually probably not, sleep or no sleep, our world revolves around these boys.

Fast forward - by the 4th or maybe the 5th time Rhett woke up it was safe to say we needed to visit the doctor. And we both needed somewhere to sleep for at least one hour uninterrupted. So, I ran off to work like my usual Monday, into a mess of busyness that didn't leave me walking through the door until after 7:00pm, quite a bit of time without sleep! Mary was able to have Rhett seen at our pediatrician to discover that his ear infections have become worse, going into our third week and two antibiotics have failed! On top of all the confusion and things going on in his little world he can not defeat ear infections. The bright side for us, not for him, is he received a shot today to hopefully build him up and clear this out. Needless to say my wife had a long day of holding our crying baby.

So here we are, the end of the longest day either of us have had in some time, exhausted watching the boys play with each other - of course fighting their sleep. The good thing we have been blessed with recently is constant events, things you could say, that have kept our minds busy; work has been the most entertaining in months, Noah has transitioned to doing lessons at home (I believe he is able to read and identify all letters except his G and the number 7), our niece Emma was born Tuesday, Mary has begun a relationship with the gym again and a friend recently reopened his business(which allowed my wife and I an evening out of the house).

We are no closer to discovering the whats and whys of Rhett but we are thankful for his happiness, as it's very easy to see he is happy and is loved. His brothers are both adapting to our changes, hopefully one day they will all have a routine that is easily followed by all. We as a family have much to celebrate and as things change in our lives we will continue to share.