Family Life (82) Surrogacy (66) Rachael (44) So Sayith... (23) Justin (17) Jordan (16) Taylor (14) Elijah (7) Nerdness (3) Adoption (2)

Monday, March 31, 2014

So Sayith Tay, Jay, and Eli #4 (In Honor of 20 Weeks)

In honor of being HALF WAY DONE (20 weeks on yesterday) you will get a blog about babies...again...but they are funny so you know you can't complain.

How are babies made?

Taylor: In your belly.  But you have to get married.

Jordan: I don't know.

Elijah: Um, Sophie...Sophie's a baby.

Where do babies live?

Taylor: In your belly.

Jordan: In your tummy.  Tummy.

Elijah: In your tummy! Baby lives in your tummy.  Mommy does the baby live in your tummy.

How do babies come out of mommy's belly?

Taylor: In your vagina.  Then they come out as a baby.

Jordan: Your bajina

Elijah: By open your mouth.  Open your mouth for babies.  Babies come out of your mouth.

Tell me about the baby in mommy's belly now...

Taylor: There was 2 but one died.  But there is still one so that's good.  And I think its feeling good right now.  And that it is growing and mommy's belly is getting bigger and fatter.  That its really good and I'm glad that we are doing something for the parents.

Jordan: It's growing.  That your are gonna give it to some one.  Can I tell you what favorite movies I like? I like Mary Popins! I have 2 favorites.  I like Mary Poppins and the dog one.  And I'm going to tell you my favorite song ::starts singing:: I love rock and roll put another time in the jute box baby.  I love rock and roll wont you take your time and dance with me.  I can't show you the dance because I don't know it.

Elijah: Uh, his name is Sophie in your belly. Sophie's in your belly.  She likes to live in your belly.  Her mom's baby.  Sophie was in her mom's belly and she said my name is Sophie.  And Sophie calls baby Aria Sophie.

The Earthquake Story

I have to start by saying I find earthquakes relatively enjoyable.  I mean the So Cal earthquakes are usually around a 4-5 so it’s like a roller coaster in your living room.  However, last year when we had the few earthquakes (in the 4 range) I was home alone with all 3 kids and that was my first moment of terror.
The nice thing about earthquakes is that they are a slow build.  You hear it and feel it begin so you have time to react.  But how do you react with 3 kids all asleep in different beds in different rooms in your house? Which do you wake up to move to safety first? 
After that moment of freaking out last year I didn’t think about it again though.  Until this last round.
So here is how it all went down (keep in mind this was the first earthquake my kids have actually been awake to experience):
She had an earthquake drill Friday at school.  She told me she had to go under her desk in an earthquake and then asked where she should go at home.  I told her the safest spot in our house which happens to be the central location in our house and the quickest and easiest to get to.  As soon as the rumble started she bolted to under the kitchen table (not the agreed upon location, but a pretty safe spot none-the-less).  I was impressed the way she handled the stressful situation.  She didn’t hesitate and did what she needed to do.  That is NOT typical of Taylor at all…our drama queen by nature.  However, as soon as she was safe under the table gripping the leg she cried (her wailing cry) like we are all accustomed to.
Jordan was on the top bunk of her bed and couldn’t get down.  She tried to climb down but the ladder was shaking and she actually scratched her leg trying to get down.  She screamed the entire time (like we would have expected from Taylor).  She was probably the most terrified after it was over too.  Between tears and sobs she asked if we could buy a house with 3 rooms (she means 3 kids rooms) so she can have her own room so her bed can be on the floor.  She refused to get back in her top bunk so we let her sleep on the floor that night to feel safer.  We assured her that her bed was VERY sturdy (built by her papa) and that the bed her wall is on was the safest wall.  We told her she could lay as close that wall as possible and be ok.  She disagrees.
Elijah was already asleep when it hit.  Justin was in the hallway (I think) when it started so he grabbed Eli to move him to the doorway.  Elijah looked at Justin like “why the heck are you waking me up to lay me on the floor?” and then proceeded to fall back asleep in the doorway while the earthquake finished up.
Justin was a good daddy and got our sleeping son out of bed and then handled the freaking out girls well.  Justin is pretty much oblivious to earthquakes in general so out of all the earthquakes and aftershocks he moved for the “big one” (a 5.1) and noticed the smaller one Saturday afternoon.  I’m pretty sure he thinks I’m making up the aftershocks.
Again, I enjoy earthquakes.  I typically wait a moment before reacting.  You can feel them grow and you know when it’s getting big.  I watched Taylor bolt and cry, and listed to Jordan scream.  I got up to move toward Jordan to help her and noticed our TV swaying (which has NOT been strapped down yet despite my pleas to my dear husband).  So I stood in the safe spot with a hand on the TV to try and keep it from tipping (seriously the Davis’ don’t do well with TVs).
And that is our earthquake story.  Noting broke.  Noting knocked over.  Everyone was fine minus the scratch on Jordan’s leg.

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

While They're Sleeping

So my kids are horrible sleepers in many different ways.
They come up with 50 excuses to get out of bed to “tell you something” or pee for the 10th time.
They scream on occasion merely because you told them it was bed time.
But the thing that they do that is the inspiration behind this blog is their flailing and kicking.  While they sleep.
They roll, they punch, they kick, they stretch (sideways), and anything else you can think of that involves movement while sleeping.
This makes sleeping next to them nearly impossible.
We rotate nights the kids take turns falling asleep in our bed before moving them to their own bed later.  Last night was Elijah’s turn.
So as I crawled in to bed (way to late I might add) I looked at his cute little sleeping face and thought several things that must be shared:
1.       Every parent should have a picture of their kid(s) sleeping.  In those far to common moments where you sit exasperated and wonder why on earth did we have kids? Look at that picture.  Remember how cute and innocent they are asleep and it makes everything just a little bit more bearable.
2.       How on earth can I love this little kid so much? You parents know what they are like while awake which is why #1 here is even needed.  But as Eli slept and I watched his cute little nose and slow breathing I just relaxed.  The love for your child is indescribable.
3.       How I feel while staring at my little kid is only a glimpse of how God looks at us.  That’s amazing.
4.       In about 5 months I get to hand a baby to a husband and wife and watch them become a mom in dad.  Watch them experience that moment of crazy indescribable love.  I am SO blessed to get that chance.  People tell me what a blessing I am to them and how I’m doing an amazing thing, but really all I think about is getting the chance to be part of their experience.  I’m the blessed one.  They chose to work with me.  That’s amazing.
5.       Lastly, I  thought…ok now it’s time to get him out of my bed.  I’ve stared at him for like 5 minutes and been kicked twice and punched three times.  Move it kid.

Friday, March 21, 2014

The Little Bell Pepper

So first GOOD NEWS!  I met with the Genetic Counselor and Perinatologist yesterday and some things happened.

First: The genetic counselor highly suggested the amnio since it is the “only diagnostic test that is accurate”.  She said everything else is screening and there can still be risks relying on those results.  But with a miscarriage rate that ranges from 1:200 – 1:500 (worse the further along you are).  We (My case worker and I) did not see the point, but it isn’t our decision.

Next: I had the Level 2 ultrasound with the perinatologist.  There were NO markers for Down Syndrome!  Nothing even slightly questionable.  She looks great.  There was a small cyst in her brain that could be an indicator of Trisomy 18.  The cyst itself is a non-issue that should go away on its own in a few weeks (common).  She did however look in detail for any other marker for Trisomy 18 and again the baby was completely clear!  From the ultra sound she looks like perfect little wiggle worm.

The genetic counselor still wants us to do the amnio, but based on all of the information the IP (intended parents) have decided to wait.  They have sent all the information on to the Fertility Doctor review and will move forward with what he recommends.  Last time we talked to him he was against the amnio (even before he knew the ultrasound results) so I think this is great news.

Now let’s get to the fun stuff.  This little girl is the size of a bell pepper and her little punches and flops are more prominent this last week.  She’s not strong enough to show the external signs of movement, but I can feel her wriggle in my belly.  Seeing the ultrasound yesterday was an amazing moment.  Pure excitement, but like I would be looking at an ultrasound for a good friend.  I didn’t look and think “there’s my baby” and I didn’t feel a “connection” with that little girl on the screen, but I was excited for life.

I was excited for her life and just silently prayed for all the amazing things God will do in her life.  She will be treasured gift to this mom and dad who have waited so long.  She is loved in such a deep way and being prayed for by so many and that is exciting.

So here is her picture (I was sad not to get the profile one though).  And thank you for all of your prayers that I have no doubt had an impact on her little life this last week.

Prayer Request:

·         That no further tests are needed (give my body a break and my stress levels down)

·         That she continue to grow strong and healthy

·         That the IP see God working through all of this and get to experience his love through my family

·         That I get some energy back so I can stop falling asleep 5 seconds after sitting down pretty much anywhere

·         That my body handles this pregnancy well so I can take the 2-4 weeks off work I want instead of 8-12 that may be required.

Monday, March 10, 2014

Because My God is a God of Miracles

I just got unsettling news from my Doctor.  My 2nd Trimester screening blood work came back positive for a possible chromosomal disorder.

What does that mean? It means something MIGHT be wrong with the baby.  And as mentioned here we do not want anything wrong with this baby.

So my emotions are currently all over the place and I have barely been able to hold myself together to focus on work and not the situation at hand.

And right now I’m asking for your help.  There is little you can actually do right now, but there is one important thing you can do.  The most important.

PLEASE PRAY.  Pray and pass this on to anyone else you can possibly think of to pray to.  You can share my name, my story, whatever (no secrets here). 

Here are the specifics (that I do have):

·         On Thursday 3/20 I will be meeting with a genetic counselor at 8:30 AM to discuss all the “options” for additional testing that are available and what my initial results actually show as any possible issues

Prayer Request: That I’m WAY overreacting and the things that “may” be an issue are minor and something the parents are willing to deal with (not abort)

·         On Thursday 3/20 at 9:30 AM I will be meeting with a perinatologist to do a “2nd level” ultrasound to continue the screening process.

Prayer Request: That they find nothing because between today and then my God HEALS this baby OR what they find is minor and the parents are willing to deal with it OR if there is something wrong they just miss it

·         Sometime after that the parents will have to decide what additional tests they want (if they want).

Prayer Request: That they do not need anything more or that the results take so long we miss the “window” for the abortion so that abortion is NEVER an option during the next few weeks

·         And the last and least desired outcome that if the parents to make that horrible decision that God provides for Justin and I financially to cover the $100,000+ of expenses for the parents so we can choose to save the baby’s life.

Please, please, please spread the word to anyone, anywhere.  This little girl deserves every bit of a miracle (if a miracle is even what is needed)
UPDATE 3/12/14:
I got more information from my OB office:
  • The only "positive" result I got was for Downs (1 in 27).
  • EVERYTHING else tested "negative" - PRAISE JESUS!
I also got information from the Fertility Doctor (because my agency called him to clear some stuff up):
  • They did a FULL screening of the embryos before the transfer which included Downs and was negative (results can be wrong, but they are 95% accurate)
  • He is pretty confident the child does not have Downs and suggests I do NOT do any further genetic screening (still up to my IP/Intended Parents to decide)
  • He is pretty confident the results are scewed because of the twin that did not make it
So as of now I will still be going to the appiontments next week to give the parents a peace of mind but there is some relief from the information from the fertility doctor.  There is still a small chance there is a problem (like any pregnancy) so I still pray the results from next week are completely clear.

FAQ: here are the answers to a few questions I got after posting this as well

Would you consider abortion knowing you can't afford the $100,000? No, never.  This baby no matter what problem she may have is worth far more than that.  Justin and I will never agree to allow anyone to terminate her life outside of God's control.  This life is more presious to Him than even us and He will provide for us - we have full faith in that!

What if they want to abort, you say no, and the baby is born without any problems? Do you still have to pay?  From what the contract says, yes.  We would however, probably fight that legally if it came to that.

If the parents don't want the baby will you keep her? That's complicated. She is not mine (legally).  Despite whether they want her or not they are the legal parents/guardians so I have no say in what happens to her once she is born.  Justin and I would probably ask if they would be willing to let us adopt her if they will let us.  If not we will try to help them find somebody in the US that would be willing to adopt her.

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

The Little Avocado

I had my OB appointment yesterday and did not post because Justin’s Birthday easily trumps one of those standard OB visits.

You know (or you don’t know) the ones… the doctor walks in, uses her spiffy magic machine to check the heartbeat, asks if you have questions, and sends you on your way.
Because if nothing is wrong (and you are having your 4th baby) there’s not much else to talk about.
So my appointment was mostly standard.  I missed blogging last week to tell you about the little “Apple” who has now grown into a little “Avocado”.  Which means Uncle Sam hates the baby this week.
I wonder at what I point I stop calling her little… eventually a fruit will come along and I’ll think that cantaloupe is coming out of my nether regions in a few months, that is NOT a little fruit.
For now, although an Avocado is not small in comparison to those womanly parts of the body, it’s still small compared to what she will soon become.
Enough about that awkward subject and on to a more emotional one. Yay...emotions...
It’s no secret that I am, in ALL circumstances, against a woman’s “choice” to kill a child.  A debate that we will not have now if you disagree because it’s pointless via internet and just frustrating (call me!)
That being said my IP (intended parents or baby’s daddy/mommy) are not nearly as opposed as I am.  They think it is fine in the case of a “severe disability” of the child that can cause her an “unhappy life”.
The good news is my contract is written in a way that if I am forced to make the decision I can say I will not abort (and then have to pay for all the costs of the surrogacy of the parents which is about $100,000).  So no matter what this baby will live (unless natural means say otherwise)…it just might mean my family owes the IP a lot more money than we have or would have any time soon.
All this came about because I had my 2nd trimester screening blood work yesterday.  Somebody will analyze my blood and the info of the mom and me and decide if based on all of that the baby MIGHT have something wrong with it.  That makes me nervous.  Not because I have any assumption that anything is wrong with the baby, but because IF there are, things can get really costly for us.
So my prayer requests for the next few months:
·         This baby girl continues to grow nice and healthy
·         IF something is wrong with her the parents decide it’s worth it to keep their baby girl
·         OR IF something is wrong all these tests don’t see it, because I a firm believer that no matter what is wrong with your baby it is nearly impossible not to love them once you get to actually see, hold, and experience them
·         And that I continue to feel good during the pregnancy so that I can make sure my time off is not a burden to my coworkers
·         I will also settle for somehow winning a large sum of money that could cover the costs

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

He Can't Run...He's 31!

When I was in High School I envisioned that “perfect man”, the one I would one day marry.  I can tell you that my 16 year old self would not have given Justin Davis a 2nd glance.  He did not fit all my shallow desires like being well dressed and NOT hairy.
My 16 year old self was obviously an idiot.  A brilliant idiot.
Luckily I met Justin my Sophomore year of college and he unknowingly convinced me the things I thought I wanted were not actually what I wanted.
So here I am married to this pretty awesome guy.
A guy who…
infuriates me at least once a week
makes me laugh every day
like dumb things like riff tracks
thinks I’m gorgeous and tells me and others that often
constantly wakes me up in the middle of the night
takes care of me when I’m sick and tired
our children adore
yells and honks at people on the road
memorizes lines from movies and tv after 1 viewing
doesn’t like pickles (what’s wrong with him!?)
gets me to try new things and meet amazing new people
I’m one lucky gal.  And most importantly I wanted to say HAPPY BIRTHDAY to this amazing man.  And I hope he knows how much I love him even if I occasionally want to rip his head off.