Monday, September 27, 2010

Things I've Made Recently

So I'll give you a break from all the baby drama :) One of the advantages to having Skylar home though is that we have been better about getting all the pictures off of our camera. I've been planning this post since last August, but was too lazy to transfer the pictures to our computer...Lame? Yes. But since I did wait so long, I now have more creations to add!

One of the things I started getting interested in last summer was cake decorating. My Aunt Laurie makes AWESOME cakes and I wanted to learn a few tricks. I started off with my own birthday cake that she helped me put together. It isn't the best, and cracked on the way drive back from Layton, but everybody has to start somewhere right?

It was super yummy though and was a raspberry cake with chocolate filling. I also made the same cake (by special request) for my sister Brittny's birthday in November, but I don't think I did anything special with it and can't find any pictures of it :)

The next birthday was Ryan's in January. He wanted a boring vanilla cake, but I convinced him to let me put a whipped cream filling with strawberries in the middle. This one also received rave reviews, and I was more pleased with the quality of the decorating on this one.

In honor of his love of all things BYU, we went with just a simple "Y". Not necessarily explicitly birthday, but still fun!

I branched out a little bit next and made an ice cream cake for Valentine's Day. It was layers of chocolate and vanilla ice cream with a cookie crumble filling in the middle. I didn't have a recipe for this one and just kinda made it up as I went. It turned out marvelously though, but I wouldn't ask for the recipe...I just can't remember what I did :) In my defense, I was still in the throes of the first trimester of pregnancy at the time and didn't think to write it down!

Not the most creative decoration, but like I said...I was in the middle of morning sickness!

The next cake I made was in celebration of our ultrasound. Since we didn't do anything fun to announce that we were having a baby, I wanted to do something fun for announcing our "flavor of baby." So I made a cake and decorated it and then sent pictures to my family and friends to make the announcement.
This one was a layer of vanilla cake and a layer of strawberry cake with a chocolate filling and chocolate frosting. For some reason my entire second trimester was all about chocolate and strawberry. Not separate, but together. Basically Neapolitan ice cream and I were best friends :)

This one is out of order, and not really in keeping with the genre, but I've also made lots of cheesecake for weddings, showers, birthdays, etc. It is basically the most perfect recipe so I haven't thrown any variety into it at all. It is a chocolate raspberry layered cheesecake and is my absolute favorite thing ever. I did try it with semi-sweet chocolate like the recipe calls for, but I quickly decided that I was correct in using milk chocolate instead. It even looks pretty when it is done!
This one I made to celebrate the birth of my nephew Sam! Half of our family was in Utah celebrating, so I made this for those of us stuck in California to celebrate with :)

My other recent creation has been a slew of baby blankets. I came up with this pattern when I had mono while Ryan and I were engaged. I was down and out for the count for a long time so while I was just lying in bed I decided to make a blanket. I wanted it to be big enough to cover a twin bed, or for two adults to snuggle under while watching a movie. It was huge and took me hours to complete, but was super pretty.

It probably took me about 50 hours to finish though so I decided to scale it down and make baby blankets instead. The first one I made was for my friend Heather and her baby Ethan. I don't have a picture of it, but it was white squares with blue piping.

The next one I made was for my friend Becky and her baby Khloe. I stuck with the white squares, but did purple piping instead.
The next two blankets I made while on bedrest/recovering from a C-section. The first one I made was for my friend Jeanine and her baby boy (tentatively named Micah). Her nursery is a dinosaur theme with blue, green, and orange.

This was also when I decided to start documenting my blankets before giving them away :)

The next blanket is special because it is made from yarn that I got from my great-grandma Bonnie. She passed away a year and a half ago and left all her yarn with my grandma. She in turn gave it to me. I made this blanket (and will probably make many more based on the trash bag of yarn I came home with).

Finally (kinda, I left a few blankets out because I didn't have pictures), I made a blanket for my own baby! My theme for his nursery is pretty boring, just brown and blue. I'm not really a fan of all the baby animal prints that they have out there, and so I'm just sticking with prints that are simple like polka dots or stripes. If we had a girl it would have been chocolate brown and lavender. This one is my favorite blanket, not only because of how it looks...but mostly because I get to wrap my little man in it everyday!

The one on the right is the back of the blanket, and used to be attached to the first one. I'm going to re-attach them when it starts to get cold again, and use it to cover his stroller or carseat when we go outside. It took FOREVER to make and stitch, so if you ever receive one of these from me, you will now that I love you dearly. I still probably love you even if I don't make you one of these blankets, but if you get one of them just consider it a super big compliment.

That's about it! Hopefully I'll be able to add to the collection as the years go on :)

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Finding Strength

I've found recently that being a new mom gives you a lot of time to think. I'm not stuck with a bunch of errands to run (probably because I'm only the mom of one), and I actually just stay inside with a baby who eats and sleeps. This being the case, I've had a lot of time to reflect on the things that have happened recently. As you can imagine, Skylar's delivery wasn't exactly what I had planned for it to be. In fact it was quite scary and intense at times, but I was never anxious for the health or well-being of myself or my baby. This was because of the priesthood blessings I had received prior to Skylar's birth.

When we found out that I had preeclampsia we started making plans to be ready for Skylar to come early. One of the things that I felt I really needed was a priesthood blessing. This seemed silly since I was still five weeks away from my due date, but despite all of that, the night before I was induced I asked Ryan and my brother-in-law Eric to give me a blessing. In the blessing, we were told that the labor would be difficult (little did we know just HOW difficult), but that it would be that way because of the great things that Skylar has to do in this life. Strangely enough, this was the most comforting thing for me to hear. I didn't like the fact that the labor would be difficult, but I knew that it would all be for a purpose....and that Skylar would make it out whole.

During our second night in the hospital, our bishop came to visit us. This was after Skylar's heart rate had taken some scary dips, and things weren't looking so good. He and Ryan gave me another blessing at this time, and during it Bishop Meredith didn't so much talk about Skylar, but talked about me and the work that I have to do in this life, and blessed me with comfort and peace to get through the labor. This may not seem significant, and at the time I mostly just felt comforted by the blessing. However, during the events of the next day I found strength from both of these blessings.

I only once opened my eyes when I was in the OR for my C-section. I didn't want to be there, and if I kept my eyes closed I was able to pretend like I wasn't there. Juvenile? Yes...but it got me through it. Because of this, I have a somewhat limited recollection of exactly what happened while I was there. Ryan was there too, and since I'm a somewhat queasy individual when it comes to blood and guts and such, I asked him to not tell me anything about what happened there unless I specifically asked. We were talking last night about it and he happened to let slip that when I thought I had been put under by the anesthesiologist, I actually hadn't been knocked out, but had passed out. Apparently this was when they realized that I hadn't been lying about feeling the incision, and started to worry that I would go into cardiac arrest because of all the pain I had been feeling. Considering Skylar's heart rate had disappeared, I'm guessing this wasn't exactly the best case scenario my doctor would have liked. Now she had to worry about keeping me AND my baby alive.

I only bring this up because throughout the entire delivery I never once worried about the outcome. I knew that no matter what happened, my baby and I would both be alive and well. My mom was there during the scary parts, and she told me later how scared she was that we would lose Skylar. I never once let this cross my mind, not because I considered it an unthinkable horror, but because I had been promised in blessings that he would grow and develop and live a full life. This helped me so much during the scariness of our delivery because I never started to freak out about everything that was going on. Instead I was able to just close my eyes, and focus on getting us to the end of the journey. I'm grateful for the priesthood blessings we received because it gave me assurance that everything would turn out just fine, and considering the scary turns we had to take, just knowing we would make it out alive was a necessity.

I've had a lot of people ask me lately why I always seem to get stuck with the hard stuff in life. It seems that anytime I set out to do something I get the hard route. I had some scary health issues during high school, and doctor's offices and I have become fast friends....or acquaintances at least :) Some have offered the opinion that I get to do hard things because I'm strong. I sometimes tend to wonder if I bring a lot of it upon myself through choices that I make, but every time I start to say that whoever I'm talking to starts to tell me that I'm ridiculous since nothing I could have done would have changed my trial. I still think it anyway...

I think the main reason I get to do all the hard things that nobody else wants to (if I had the choice I wouldn't want to do them either) is because I handle it. This isn't because of anything I have that others don't, but because of the faith I have that everything that happens has a purpose, and that the knowledge that I will be supported and comforted in my trials. One of the scriptures that has been running through my mind lately is Philippians 4:13 which says, "I can do all things in Christ which strengtheneth me."

One of the nurses in the NICU remarked to my mom that I was very strong (she's obviously never seen me try to do a pull-up... Apparently I seemed very pulled together, but mostly I'm just too stubborn to cry in public). This is false. I am in fact very weak. I get upset by the most trivial of things, and I am far too self-centered for my own good. However, whenever I've met my hardest trials I've been smart enough to give up. Not give up on the trial, but give up trying to do it by myself. It has been during my moments of physical weakness that I have found the most spiritual strength. This has come through relying on the Lord and letting Him work with me and help me through the trial.

I think this is why I get stuck with the "hard things." Not because I'm so strong and can handle it, but because I need to be reminded that I can't do everything by myself. My trials have helped me to be grateful for the atonement and the sacrifices that have been made so I don't have to do everything by myself. I still can't say that I look forward to my next big trial, but I feel blessed in knowing that when it does come I'll be able to handle it. Not on my own, but through Christ, because He does strengthen me.

Sorry for the novel of a post. One of my English teachers told me I liked the sound of my own voice too much (later she told me that she likes the sound of my voice too....but that editors and college professors might not be as entertained by my wordiness). I figure though that this is my blog so I can write as much as I want! You're the one that chose to read it :P

Monday, September 20, 2010

He's Home!

After two and a half weeks of being separated, we're finally all back together again! I can't tell you how exciting and natural it feels to have Skylar home with us, and we are grateful to the doctors, nurses, and therapists at the NICU who have made it so he can be here with us. This journey has definitely been long, difficult, and nothing like what we had planned, but all in all it has been completely worth it. I'm sure Skylar will begin to wake up more and wear me out in the next few weeks, and I'll start to maybe wish that I could drop him off at the NICU for a few hours while I take a nap. However, in the future when I start to think of how much being a mom wears me out and how I wish I could sleep more, I will remember how content I was to finally lay our son down in his bed and know that he gets to stay with us forever.

I think he is happy to be home too!

Skylar and his daddy, pretty much a smaller version of the other.

We weren't able to get a picture of all of us together, but we're looking forward to getting family pictures taken once Skylar has chunked up a little more and I have lost the swelling and baby weight :)

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Back at the Hospital

This time it is a good thing though! Skylar has been doing really well with his feedings and they have been advancing him steadily through their protocols. He has taken four feedings a day consistently and the next step is a 12-hour request period. Basically I hang out here all day and whenever he wants to eat....I feed him. If he does well with this, then they take out his feeding tube and they watch him for a 24-hour period while he gets all of his nutrition from a bottle or the breast. This will be an extra good thing since he has pulled out his feeding tube of his own accord twice in the past day. He then proceeds to cry when they put it back in. Apparently he wants to leave just as much as I do :) Pray that he continues to do well and we get him out of here this weekend!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Hospital Funnies

So since we spent a lot of time in the hospital this last month (and will probably still be spending lots of time there in the coming weeks) we have made good friends with many nurses and staff who now greet us by name. We feel like very special VIPs because we rarely have to give anybody our code to get in since they usually recognize us and buzz us in. I've felt recently that my blog has been getting a little bleak lately so in an effort to lighten the mood I'm going to share some funnies from our time spent in the hospital.

One of the funnier ones involves "passing gas." I apologize for writing about this on a blog, but I'm sure at least my 16-year-old brother will enjoy the story. Since I was induced on Monday night and didn't have Skylar until Wednesday afternoon it had been two and half days since I had eaten. They don't let you eat when you're in labor because of nausea so you're basically limited to clear fluids and ice chips....not the most substantial meal in my opinion. This didn't work since I threw up anyways, but apparently they enjoy torturing laboring women by not letting them eat before going through some of the hardest physical work imaginable. Go figure. Anyways since I had a C-section one of the concerns they have is that your digestive system begins working before they will feed you anything. So although I had already given birth to Skylar they wouldn't feed me until I had "passed gas."

Well, Thursday morning rolled around and I finally farted. Normally I wouldn't want to share this information with the world, but since it meant I would finally get a decent meal I was telling everybody! Did I mention that I hadn't eaten since Monday? Once Ryan woke up I shared with him my exciting news. He wasn't that impressed and gave me a weird look, so I waited for him to take a shower and then told him again. He still didn't get it so finally I told him to go tell the nurse that I farted. I wish so much that I could have been there for that conversation. That poor man had already been through a lot, and now his wife who was still a little loopy from pain-killers and was currently being dosed up with lots of magnesium was making him share with a complete stranger that his wife had displayed evidence of a working digestive system. What a champ.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Skylar's Progress

So some of you might be a little bit confused as to why Skylar is in the NICU. Since he was born 5 weeks premature he has a condition known as Respiratory Distress Syndrome. This is just a fancy way of saying he has a hard time breathing on his own. When he was first born they had him on a C-Pap which did a lot of his breathing for him. That only lasted for a day and then they switched him to a breathing tube. This didn't supply oxygen for him, but rather gave him a feed of pressurized air. This helped him to more fully expand his lungs and have something to work against to help build the muscles he needs to breathe on his own. They've been slowly decreasing his pressure over the last week, and as of last night he no longer has a breathing tube! He has been doing great on his own, and it is looking very promising that he will be able to continue breathing without any foreign devices.
No more breathing tube!

He is also currently receiving fluids and antibiotics through an IV. This is probably the saddest treatment he has to endure in my opinion, but I also am not a fan of needles :) He started off with an IV in his hand which they eventually moved to his head, then moved again to his other hand, and back to his head. Since his veins are so tiny they have a hard time supporting the IVs for very long and the veins eventually end up collapsing. We're hopeful that this last IV in his head will be his last one. Since his feedings have been increasing they have been gradually decreasing the amount of fluid he receives via the IV and they think he will be able to come off of it completely sometime this evening or tomorrow. This will make his mama very happy since the sight of a needle in her son's head is not pleasant. We did manage to get a picture of him when he didn't have any IVs in his head (there had been a point when he had one on each side as they were still flushing the other one and had started a new one). I love that he has so much dark hair and the fact that they gave him a hairstyle reminiscent of his daddy's!

The last invasive tube that he has right now is a feeding tube. He receives most of his nutrition through that, but we have also been practicing breast-feeding twice a day. Once his IV is out they will start weighing him before and after feedings. So far he is doing well at latching and even does well with sucking, but we can't be sure how effective these feedings are until all of his fluids come from nursing rather than through an IV. Once we can determine if he is actually receiving milk from nursing they will start increasing his feedings until he is only receiving milk from me rather than through the tube in his nose. We are excited for that day, because at that point he will be allowed to come home!

We are pleased with all of the progress he is making and know that it is because of the faith and prayers that have been issued on his behalf. It has been very touching for me to hear how many people are praying for him. Our ward held a special fast for both him and I as we are still in the recovery process, and I know that it is because of the fasting and prayers that he has been able to make steady progress. The doctors and nurses keep reminding us that everything we are asking of him is something that we wouldn't expect him to grasp for another 5 weeks, so his progress may rollercoaster a little bit. They keep telling us to expect that he won't be discharged until his due date (October 5), but we are very hopeful that he will come home to us sooner. It is very strange to only be able to spend 2 hours with this little man after having him with me 24/7. Whatever happens, we know the Lord is in control of the outcome and that when he does come home he will be able to be healthy and more capable of living normally.

Monday, September 6, 2010


I've been trying to focus on the positive recently, and after my last novel of a post, I feel like giving people something to celebrate! So without further ado....

5 Advantages to Not Being Pregnant Anymore

1. I can brush my teeth without throwing up.

2. I no longer have to eat breakfast within 15 minutes of waking up to prevent more throwing up.

3. My feet are almost back to a normal size.

4. Sleeping is easy! (I can still say this since my baby is sleeping in another location. I have a feeling this will wear off faster than all the others.)

5. In another week my swelling will hopefully have gone down enough to wear shoes and my wedding ring again!

5 Advantages to Having a C-Section

1. No episiotomy or tearing. Need I say more?

2. I'm not supposed to lift anything. I get to be waited on hand and foot :)

3. I am now more empathetic towards my Uncle Blake who recently had spinal surgery and had to relearn how to walk. I may rub it in that it only took me two days to get on my feet, whereas it took him almost a month. (totally kidding btw)

4. My doctor told me I am not allowed to clean for 6-8 weeks. Whereas this will be hard for me to just leave things alone, the break will still be nice.

5. I'm not supposed to climb stairs. I will never feel lazy when I take the elevator.

I have many things to be grateful for. More to come! I'm probably going to be blogging much more now that I have a doctor's order to take it easy...

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Birth Story

This week has been one of the most defining experiences of my life, but has also been filled with some of the most traumatic moments I've ever had to deal with. My mom suggested that maybe writing everything down would help me sort through it in my mind and be able to deal with it better. I don't know who would want to read it, and if you are currently pregnant I actually recommend that you don't read it. However, I'm sure having other people know what I am going through and also had to go through, will help me to better cope with what has happened and what I will still have to face in the future.

I guess most of this started three weeks ago when I started realizing that I was swelling more than normal and that my blood pressure (which pre-pregnancy ran around 90/60) was creeping upwards of 150/110 at times. My doctor and I kept in touch and after a few stays in the hospital I was diagnosed with preeclampsia. The only way to solve this was to deliver the baby, but we figured we could hold off long enough to deliver that Skylar would be fine. I was put on strict bedrest to try to keep him in there as long as possible, but last Monday everything reached a point where it threatened my life too much to have him stay in utero. Everyone assured me that he would transition just fine outside of the womb. I think in the back of my mind I knew that he would have to spend some time in the NICU, but since he was only 2 weeks shy of "full-term" (37 weeks) I figured he would still come home with us and we could be a family together.

All things considered when I walked into the hospital on Monday I did know in the back of my mind that there was a chance that I would be delivering my baby before I left. My sister took me up to perinatology and we ran a few tests. After these tests were done they decided to admit me overnight and sent me over to labor and delivery. I didn't realize how serious they were about the possibility of me delivering that day until I started joking with the nurse at the front desk. She had seen me a lot in the past few days, and as I was signing the same paperwork for the third time I remarked, "Man, by the time I actually come here to have my baby I'm going to be a pro at this." She responded with, "Uhm, I think that is why you are here." .....Now enter meltdown mode.

Thankfully my sister had packed most of my hospital bag, and I had created a google doc to help her pack the last few things. So with this new revelation, I texted Ryan at work to let him know that he probably wanted to come to the hospital sooner rather than later. He arrived and we waited awhile to meet with my doctor. Thankfully, one of our friends ended up being our nurse for the evening. It was good to kind of have somebody to abdicate for us and just understand our concerns. We waited around in a room for awhile while they monitored me and Skylar, and around 10 o'clock my doctor came in and announced that enough was enough and it was just time to induce me. They started off with just a cervical gel to see if that would be enough to start me into labor.

After about 10 hours of that I was still only at about 1 cm, so they decided to start me on Pitocin. For those of you unacquainted with this drug, I encourage you to remain that way. It basically kickstarts labor, but is well known for intensifying contractions. Most doctors make you start an epidural when you start Pitocin, but I wanted to see how far I could make it without an epidural. Around this time my mom showed up, and I was already completely exhausted despite barely having any real contractions or progress in labor. I hadn't really slept in the past day since I was constantly awoken by someone wanting to take a blood sample or run tests.

It was now about 4 o'clock in the afternoon and I had progressed to about 2 cms. My mom suggested that I take an epidural since they wanted to crank up the dosage of Pitocin they were giving me. I decided this was good advice, and after a quick visit from the anesthesiologist, I decided that epidurals were a gift from God. With my epidural in they decided to really crank up the Pitocin, and start some heavier contractions. I was fine with this since I could not feel a thing. Unfortunately, about 30 minutes later Skylar's heart rate started dropping into the 30s.

I'm not sure if it was scarier to watch his heart rate disappear, or to watch how quickly my room flooded with doctors and nurses. It was very apparent that something was wrong and the next few minutes were vital to keeping my baby alive. My doctor was not at the hospital at the time, but another doctor proceeded to break my water, stop the Pitocin, and insert a device that would monitor Skylar more effectively from inside the uterus. Thankfully, these measures worked and Skylar's heart rate picked back up.

Unfortunately, this meant that I was left to my own devices to progress in labor without Pitocin, and with a body that was still thinking it should be 35 weeks pregnant. Needless to say, we went another night with not a lot of sleep, and not a lot of progress. It was however painless, thanks to the epidural :) The next morning they decided to slowly start creeping up the levels of Pitocin again since it had been over 30 hours since I had been induced, and since they normally want to deliver a baby within 24 hours of your water breaking.

I can't say when, but somewhere around mid-morning my epidural stopped working. It wasn't the worst experience ever, but I could tell a huge difference in my pain management. I suddenly had to start breathing through my contractions and at times pant or moan just to endure it. I had progressed to about 4 cms, but considering that I had been in labor for 30+ hours this was rather unimpressive. My doctor came in and informed me that she was going to give me one more hour to progress to a 5, otherwise I would have to deliver the baby via C-section. My mom joked that it was a good thing they gave me a specific goal, since I am a very goal oriented person. They proceeded to crank up the Pitocin, and the next hour was one of the most painful I can remember.

I have a very high pain threshold, so once my mom saw me panting and moaning and crying through contractions she knew that something was wrong. She was able to figure this out even further when I told them to page the anesthesiologist. He came in and proceeded to dose me up with more medication in my epidural, but despite a large amount of drugs, my pain stayed pretty consistent. My doctor then came in to check me, and to everyone's surprise I had not only progressed to a 5, but was all the way to a 7. In the past hour my body had almost doubled the progress it had made in the last 35(ish), and had done it without the relief of an epidural. Yes, I'm basically awesome, but I was also in some serious pain. It took about another hour for me to get to 10 cms, and was almost completely effaced when Skylar's heart rate started dropping again.

It was at this point that they started prepping an OR for my delivery, and the anesthesiologist returned to redo the epidural. I have a few moments during this time that I know that I blacked out. I don't remember being transferred to the OR, but I remember waking up under their bright lights and listening to the heart rate monitor and silently talking to Skylar and trying to help him bring his heart rate under control. I'm sure he was just as exhausted as I was at that point, but my doctor knew how desperate I was to avoid a C-section so she let me try pushing a few times. Unfortunately every time I pushed his heart rate dropped lower and lower until it disappeared altogether.

I remember my doctor telling me that we would have to take him out via C-section, and I remember breaking down into the biggest sobs I've ever cried. I felt so helpless, and scared, and nervous for the next procedure my body was going to go through. The anesthesiologist then started testing my body to see if I was still feeling any sensation since they prefer to keep you awake during a C-section. He had a special pen or something that he would push on your body that had a retractable pin. He ran it all up and down my body to test whether I was feeling pain (the pin) or pressure (the pen). I kept telling him that I could feel it when he pressed it against my stomach, but he was positive that I was just being hysterical. I can't say I really blame him considering the large amounts of drugs that he had previously been giving me.

Next thing I knew I was being cut open....and I could feel the knife. I started yelling that I could feel it. The next thing I knew they put me to sleep and I woke up back in labor and delivery. If you want to know what happened in the meantime, you'd have to ask Ryan since I have no memory of the next two hours or so. All I know is I woke up in a new bed, with staples holding my stomach together, and my baby was not with me anymore. This is where shear panic and distress set in. I've been told that for the next few hours I kept asking the same questions over and over again (I was pretty doped up). I kept asking where the baby was, how he was doing, what time he was born, where I was, how big he was, etc.

Thankfully Skylar made it through the delivery, but like myself was a little worse for the wear. The doctors aren't exactly sure what went wrong, why his heart rate kept dropping, why I could feel the incision, and why everything that possibly could go wrong did. The cord was wrapped around his shoulder and so they think that maybe every time I pushed or they turned up the Pitocin it put too much pressure on the cord and cut off oxygen and blood to Skylar. Nevertheless, we both made it through the delivery process and I can now say that I've experienced three labors in one. Laboring with an epidural, laboring without an epidural, and a C-section. I'm basically a pro.

I have a lot of thoughts going through my head still that I'm sure I will write about later. Through it all I had some strong impressions that this was going to be a hard process, but that the outcome would result in me and my son being safe and alive. We're definitely both a little worse for the wear, but our doctors assure us that we won't carry any of the trauma with us for the rest of our lives. In the meantime, I'm grateful for modern medicine because without it my son and I likely wouldn't still be here. We've been mourning a lot around here lately since we are now home, but we had to leave Skylar at the NICU. He'll likely be there for a few more weeks, and my heart just yearns to be with him and hold him. Especially after being so physically attached for the last 8 months. However, today my mom told me that she was praying for guidance in how to help us cope and she received the strong prompting that both Skylar and I narrowly escaped death, and because of that we should be grateful.

I will still mourn the absence of my baby, but I so look forward to the day that we finally get to bring him home. We've put away his clothes and removed the physical reminders of the fact that he is not here with us, but I rejoice that we will have the opportunity to bring him home someday. I don't have to wait until the eternities to be with my baby, and it is because of the priesthood blessings we received, the knowledge of medicine we have been blessed with, and the ability of our doctors to listen to the promptings of the Spirit and know how to keep the two of us in mortality. I have much to be grateful for, and I plan on remembering that every time I cry during the next few weeks.