A Diagnosis

Autism, Apraxia of Speech (CAS), therapy...all words I never thought would be associated with my child, but have crept into my life one step at a time. About a year ago, I thought Autism had been ruled out, maybe I just had it in my head that it had been, but as of Thursday of this week, in Avery's pediatricians opinion, he is mildly autistic. This diagnosis was followed by the speech therapist diagnosing him with Apraxia of Speech on Wednesday.

I am flooded with emotions right now. Not sure which path to turn to first. My mind is overwhelmed while my heart aches for Avery. No mother wants their child to struggle. My goal right now is to stay focused on the big picture; it's not the end of the world, it's not a death sentence. None of this means he won't function normally and grow up to be as bright and intelligent as any other child, it just means he'll have to work a little bit harder. Even though I can make myself look on the positive side, right now I'm coping with all of this. It's difficult to digest all of this information at once. I've had to make myself stop researching for a few days just to allow my mind time to grasp this new life.

I put together a video for you all and mostly for Avery. It is ironic that I was singing this song to him the other night and he wanted me to hold him tight. Normally, he doesn't like for me to sing, but now he request this song.

Here's my promise to you sweet Avery:


My Guardian Angel

I've been contemplating publishing this post for a few days, but decided it was ok to share this part of my life with you all. So here goes:

I believe it’s impossible to ever forget a great loss in your life. No matter how much you try to tuck away those awful memories, the scars still remain. Often times when I think my wounds have healed; something comes along and opens them. It stings. One of those times is approaching and I wasn’t excepting it to sting this badly.

It was this time last year I found out I was pregnant with my second child. A sweet little surprise from God, but a welcomed gift nonetheless. I was a little apprehensive because of some personal issues, but I was excited to be a mom to another precious angel, no matter the circumstances. I couldn’t wait to go to the doctor and hear the little heartbeat and see the little “bean” on the ultrasound. I was also excited for Avery to become a big brother.

I was waiting to tell my family until I had my first doctor’s appointment on July 13th, 2010. As any mom can probably testify, it doesn’t feel “real” until you go to the doctor and have your pregnancy confirmed. I was no different. I was so ready for that date to come I could hardly stand it.

It was the morning of July 12th, 2010 that my life changed. I woke up that morning and felt fine. Nothing seemed out of the ordinary besides being the normal preggo tired. I got in the shower and noticed some blood. I wasn't too alarmed at first because it’s not completely uncommon for a woman to spot during pregnancy. I cried out to God and prayed and prayed for it to quit. Still not trying to get too upset, I got ready for work, got Avery ready, and headed out the door. The bleeding seemed to subside and I just kept telling myself it was normal spotting. When I got to work, things changed. I’ll spare you the details, but I knew something wasn’t right. I began to cramp really bad. By this time my OB’s office was open and I called right away. The nurse told me to go straight to the ER. I was hysterical at this point. I called my family and told them to get to the hospital. My co-worker offered to drive me to the hospital, but I knew if I didn’t drive myself, I was going to completely lose what little composure I had left.

I checked into the hospital and they began drawing blood, giving me IV’s, asking a million questions, and so forth. My mind was racing and my worst fear was coming true. An ultrasound tech came in and took me back. Having had a baby before, I knew what it should sound like. I knew I’d hear a lot of swooshing sounds and then I should hear a little heartbeat. I never heard a heartbeat. The tech never changed her facial expression, no smile, no frown; just a complete stare at the monitor. I asked her if my baby was alive and she told me she wasn’t allowed to diagnose anything. She then stepped out of the room and the radiologist came in and took a few more pictures.

It was the longest day of my life. Deep down I knew my sweet baby had gone to be with Jesus, but my heart kept praying it was just a rare fluke. The ER doctor came in later and confirmed my fears and told me he believed the pregnancy was atopic. He ordered me to go to my OB for more test. I was released from the hospital and headed to my OB. She did another ultrasound and ran more blood work. She was able to rule out an atopic pregnancy and said the mass on my tube was a cyst. My hCG level was still pretty high so she sent me home to continue the miscarriage process and ordered me back in the next day to check my levels again. Luckily, my levels were significantly lower the next day and no other treatment was necessary.

I still have a hard time with the entire miscarriage process. It feels so insincere. I know that there wasn't anything else that could have been done and the baby was so small that the naked eye couldn't have seen it, but it's hard not to feel like I flushed my child down the toilet. I miss my sweet baby every day. I often wonder what he/she would have looked liked or what name would have been chosen. I think about how Avery would have been the sweetest big brother and how precious it would have been to see these two bond. I find my peace in knowing that my angel baby never knew pain or evil and lives with our Redeemer in Heaven. I know Jesus holds my sweet baby tightly and that gives me a peace like no other. A piece of my heart died on July 12th, 2010 and I will never be the same. No matter how preciously small, the loss of a baby will change you forever. I look forward to the day when I'm able to see my precious angels face and give all the kisses and hugs I've longed to give my baby, but until then, when the wind blows, I know it's my guardian angel passing me by.


If I Could Have A Flower

If I had a single flower for every time I think about you, I could walk forever in my garden. ~Claudia Ghandi

It saddens me to think that Avery won't remember my Nanny and Pop when they were alive. I wish he could see the smile on their faces when I brought him over to their house, the pure joy in their eyes to see their handsome great-grandson, who they loved so dearly. Much to my dismay, I can't change death to bring them back; however, I can tell my sweet child everything about his Nanny and Pop. I can tell him how much they loved him, how much they loved their family, and how much they loved each other. I can show him precious pictures of them holding him as a baby, I can show him videos of them smiling and talking to him, I can take him to their grave and let him talk to them. No, he doesn't understand yet, but he will one day and he will know everything I can possibly tell him about his precious Nanny and Pop, whom we miss so dearly.


Happy Father's Day!

My father didn't tell me how to live; he lived, and let me watch him do it." -- Clarence Budington Kelland


Sprinklin’ Safari

Let's go sprinklin' now

Everybody's learning how

Come on and

Safari with me!


The Heart of a Champion

Chris Landreau, a firefighter from Georgia, had the Heart of a Champion. On February 4th his life changed when he received the news he had stage 4 cancer. He took the challenge to beat cancer with an attitude like no other. Cancer wasn't going to rule his life and he fought the battle with courage and integrity. I was saddened by the news today that Chris passed away. He had a stroke last night and tragically lost his life at age 26 leaving a wife and two young daughters behind. My heart is breaking for this entire family and community. Chris truly touched the lives of thousands, including mine.

I've included a song that was written for Chris. Please take the time to listen to it.


Well, Poo-Poo

My sweet Avery has earned the title “master of destruction.” Every time I hear the words “ut-oh” come out of his mouth my heart sinks. I never know what I’m about to find. Sometimes it’s as simple as he dropped a toy, but other times it is one, huge mess. It seems lately my child has a fascination with poop. Yep, poop! As a mother who is trying to get into nursing school you would think poop wouldn’t bother me, but gagging I’ve done over these past few weeks. Lots of gagging, in fact.

Sure we’ve had the occasional “Avery puts hand in poopy diaper” scenario, but much to my dismay, it’s gotten a little bit worse. A couple of weeks ago he went into the other room and was quiet, of course him being quiet meant something was up. He walked into the living room and literally handed me little pieces of poop. I wasn’t expecting poop and at first it didn’t really look like poop. So I smelled it, confirmed what it was, gagged, and about threw up. Once I got myself together, I got busy cleaning the nasty mess.

As if that wasn’t bad enough, I picked up Avery from daycare last week and thought it would be a nice day for him to run in the sprinklers. Stupid me thought since we weren’t in a pool, sure, no swim diaper needed. HA! Ten minutes into the sprinkler fun we had poop everywhere. I took his swim suite off, got rid of the poop, turned around and saw him picking his butt and rubbing poop on his chest. Seriously? I proceed to clean Avery off using the water from the sprinklers. Needless to say, I didn’t get by poop free, he rubbed his hands on me too. GAG!

Unfortunately, I didn’t get by the weekend without a poopy mess. Same story of poop on hand, poop on toilet, clean and sterilize everything, oh, but wait, he went and sat on the cat with a freshly cleaned bottom and needless to say, cat hair was everywhere. (INSERT GAG HERE!)
It was a mild adventure compared to the above, but I was close to throwing up.

Is anyone else having these issues with their toddler? It doesn’t matter if Avery poops in the potty or in his pull up, it seems to be a crazy ordeal. I try to hold him down while I change him, but he can still reach his hands to his bottom. GAG!

Tips and tricks anyone? I don’t know if my stomach can handle much more of the “poopy-ut-oh’s!”