Thursday, January 17, 2013

1 Year Post-Surgery Anniversary

At the end of December and beginning of January, I kept thinking about how January 11th was Dylan's one year post-surgery anniversary. I was excited for it and had plans of doing this blog post on that day to celebrate it. However, my husband's grandmother passed away and so we drove down to my husband's hometown to attend her funeral and were traveling on January 11th and it totally slipped my mind. Today I looked at the calendar and realized it was the 17th and I had missed the big day. I guess that just goes to show how normal life is...thinking about Dylan's surgery one year ago wasn't even on my mind in the midst of normal life.

I do, however, still want to post about my thoughts regarding this one year mark.

One year ago on January 11th, this is what our day looked like....

It was a HARD day (and weeks of recovery to follow). While in the midst of it, you just do plug along, you deal with the emotions or you push them away if they interfere with your tasks, you ask questions, you comfort, you just do whatever it takes to get you through each minute. Looking back, I get emotional thinking about how exhausting the whole process was...emotionally, physically, mentally. We spent a year leading up to the big surgery day and we got through that year much of the same just deal with it. I like to think of Dylan's leg journey as climbing a mountain. We spent the whole year leading up to surgery steadily climbing this mountain, making it a little further up every few months, hitting milestones, getting opinions, making decisions. It was a rocky mountain that left us exhausted and wanting it all to end. Then you see the top of the mountain, but you realize you have the hardest part left, the tip of the mountain with the steepest incline, the part that drains you emotionally and physically past the point that you think you can handle. That was surgery and recovery. But we survived it. Dylan survived it. It was hard, but we did it. After surgery and recovery, it was smooth sailing from there. Sure, there were rocks along the way...figuring out this new life with a prosthetic leg, helping him adjust to certain things, dealing with rashes or other issues, etc. But overall....we sailed, we ran, we rolled, we enjoyed the past year of getting down off that mountain. And now we can look back at that mountain that we overcame and we can appreciate the lessons we learned about ourselves. We are stronger than we ever imagined. We can get through hard times. We are closer as a family. It may have been a hard couple years, but we have witnessed our lives being blessed more in the past two years than we ever have and probably ever would have had we not gone through this trial. We can now look at Dylan and not only see how we imagined and believed he could be, but we are seeing it come to pass. We always had faith that he would be okay and now we are seeing it...he is not only okay, but he is thriving and doing AMAZINGLY well.

If I had to describe Dylan I would use these words:

Adorable, funny, caring, strong, independent, obedient, stubborn, happy, determined, loving.

The fact that he wears a prosthetic leg does not define who he is. It enhances it.

We love having Dylan in our family. We love the happiness and joy that he brings us. We love the challenges that his special life has presented us, but we love the blessing that he is to our lives. Two years ago, we couldn't have ever imagined the past two years would have played out as they did, but we wouldn't change any of it. We are better people because of it. Dylan is a stronger boy because of it. He can do amazing things....he has and will continue to do so.

He runs, he jumps, he plays, he teases, he laughs, he loves...he is leading a totally and completely normal life. We had faith that he would, but it was hard to imagine at times. Here he is though...your totally typical two year old. Take that, amputation surgery, he showed you! :)

A look at the past year...

My goodness, we love this boy!
Happy one year post-surgery anniversary, son. You amaze us!

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Drum roll please....

And the gender of Baby #3 is.......

Well, first I'll keep you all in suspense for a little longer and show you the fun we had in finding out. :)

We traveled to my hometown for Christmas to spend the holidays with my family, so we figured that would be the best place to have our Gender Reveal Party. The drive to my hometown is a good 20 hours each way (that is including stops and what not) and it takes us two days to do it. So the day we left, we left excited to see family, get away for a little bit, to celebrate Christmas, and, of course, to finally find out the gender of our little baby. Well, a little over two hours into our drive, we had made a stop for lunch and as we were eating we realized we had FORGOTTEN the envelope with our baby's gender back at home on the fridge. did we do that??? hahaha. We frantically started making calls to our doctor's office to see if there was a way they could email my husband's sister the results (since she wouldn't be at the party) and then she could email it to the lady my mom had found to make our reveal cake. After lots of phone calls between sisters and parents and doctor offices, we got it all squared away and were still 100% in the dark about the gender. Phew! :)

So the day of the Gender Reveal Party....

My sister got some cute decorations and some pink and blue juices.

Then we all poured our juice according to what we thought the gender was.

All the cousins...a pretty even mix, but I believe it's one more pink than blue.

Kaden guessed boy.

And Dylan guessed girl.

All the adults....more pinks than blues.
And PS...we don't typically all dress alike, but we had taken family pictures earlier in the day, which is why we are mostly in black and gray. haha.

My good friend, Erin, stopped by for the big reveal. She guessed blue. I'm SO glad she came!! LOVE YOU ERIN!

Bryson and I with our guesses. Both pink. :)

And then it was time to cut the cake. A lady who goes to my parent's church volunteered to make the cake for us so that no one in the family would know. Thank you, thank you!! Beneath the frosting was either pink cake or blue for girl, blue for boy (obviously). :)

Drum roll.....

And the gender is.....


I totally got all teary eyed. Bryson and I had a feeling it was a girl, but it was still a shock to actually see the confirmation. We each had a very distinct impression when we were pregnant with Dylan and found out he was a boy, that the next one would be a girl. But that was over two years ago and we were starting to wonder if what we felt so long ago was right or not. During the gender ultrasound there was one quick shot where I was like, "Hmmm...maybe it is a boy" and another where I was like, "No, maybe it is a girl." We left the ultrasound totally confused. The tech and nurses and our doctor did a great job at not hinting one way or the other and so we really had no idea. We obviously felt like it was a girl, but at the same time felt like it very well could be a boy too. BUT IT'S A GIRL!! And we are so excited!!! We would've been so excited for another boy because we love our little guys. We're kind of like, Oh great...what do we do with a baby girl!?! hahaha! We know boys! We know how to handle baby boys. And I'd have to say we kind of make good looking little boys! :) But it'll be so much fun to switch things up a bit and for the boys to have a little baby sister. And let's face, what mom doesn't want a little girl to dress up and do girly things with? :) We can't wait to meet her!!

It was such a fun way to find out the gender and share it with everyone. We had Bryson's family there on Facetime. It was just so much fun! Thanks to everyone involved and who participated! :)

And in case you were all dying to see a belly I am at 23 weeks.

It's kind of a weird picture (Bryson and I were just being silly while taking it), but it's the most recent one I've got.