2 weeks new

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!!! 

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This new year was pretty exciting for us because we rang it in with our girl, Logan…. Then, today, we brought home our sweet Rhyann. (Seriously, she’s sweet.) So, the old year ended and the new year began with our sweet girls with us. And, that is just about every drop of perfection I could ever imagine.

And, I can’t believe they are two weeks old. In the moment, I felt that I was in the hospital for forever, I thought the pain would never stop – and, I have a high tolerance. I thought the girls would never come home. And, it’s literally only been two weeks since I delivered, and three since I was admitted into the hospital. I think the saying goes “the days are long, the years are short” and if these two weeks are any indicator of how fast the years will fly by, I’m terrified. It’s amazing how things can change in literally a day. It’s both encouraging and heart breaking at the same time.

Two week in and we’re already starting to see patterns in their personalities, which is pretty neat. Rhyann is calm the majority of the time and she doesn’t need much; all she’ll ask is to be swaddled and fed. That’s it. Little Ms. Logan, on the other hand, is my snuggle bug. She loves to snuggle and would prefer to be in your arms than anywhere else! …. And, she has no problem with letting you know it. She also loves a swaddle and a nice bottle, but if you cuddle her close, you’ve won her over. The girls sleep like champs and are eating much, much better. We have our first doctor’s appointment tomorrow… it’s just a weight check, but I’m looking forward to it. I’m nervous about getting everyone ready and out of the house in time, but I believe if I prepare well enough it will alleviate a lot of stress tomorrow.

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See what I mean? Perfect personality capture.

I think this is the second year, I’ve ended my year with a word I want to focus on and center my life around. This year, my word is intentional. It’s so important to me because I saw the gravity of how difficult and broken things can become if we aren’t focused, brave, and thoughtful in everything we do.

One of my friends posted this scripture on Insta today and it was literally just exactly what was needed.
Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. – Philippians 3:14

Now that I’m a mama, what I’m expected and called to do is so very different and much heavier than just anything I’ve ever experienced before aside from being a wife. This calling to mother, to nurture, to lead to Christ, to encourage…. To actively show patience, love, forgiveness, grace, and integrity in a way that I’ve never had to before. I have to treat my girls in a way that teaches them to trust me with everything no matter what and even in my faults and theirs. I have to behave in such a way that shows them Jesus even before they truly understand who He is. I want to love them and respect them in a way that always makes them feel like real people with real thoughts and feelings that matter.. while teaching them the balance of being a child and respecting rules, boundaries, and adults. And, that’s HARD because as adults our thoughts and priorities are so very different than those of a child, but matter just the same. Oh, and the patience. Two babies who tend to be hungry, wet, sleepy, and wanting cuddles at the same time. Two that can’t get anywhere without being carried and depend on you for it all….. takes a lot of patience. Because it’s day one, today has been much easier than I know the coming days will be, but I’m determined to be patient with my girls, especially when they can’t control or fully understand what it happening. (Sidebar: It’s funny how quickly & efficiently you ways to get things done!) Accomplishing these goals, even on the days that I try my best and still fail, require intentional planning and intentionally remaining in the moment, and intentionally staying face to face with Jesus.

I’m forming a list of ways in which I want to truly be intentional…….. and, working to not make the list so long. Probably need to prioritize and schedule some acts, but I also want to work on being intentional in the moment. I get so stinking distracted a lot and sometimes moments pass me by because I’m hesitant or scared or too into my own thoughts to focus. Sometimes it’s fear. Others it’s a time crunch and sometimes it’s just not feeling like it. Have to work on that.

Forgetting (read: {for me} forgiving) and straining – literally working to push ahead – is hard. But, so beneficial. It’s an opportunity to experience newness and growth. Am I afraid? Yes. I am. But, I’m looking forward to what can be. Looking forward to the opportunities that will be. Looking forward to watching my girls grow and experiencing life with them.

If 2015 is going to be anything, it will most definitely be sweet.

 

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obsessed

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My goodness…… My goodness. My goodness.

As much of a crying, stressed, nervous wreck as I am…….. These girls are my everything. I am in awe of them. They make me smile, lift my spirits, and completely fill me with a hope I hardly understand. I can’t stop staring at them.

I love kissing their cheeks and bellies…. Holding their hands and rubbing their little feet. They have the sweetest toes in life.
And, their breath. I love feeling their backs rise and fall… I love feeling their breathe on my chest or neck…. I love just watching them breathe. And, hearing them hiccup. And, sneeze. One of them coughed in my face and I didn’t even care. lol.
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I love that they have constant bed head even after I brush it. I know they’re going to have the curliest hair ever. And, I’m looking forward to crowing their little heads with all of the bows and headbands that are mounting!

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The sound of their cries stirs me to my core… Tears flowed down my face the first time I heard them cry in the operating room… let me know that they were real, that this life, this dream was really happening, that they were okay.

I love how they kick and flail when they’re aren’t cuddled or swaddled…. I love how they calm when you run their heads, hold their hands, or hold them close. How they seek comfort, familiarity, and security and find it in me. I love how easy they are.

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I still can’t believe they’re mine. That they are the world’s sweetest answers to the most painful of prayers. I’m so thankful. So thankful for them. Thankful that such a hard year is ending and that my “… in with the new” begins with them. These girls, although they came early, came at the perfect time. And, I love them for that….. Something I hope they never understand, but I will be forever grateful for.

I love them because they made me a mama.

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speechless…

day1I am a mama.
It’s unreal. It’s beautiful. It’s certainly special.

It’s hard to believe that a couple of weeks ago these little girls were in my belly kicking and squirming….. There are moments where I expect to feel a jolt or someone getting comfortable but instead I have moments where these little girls are in my arms squirming and peacefully laying on my chest.

I thank God for my girls daily……
Thank Him for honoring his promises…..
I thank God for blessing us with children I never thought we’d have.
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The past couple of weeks have been so difficult for me. Ten days in the hospital, a kidney infection, sky high blood pressure, and sudden onset of pre-eclampsia really caused me to be very emotional and disappointed about how the last couple of weeks played out. Every time I even began to complain, I was reminded of how God saw to it that when my health began to falter, I’d be in the best place possible to be taken care of. I was reminded how of great of a pregnancy I’d had and how great it was that I’d been able to carry my girls to 34 weeks. My doctor (who is phenomenal) constantly reminded me of how my small frame carried so much for as long as it could…. that my belly was measuring 43 cm at 34w. That my uterus was literally stretched well past that of one carrying a singleton full term and that everything was fine.

A quick little update:
My girls were born by c-section due to pre-eclampia at 34w and 1 day. They weighed 4 lbs 13 oz and 4 lbs 6 oz and are in NICU to basically feed and grow. They are doing a magnificent job and are meeting their milestones and taking all of their adjustments in stride. For our hospital, they are required to meet a few milestones before going home which they seem to be doing a lot faster than I thought they would. logan4
In order to go home, they have to be able to:
a.) maintain their body temps b.) gain and maintain their weight c.) sleep with no apnea d.) suck/swallow/breathe simultaneously.

And, right now they’re able to maintain their body temps and should be transitioning from their incubator to an open crib within the next day or so. Initially, their incubator was heated, covered by a blanket that kept the light out, and they slept on a z-flow which prevented them from moving around so they wouldn’t burn calories and in turn lose weight. They were able to have their lamps turned off a couple of days ago and as of today, they no longer had their z-flow or blanket covering their incubators! Not only that, but their incubator tops will now stay open for 24 hours! If they do well, THEN they will move to an open crib!! Definitely progress and definitely reason to praise God and be ever so grateful that they’re able to maintain their body temps on their own!!!

The girls are sleeping incredibly well (no sleep apnea!!!) and are able to drink their milk from a bottle with no issue. Suck/swallow/breathe – check!!  The nurses are steadily increasing the amount of milk their have and the girls are able to keep up with the increases!! They do tend to fall asleep during feedings, but they are finishing and that’s most important! Logan has a feeding tube that was put in because she was having difficulty finishing her bottles at first. But now, she’s eating like a champ and hasn’t had even a portion of her bottles fed through her tube for the last couple of days! They’ve gained most of the weight they lost after delivery, which is normal, and are ounces from their birth weight.

I was discharged from the hospital today and had to leave my sweet girls which was easier than I thought it would be because I know they’re in great hands. It’s not easy by any stretch of the imagination, but knowing they’re being taken care of and are best where they are makes it less stressful. Plus, I have access to their charts and can call the NICU anytime (which I will before I go to sleep!!) to get updates and check in! logan3

These girls are the sweetest little people…. It’s amazing to see how much they change every day….. It’s so fun to watch them learn and do new things – like smile in their sleep or calm when held skin to skin or cuddled.

All of this feels like a dream. It feels so unreal. I don’t think that these little people are the ones that have been with me for 8 months, that they’re MINE, that they’ll be coming home with us soon has really hit me. I think I’m still in shock that I even got pregnant so to be here taking care of my babies seems impossible, like a fairy tale.

But, I could never be more grateful. Their lives are testaments to God’s goodness and grace, his love and complete affections for us. His fantastic plans that not only blow ours out of the water but bring us more than we could even think, plan, or imagine. This time last year or even January of this year, I would not have imagined that by the end of the year, we would have two beautiful daughters of our very own.

I’m humbled and honored that we would be blessed in such a major way…… Honoring God in my parenting is my ultimate goal; I don’t know of another way to “repay” or show thankfulness other than treating the gifts I’ve been given with the utmost respect and gentleness. The girls’ birth has also challenged me to be more respectful and honoring to my husband, as well. I want them to grow up with a healthy image of relationships – their ups and downs, the amount of work, grace, and forgiveness involved, the benefit of them.

I’m looking forward to this experience more than anything in the world…. but, I’m also looking forward to this “nap” I’m about to take. Why just a nap? Because I’m up every couple hours pumping and taking meds. Woot – woot. lol. Great practice for when the girls get home,right?

More updates coming soon!!!
Thank y’all so much for the notes, gifts, visits, emails, texts, and on and on and on! 🙂 We’ve loved them and they’ve made our last couple of weeks that much more bearable!!

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