Oct 29, 2015

Lincoln: Eight Months

Eight Months
July 2015

Every month I know I say the same thing, "I can't believe you are growing so fast." And again it is true. How is it that you were my little tiny baby just yesterday and today your laughing and singing and spreading your full-faced infectious smile.

You weigh 20 lbs 12 ounces now, although now they weigh you fully clothed and with your helmet on. Your length I have no idea because they haven't measured you at the doctor in forever.

Speaking of doctor, the reason we know your weight to the ounce is because we did go to the doctor recently. But not your baby doctor. You fell off the bed while Mommy was cleaning your little helmet. And let's just say that the fall was longer than you are tall. I screamed and held you and ran to the nurse to get you checked. You soothed quickly in my arms and it was a great relief. You wouldn't put any weight on your leg so we headed in. Congratulations, you got your second set of x-rays. (The first were your chest x-rays when you were born). Also, congratulations, your leg is not broken. You, sir, must be tough.

Thank for being tough.

And also, sorry. I'll try not to let you fall off the bed again as an infant. Although I'm sure you'll someday fall out of many trees or maybe off the frame of a four poster bed, and maybe you'll break your arm or leg one of those times.

I pray you take lots of adventures and that you're not afraid.

This month we've been busy that it's hard to count the milestones. This month we've been adventuring around Colorado in the mountains and to the tiny towns.

I will say that this month you attended your first Fourth of July Parade in Lake City. And really, you were in the parade, so that's a first. We had watermelon and played bingo in the park. But, to your mom's disappointment you didn't get to try turkey legs, because there were no turkey legs for sale this year in town.

Now that I really think about it you had a lot of first among the adventures. You played in your first Lake City Open at the mini-golf in Lake City. Although 'played' is a bit of a stretch because you mostly just chewed on the tiny little plastic orange club.

And you got to see you first movie in theatres. Typically sane people don't bring small babies to theatres out of the politeness of their hearts for the other people watching. We're polite, but the local Mountaineer Theatre held a special showing of Jurassic World for camp staff and so we brought you along. We put you in the ear protection muffs from the shotgun range and you fell asleep halfway through the movie and slept through the credits. I will note that you didn't seem scared at all of the dinosaurs and so that makes you extra tough.

You also got your helmet off. Your head grew so fast that it got too small and the doctor said you were all done. Your head's not perfect, but I'm sure ours aren't either. And who's aiming for perfect anyway. Won't be me.

Lots of adventures in Colorado Little Buddy. I do hope you come to love it here.

Love you always, my tough little guy,

Oct 28, 2015

Lincoln: Seven Months

Seven Months

June 4, 2014

Lincoln, my little buddy,

Today you are seven months old. How can it be true? How can you already be closer to one year old than the day you were born?

You sweet boy are more of a boy than a baby to me now. You can sit up all on your own and you can eat real food and you radiate joy out of the smiles and laughs that you gift us with daily.

I have no idea how much you weigh or how tall you are because we are in Colorado, in the middle of nowhere, and I haven't seen a scale in over a month. But you do feel heavier, even thought your pot belly is slimming out daily. And you do seem taller, especially when you try so hard to stand on your own.

You do, though, radiate a joy always. I pray that it's a joy from the Lord. I know surely that the Lord instilled a joy in you that he knew your momma needed. That after a year of tears he sent you to me, a picture of his unending joy. And every day you've made me smile at least once if not a hundred times, even amongst the poop and the crying and the fact that your skin is freaking out a bit up here in the Colorado air.

Just a few nights ago you slept for an entire eight hours straight. I woke and I thought for a second you must be dead, because you'd only slept at most five hours in a row before this. The next night you slept 7 hours in a row and I do hope you've decided to make this a pattern. I love you dear little one, but your momma wouldn't mind if you let her get a few more minutes of sleep now and then.

I mentioned your skin and it has been freaking out. I don't know if it's the altitude or the dry climate or something I could be feeding you or what your very own pediatrician called "fat baby rash" but your chubby little legs trap sweat and heat and the back of your knees are crusty. We're healing it now but I'm sorry if it somehow scars you for life.

I'm learning.

You talk to us all the time now, in your own little language, and you smile in delight when you figure out a new sound or a new tone. I love your voice. I love that you stare into my eyes and smile and talk as if you love me more than anything or anyone in the entire world. I know someday you you'll love another lady more than me and I'm okay with that, but for now, feel free to keep loving me, okay?

Your daddy makes you laugh more than anyone. He can make you giggle or tickle you until you can't breathe and you get the hiccups for hours. There's a way you love him that's special too. I pray he's always your favorite man.

My growing little boy. I love you. I can't believe you were once my little baby and I can't believe you will, in the blink of an eye, be 18 and leaving for college...

Happy 7 Months.

Love you always,

Oct 27, 2015

Lincoln: Six Months

Six Months
June 2015
Little Buddy,
I cannot fathom how you got to be six months old. Just yesterday you were only four months old and it must have been last week that you were born.
But now you are our little boy. Every day I look at you amazed at how you’ve grown so quickly and how you are turning into more of a little man and less of a baby. I often ask ‘where did my little baby go?’
You are hitting all the milestones that the doctors check. At your six month appointment you weighed in at 18 pounds 5 ounces and your head still hit into the 95th percentile range. Your head will get us into a bit of trouble as the weeks go on, but we’ll be just fine and you’ll probably never remember that you had a flat head and we had to go to all these doctor visits or that you will have to wear one of those little baby helmets. Sorry if you do.
Right before your six month birthday we packed you into your Daddy’s big black truck and took you with us to Colorado. We arrived and you cannot stop looking around at all the new things. I love watching you explore this new world and I love seeing the wind hit you in the face as your eyebrows jump up in shock. I hope you come to love this place, I hope part of your heart lives here like ours do. I hope you gain a curious mind and an adventurous spirit out here, although I know that will get me into much trouble when you are a little older.
We started the fun of feeding you food this month and your dietitian Mommy is in heaven. You are in heaven too. The very first day you squished your little face at the taste of an avocado, but since then you’ve gobbled down that very same avocado, banana, oatmeal and sweet potato. You may grow up to be like your momma, there’s not a food I don’t like.
The wonder of living at camp is also seeing others marvel at you. We sit at the dining room table and stare at you. We all watch you smile and giggle and play and talk. We make funny faces at you and it would seem that all of us here haven’t a thing to do but watch you chew on a spoon.
Six months. And I cannot explain how much I love you. I just do. In a way that I want to kiss your cheeks constantly and I want to put your needs above my own constantly.
I love you sweet boy. Half a year, I can’t believe it.

Oct 22, 2015

Lincoln: Five Months, Honestly

Today I'm going to be honest with you.
I forgot to write about my son turning five months old.
I guess we were busy with Easter and travelling and packing for Colorado. I'm not sure of my other excuses. I promise to someday write all the details about when little Lincoln boy was five months old. But I can't find my notes. All I know is that he weighed 18 pounds 5 ounces and that he hadn't started solids yet. I know he was chunky and I know he was quite immobile, couldn't sit up yet, but still made us smile ALL. THE. TIME.
So I thought, 'well I could make something up, or I could just tell the truth.' So here it is.
Five Months
"April 5, 2015"
Little Buddy,
I love you.
Tell the truth always. If needed, follow Grandma's advice and 'if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all.' If needed, substitute 'true' for 'nice' in the previous sentence and that'll do.
I love you.
I just spent more time loving you this month than writing about you. Enjoy the pictures. I'm sure you won't be this tiny forever.
Love always,

Oct 13, 2015

Lincoln: Four Months

Four Months

March 2015

Little Buddy,

I can't believe you're four months old.

I can't.

I know that I'll probably say this with every month and every year that passes, but you grow up so fast.

But you really do.

This month you are busting into the six to nine month clothes. It is ridiculous the way your feet stretch the little bottoms of the footie pajamas. You have more rolls than a sushi bar and every one of them at some point in time has been filled with lint. I don't know how, it just happens.

At your four month check up I asked the doctor about the red skin under your neck. He informed me that it's what they call "fat baby neck rash" or in other words it's when slobber gets stuck in your chin rolls and can't get out. It's true, Little Buddy, you're growing.

You weigh seventeen pounds and you're so strong. You have the best smiles in the entire world and you look so proud of yourself when mommy or daddy helps you 'stand up tall.'  You still wear Size 2 diapers at night but I'm pretty sure if we had any Size 3 that those would fit much better. You wear cloth diapers during the day and someday you'll either think your parents were crazy or cool for that.

Your friend Max was over the other night and you and Daddy were playing. That's when you had your first laugh. I stepped out of the room for only a moment, but rushed back in when I heard. Little Buddy you have the very best laugh. Even if you do give yourself the hiccups every time you try to laugh, and then get frustrated because the hiccups won't go away.

Technically, we didn't know this the day you turned four months old, but I'm writing this a few days later: You don't have VLCAD.

Forever you'll have a tiny scar on your left forearm to remind you of the testing and the poking and the prayers. Forever, I'm sure, we'll tell the story of how your saints of a mother and father woke you at all hours of the night to feed you. I'm sure at every birthday we'll draw out the story and make sure you know how much we really did love you from the start. But I do hope I remember and am always grateful of how healthy you are. I won't easily forget the tears I cried and the prayers I prayed over you. I won't easily forget the relief when we found out you were just a carrier of VLCAD.

I pray that there are lots of stories. I pray that there are many more to come. I pray that there will be trials and triumphs that will draw you nearer to the Lord every day. I pray that you grow up to tell the stories of the Lord's faithfulness in so many areas of your life. I pray that you know the Lord loves you.

I do. I love you.

You and your neck rolls and your three chins and your hiccup laugh.

I love you, all of you, even your one VLCAD gene and all the sleep it cost me,


Oct 8, 2015

Lincoln: Three Months

Three Months
February 2015
Little Buddy,

It seems we finally have a routine.

After all the traveling and all the transition, here we are. In the day it's just you and me. I take more pictures than I do showers, maybe even 100 to 1. But you know what they say, 'a picture lasts longer than a shower.' Or maybe they don't say that at all...

You are getting bigger. I heard Daddy call you his 'little buddy' one day and it just stuck. I stopped calling you Little One and now you're our Little Buddy. It fits because you seem more every day like a little boy than a baby. You're growing so fast I think you're almost to 14 pounds and we're breaking into the 6 to 9 month clothes at an alarming rate.

It is true, you are the happiest baby, smiling when I sing or change your diaper. Yes, you smile most when I change your diaper. Your dad and I sometimes call it a 'reset.' You'll be all fussy and we just have to lay you on your changing table and out come the smiles.

Your dad has taken to making silly faces and dancing and singing for you. He can make you smile more than anyone. There are times when I catch you staring at our front door, almost as if you know that at 5 o'clock your daddy is going to come walking through. I think maybe you think Dad just sits on the other side of that door all day, hiding.

Just like Mom and Aunt Payton, you love looking at yourself in the mirror. It makes tummy time quite simple because you are completely content laying on your stomach as long as you can see your own face.

Really the only time we find you fussy is when you wake up from a nap too early or when you poop. We talk about poop a lot it seems. And yes, we talk about naps all the time. We're working on naps in the crib but you still prefer moms arms. Right now you sleep great at night in your own crib, in your own room, without a pacifier even. We still swaddle you, we even had to buy a larger swaddle, but you love it. I will say that we 'say' you're a good night sleeper, but we are still waking you at night.

We wake you as we wait for your skin biopsy results to return. "One gene at least" they said, and now we wait to see if you actually have VLCAD or not. I may have freaked out a bit over your skin biopsy when the scab got caught in the gauze, but so far the biopsy site is healing nicely. They say the scar will fade.

We did start putting you in cloth diapers and I'm certain that someday you'll think we're either really weird or really cool when we tell you that. Who knows? The culture seems to swing there and back and well so far the diapers seem to be working for you.

You made me smile in the best way when I took your three month pictures. Sometimes I forget how big a blessing you are and then God reminds me. There you were laying on our bed when all of a sudden something caught your eye. You wouldn't smile at the camera for me, but you saw our Hannah bear and your face lit up. I'm sure you had no clue what it was, but God reminded me of the sweetness of you. You'll always be her little brother, whether you realize it or not.

But yes, we are back to the day to day. It's time for real life now. The days of you and me, Little Buddy. I cannot wait to take you on adventures and see what the days will hold.

Love you always,

Oct 1, 2015

Remembering October

Today is October first. The entire fall season seemed to sneak up on me this year.

I will admit, however, that my grief didn't sneak up. It rolled in a bit early and filled my thoughts more than I'd imagine almost two years later. Someone told me they were thinking of our Hannah the other day and my reply back was a thanks and simply that 'yes, me too, a lot lately for some reason.' I don't know if its the cooling weather or the return to our home here in Texas. But that sweet girl has been on my mind.

And now it's October and October is Pregnancy and Infant Loss Awareness Month. While I don't have any new stories for you today, I would like to invite you to read the stories I was so blessed to share here last October. They are all written by those affected by loss, and they are beautiful stories of the Lord's goodness.

It has been my joy to get to know some of these mothers a little better over the last twelve months. And it has been my great joy to get little messages from those who have been so blessed to have new babies, one of which was born just last night. How perfect.

So if you didn't catch them last October or simply wanted to read them again, here they are.


In the Presence of God: Catherine Causey

Hartley: Madison Dumas

Twenty-two Years Later: Brandie Grant

Harper: Amber Roberts

In This Storm: Cherish Montgomery

John Carter & Elliot: Katie Bryant

Fear Does Not Hold Me Any Longer: Katie Haley

Bryant Cole: Molly Brown

Amathyst: Celimar

Back Further Than Nine Weeks: Christy Cash

Even Nine Months Later

And mommas (and daddies) out there, those who have shared your stories and those who have not, know that this momma is praying for you today.
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