Thursday, August 30, 2007


Antalya was able to move forward today for the first time. For some reason she was incredibly interested in Jason's cereal bowl and spoon. With a weird movement of pushing her bum in the air and then sliding her chest forward she moved about 3 feet. It was great fun watching her.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Snack Time

This picture was too cute not to share. Antalya has mastered picking up small objects. It has made snack time one of her favorite activities because she can feed herself. Her new favorite treats are black beans and craisins.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Another Visit to the Doctor's Office

After three weeks of non-stop congestion and runny nose we finally headed to the doctor's. I know I should have gone sooner, but I kept thinking she would get better, and I hate long waits at the office. The doc gave Antalya a prescription for Augmentin. He said we might need to do 21 days of it to get rid of the cold because she has had it so long. She also got a steriod shot, because she has been struggling to breathe the last week. Good news? Her iron levels are up and we can stop taking the iron supplement. Poor Antalya. This has been one rough summer for her. Her last cold hit at the beginning of summer and lasted for over a month, only to be replaced by the flu. The throwing up stopped after a few days, but was then replaced with a week and half of diarahera. As soon as we got that cleared up, this last cold hit. Hopefully things will get better for her. She was so brave today, and barely cried when they gave her her shot. That's my girl! :)

I went to Lillian's viewing today with another T21 mom. She looked just like a porcelain doll lying there. She is so beautiful. I am sorry Antalya will never get the chance to play with her, but I am happy that she is now free from the pain, struggles, and constraints of her body. To all who have little babies, give them an extra squeeze today! Isn't it amazing how much a little baby can teach us old people in such a short time. On that same subject check out this video.
99 Balloons
Our children don't need to grow up and change the world (in the worldly sense), just being themselves and doing their best everyday can change the world.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

The Worth of a Child

A dear friend past away today. She was only 7 months old, and I have never met her nor her parents. But for the last several months I have joined with countless others who have been touched by Lillian in prayer and fasting for her and her family. Little Lillian had Down syndrome and her family lives in my same county. She went in for heart surgery three months ago to have a valve repaired (this is very common for babies with Ds). She happened to fall into about the two percent of babies that have post surgery complications. One thing lead to another until finally the doctors knew there was nothing more they could do to keep her sweet spirit here on earth. Her death has really touched me. My heart goes out to her wonderful parents that have been so strong through the whole journey.

Next week it will be one year since my husband and I found out that our baby would be born with a serious blockage in her intestines that would prevent her from being able to eat unless they could successfully repair it in a surgery right after her birth. We also found out that our baby had Down syndrome. I would be lying if I didn't admit what a challenge the first fews days were after receiving the news. We battled with coming to terms with the reality of having a disabled child, and struggled over the worth of our unborn child. Was a life of possible health problems and mental retardation worth very much? The answer is YES! Life in all it's forms has immeasurable worth. If only we could all see it! Life, no matter how long or short, or easy or difficult, should be celebrated! I praise the Lord for the blessing of having a child with Down syndrome that has taught me this lesson, and for the short, yet powerful life of little Lillian who has reinforced it.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Baby Showers

Tonight was a baby shower for a friend. I made chocolate covered strawberries - they turned out delicious. Like most baby showers the topic of choice was pregnancy and birth stories. Sometimes I can't help but feel that so many women take for granted the first moments with their child after the birth. Almost that it is expected. Do they realize what a miracle it is to have a healthy baby from the first breathe? Six weeks before Antalya was born, my midwife discovered some major problems with the baby and recommended we transfer our care to a perinatoligist. It soon became clear that my baby would need surgery immediately following birth and would need to be immediately transfered to the neonatal intesive care unit upon taking her first breath.

When Antalya was born my doctor held her up for two seconds, exclaiming "what a beautiful girl!" before she was handed through the window next to my bed directly into the hands of neonatal intesive care unit nurse. An hour of two after that was my first "real" look at the child I had carried with me for nine months. She was covered in cords and monitors with an IV stuck in her scalp.

Maybe it is true after all that no matter what your birth story or the health of your baby, all mother's are in a sense given that precious time to bond with their child. It just comes in different forms. For me, it was not how I originally imagined, having just given birth, the naked child placed on my chest, and all the doctors and nurses leave the room to give our new little family time to bond. But yet, there in the NICU room, holding my child for the first time, surronded by other babies, and nurses, and machines, was anything I could have ever hoped for - for in my arms was my very own piece of heaven. I am grateful that we are all blessed with different experiences in this life to teach us tolerance and compassion. Hopefully next time I can remember this and instead of getting upset at the so-called "picture perfect" experiences of others, I can find joy in each women's story, knowing that we are all mothers and love our children more than anything.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

My good friend Christine is moving to Turkey. Today was our last little outing together. We took a picnic and headed to the park for some fresh air. Antalya even gave up her nap happily to play on the blanket with Atticus, Shermy, and Cinnci. We live in a college town; people in our neighborhood are constantly moving in and out. I have grown accustomed to it in the two years we have been here. Yet this move of our friends strikes my husband and I a little more poignantly. When we moved here it was kind of the unspoken agreement that within the year we would move somewhere abroad to begin our adventures overseas before we became too settled. Needless to say, one decision led to another and now - here we are - with committments that will keep us here another two years. It's funny how life always has a way of changing things. I'm glad that I learned early that life is not some destination we are trying to reach, but rather a journey with many twists and turns along the way. I am so thankful for the journeys of life that lead us to good friends. And even though our paths cross for only a short time, the friendship lasts much longer. I wish my friend many good travels on her new adventure with her family. Hopefully in another time and place we can meet again for another picnic at the park.
Antalya, Atticus, Shermy, Cinnci
Playmates Cinnci and Antalya

Monday, August 13, 2007

Here is a picture of my beautiful daughter, Antalya.