Saturday, May 13, 2006

Gonzalez's Heart

You guys, I am thankful for all of your patience as I have been so busy. Thank you to Mama Rose for updating everyone as you know better then anyone how busy we have been here. I had a lot to read and get caught up with on my blog and I laughed and cried. Tears even ran down my chest (so Jaden will get a salty dose of breast milk). Robyn and I went shopping today for the best mommy in the world. Sorry to all you other moms, but I have to say, mine is by far the best. She deserves tomorrow so much. She always helps everyone out so much but this time she far exceeded her mommy duties. I unwilling had to kick her home to rest and try to recoup. She felt horrible leaving as I did not want her to leave either but knew she needed to. So this is the first minute I have had to write and all of my fun shopping is sitting on the floor in bags having to wait.

We have had a wonderful time at home but very exhausting. Dad came to the hospital to help me with Jaden on Wednesday as Sal was there Tuesday but had to get back Wednesday so he left at 6am. Dad wanted to make sure I was not alone when Jaden got to leave. That was so nice. We then had to do some last minute things at the RMH and then we drove home. Jaden's first car ride. I was very nervous and afraid I may not hear him cry. It went fine.

So I drive up to the house and there a very large pinwheel spinning in the ground with a "it's a boy" sign. It was so nice to be greeted with. I waited for mom as I saw her at Ethan's school and I knew she would have it special inside. When she got out of her car she saw me and fought back the tears. I of course had to also. We went inside and it was decorated so nice and a plate of sandwiches were on the counter and gifts on the table and cute decorations on the wall (balloons also and one was even a star). It was so wonderful. A perfect welcome home.

I picked up both Ash and Ethan from school one at a time and when we got home, they did not even notice Jaden. When they did, all they could say was "does he get to stay home forever." They fought over holding him and my attention. We were busy all afternoon and went to Awana and everyone said hi to me and half of them didn't even realize I was pushing a stroller at first. It was pretty funny. It was a great night. Thursday and Friday were so busy. I have been going non stop. Steph T. was so nice to offer to watch Ethan Thursday and Friday morning and then to even bring him to pre-school Friday. That helped me so much no one would ever be able to understand. The nights have been so long and tiring. We have been run down and trying to stay positive with everything. It has been a wild ride being home. We have midnight meds to give, feedings, diaper changes, pumping and Ethan crawling in our bed in the middle of the night. We are trying to help each other out with who does what when, and so far we are doing fine.

Jaden is doing wonderful and at night we are so tired that I have to set the alarm to wake up as he does not always wake to eat because he gets so exhausted from eating.. He does wake up at least once a night on his own and I wonder how long he was crying before I heard him and woke up. He is in our room in his bassinet but he is very quite and we are very tired.

I know you are all wondering if I have unpacked yet since that seems to be the topic of discussion and NO, I have not. There are bags in the car still (not many as Sal unloaded some and so did mom). There are bags in the living room, the hall up stairs, the laundry room and of course our bed room. I know a lot of stuff for only 5 and a half weeks, but we had clothes, toys, baby gifts, and living kind of things for the RMH like picture frames, bath mats stuff like that our room did not have. I will be posting pictures and another audio in the next day or so.

I love you all so much and hope you all have a great mothers day with your moms or grandma's or your children, which ever you may be celebrating with.

Love, Ashley, Ethan and Jaden's mommy


Anonymous said...

Steph and Sal,
I was wondering if Jaden qualifies for any in-home nursing. I know when our Benjamin came home, it was a life saving resource. It's hard to have other people in your home, but the rest and chance to spend time with your other kids would be well worth it. I know your situation is different than ours, but it was just something I've been thinking about. I'm thrilled to hear things are going well for Jaden. Before too long, a routine should set in, making things a little easier. Take care and Happy Mother's Day!

Stacy said...

Steph - I am so glad that you are finally getting settled in at home. Everyone at my work was so excited when I told them Jaden got to go home! He seems to be doing so well.
I hope that we will see you and your family at the Krueger Reunion in June! Although, we will definately understand if the Gonzalez's can't make it.
I hope you have a great Mother's day. You recieved the ultimate gift early. You get to be at home with your family!
Enjoy your day!
Luv, Stacy

Steph and Mitch T said...

Happy Mother's Day!!!

Steph T

Robin Potter said...

Happy Mother's Day, Stephanie!! What a wonderful gift to be home with your family! It was SO good to see you at Awana the other night, and the extra blessing of being able to hold baby Jaden was so awesome!! He is absolutely beautiful! I could not get him out of my thoughts for days afterwards!

Give me a call when you are up for company - I would love it if you would put me to work!! I keep hearing about this unpacking that needs to be done, and all I can think is that I would LOVE to help you - seriously - laundry is my specialty. :) I have Wed and Fri open this week - let me know what works for you!

Blessings, Robin

Karen said...

Hey Steph & Sal,
How wonderful that you are all home now - together like you should be. Take good care of sweet Jaden, each other and your mom!
Hope that you had a great Mother's Day!

Krista said...

What a Mother's Day you had! To be home with Jaden, Ashley, & Ethan. It sounds like things are starting to fall into place for you guys since you have been home. Once the routine gets going that will help a lot too.

We spent the week-end at the cabin and Ken and the kids helped his Mom clean up dead trees and leaves outside while Owen and I kept the fire going. They hauled away 4 loads of stuff and it looked so much better. It was a great Mother's Day.

Take care!

Steph and Mitch T said...

Ok, a friend sent me a touching story. The original version is from "Chicken Soup for the Christian Family Soul." I couldn't resist sharing it!! (And I did the appropriate snopes search first to make sure. Yes, it is a true story!!)

The Smell of Rain

A cold March wind danced around the dead of night in Dallas as the Doctor walked into the small hospital room of Diana Blessing. Still groggy from surgery, her husband David held her hand as they braced themselves for the latest news. That afternoon of March 10,1991, complications had forced Diana, only 24 weeks pregnant, to Danae Lu Blessing.

At 12 inches long and weighing only one pound and nine ounces, they already knew she was perilously premature. Still, the doctor's soft words dropped like bombs. I don't think she's going to make it, he said, as kindly as he could. "There's only a 10 percent chance she will live through the night, and even then, if by some slim chance she does make it, her future could be a very cruel one." Numb with disbelief, David and Diana listened as the doctor described the devastating problems Danae would likely face if she survived. She would never walk, she would never talk, she would probably be blind, and she would certainly be prone to other catastrophic conditions from cerebral palsy to complete mental retardation, and on and on. "No! No!" was all Diana could say. She and David, with their 5-year-old son Dustin, had long dreamed of the day they would have a daughter to become a family of four. Now, within a matter of hours, that dream was slipping away.

Through the dark hours of morning as Danae held onto life by the thinnest thread, Diana slipped in and out of sleep, growing more and more determined that their tiny daughter would live, and live to be a healthy, happy young girl. But David, fully awake and listening to additional dire details of their daughter's chances of ever leaving the hospital alive, much less healthy, knew he must confront his wife with the inevitable. David walked in and said that we needed to talk about making funeral arrangements. Diana remembers, 'I felt so bad for him because he was doing everything, trying to include me in what was going on, but I just wouldn't listen, I couldn't listen. I said, "No, that is not going to happen, no way! I don't care what the doctors say; Danae is not going to die! One day she will be just fine, and she will be coming home with us!"

As if willed to live by Diana's determination, Danae clung to life hour after hour, with the help of every medical machine and marvel her miniature body could endure. But as those first days passed, a new agony set in for David and Diana. Because Danae's under-developed nervous system was essentially raw, the lightest kiss or caress only intensified her discomfort, so they couldn't even cradle their tiny baby girl against their chests to offer the strength of their love. All they could do, as Danae struggled alone beneath the ultraviolet light in the tangle of tubes and wires, was to pray that God would stay close to their precious little girl. There was never a moment when Danae suddenly grew stronger.

But as the weeks went by, she did slowly gain an ounce of weight here and an ounce of strength there. At last, when Danae turned two months old, her parents were able to hold her in their arms for the very first time. And two months later-though doctors continued to gently but grimly warn that her chances of surviving, much less living any kind of normal life, were next to zero. Danae went home from the hospital, just as her mother had predicted.

Today, five years later, Danae is a petite but feisty young girl with glittering gray eyes and an unquenchable zest for life. She shows no signs, what so ever, of any mental or physical impairment. Simply, she is everything a little girl can be and more-but that happy ending is far from the end of her story.

One blistering afternoon in the summer of 1996 near her home in Irving, Texas, Danae was sitting in her mother's lap in the bleachers of a local ballpark where her brother Dustin's baseball team was practicing. As always, Danae was chattering non-stop with her mother and several other adults sitting nearby when she suddenly fell silent. Hugging her arms across her chest, Danae asked, "Do you smell that?" Smelling the air and detecting the approach of a thunderstorm, Diana replied, "Yes, it smells like rain." Danae closed her eyes and again asked, "Do you smell that?" Once again, her mother replied, "Yes, I think we're about to get wet, it smells like rain. Still caught in the moment, Danae shook her head, patted her thin shoulders with her small hands and loudly announced, "No, it smells like Him. It smells like God when you lay your head on His chest." Tears blurred Diana's eyes as Danae then happily hopped down to play with the other children.

Before the rains came, her daughter's words confirmed what Diana and all the members of the extended Blessing family had known, at least in their hearts, all along. During those long days and nights of her first two months of her life, when her nerves were too sensitive for them to touch her, God was holding Danae on His chest and it is His loving scent that she remembers so well.

Kristin said...

I love that story! Steph, I'm sure that this Mothers' Day will always hold a special place in your heart. What better gift than to bring home your little miracle baby :)


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