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Just a reminder

March 19, 2008

There are so many things that have hit my five senses in the passed few weeks, it’s easy to start to feel a bit numb, and just adjust. We are going on the sixteenth day of Skyler’s hospitalization, and while so much of it is a blur, there are several things that I’ve learned or realized, or been reminded of. These are things that I never want to forget. So I’m writing a reminder to myself. In no particular order:

1) The smell of my baby’s skin. Whether freshly bathed or sweaty, I love her smell. In the PICU, we had to wear those masks while in her room, and all you could ever smell was the material of the mask. I cheated a few times, because how can a mother be blocked from nuzzling her baby and breathing in that sweet, musky scent of her skin? But now in the regular room where we don’t have to “dress up,” I just can’t keep my nose out of her face.

2) All the images of Ronnie with Skyler. It’s just magical. He is her everything when they are together.

3) The sound of Skyler’s cry. For a few days after surgery, she was silent. Her lungs weren’t capable of helping her produce a voice. You could see her crying, but couldn’t hear it. The first weak noises didn’t even sound like her. Once she had her voice back, the sound of her cry was like music. It was a sign of health and life.

4) No matter how bad it seems, there is always a worse situation. There is no other place like a children’s hospital to really drive this one home. Life’s ups and downs are so relative!

5) There is always joy to be found. Sometimes it takes awhile and can be difficult to find, but it’s there. Remember Catherine, the 5-year-old with the bullet in her head. Her mom and dad told me that one night in the waiting room as we discussed the many stages of the “PICU experience.” Even their daughter, still in a coma, could laugh and smile in her deep sleep. That joy for her became joy to her parents.

6) Friends, family, coworkers, and even strangers will rise up with jaw-dropping encouragement, support, and prayers when we’re having a rough time. We have been absolutely humbled and fascinated by how so many people, both close and far, have responded to this time in our life. We never want to forget this, and we hope that we can “pay it forward” as they say, someday down the line when someone we know finds themselves in a tough predicament. I would love it if the secretary angel above could send me a count of all the people that have been praying for Skyler in the past few weeks. What a number that would be!

7) The feeling of rocking Skyler on my chest. We were unable to hold her for a few days after surgery, and even now, I feel really awkward handling her. But once I can get comfortable with her on my chest, all I can say is “ahhhh.This is the way life should be.”

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. Amy B. permalink
    March 19, 2008 1:18 pm

    Lori, you astound me. I am speechless at how well you have kept your situation in perspective. You are truly an inspiration. I will listen to Calvin’s crying with appreciation now instead of frustration and dread.

  2. Brynn permalink
    March 19, 2008 1:44 pm

    Miss Lori,

    Wow! You truly are inspiring. Your reflection of this experience is a wonderful reminder to all of about the truly important things in life. Its easy for all of us to forget and your experinece and thoughts of little Skyler help the rest of us be a little more grounded.

    I’m a big believer in paying it forward (since you mentioned it). I want to let you know that some of us who want to offer support are paying it forward for what others have done for us as well as the support your family has shown us during dificult times.

    Please hug Skyler for me, I’m sending her get well wishes a thousand times a day!

  3. Maria permalink
    March 19, 2008 3:40 pm

    What great reminders! Thanks Lori, for putting so many things in great perspective for me! Nothing like the after sigh, when you hold your baby close!

  4. Amber permalink
    March 19, 2008 7:55 pm

    Congrats on the move! I am so happy for you guys! I can’t wait to get up there and see Miss Skyler…oh and you two in regular clothes. Not that you both didn’t look super hot in your yellow gowns. πŸ™‚ I am just so happy you have your own space and Sky can hopefully get some rest now:)

  5. Sheri Hart permalink
    March 20, 2008 4:14 pm

    First you made me laugh with the pictures, now I am sitting here at my desk in tears after reading that one. A great look at what you are dealing with and something everyone can understand at a certain level. So good to hear about the happy moments, you deserve them.

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