Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Love for Clara

This is Clara. She is 2 years old. She is my brother's youngest child. Two days ago she was diagnosed with high risk Neuroblastoma cancer. She is currently in the hospital undergoing many tests to really find out what she is up against and it seems that each test result brings more bad news. About 3 weeks ago, Clara started getting sick and the doctors thought she had strep. After the antibiotics failed to work, they questioned whether it really was strep. Clara was in a lot of pain and was having a hard time even walking, along with trouble breathing. They finally decided to take her to a hospital in Spokane, where they discovered the cancer, first around her kidneys, then in her leg, now on deep eye sockets, sinuses, and behind her eyes. Today she is having another bone scan done and then a biopsy on the tumor around her kidney. I'm receiving most of my updates through Facebook, thanks to my brother's sister-in-laws, but comments like these are just breaking my heart:

"Clara is in a lot of pain. They are having to give her morphine sooner than she is scheduled for it. As soon as she saw all of the presents and goodies from her friends, her face lit up and she wanted to hold the toys and dolls.

"Clara is sleeping and Brian is holding her hand. She opened her eyes for a moment and said, "Thank you Daddy." My mom said she has been saying similar things to the nurses and doctors."

From my brother, Brian: "
You'd think we'd be better at this after what happened with Carson, but this seems so much harder."

That's the next thing. This sweet family has been through this before with their second son. When Carson was about 6 months old, they found a brain tumor and operated on it a little while later. I remember his head was so swollen after that surgery, but luckily they got it all and he is the most angelic boy you will ever meet now.

Less than two months ago, Clara and her family came to stay with us in Utah. They live in Washington so I don't get to see them much. Before this trip, I really didn't know Clara too well, but she made a huge impression on me in a short amount of time. Within ten minutes of being in my house, she ran up to Walter, only to realize that he was an actual living dog, so she turned and ran away screaming. Every time I put Indie in her swing, Clara was right there to help push it, usually much too hard :) When her cousin Cash was being whiney, Clara took it upon herself to discipline him by shaking her pointer finger at him. When we went to Kangaroo Zoo, which is a children's play place with tons of bouncy toys, Clara really loved the biggest slide. She would come up to me and back up into me so I would pick her up and take her down it. This happened time after time.

A fundraiser has been set up on Clara's behalf, as she has a long road ahead of chemotherapy, radiation and many other things a small child should never have to go through. Many have already donated that don't even know her, which means so much to my family. I'm adding a link to the fundraiser so that if you are able, you can donate as well. Thank you in advance.

Click here to help Clara

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Bored on a Saturday

It is 85 degrees outside right now and so beautiful but I am stuck inside while Indie naps so I thought I'd be a good little blogger for the time being. Our days out here in Charlotte are much like the movie Groundhog Day...same routine every day with slight variations if we are motivated enough. I usually have no idea what day it is, which doesn't even matter since all the days are the same. Somehow 5 1/2 weeks have flown by and Indie is growing like a weed!

We spent our first few weeks relearning how to sleep because apparently she forgot when we changed time zones. I have read so many sleep books but one was recommended to me by a friend, called The Baby Sleep Solution, and it is, by far, the best one out there. It claims to have your baby sleeping 12 hours by 12 weeks old, but I can't vouch for that since I started when Indie was around 17 weeks. I'm already excited to train our next baby!

I've been snipping away at Indie's hair lately because it's starting to look so retarded. She rocks herself to sleep by moving her head from side to side over and over, which means she is rubbing all her hair off. If it weren't for all her hair on the top, her and my dad would have the same hairstyle. I took the clippers to the back of her head last night just to even things up a bit and it looks much better. Sad that she's making herself go bald but I guess it was inevitable.

Indie giggled for her first time on Mother's Day and it hasn't happened since. You could tell while it was happening that she was confused and had no idea what was coming out of her mouth. It lasted for about 30 seconds and that's the last we've seen of that. She mostly just squeals all the time. I can get her squealing just by making the noise and she will mimic me until she gets bored. Speaking of bored, you may never meet a baby that gets bored quicker than Indie. We are constantly switching up the activities because she will definitely let you know she's over it.

We did a mini photo session today that only lasted about 5 minutes and you can see by the end of it that she was done.

Geez, how many rolls can you count on those arms?!

I'm realizing that my blog is mostly consisting of Indie these days but I guess that's to be expected when a baby comes along and consumes your whole life. I absolutely love being a mom to this little one and get more excited everyday as she gets bigger. Some moms are sad to see their kids grow up, but I love it because she's able to interact with us more and more and that's way more fun than boring baby blob. Is that mean? Don't get me wrong, newborns are precious, but I enjoy the growing up part much more!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

4 Months Old!

For Indie's 4 month old birthday, she got a double chin, two thunder thighs and some roly poly biceps. Oh, and let's not forget calves that pretty much fold over her ankles. You'd never know this was a low birth weight baby, that's for sure. Trey and I both feel like she's totally chunked out since we moved out to Charlotte, which was just over 3 weeks ago. I just love squishing all that chub. And go ahead and judge me, I pierced her ears.At her 4 month appointment, she weighed in at 13lbs even and 24 inches long. I don't remember the percentages because this doctor out here doesn't really get specific, just does ranges. I think her head was in the 10-25th percentile. That's too big of a range for me to take them seriously with anything. My favorite part about her appointment was when the doctor asked me how much time she is spending on her tummy. I was proud to report that she can stand it about 6 minutes a day now, real improvement! The doctor then went on to tell me that she should be on her tummy for 3 hours a day. I just laughed. No way in H-E double hockey sticks that that will ever happen.

Since moving out here, Indie has backtracked a little on her night sleeping so we are in the process of fixing that as soon as possible. My eyes burn all day long as my night's sleep has likewise backtracked. Aside from that, she's smiling all the time now and loves squealing and kicking her legs to Ellen. She gets the whole kitchen wet when I bathe her because she just loves to kick those legs. She absolutely hates riding in the car, I think because she needs constant entertainment and staring at the back of the car is not that cool. My rotator cuff is frequently sore from reaching back and putting her binky in her mouth. Needless to say, I now hate riding in the car too. Notice a pattern? If Indie doesn't do it or doesn't like it, neither does mom.