Monday, May 21, 2012

Thoughts for the taking...

Lately the thought of a tiny little boy on an operating table has come to my mind. I think about how little he'll look on a table that is probably 10x his size with wires and tubes and beeping noises... I try not to let it stay long. It worries me. Although I know it's a procedure the surgeon has done a million times I'm sure. But the fact that it's MY baby on that table doesn't help. Next week I'll have to hand my son over to the surgeon I have only met twice. It's a weird feeling to trust someone like that so much with something so precious. I'm his mom, I'm the one who takes care of him not a... stranger. But for 2 seemingly short hours he'll be in the hands of someone else...

Last Thursday was our last appointment with Dr. Glick, the orthodontist. I was kinda sad yet happy at the same time. She has been wonderful! If only all his doctors and nurses could be like her I wouldn't worry as much! Her whole staff has been super friendly and caring. Most of them came to say goodbye to Hudson yesterday in our little room. It was sweet. They all wished us good luck and said we have to come back and visit. That's why I was sad, I'll miss them. But happy that there is only 2 more weeks left of the NAM and taping!

While I was in the waiting room that day the front desk called me up for the copay and I left Hudson in his car seat next to the chair I was sitting in. It's a pretty big waiting room and there was a few other patients in there. I heard him start fussing while I was waiting for the lady to finish with my card. I looked back at him to see his feet kicking, which he does when he's angry. That's when I know his pacifier falls out when we are in the car. I hear the rustle of his feet sliding on his seat. It gets faster and faster and then it's followed by a yell. And that's when I have to reach back, dig for his pacifier and find his mouth to put it back it. He must think it's a game because it happens quite a bit...

Well she had entered the wrong amount and had to cancel it and redo it. While I waited I went back to Hudson to give him his pacifier and then back up to the front desk to sign the receipts. I could hear him again and so I looked back to see a girl probably around 14-16 years old rocking his car seat. So I smile at her when she looked at me to let her know it was ok. I could tell by her smile she had had a cleft lip as well. I finished up at the front and came back and told her thanks. I thought it was such a sweet thing to do! I like the feeling of sitting in that waiting room and knowing that everyone in there is in the same boat, just on different levels. We don't stare to judge, we watch because we want to know "what's yours like?". We all kind of get each other.

Since the day I found out about Hudson's clefts it has been my favorite topic. I researched and research and looked up pictures. I love talking about Hudson and his cleft lip and palate! And sometimes it makes it better when it's with someone who knows what it's like!

Oh it's been such a fun journey! Not easy, but fun and different. I worry that when he's older he look back at his baby pictures and hate them. But I could stare at them all day! And in 2 more weeks the pictures will be all I have of that precious little smile! How lucky are we to get a second "first smile"!

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Time flies when your having fun

This guy is my most biggest accomplishment yet! He is the toughest little guy I know! And everything he has been through has not taken that smile off his face! He is now 4 whole months old today! I love that I get to hang out with him all day. He laughs and smiles so much I can't even stand it! He always makes my days enjoyable!

If I had thought the 3rd month brought changes I was wrong! THIS last month has made a huge difference! Even this last week!
-He is so mobile! He tosses and turns and rolls over. He loves to kick! When he gets excited or angry he'll kick faster.
-He is sooo ticklish I love it! And his laugh is the cutest thing I have ever heard in my entire LIFE! Definitely contagious!
-I started feeding him some baby food and he gets better at it everyday! It use to always come out his nose. And I have to take cover if I see a sneeze coming on! It can get pretty messy. But it's always fun! He loves his baby food though and he always opens his mouth for the next bite!
-Sleeping has improved a ton! On great nights he'll sleep 12 hours and just get up once around 4 to be fed. It's all about figuring out how HE likes to sleep. And for him it's with a blanket over his face. Serisouly! He turns into it and usually goes right to sleep.
-He's loving all his toys now and loves to put anything he gets a hold of straight to his mouth. He reaches out for anything that is in front of him.
-He is so vocal too! He'll talk to his toys which I love! And when he throws fits... He yells and yells and grunts and turns all red. It's pretty funny.
-And the slobber! It's out of control! Can't say I'm use to that yet. Oh but I love this kid so much its amazing!

I'm always so excited for the next step of his life but at the same time I know it's already going by so fast! I know I'll miss it once it's gone.

His well check isn't until next week so I don't have his stats yet dang it! I'm sure he's grown some. :) He's such a skinny little thing though. I hope he gets his dad's skinny genes! And I don't mean skinny jeans! Those are mine.

Well only 15 more days until surgery! I knew it would come up quick! It's so weird to me that his cleft lip will soon be taken over by a scar. I can't tell you how much I'm going to miss it. But I do look forward to a new little smile I know I'll fall in love with.

So he went for his first swim which he did very well with! He rocked a speedo and worked on his tan! He'll be ready for the beach babes in July.

We tried out is Johnny Jump Up. But he was more interested in chewing on it and his toys than jumping. I thought he would love it since he so good at standing when your holding him.

I gave him his first hair cut. Just a little trim to even out all those fly a ways! I love his hair! He always gets mats on the back of his head.

He has got the biggest smile I have ever seen! Maybe it's the gap that adds to it. ;)

Still getting use to his bumbo! He'll slide around in it.

Cutest thing ever! I love him so much!

Monday, May 14, 2012

I'm the Mom, that's why!

Mother's Day was a little more special for me this year.

This little boy has made me one proud mamma!! I already love who he is becoming.

Curtis kind of lucked out last year since we found I was pregnant 2 DAYS after mother's day. 
But none the less, he took care of me this year as he does with any special occasion. He made me my favorite breakfast which is pancakes and came through the door ringing the bell to this beauty...

Now I just need a basket and a seat for Hudson and I can pretend I'm cruising along the boardwalk of Santa Monica beach like we have done before...

I still can't believe I'm a mom! My days mean so much more to me now. I'm not constantly counting down the hours until lunch break or counting down the days until the weekend. As much as I hate getting up early I'd rather walk into my baby's room and see him smiling than walking into an office. I love hanging out with him all day! We have become best friends and I love that he knows who I am (and loves me the most)! I love my little family! And I love being the mom to my amazing little Hudson!

Friday, May 4, 2012


27 Q-tips.
That's how many more days until Hudson's surgery.
And that's how many more times I have to put his mouth piece back in.

Everyday around 9 or 10 o'clock I take his NAM out (unless it falls out on it's own) to scrub and clean what's left of the goop that holds it in. If I take too long then he's probably sitting in his bouncy chair on the island whining and yelling to me behind my back. I only want to give him a break from it, but he wont have it. He doesn't like when it's out now. He's gotten use to the once foreign object we have had to put in his mouth for the past 8 weeks (has it really been that long?!). I try and calm him down with his pacifier while I hurry and dry that NAM thing, but he wont have that either. I don't know why I even try it every time. So he gets to cry while I squeeze some more denture, yes denture, adhesive onto the mouth piece, take a q-tip from my pile and spread it around like butter. But not before the tape goes on! No, the tape must be first because I'm not gonna try and thread it through the loop of the piece that goes up into his nose. I'm not trying that again while I have a boy kicking and crying and shaking his head side to side. The tape goes first. Crying or no cry it gets put on.
So the mouth piece gets put in next. If he's crying then it's easy. He doesn't gag when he cries and it breaks my heart to do that to him. His mouth is already open while crying so I slide it in real quick and press it up against the roof of his mouth and hold it for 30 seconds, which usually turns out to be more like 15. I can't take the cry of the poor little boy who thinks he's being tortured. I scramble for his pacifier and plop it in. He wimpers for a minute and then looks at me like "don't do that again".

After 58 days of the NAM it has become part of our daily routine. Just like the torture of tummy time and washing bottles which I almost hate doing more than dealing with the NAM. I'll be happy when it's gone and I can stare at my sweet baby's face without anything obscuring my view. No stranger will ever know he was born with a cleft lip. Which I also might miss...

So it is, my count down of q-tips begins. Only 27 more days my sweet baby boy. These are only the battles. The war has yet to be won.
May the odds ever be in your favor.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

The Facts

Fact: 1 in 700 babies in the United States is born with a cleft lip and/or palate each year.

A cleft lip is one of the 4 most common birth defects in babies born in the U.S. The other 3 being heart defect, down syndrome, and spina bifida.

There are about 4 million babies born each year in the U.S.

If 4 million babies are born each year then that leaves about 5,714 babies born with a cleft lip. On average that's 15 cleft babies a day! On January 16th, 2012 MY baby was one of those 15.

Because Curtis and I have no history of clefts that left us with a 2-5% chance that our baby would be born with a cleft lip.

Hudson is no average baby.