Wednesday, May 29, 2013

The Twins ....One Year Home

This has been a crazy year!  Many bumps along the way.  Many amazing changes along the way.

Blake grew 2.5 inches and gained 8 pounds!  Miss Emery grew 4.5 inches and gained 14 pounds. Wow!  The pediatrician believes Emery most likely was in failure to thrive status at the time of her adoption.  Definitely not the case now!

The twins are healthy and happy.

Both went through a variety of difficult phases.  Most were short lived. Although at the time, it seemed like some phases would never end!  I am sure, as with all children, we will encounter more "phases".  Since we all survived the first year, we should be able to handle the future! 

The twins faced many challenges and their progress has been amazing to watch unfold.  Some of the challenges overcome that I am forever grateful include:

Emery smiling and laughing all the time - at first it was rare to see a smile on our little girl's face.
Blake learning to deal with his emotions in a good way - in the beginning there were many tantrums.
Both kids being potty trained - enough said.
Being able to tuck Emery in at night all cozy under her blankets with lots of kisses and hugs - for
     many months, Emery would not allow us to do this at all.
Blake telling everyone he knows that I am his Mom - he is so happy and proud to have a family.
Emery making me carry her around often - all 50 pounds of her - at first, she would not allow this.
Blake fighting with his big sisters - this truly says "family".
Emery beginning to talk and playing pretend - brings tears to my eyes just thinking about it.
Blake's excitement about getting a prosthetic leg - this little guy's outlook on life amazes me daily.

God has certainly blessed us as a family and blessed these two kids.  I shudder thinking of where they would be today, if we had not adopted them. 

And finally I have the twins one year home video finished. Only a month late! Sorry it is a bit long, but I wanted to capture the changes in our twins since being home.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

Set Back

On Thursday, Blake excitedly left to go to his prosthetic appointment and finally bring his new leg home.  He loved his leg and couldn't wait to practice using it. Unfortunately, the pressure of the leg caused his incision to leak fluid.  The surgeon was concerned that there could possibly be an infection.  So on Friday morning we were back at DeVos Children's Hospital to have Blake go under anesthesia and have his incision inspected.  If there was an infection, the surgeon would have to take Blake into surgery and reopen his incision.  We were praying this was not the case.  We did not want Blake to have to go through another long healing process.

God answered our prayers!  There was no infection. The leakage was caused from a small stitch trying to work its way out.  It caused a small opening in the incision.  The surgeon fixed the opening and bandaged Blake's incision. Blake was disappointed that he cannot wear his new leg for the next few days.  But, the surgeon wants the incision to heal well.  Blake goes back for a check up next Tuesday and we are hoping to get the go ahead to use the prosthetic leg.

Blake had a very hard time at the hospital.  It took 5 of us to hold him down to get the IV in.  He was even given gas first to try to relax him, but it had no effect.  My guy is just emotionally exhausted from all of the medical appts and procedures.  Praying this is the last of it and we will soon be shopping for his new bike.  It is so hard to look into your child's eyes when he is in so much emotional pain. I was holding him and whispering in his ear as he went under and was holding his hand as he woke up.  After about an hour, he was back to himself.  He recovers from things so fast.  He is a strong boy.  Very grateful there was no infection and we will be back on track soon.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Blake's Prosthetic Leg

In mid-April Blake had his 1st appt with the prosthetic doctor. Blake was still very emotionally sensitive about his leg, so there were a lot of tears.  Dr. Mark basically just talked to Blake and took a few preliminary measurements. The next few days we talked a lot about his leg and worked on touching it and reducing the sensitivity.  At the end of the week, Blake went in to be molded for his prosthesis.  Both Dr. Mark and I thought it was going to be quite traumatic for Blake.  But, once again, our little guy surprised us all.  He was a real trooper, only shed a tear or two.  The molding was successful.  All final measurements were completed as well.  Dr. Mark was now able to make the mock upper part of Blake's leg and order the lower part.  In the meantime, we took Blake to a fabric store to pick out material that will be laminated into the upper part of his leg.  He had a hard time deciding between a Scooby Doo fabric and a sports themed fabric.  He ended up going with the sports fabric.  It is very cool!  On Monday, Blake had his first fitting.  Dr. Mark had to make a few adjustments, then the mock leg was ready for Blake to try.  Blake was in a super silly mood and did extremely well!  He stood on two legs for the very first time in his life.  He was so very proud.  After Dr. Mark showed him the mechanics of the leg and helped him take some steps, Blake was able to take a few steps by himself.  Wow!  What a feeling it is to see your son walking on his own without crutches for the first time.  Mom and Dad had to choke back tears.  Blake is so excited to have his new leg.  All he talks about is buying a new bike to ride "really fast" and playing basketball.  Blake goes for his second and final fitting tomorrow.  Dr. Mark will make necessary adjustments and create his final leg.  Blake should be coming home with his new leg sometime next week!  He will then have to have physical therapy to learn how to walk with his leg.  I honestly cannot imagine him being any faster than he already is, but I know it is going to happen in the near future.  Blake's enthusiasm, courage and determination are an inspiration to us all.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Busy Days

It has been quite awhile since my last post.  We always seem to be overly busy this time of year.
We recently celebrated a very special day in our family.  On April 28th, the twins were officially home for one full year.  So many changes have taken place.  The girls and I are in the process of creating a one year home video.  Hopefully, it will be completed soon and I will post it.  We went to dinner at the Olive Garden to celebrate.

I also need to post Blake's prosthetic progress.  All is going well and I will write a post soon with details.

Sometimes I wonder why I cannot accomplish more.  My house always seems to be in a disarray and in need of a good cleaning.  I created a new cleaning schedule to try to keep on top of things, but it only lasted 3 weeks.  Now I am way behind again.  With all of Blake's medical appts, Emery's therapy sessions, 4 nights of Volleyball practice per week, 14 hours of volleyball tournaments every other Saturday (I know, crazy!) orthodontist appts, and school activities, I am lucky to keep up the laundry.  I manage to get a few basic things done around the house like dumping trash and making dinner (most nights), but everything else falls behind.  I have not even thought about yard work yet.  My landscape areas are a mess because I never got around to doing any Fall cleanup.  My car needs cleaning on the inside so bad, I am embarrassed.  Oh where oh where is my phantom house cleaner and lawn maintenance guy???