Sunday, October 7, 2012

Brock's First Angelversary

I do not think I was any more prepared to deal with one year passing by than I was with Brock passing; things just do not get easier and the emotions do not go away. I have had a rough time lately with dealing with emotions and find myself going back to the days leading up to Brock dying and to the night I watched him fight as hard as he could so helpless holding on to all hopes and faith that he would make it; and so devastated and heart broken when he did not. I could not have made it through my sweet Brock dying and Grayson being diagnosed with the same disease, etc...if not for my family and friends who might as well be family.

I love being close to home so my boys can spend a few years growing up near family, but I have missed San Antonio like no other this past week. As much as I looked forward to Jeff getting the humanitarian orders back near home.....I would give anything to be back to what feels like home. I miss my sweet neighbors who loved my boys like no other and who made a long day worth it by sitting in the circle and unwinding with great company and maybe a good drink! I miss them popping in and making an exhausting day worth it. I miss my NICU nurses who became my best friends and apart of my family whether they wanted to or not (just saying....spend hours upon end in the NICU and have an excellent happens!)!Some of my most memorable moments with the quads were made because of the nurses who cared for them and loved them and as I said, who became my dear friends and apart of my family. I miss them. I miss what became "home". Here just does not feel like home yet. It just is not the same without my "family", which makes this past week even harder to face.

Jeff and I knew the date was coming up and just ignored all conversations relating to it and just had a mental understanding that we were going to go home. He took Thursday and Friday off where we had planned to go back to Panama City for the weekend. Thursday came and we were just overwhelmed. Neither of us wanted to pack the kids (3 15 month olds require a lot of stuff for a few nights away from home) or deal with a van ride or really, deal with anything. So we stayed.  We decided that we would release balloons for our Brock on Friday. After an eventful trip to Wal Mart to get our dozen blue balloons, we went to the beach to release them with Brock's brothers. No words can describe the feeling of sending my sweet angel balloons....  As I watched them float to the heavens, my heart just broke. I looked at Grayson, Keaton & Camden and yearned for Brock to be at the beach with us and on a happy note.

Jeff and I were both on an emotional edge and just not in the best of spirits. Once the boys laid down for a nap, I went to the Commissary and Jeff stayed behind. I was texting with my sweet neighbor, Jill, from San Antonio when she called. She got Jeff and I on the phone together and told us that there were tons of people gathered: NICU nurses, neighbors, children.....all to release balloons for our Sweet Brock.  We were both overwhelmed. A day of raging emotions and sadness had turned into a day of celebration. Although Brock was just four months old when he became an angel, he made an impact on so many lives. His first Angelversary as my dear friend Cynthia calls it....was one I will never forget thanks to those I consider my family; you all outdid yourselves!!!!!!!!!!

As if hearing the excitement from Lackland AFB was not enough, looking at the precious pictures of all of the people and balloons being sent for my Brock, was just amazing. Although I miss my sweet boy so much, knowing the impact he has made on mine and so many others lives, I know I am and will always be blessed times four.

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

As Time Goes By...

It has been a little while since I have made a post & vow to start updating more frequently! So much has gone the past few months! My babies are no longer babies, they are toddlers! Well...Keaton and Camden are; Grayson like always, is doing things on his own timing. They are just so much fun! The joy I get from watching them laugh and play each day is overwhelming. The boys and I made it through Jeff's first TDY since having the quads...and I am proud to say that we survived! I was one tired and worn out Momma; but the since of accomplishment knowing that we made it through 2 weeks by ourselves is a good feeling. However, it was an even better feeling to get to pick Jeff up from the airport a week early thanks to the hurricane that ended up not hitting us! It was a complete win situation; well, maybe not for Jeff as he did not receive credit for the course he was taking which I do hate....but AHHHHH, to have him home and to no longer be "a single parent" made my happy!

The boys became so big that they started an Enrichment program 2 days a week for two hours. They have not quite made it the full two hours but they are doing so much better and really seem to enjoy it! Having them in a "school setting" where they are able to participate in circle time and get to associate with other kids makes the teacher in me elated! Although more than not, they are always right by each other when I pick them up....but still! I love that I have fridge art to hang and love even more the picture messages I get from their sweet teachers of the boys having fun at school!

The boys are still going to PT & OT every week and we added Speech to the list as well for all three. They have a severe feeding issue & are still behind with their speech & language development that their Speech therapist & we are working hard to make better! They will get there!

There is not a day that goes by that I do not think of my sweet Brock and the events that led up to the day that I watched him go to heaven. It is no more easier today than it was nearly a year ago. When I watch the boys play ball up and down the hallway, I wish I were seeing my sweet Brock get to have fun with his brothers too. I wonder what his little personality would be like, which brother he would look most like; my heart just yearns for him. I feel this past year I have not really got the time to grieve and let out all of my emotions and heart ache and as October 5th nears; my sadness is leaking out. I am finding it hard to suppress my heart ache like I have forced myself to do all this time. What seriously gets me through each day, is knowing that because of all that happened to Brock, I still have my Grayson here today, alive and well. And how blessed I am to have Keaton, Camden, & Grayson here to be reminded of my him each time I look into their smiling faces. These boys are my world and I am so honored that God allowed me to be their Momma here on earth. A year ago, today, tomorrow, and years to come, I am blessed times four.

The boys first day of "school"!

On our way to church at Nana & Grandpa's house

Thursday, June 21, 2012

It's Official...They Are Big Boys Now!!!!

The day that marks an epic milestone in a baby's life...hit my three boys on June 6th. They became an official big boy, turning one year old!!!!!!

It was such a bitter sweet day and I suppose will always be. I was so excited (in a sappy, "oh my babies are getting so big and will graduate high school next year if we keep at this rate" kind of way) for my babies to have overcome all adversity to make it to their first birthday...3 months premature, one on the vent for a month, heart surgery at 3 weeks of life, a 3 month NICU stay, oxygen until 6 months, Hisrchprungs Disease....and the list goes on! In the same breath, it is just a sad day. Looking back one year ago, I was being wheeled back to deliver my quadruplets...not three....FOUR! My heart just yearned for my sweet Brock to be here to celebrate his momentous birth with us and his brothers. He fought the same fight they did and came home to grow up with his brothers; but wasn't given the chance. I constantly remind myself that if not for Brock, then my Grayson might not be here too; so in that aspect I try to not be any kind of bitter to the situation...but I still struggle with that battle. We played "If I Die Young" at my baby's funeral and I turn the TV to pop hits while they eat each meal...and it seems as if that song has played everyday, sometimes multiple times....I can't help but to find myself tearing up. It is not a bad thing...just another reminder of my precious angel!

After the boys' sacred morning nap, we packed up to head to Panama City to bring Brock his Birthday gift and to wish him a Happy Birthday and to also take the boys out to an epic first birthday dinner with Nana and Auntie Ilea and Ella. Well....we started out the trip all wrong and should have seen this as an omen for the day!!!!! We took the "scenic" route on a Wednesday morning that was obviously the vacantioner's dream day to come to Destin! We were in the car for what seemed for forever!!!!!!! Once we got home, we took the boys to Nana's work to show then off (she is so proud) and to feed them a snack...needless to say...we took over City Hall!!!!!! Once bellies were full and they had been passed to all of the excited ladies...we went to see Brock. We got him a "Cars" car, four carnation flowers, and a 1 cupcake sign for the ground. I can not begin to describe the emotions I had when singing "Happy Birthday to You, Happy Birthday to You, Happy First Birthday Momma's Sweet Brock....Happy Birthday to You".  That being said, how thankful I am to have the opportunity to go and see my baby on his birthday and that we are not hours apart anymore!

After seeing Brock, we loaded up to head to Pier Park where we intended on having the boys' dinner at Margaritaville. Who would have thought that at 4 pm on a Wednesday afternoon....there would be an hour wait!!!!! My boys' have sat in the car all day as it was, sitting for another hour....they would be done for!!!!!! As bummed as Jeff and I were, we sucked it up and took them to TJIFridays. Fun they had all of the same!!!! ( note to all....they do not sing Happy Birthday; which is all we wanted for our boys....we sang it to them though which is good enough!)!

For their official first birthday party we had Jeff's sister, her husband, their two kids and his mom here to visit! We were doing the Seuss Party theme but this time it would be at the private Hurlbert Beach and Pavilion which would have been perfect!....but it was far from it!!!! From getting balloons, to decorating in what seemed like huricane force winds, to Keaton's name missing on the just all went completely wrong! Once our sweet guests monsooned! We ripped the boys' clothes off, Jeff cut the cake for the guests...and the boys dug into theirs! We had everything to grill burgers and got dogs....but the grill wouldnt stay lit with the horrible conditions! On the positive side...we will NEVER forget their first birthday party!!!!!!!From the pictures my sweet sister in law and neighbor (who is a triplet mom to beautiful 4 year old boys) took; you would never know it was a disasterous day! Although we were not able to release the dozen ballons we worked so hard to get for Sweet Brock...I know he was there with us celebrating the momentous day! And even though I do not have all four of my boys here, I know I have one amazing angel....I am blessed times four!

Friday, June 15, 2012

A Fresh Start/The Epic Move

About the time Grayson's butt was healed; it was time to get ready for our big move to Florida! Before I could concentrate on the move, I had to plan the boys' first birthday party for all of our San Antonio friends who have become family. These are the nurses, doctors, neighbors, etc who were there from the start of the pregnancy and who will remain in our lives no matter the miles apart!

I decided on a Seuss themed party and found "Thing 1, Thing 2 and Thing 3" onesies for the boys' outfits! I never realized just how much effort goes into planning a successful party! It was CRAZY all of the prep work that goes into it! But I must say looking back on was perfect and I would do it again in a heartbeat! From Pinatas to photo props, everyone had a blast! The boys did great considering they were out a nap and were 2 months shy of actually being a year old! Camden thought the cake was the greatest thing EVER as he demolished it! Keaton and Grayson were a bit more cautious! Aunt Barbara was able to come a couple weeks prior to the big shindig which helped out tons!

It was a special day for all four of my babies; and we were sure to wish Brock a special day too as we released a dozen balloons just for him.

That next week; the move process commenced! A memorable event it was sure to be! The movers packed our home one day, took it the next day, and after roughing it one night, we lived in a hotel the next few days before starting the drive. My sister came down to help us back and got to experience our tiny one bedroom TLF with us! Three adults, three babies, two cats and a made for close quarters! We survived as we counted down the days until the big drive!

All of us adults got up early to load the uhaul and vehicles so when the babies woke up, we could leave. We initially thought of driving at night, but I am not the best night owl around...I NEED sleep! We left around 7:30 and every hour became increasingly worse! Jeff had all things animal and I had all things kids! The kids started out loving life as gypsies....until about five hours into the drive! Camden wanted nothing to do with confinement of a car seat; the kid wanted out and was sure to announce his unhappiness quite loudly! (let me say we prior planned by getting dual DVD players and tons of Nick Jr shows)! We stopped for lunch and dinner only and then continued on our journey. 15 hours later and we made it to our pit stop for the night at Biloxi! ANGRY babies, exhausted adults, and easy going animals...WE MADE IT! We unloaded and put babies to bed in 0-60.

I have never enjoyed a night's sleep so much more! Good thing babies slept solid too so no one's sleep was compromised! We got up the next morning to what seemed like a monsoon (coming from San Antonio where rain seemed non existent). A quick Wal Mart run to get Yo Gabba Gabba DVDs which we discovered was crack for kids and we were ready to load up once again. The realization that we were almost home set in when we met Jeff's brother and family for lunch. How refreshing it is to be so close to family that the boys will now get to grow to know!

Four hours later, and I was back home at my Momma's house. How sweet it is! We invaded her home for a week until our house was ready on Eglin AFB...none of us minded at all! Even sweeter, I am able to go and see my sweet Brock whenever I want or need to. On the outside I have remained strong for my boys, not wanting them to see their Momma grieve....on the inside, I I have been yearning to just break down and let it out. 8 months have gone by and I will be for the first to say; it does not get easier. And for the comments that we have been told time and time again, "at least you have three others"...50 kids could not replace one who was lost. Period. It is a hurt and emptiness beyond words and I just don't think that feeling will go away. That being said, we are a testament as to all things happen for a reason, as Grayson is healed and recovered from the same disease that Brock had; for that, I am blessed times four!
1st Bday Party in San Antonio!

Waking Daddy up in TLF

Our 1 Bedroom TLF

1st Time Meeting The Great Grands!

Having fun playing at Nana and Granpa's House!!!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Over the Hump...

It has been awhile since I have updated and will keep my promise to myself to remain faithful with posting! What a couple of months it has been! Grayson's surgery went wonderful without the need for a colostomy. About a foot of intestine was removed and reconnected. After under a week stay in the hospital he was reunited with his brothers. Being home was not what I thought it would be. Grayson shrieked the second poo touched his rear and the poo was unceasing. My once happy baby, was a miserable and pained poor baby. At the surgery follow up we were taught how to dilate his rectum as it would initially have to be done twice a day to ensure scar tissue didn't seal off his rectum. An already crabby baby (with given right) was just angry with us every morning and night this had to be done. At the next follow up, I addressed the issue with the surgeon. She said she would contact a colon nurse and she would call with advice. It was a good week later but she called! She provided us supplies to form a crust on his butt. I know it sounds bizarre; but it worked!!!! After crusting his butt for a solid week, his bum scarred up and all open wounds were closed! He was beginning to be my happy baby again! Although he was still fussy, I knew it was not from pain but rather that all attention was not given just to Grayson.....he forgot for a minute that he was not the only child!!!!!

Now that Grayson was becoming the happy little boy he once was, I feel that we are finally on the up! The boys are growing faster than ever! They are cooing and babbling like crazy! Their personalities are just booming! They laugh, play, entertain one is just too neat! Keaton is getting up on all fours trying his hardest to crawl, but ends up doing a ton of rocking instead! Camden and Keaton has their first tooth popping up and Grayson is making strides in his development! It was so hard to see the light when my babies were not healthy; now, I see the light and look forward to the future!

My sister and her sweet Ella came for a week during Spring Break to visit! My oh my...Three 9 month olds and an almost 2 year old....IT WAS CRAZY!!!! But oh so fun! We were on go go go mode the entire week! We had two picture days, several mall days, a Momma's wine day and many trips to Cha Chos!!!! I needed that sister time and it made me look forward to our move date to Florida on May 1st even though it is just so bitter sweet. We have met such wonderful friends here!

Having been through all we have; I have truly come to accept that all will be well and for the better. I just hope to meet and have some amazing neighbors to hopefully continue on circle time, doctors that become more than just a sick visit, and friends to make new memories with. Life is good and blessed times four I am!!!!

Friday, February 10, 2012


WOW!!! I hate to be that person...but goodness!!!!.... I want a break for not just me but for my babies! So Grayson went to Houston where they did the test (Jeff said like 30 times) and it came back positive for Hirschprungs.  As emotional as it made me; I was happy that at least we have an matter what has to be endured by all; it is fixable.  Just as we thought it was confirmed, we were scheduled for a surgical biopsy at a civilian hospital where a pediatric pathologist was available.. Hirschprung's Disease is the absence of ganglion cells in a part of the bowel which the biopsy would test for. We were told it wold take 5-7 days to get the results; however the pathologist reviewed the biopsy and it was apparent Grayson had the disease. We have been diligently irrigating Grayson three times a day. You would think with all that he has been through that he would be a cranky and irritable baby...quite the opposite! He lays while I irrigate and just looks at me with his heart breaking blue eyes and smiles.

I write this now in the surgery waiting room, having just left my baby in the arms of a nurse in hopes that this will be it. There are no words to describe the helpless feeling when having to watch your baby go through the operating room coorridors. The surgery will take about 4 hours we were told. They brought him back at 8:30 and we were just notified at 10am that the surgery was just beginning. The hour hand can not move fast enough for this momma! Aside from the normal surgery risks; Grayson also runs the risk of having a colostomy if the colon looks unhealthy or not enough to reconnect. This is my fear. Knowing fear is not of God...I am unceasingly praying for this surgery to be successful and for him to be on his way to good health! We are at a civilian hospital downtown...what I would give to be back at BAMC where we have grown to know the staff and have even made close friends. However, I know we are at the place that is best equipped to serve Grayson and hopefully after his recovery time here...we are done with hospitals (one can hope!!!)!

Jeff also received Humanitarian orders to Hurlburt Field in Destin which is about 1 1/2 hours from home. To be honest, I can not find myself getting excited. All I want is for all of my children to be healthy and happy and problem free! I am certain once we are over today and I know Grayson is on his way to being better; I will gain excitement; as for now, there is just too much uncertainty.

On a lighter little babies are not so little anymore!!!! They are now evolving into little boys....rolling over, cooing and babbling up a storm, trying to sit up and are just so fun! How fast eight months has gone by!!! As the kids were napping not too long ago; I sat and reminisced on all of the NICU pictures. Picture folders that are named Delivery, 28 weeks, etc...has become 8 month babies. It is hard to imagine my monsters being a mere 2 pounds! How far they have come; and how much I look forward to what is to come! It is moments I spend playing with my boys, hearing their sweet giggles and voice, and watching them interact with each other that remind me no matter the trials that come our way...I remain blessed times four!
Just another day hanging out at the house! Say Cheese!!!!

Out and about strolling around the neighborhood!

All of my boys' being Air Force proud!
Getting spoiled by Aunt Barbara who came down to help during the surgery.
Hanging out with Grandpapa while sporting the cute glasses one of their favorite NICU nurses, Kristie, got them in their Valentine goody bags!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012


I sat and read my post about the upcoming new year...I just spoke too soon. Not that I am dooming my family to a horrible year or am I being pessimistic as to what is to come; but our new year just didn't go as planned. The day started out great! The boys got a bath, played, ate, napped like champs, and we took our daily outing to Wal Mart to pick up odds and ends...and to just get out. Grayson had been spitting up a mucus substance for a couple of days but we were just excited he wasn't projectile puking! It got progressively more in volume and come New Year's; the color had turned to a brownish. I wasn't concerned as he gets prune juice in the majority of his bottles in addition to the formula; so I assumed the color was from the juice. We went to dinner at a hole in the wall Mexican Restaurant nearby (literally a mile from base just in case the boys were fussy as Grayson had been all afternoon) and that is when the pukes got worse and the color darkened. It was like we were reliving the story of Brock. I called my pediatrician and she was also concerned about the color. I found myself in denial and even reassuring her that I was putting prune juice in his bottles and maybe that was the cause for the dark. It wasn't five minutes we were at home and he started spitting up bright red. I packed him up and took him to the ER once again. I found myself going back to that Sunday afternoon with Brock. Same white bib, same brown and red spit up, same hospital. I refused to have the same ending.

After a sleepless night and an additional 2 day stay; they presumed he had C.Diff and had made a tear in his esophagus from all o f the spitting up which caused the blood. Whatever it was, they were thorough in making sure what happened to Brock was not with Grayson. They even; put a rush on the biopsy to double check things. Longest wait ever. GI almost assured us that it was still just the milk allergy. What we did not want to hear happened. The biopsy showed that he had Hirschprungs. The pediatrician delivered the news after I paged for the results. Our GI doctor called and brought a glimmer of light to the situation. He said that the biopsy tests for Ganglion cells; those which might not have developed yet due to his prematurity. He said there was one other test that would bring definitive answers but was not done here in San Antonio. My response was that we would go where need be to be given a clear cut answer. Being a momma I wanted to be in two places at with the other two boys and in Houston with my sick baby. It just made since for me to stay here with the other boys to keep routine and Jeff go with Grayson. I sat on pins and needles. Thanks to my wonderful neighbors for occupying my time with their company an d all of the food between the anxious me that I prepared and kind them. Jeff finally called me back to tell me the confirmation news of what we already knew from the biopsy but were hoping would be negative. He said they did the test tens of times and it ca;me back with the same result of him having Hirschprungs. My heart just sunk. I didn't want it for my baby or my family to endure. I now desperately seek the easy button.

I have become "that mom". I find myself being a bit paranoid. I was given the warning signs to look for to when he should go to the hospital...he must poo at least once a day, eat the same, and no fevers....what constitutes enough poo??? This has been so nerve wracking.

The surgeon called me this afternoon with some sort of game plan. She wants to redo the barium enema test to see what was really Hirschprungs and what was resolved from the formula change due to the milk allergy. We do this on Thursday. Keaton will also have a barium enema done as he to is struggling to go number 2...and well; I just can not take any chances with my three little boys.

As selfish as it sounds...Ido not want to have to endure any more surgeries with my babies....I do not want to see Grayson go away to surgery where I can not help him and make it better, I do not want him to hurt, and I do not want my other two to feel neglected throughout it all. I just do not want it. However; this is what we have to deal with ; so we will. In hopes that all of my boys will be well and healthy we will persevere; because we remain blessed times four.

Grayson all packed for his first road trip away from home.

Grayson being a big boy1

Everyone home and back together!