Saturday, March 24, 2012

Justin at One!

A year ago – on February 24th, 2011, I headed to Bunco with my buds while thinking it was a good idea to try and get my “due date” off my mind. It worked – for a little while. At least one time at dinner I put my hand on my stomach. I think it was Megan or Laura who asked if I was having contractions. Blowing them off, I said that I had a Braxton Hicks contraction. Um….maybe not?

A couple short hours later, those “fake” contractions were closer and closer together. Sleep didn’t seem to be an option. At 2 a.m., we called my buddy Tracey who came over to help with Troy once he woke up. Spent as long as I could relaxing in the tub as the contractions grew closer and stronger. By 3:30, we left for the hospital. Luckily, my doctor was at the hospital already and Justin arrived at 6:28 a.m. At the time, I didn’t realize it but he was breathing a little funny.

Justin was taken to the special unit for extra care. I was oblivious! Brian left to call his family and get our bags. While he was gone, the pediatrician came in the room. The news was not anything I was expecting: baby Justin is having a hard time breathing, his heart is enlarged, he’s being sent to UAB. Wait? What? Like now? Well, not immediately but as soon as the jet arrives. Jet? What?

Well, the next 8 days were the longest I can remember but also the shortest. The days were long but the week flew by. PPHN, a right sided aortic arch, club feet. Not necessarily what you want to hear but something we knew would be manageable. And he was going to live. Thank the Lord. Finally we headed home. Nervous as a first time parent. Nervous!

Here he is in the transport machine thingy (very technical, I know) before he was placed on the jet.


Orthopedic appointments weekly for 8 weeks. Castings, a heel cord lengthening, more casts, braces on his feet, trips to the pediatric orthopedist, immunologist and eventually to the ENT. ENT appointment will be made up again later though (due to an ear infection). Little dude is a trooper, loveable, very patient and very kind.

We baby him, yes. Not only because he’s a baby but because of what he’s been through and what we’ve been through. We’re slowly learning that he is stronger than we think. But, we’ve been much easier on him than on Troy. Granted, he’s not as mischievous but we’re still more lenient.

Justin has done marvelously with his braces, no issues at all. I’ve learned that this is a huge deal because many people have issues with socks, blisters, the shoes coming off, etc. The only issue we’ve had is the banging of the braces/shoes against his crib. Yep, there are some nice dents in the crib. At least it’s on the inside and toward the bottom of the wood. It’s a convertible crib so I hope that when it is a full size bed, the marks will be covered up.

So Justin is crawling like a crazy kid, trying to keep up with Troy. He loves to find toys inside things (baskets, the kid kitchen, wagon, etc.) and throw them all out. This keeps him entertained for quite a while! He loves to eat! Has transitioned to the cup like a champ. We took the bottle away the day before his birthday and have never looked back.

His favorite toys are the Woody and Buzz Lightyear dolls from Toy Story. His older brother loves them which has apparently led Justin to adore them as well. So we have two sets of each! Why not, I guess, right?

He LOVES his mama! If he sees me crawling toward him, he starts laughing and crawling and pulling up against me. He loves to dance as much as possible. Uses his sign language: more, eat, all done, milk, bye bye and blowing kisses. I guess blowing kisses isn’t really sign language but we know what he’s doing. He’s saying “dada”, “bla”  and sometimes I think he’s trying to say ball and light.


     Weight: 22 pounds

     Height: 30 1/2 inches

    Head: 18 inches

His measurements are right at 50%. What a huge difference! 11 months ago his head was under the chart (we found out recently) and he was at 10-20% for height and weight. He has made huge improvements over the past year! Cannot be MORE proud of this sweet, God-given gift. I’m so grateful to be able to “borrow” him from God for a little while and teach him about life and Jesus! I love this little dude to pieces!!!

justin 2faceJ looking down 2eating a stick


Brian said...

Although scary, it's pretty awesome to look back on that experience and see how God was in control the whole time. It was hard to see it then, but praise God we don't have to see, just believe. Thanks Elyse for sharing that story again.