United Together – Day 4 Summary

It was a Sunday and normally on Sunday’s we are up and moving at the crack of dawn or depending on the time of the year….even before then. But yesterday, we slept in.

It didn’t help that we stayed up too late the night before watching a movie; but, it was a nice evening for Gelica, Jon and I.

We finally did get up and moving and while Geli ate some breakfast we watched another movie. Sometimes you just gotta do something to pass the time. And then at other times….you blink and you’ve lost the past 4 hours and it felt like 15 minutes.

Here is a picture of Angelica’s Room.

Geli's Room

It’s tiny and the cot (for me to sleep on) doesn’t help with the squishy feeling). What you can’t see from this position is that there is a sink directly to the left straight ahead of my cot and a TV/DVD player hung up on the wall above the sink.

Nana Karen brought Xandra and Siah in for Father’s Day and it was nice to see them. Siah’s been aware of the change of routine and not having Mommy, Daddy or Geli around. He was very happy to see Geli today.

Cuddles from a little brother

Angelica was allowed to be unhooked from her IV pole for 2 hours today and actually has a standing order for 2 hours a day unhooked….WooHoo! We decided to get off our ward and head on out exploring.

Headed Out Exploring

Well, We made it to the Lobby of the Hospital where we found the gift shop and Siah found a tiny toy station……. So we waited for him for a bit…..

The Lobby is so Exciting

It was SOOOOOO Exciting….NOT!

But, that is life with a little brother…..they like to play and explore and RUN REALLY FAST!!!!! Even in Hospital Hallway’s when Mommy and Daddy are yelling as quietly as possible for him to SLOW DOWN!!!!!

Running Fast

We made it over to the Starbucks and along the travels we managed to scratch Angelica’s left foot and run over the two smallest toes on her right foot. Seeing as her platelets were so low….that scored us a free bag of platelets once we made it back to the ward.

But, before our 2 hours of free, untethered time was up we made it down to the cafeteria for some fries and a Cheeseburger…..On our way back up to the room, we met up with Aunty Sherry. She popped by for a visit before she had to be at work at the hospital down the road….

Visit with Aunty Sherry

After Aunty Sherri left Mommy and Daddy watched Siah in the playroom and Gelica and Xandra stayed in the room and played on the computer…..

Computer Time

And Colored…….


Geli looks so pretty doesn’t she?

Later in the Afternoon, Nana Cully came by with Geli’s Grade 7 Grad Dress. They are working on the last minute fittings…..it’s pretty cute isn’t it? Geli’s pretty excited.

Geli's Dress

She rested for about an hour before the time of the day that she had been looking forward to all day long…………Her school friends came to visit…but I think I’ll post about that adventure separately….

We’re all doing well. I’m feeling huge and although I’m okay with our little man staying inside a it longer….I’m also aware that every day we pass means that he gets a little bit bigger and if I’m being totally honest….I’m a little concerned about popping out a 10 pound baby. But……ya gotta do what ya gotta do, right?

We’re up and at ’em this morning (Monday morning) and we’ve (Me and Geli) already brushed our teeth and eaten some cereal. Fruit Loops for Geli and I had a bowl of Frosted Flakes – definitely the breakfast of champions…I might add some strawberries just to round it all out health wise, eh?

Jon stayed over night at the Easter Seals house which is about 3 blocks away. He was finding the teeny, tiny scrawny, short couch in the playroom to be a bit uncomfortable. Hopefully, he got a god sleep last night….it’s just 9am here and we haven’t heard from him yet.

Alright, gotta ditch the jammies and possibly put on some make up…..don’t wanna scare the residents away….

Thanks so much for praying for us. Geli is not feeling sick to her stomach or having any pain. So please continue to pray that her body responds to the Chemo by killing the Leukemia Cells and that there would be no negative side effects to go along with it. We believe that God can work miracles….and we believe that we are seeing those miracles every day. Thank you so much.

Also, you could pray for Jon and I that we would get good rest, be at peace always, and have wisdom and grace in dealing with every facet of this situation. And for the other kids and our family and friends that are helping us out that everyone would also be at peace and that everything would work together and that no one would feel tired or stressed or worn out or nervous or any of those other things that a situation like this could possibly carry with it….

Geli loves reading the comments from you all. It’s so nice to hear who’s praying for us and to hear how Geli’s Story has spread around around the world and is uniting so many people together in faith and hope…….

We love you all.

39 Weeks plus 1 Day

This is officially the longest that I’ve ever been pregnant.

Both Angelica and Josiah were born 1 week to the day before my due date and Jeremy and Xandra were earlier than that.

I’m doing okay aside from this………….

swollen ankles and feet

I have puffy, puffy, PUFFY ankles and feet. The swelling starts just above my ankles and continues down to my toes….it’s lovely. It doesn’t hurt, but it is slightly uncomfortable.

I don’t really have a belly shot, but I’d like to get one…..hopefully today sometime.

We are wanting to get the cord blood from our baby in the occasion that it could be a help to Angelica. This means that I need to deliver here at BC Women’s Hospital……or that would be the best case scenario for us at this time. It’s not what I’d planned, but it is what would work out best for this situation here and now.

So this means that because I have in the past had quick labors that I need to hang around the hospital just in case this time goes quickly as well. It would be not cool were I to go into labor and try to get into BC Women’s from Langley only to have the baby in the car. Jon does not want to miss the delivery of our baby and so he too is here. This leaves our children in the loving care of our family and friends and we are so thankful that Angelica is expected to come home by next weekend. It’s not that long and I’m guessing that I’d have the baby within that time anyway.

We decided against inducing this weekend to give our little man a bit longer to cook, if necessary and to allow for labour to start naturally if possible.

Probably, the best case scenario would be if I gave birth close to the end of next week (which coincides when Geli is supposed to be coming home) and then we could all just go home together.

I’d initially thought that maybe I could hope to hold out on having this baby until I went home and then I could just go back to our original plans for birth and delivery with my midwife….but after talking with the lab who deals with the cord blood, I think it would be the best idea to have the baby here….not my first choice but possibly the best case in this messy situation.

I think that the stress of everything has stalled things from progressing as they seemed to be doing. Aside from the very stressful Thursday which ended up with me being monitored and having contractions 6 mins apart there have been a few twinges here and there, but nothing where I’ve really wondered if this was the start of something.

The midwife that I’ve had caring for me here in Vancouver has been unbelievable. June Friesen has gone so far above and beyond in her care of me….I don’t even have adequate words to describe how caring she’s been or how much she’s been here for us or walked us through some of the hardest and stressful days that we’ve had so far. She is an amazing midwife and I’m so thankful that Cathy referred us to her care. Although I miss Cathy terribly, I am in amazing hands and I’m so grateful to have such caring women as a part of bringing our newest little man into this world.

I did have a non-stress test yesterday and he is doing well.

I’ll try to get a picture of myself today and back add it to this post……(DONE)

39 Weeks 2 Days

Angelica Update 6-17-10

Jon and Geli got into Children’s Hospital last night and finally got moved into a room around 2am.

We signed off to get some sleep around 2:30am and I’ve not heard from them this morning.


There was some initial confusion regarding the blood work and it looked like it might not be leukemia, but rather an atypical form of mono.

After some more tests, and a meeting with the Hematology/Oncology Doctor, his initial feeling is that it is a type or form of Leukemia that we are fighting against.

Her platelets were low enough last night that they gave her a transfusion over night. She also had her blood work re-done and had an x-ray.

The plan for today, as of last night (or early this morning), was to do a bone marrow biopsy and to test some of her spinal fluid. Both of these tests should bring more answers.

There has been some discussion with the Dr. at Children’s about the possibility of using Cord Blood from the baby to help Angelica and we should know more on that today.

It’s not something that we had thought about or looked into or planned for and so we need grace and wisdom and the timing of everything to work out perfectly.

I have an appointment with my midwife this morning at 10am and obviously will have a ton to discuss.

We will continue to update and let you know where we are at and we so covet your prayers at this time.

Things to pray for:

Angelica seems way too calm according to the staff at the hospital. She has a tendency to process her feelings and emotions very slowly and so we are just praying for her that she will be able to process all that she is going through and not stuff her feelings and emotions. Please pray for health and strength both physically and emotionally as she walks this road before her.

I’m feeling extremely emotional and try though I might I can’t seem to stop crying. Physically, the baby was moving a ton last night and so he seems quite happy. I am needing to be at peace and to be able to be confident that none of this is a surprise to God. Pray for perfect timing for the delivery of this little one and that all the details would be sorted out smoothly and in His perfect time.

Xandra and Jeremy are both upset and processing what all of this means to them and to their sister and to their family and they are doing so on an 9 and 12 year old level. Please keep them in your prayers as well.

Siah seems blissfully unaware at this point.

We could use prayer for all our family/friends as this is their Grand daughter, niece, cousin, friend and the uncertainty can be stressful.

Health and Peace, Faith and Wisdom! Those are the biggest things that we need right now…….thank you.

11:30am update:

Home from my midwife appt. Things look okay with me and baby. Wheels set in motion to be ready and able to collect cord blood. Geli had to receive another platelet transfusion as her counts needed to be above 50 to do the bone marrow biopsy and they were up to a 40 from the initial count of 9. So she’s received the 2nd transfusion and they are waiting on the numbers to proceed with the biopsy.

Hanging Around with Nothing New

Well, I got nothing in regards to a pregnancy or baby update. Nothing’s happening and while the ladies at our church threw us a Baby Shower last night….I’ve not gotten to those photo’s yet and so I’ll delay on sharing about that just yet.

We did go for a walk on Sunday afternoon. Geli stayed home and the boys and Xandra and Jon and I walked around Walnut Grove. It’s such a great little community.

I got some great shots of Jeremy….


He was in a great mood and posed for a bazillion shots……


A lot of times, he takes BRUTAL photos and so I’m always THRILLED to get some decent ones of him….


But today…..today we had some winners and I’m so pleased.

Which is your favorite?

My boys paused for a quick hug and I was able to snap up this shot…..


Siah was just mellow and chillin’ this particular afternoon……


My boys……I sure love ’em!


I woke up on Saturday morning having some contractions.

In fact, even though they were not regular and increasing in intensity and length, I actually wondered if this might be the start of things. Especially when there were some “signs” that things might be progressing…….

Now, obviously all of the prep work that my body is doing is helping to get things ready for the “actual moment” but basically, I had irregular contractions ALL DAY on Saturday and by dinner time I figured that nothing was really happening and that I’d go to bed and either wake up in the middle of the night in full blown labour or I’d sleep till morning and carry on.

Yah, it was the second. And although I’d love to be holding my baby right now….I got a really god night of sleep – you know, until Siah came into my room on Sunday morning at 5:11am crying about the fact that the cookies were all gone.

Apparently, he woke up. Went downstairs. Looked for the Chocolate Chip cookies that I’d made on Friday. When he couldn’t find any, he was devastated and came upstairs crying about it.

I assured him that I’d just put them away and that there were lots left for him.

I honestly figured that he was AWAKE awake and that my day had started. But nope, after almost an hour of thrashing in the bed beside me he finally konked out until 7:20am. So, we got a tiny bit more sleep, which was nice.

But, to wake up on Sunday morning with……NOTHING! Nothing at all happening especially after wondering for the whole day on Saturday… Well, it feels a bit like a nasty tease. I know that it’ll happen soon enough and all these different signs are obviously leading up to the big day and I must just be patient.

I HATE being patient. I hate waiting for surprises. I hate delayed gratification.

At this point though, I have no choice, do I?

Lovely! Oh well, here goes another day hoping………..

38 Weeks

Well, I’ve made it to 38 weeks pregnant.

I’m still feeling pretty good, but I’m definitely ready for this little one to come out and join our family.

I had my midwife appointment yesterday and were at the “any time now” stage.

Baby was doing well. His heart rate was at 160 beats per minute which is a little faster than it’s been, but still okay. He’s still head down and in a good position.

38 Weeks Front View

I’m currently measuring at 36 cm for fundal height. I was measuring at 38 cm last week which is supposed to indicate that baby has dropped some. This was confirmed by an exam where we learned that our little man is at -1 station (so almost completely engaged where he was previously very high and not at all engaged) and that I am 50% effaced and 2cm dilated.

My blood pressure was low 90/60 and i hadn’t gained any weight.

38 Weeks Side View

I’ve nothing terribly exciting to report. I’m just hanging around and trying to finish up the few things that I could do, but at this point there is nothing really left that I HAVE to do. It’s done. Today, I managed to bake a double batch of chocolate cookies that is boxed up to go in the freezer and a lemon poppy seed loaf. I also managed to clean out about half of my fridge…..still gotta get to the lower half. It just needs to be wiped out. I bet you’re just so excited that I shared that tiny tidbit of info with you.

I seem to be alternating between nights were I get an amazing night of sleep and then a night where I feel like I’m awake all stinking night long. Oh well, I’m just trying to enjoy the good nights as much as possible knowing that it’s all about to change in the very near future.

Anytime Now Would Be Alright With Me

On Sunday, as we were headed into church, I realized that the crotch of my maternity jeans had worn out.

Yes, I had to go through the morning in jeans with a massive hole in the crotch and well, if that wasn’t just a slight bit uncomfortable. I kept stressing that someone might be able to see. Thankfully, I had nice (ish) underwear on.

Yup, more than 6 months of serious wear and those babies have finally bit the bullet. I bought them before I was 12 weeks because I was headed to a Ladies Retreat and my regular jeans were too tight. They were great jeans too. Low rise, sat under the gut, (I HATE stuff over my stomach ESPECIALLY when I’m pregnant) boot cut, no gathers or weird bunchy pockets…..they were just great jeans and I wish that I had them to wear after the baby comes. I might see if my mom can do something to make a comfortable yet not terribly noticeable patch of some sorts.

BUT……I DO figure that this means that it’s time for the baby to come now. I mean if I’ve worn out my jeans, then come on…….right? It would be stupid to buy another pair when this baby could come any time now….like even tonight! Hint! Hint! Little One!

Today was a fairly low key day.

I did have a midwife appt earlier this morning and I’ll update on all of that with my 38 week post tomorrow.

Other than that, I had coffee with my sister and looked a bit more for those paint with water books (no luck though) and then……wait for it…….wait for it……..

I cleaned house!

Jon steam cleaned our stairs and the hallways, up and down, and I washed our bedding and did all the remainder of the laundry and then washed the laundry room floor and cleaned out the boys bathroom upstairs in the hallway.

I need to make some laundry detergent (We use Pink Solution!) and to clean the TV Room. The main floor needs to be swept and the kitchen tidied from today’s dishes and then pretty much I’m ready!

I could clean out the fridge – doesn’t that sound fun, or wipe out the cupboards….again with the thrilling excitement…..I know!

Jon has a meeting tonight and I really wish he didn’t, but I’ll survive! I might even take a bath and do my toe nails once the monkey’s go to bed. Ooooo the Excitement around here is amazing, AMAZING, I tell you!

Well, the close of today brings me one day closer to meeting my sweet boy and I’m so excited!

16 days until D-Day

Well, It’s just over 2 weeks until my due date rolls around.

Which translates in my mind to – RIGHT FREAKING’ NOW!!!!!!!!!

I’m tired and I’d be WAY more comfortable if this sweet boy was OUTSIDE my body as opposed to inside my body but….I’m just waiting, and waiting and waiting, and waiting.

It’s tough feeling like I need to keep the house clean and neat and tidy, especially when I have no clue when this party os going to get started and I feel like if I go to bed one night and things are just total chaos……THAT would TOTALLY BE THE NIGHT that everything happened.

Which, by that logic, means that I should just leave everything and then it would all happen, BUT…..I just can’t fathom having a HUGE MESS to deal with on top of a newborn and so me and my big belly slowly waddle our way around the house and up the stairs and attempt (and I use that word loosely – VERY LOOSELY) to keep on top of things.

Fortunately, with the sheer number of things that my children have left scattered all over the house I get to practice my squats quite often. What’s really bad, is that its actually more comfortable for me to just bend over at the waist and pick stuff up and so I have to consciously make the effort to squat or lunge to pick the pick of crap off the floor. Fun times over you, you have NO IDEA!

I’m still fluctuation between puffy and not puffy. It’s about this stupid….earlier today – not puffy. Up and about walking and over at my mom’s just chillin….I literally just sat down about 10 minutes ago and WHAM….right foot starts to swell. You only wish you could have this much fun.

Well, my mom had Siah for a bit and they are here now, so I’m signing off.

37 Weeks

Well, my stomach muscles have finally lost the fight.

It looks like I’ve dropped and I can actually breath and there is space between the bottom of my boobs and my stomach, but I’m actually measuring 3 cm larger than last week. All of the stomach muscles in the lower half of my stomach have just given up and have let loose. If you look in the pictures from this week and then compare to last week…there is a whole lot more baby popped out in the lower half of my stomach than there used to be.

And, he’s not dropped – his head is still up and floating.

I had my 37 week appointment yesterday and things are looking good. Little Man’s heart rate was 144 beats per minute and he’s happy and growing. He’s still laying head down and with his back to my right side. He’s been in that position for a while now. So we’re not expecting him to have any drastic movements or shifts….he’s been pretty happy there.

37 weeks side

I had a really bad afternoon on Wednesday and after holding myself together….I finally lost it yesterday morning at my midwifes. I just couldn’t stop crying. It bothered and scared me so badly that I hadn’t felt him move and that I couldn’t get him to move for almost half an hour.

Here’s what happened……On Wednesday morning, I made a big batch of soup and then a huge pot of rice and beans. While the rice and beans were simmering, I made a double batch of Apple Hemp muffins, then another double batch of Zucchini muffins and then another double batch of pumpkin carrot muffins. I wanted to be able to freeze a bunch of them for when our little man comes. They are an easy, high fiber, healthy quick snack!

Around 1:30-2pm, I realized that I didn’t remember feeling the baby move while I was cooking and baking and that’s unusual. He’s big and strong enough now and I usually feel him move fairly regularly all day, even when I’m busy and doing things.

So I figured that while my last batch of muffins was baking, that I’d go and lay down on the couch and I should be able to get him to move then. I sat down on the couch and put my feet up and waited……nothing! So I poked at him a bit to see if I could wake him up and again……..NOTHING! I needed to go and check on the muffins, so I did and they were fine, but I still hadn’t felt him move….at this point, it’s been about 20 minutes since I realized that I hadn’t felt him moving. I contemplated laying down on the floor because I wondered if me laying flat would encourage him to stretch out and start moving, BUT……..that brought me WAY TOO CLOSE back to the Sunday that I found out that Nathaniel had died. I had done the exact same thing, trying to get him to move – I’d laid down on the carpet in my living room and couldn’t get him to move around. I didn’t want to do that because of the whole “What if’s?????” that were rolling around in my head and yet I needed to do something.

37 weeks front

I did lay down and after about 5-7 minutes I felt one little movement but I honestly wasn’t sure if it was a real purposeful movement or if it was a leg that just slipped around inside there. (I know how morbid that sounds and yet it was my reality at one point and so I do wonder and question…) Then he moved a bit more and I could tell that they were purposeful movements and shortly after that he got the hiccups…….those were honestly the most amazing feeling hiccups that I’ve ever felt in my life.

And from that point, I felt him move quite regularly through the rest of the evening.

After my meltdown in the midwife’s office, she sent me home with a doppler. She did ask me about sending me for a Non Stress Test, but as I explained to her…..while it feels great for the moment, almost as soon as it’s done, I start to question and wonder. See, I don’t doubt my bodies ability to be pregnant. I don’t doubt my ability in labour and delivery. What I do doubt and question, is if my baby will stay alive long enough to to be born.

We’ve never found any reason for why Nathaniel died or for why I lost any of the others and to have no reason means that we also can’t take active measures to prevent anything from happening. I’ve managed to hold it all together for a good part of this pregnancy, but I’m finding these last few weeks to be more difficult than the previous weeks…..I think that I’m so invested in this (and him) now and the thought of losing him (even if in reality it is only a remote possibility) is so SO difficult to handle.

And so though a NST would be nice, it’s not really helpful, but she did want me to take home a doppler so that I wouldn’t have to deal with another half an hour of stressing out……If I question or wonder…..BAM! Instant info!

I’m into my once a week appointments now, but really, this baby can’t come fast enough, as far as I’m concerned. The sooner he’s here and safe in my arms….well, technically at that point I should be able to breath easier, but in all actually it took a few weeks before I felt like that with Siah.

In other lighter news, I’m swollen and puffy enough that I gained 4 pounds in one week. How horrific is that? I know it’s mostly water weight, as this morning I was down a pound from yesterday, and that was regardless of the fact that I woke up with puffy, swollen feet.

I meant to pick up a herb to help with that yesterday at my midwife’s, but the meltdown kind of took over the appointment and I totally forgot.

At this point, it’s just a waiting game. My due date is June 25th but any time now would be just fine with me.

36 weeks

Alrighty then….we’re getting there! Slowly but surely, we are getting closer and closer to the finish line.

I’m sitting on my couch with my feet up on the ottoman and I’m trying desperately to stay awake and yet, in spite of my best efforts, I’m nodding off and I catch myself jerking awake and well, quite frankly that’s really uncomfortable. Biggest problem, my two year old is watching a movie in the kitchen and it would be terribly unwise to fall asleep….who knows what level of mischief he could get up to in 10 -15 unsupervised minutes. But, BOY WOULD I EVER LIKE A NAP RIGHT NOW!

I actually went grocery shopping with my sister this morning and well, at this point that feels a bit like a herculean effort. Especially considering that I had Siah with me. Although to his credit, he was the most amazing little shopper this morning. Normally, shopping with him is a bit like sheep herding and cattle wrangling, but the little monkey actually sat in cart the WHOLE time except for the very end. I thought for sure that I had bought enough at Superstore that I could use the coupon to get the free $25 Gift Certificate…….but no, the total rang in at $233. and so I chose to run back and pick up a 3 pack of roasting chickens (which we will totally use over the next little while – easiest meal ever!) and a Jumbo box of cereal.

But……racing through a store with a 35 pound 2 year old on your hip at 36 weeks pregnant…..HA HA HA HA HA! I “raced” him back to the cart/cashier (as opposed to carrying him) and he did great.

Okay, enough with the nodding off already, I should go and make myself a coffee.

Actually, I’ll be right back……………….

……………Okay, still tired, but I think that the getting up and moving around helped some. I haven’t actually had any of my coffee yet as it’s blazing hot, but it’s sitting here beside me and it smells amazing.

So, I had my 36 week midwife appointment yesterday and it went well. I actually lost a pound from my last visit, which was a pleasant surprise. Everything else checked out great…..little man’s heart rate was at 156bpm and I’m measuring 35cm. She doesn’t actually believe that he’ll be the ginormous monster sized baby that the OB suggested based on his scans, but only time will tell, eh?

36 weeks side

I was tested for the Group Strep B yesterday and at the same time she checked things out and I’m 1cm dilated and my cervix as soft, so things are exactly where they should/could be.

She gave me some Mother’s Cordial to start as well as a herb tea to help build up my nutrient levels and to prep me for the labour and some homeopathic remedy that is supposed to also help to prep things.

I also walked outta the appt with a whole armload of CD’s, DVD’s and a video. There were some labour massages and other relaxation techniques that she wanted me to take a look at and I figured why not. If I can get a great massage outta Jon in the next little while – BONUS, as far as I’m concerned.

I had planned to do a few things while I was out, but I had forgotten my cell phone at home and so I just went home and killed some time until my chiropractic appointment.

36 weeks front

I’ve actually been feeling pretty good. My necks not bothering me. My shoulders are not really bothering me. I do have a tiny bit of a sore spot on the top (and inside) of my right foot. I have NO IDEA what happened. I woke up fine on Tuesday morning. Walked around a ton. Put on my Birkenstocks to leave for work and right where the band crossed the top of my foot it felt like I’d been burned or like it was massively bruised…neither of which is the case.

My hips were slightly out, but really not too much and he did quite a bit of work on my feet. I think that 211 pounds combined with the Relaxin hormone is just too much for my feet to handle. I will be happy to have this baby and loose some of that weight. It sucks when your feet hurt.

I didn’t notice a massive difference in my hips until this morning when I crawled outta bed and for the first time in a while waddled myself to the bathroom and had absolutely no hip pain whatsoever.

Yah for my Chiropractor. He’s the best. I have scheduled another appointment with him for Monday June 7th. I figure that puts me a little closer to the time of the birth and that there is a good chance that I’ll be out of alignment at some point between now and then.

I’m feeling quite pressured to do another thorough tidy on my house and to prep some meals or at the very least some easy/quick meal ideas for Jon and the kids to make and to finish up the last minute things on my “to do” list. It’s very exciting because as of next weekend – we’re on an “anytime now” basis and that’s pretty exciting.

I’m planning on walking a lot over the next few weeks and continuing with the 2-3 times a week exercise class.

36 weeks! WOW! We’re almost there. YAH!