Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Birthday Bash


Scottie's birthday party wish was granted! We threw a family party for him and Lincoln. They had a blast and we loved all the company!

On Lincoln's actual birthday we gave him his own little cake and told him to dig in. He wasn't quite sure what to do with it.

At first, the slippery gooey mess in his hands was pretty foreign. Then, he really got the hang of it and was thoroughly enjoying himself!

Insert smiley face and ..... ta-da .... we have a happy baby causing all kinds of mischief!

Phew, he's not used to working that hard! It did exhaust him a bit, but it was well worth it for us to be able to see him enjoying his first birthday cake!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Happy Birthday Little Linc!

Well, the day is here. He's officially one! He's still so happy, mellow, precious, and we all just want to eat him up! We'll have a little family celebration tonight. In the meantime, here is a video for you viewing pleasure of Lincoln's first year of life!

Lincoln's First Year from Megan Brown on Vimeo.


I made sure to take a picture of Lincoln every month on his birth day. The first couple of pictures were taken in the hospital, but from four months on we were able to take them all at home.

Photobucket
Birth

Photobucket
One Month

Photobucket
Two Months



Three Months


Four Months


Five Months


Six Months


Seven Months


Eight Months


Nine Months


Ten Months

Eleven Months


Twelve Months

More birthday celebration photos to come!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Thank Heaven,


For eleven months, that is. All I can say is, I can't believe the vast improvement just a few weeks can make. I continue to watch him blossom right before my eyes. His newest trick, he loves to clap. It's all he does anymore, especially if we sing pat-a-cake, he hears someone else clapping, or we tell him to clap.

He finally has his first tooth! It came through on the 24th of September. I think he loves to show it off!


We'll put him in his bouncer and the boy goes to town. His jumps are accompanied by his giggles and our delight. When he's no longer in his bouncer, he continue to jump on our laps.


It seems he is much more interested in people. He makes eye contact with just about everyone who speaks to him. And he's always interested in what you've got going on with your hands if you're holding him at the same time.

His angelic demeanor is forever steady. He is so patient, and truly a happy baby.

Happy eleven month birthday, Lincoln. One more month until we celebrate the day you changed our lives forever!!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Developmental Test

At least a month ago or more, Lincoln's occupational therapist performed a developmental test on him to see if he's on track and where he is for his adjusted age (being 6 months). Today we received the results. Unfortunately they didn't have a copy for me right then, they'll be mailing it later on. In the meantime, I'll try and go off of memory...so don't quote me on this!

Gross Motor Skills....Lincoln scored at a 4 month level. To be expected for us. He is a bit behind and we knew he would score low here. He is barely now mastering the ability to go up on his forearms and lift his head while on his tummy.

Language....he scored at a 2 month level. This one is a bit hard for me to understand. Truly, if he was at about 6 months of age adjusted at the test, he shouldn't be saying much. He has communicative skills such as crying when he needs a bottle, diaper change, or sleep...Laughing when he's happy or someone is being silly...and just babbling like a baby would. I think where they were going with this one was he doesn't necessarily connect the name Lincoln to himself etc.

Cognitive...he scored in the 75th percentile. I am truly giddy about this!! He is above average for his adjusted age and doing things above his chronological age! I am super excited about this one because you never know with the brain bleed-brain injury how it will affect them cognitively. You don't know their capabilities physically, but mentally is also another big issue! So far, he's exceeding our expectations.

I'm going off of memory here and not all of it seeped in, obviously. There were a few more scores and only one more I remember vividly that he was above average on! When I get the actual score sheet, I'll make sure to clarify things.

We set new goals for Lincoln and checked off the ones he's achieved.
Some of the new goals:
Making more purposeful eye contact (this can be especially hard for preemies)
Getting on all fours with intent to crawl
Being able to name objects or people for him and for him to comprehend
Sitting unsupported

He's doing really well with eating....no issues there. That can be a hurdle with preemies as well.
The occupational therapist had been leery of some tone in his hamstrings. This can be indicative of cerebral palsy. When she came today, she said he felt differently and more loose than ever in his legs. We've been working really hard with his stretches.

I'm so proud of my little guy. Life with him was so uncertain and in some terms, it still is. A couple of things I have witnessed and will always believe in....

One....There is a God. We have a Father in Heaven whom is vastly aware of each of our individual situations....And He CARES. Second, I know we are predestined for the lives we have, it is our choice do with it what we may. Third, I KNOW these trials are given to us to help refine and mold our souls in combination of having the opportunity to be an example to others. Lastly, I firmly believe He will never give us anything we can't handle.

I also still, and forever will, believe in miracles. Sometimes when I have the conversation with other people about the experience I had with Lincoln, things seem knew to me. In the sense that, it's somewhat foreign and I never thought about it in that light. Like the fact that I was FOUR AND A HALF months pregnant when my water broke. That is just unbelievable. I always say I was 18 weeks along. Most people are just about to find out the sex of their baby at that gestation. And while most women have 2 maybe 3 ultrasounds through out the duration of their pregnancy, I was having an ultrasound once monthly from 9 weeks to 20 weeks, then twice a week from 20 weeks until I delivered him at 28 weeks gestation. Mind boggling. He was meant to be here and he's making his mark on this world. Ok, even if it's not a mark on this world, it sure is on me and my family. I look forward to watching his progress. I love how everything he does is so exciting and such a huge achievement to us. Even if it's clapping his hands, rolling around on the floor or even just smiling. We love this boy and we're oh so lucky to have him with us!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

bouncing baby boy

So, I don't know if anyone else feels this way, but I think it is huge that Lincoln is doing this. We were having a hard time getting him to put any weight on his feet. He's not even always that willing to stand on your lap with assistance if you prod him.

My cousin gave this bouncer to me quite awhile ago. I brought it out from storage and got a little ahead of myself. The occupational therapist said she didn't think he was quite ready for it. About a month later, she thought it was about time. I started to put him in it. He was quite slothful. He was droopy and didn't quite understand the realm of this foreign object he was in. We gently bounced him a few times to show him what fun he could have. ...nada...

Finally, with one of our latest attempts, he caught on! He's been having SO much fun with it.

video

Not the greatest picture quality, but you get the idea ;)

Lincoln can now clap his hands, play pat-a-cake, shake his head when you say no no, dance if by shaking his head if you sing or if he hears music.

He loves his baby food...inhaling twice a day. He also got his FIRST tooth...it broke through his gums on the 23rd of September!

Thursday, September 16, 2010

One of the things we're working on



.....is Lincoln being able to sit. He is getting stronger and stronger everyday! Things are improving on a continuous basis. Now, if I could only get him to keep his glasses on!! blech!




Thursday, September 9, 2010

TwO away from tWeLvE

Two more months until Lincoln's first birthday. He's ten months old today and growing ever more. It's hard to have a variety of pictures when he can't do much but lay on his back on sit in his bumbo. He is starting to do a little better on his tummy with lifting his head, but we still have a ways to go. He is a bit behind in that department, so we try to make sure to exercise him everyday. It's almost like he's stuck in the stage where they know they want to move around, but can't just yet. We had his nurse over today and she was happy with his improvements. He is now weighing in at 14 pounds 1 ounce. He's up 6 oz's in a 2 week period. His eyes are improving as well, but let me tell you what....It's a capital P.A.I.N to keep his glasses on! I will distract him, but the second he thinks I'm not paying attention he'll try to rip them off. I'm pretty quick at getting them on. Now it's just the leaving them on we need to perfect!




He fell asleep while having a little bit of tummy time! It's a lot of work you know! Nothing like my own little slice of Heaven right on my living room floor! Some good news is that he is sleeping THROUGH the night. Ah, thanks Lincoln, I really appreciate it! Bed time is 8:30pm and he's happy and awake at 7am.



^Bitter picture face^
Shame on me for not getting any pictures of the two of them together, but Lincoln was able to meet his great great aunt Barbara from Florida. She snuggled with him quite a bit. He was even so comfortable with her as to pee all over my sweet aunt!

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Ta Da


I told you there were a lot of changes going on around here. Look at little Linc. Isn't he so handsome? We've called him Dr. Brown before, but now I think he could be called Professor Brown.


Don't look so unsure buddy. Just kill 'em with confidence. Like I've been told a few times, you gotta fake it 'til you make it!

We made a visit to the opthamologist, Dr. Hoffman, up at PCMC on the 6th of August. He gave us some pretty good news. We had been told, at a previous eye appointment with a different doctor, that he had damage to his optic nerve. When Dr. Hoffman did a full exam, he said he saw no damage. He also never mentioned a word of seeing ANY CVI.. This is good news! Our vision therapist has been telling me, the last couple of visits, that she really didn't think he had it either. She said he did show some tendencies, but would be very relunctant to diagnose him with that, there are far too many things he does that would go against it.

However, Dr. Hoffman noticed he is having a hard time with focusing and his eye crossing. He also let us know he's far sided. All of this would conclude he needs glasses. I've had many people ask me, and I wondered myself, how they could tell if a baby needs glasses or not. I'm not going to get too technical here, but from what I understand, they first dilate the eyes. After that, they are able to shine a light into the pupil and depending on how the light reflects back will tell you what their eye sight is. Correct me if I'm wrong...please :) They used a few different gadgets and batta boom batta bing. Lincoln's prescription is +3.25 and from what I hear that's not too shabby.

So, after consulting with a preemie baby momma, I was able to make somewhat of an educated decision on which glasses to get. I'm glad I chose the glasses I did. There was another choice and after explaining the others to the vision therapist, she told me she HATED that kind.

He's supposed to wear these babies full time. HA...I say!! Okay, we'll try our best. He's just too mischevious. He keeps pulling them down and either gets the nose pad thingies in his nose or he pulls them down far enough to suck on them. Good thing they have a one year warranty :)

I tried a bit ago to feed him baby rice cereal, he wasn't so sure about that. I think I need to mess with the consistancy. If he's anything like his father, it's the texture that's getting him! BUT we did try sweet potatoes two days in a row and the verdict is in....


He liked it, it's written AND smeared all over his face!! Full tummy=happy baby

It's okay baby...there's always more where that came from!

Luke was eating his lunch at the same time. He wanted to be extra cautious and make sure he didn't get any food on his shirt.

Why use your hands ??

FYI...I stick by REAL close when he's eating these little pinwheels. And, he DOES use his hands LOL

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Reminiscing

The other morning I was trying to compare my memories of what Lincoln looked like back then and what he is today. It almost seems like a different life-time, a different baby. He has a few set-backs, but for the most part he is doing really well. I can hardly imagine the child who was struggling and clinging to precious life. When we're in these trying, desparate, dark moments we think we may never survive. We don't know how they will ever pass and each moment...smell...sound becomes so deeply etched into our minds. I heard the perfect description before, but don't remember where I heard it from. They said "the pain I felt was as though my heart was literally breaking in half." I felt my chest caving in and I saw and felt so much darkness. Although, through the darkness there was always a ray of light. Things change, that is life, it's ever changing. And although I remember quite a few things vividly, the pain has lessened and we're in an awesome place right now.
I took Scottie to baseball practice tonight. The field they played on was right across the street from the hospital. I sent a text to one of Lincoln's primary nurses to see if she was working. The last time she took care of him was right before he got transfered BACK to PCMC due to his infection from his shunt. He spent the last month of his hospital stay at PCMC. It had been probably six months since she had seen him. She was one of our favorites too!
She was amazed at him. She couldn't stop drooling. When he was in her care, she would tease about taking him home in her purse. Tonight she commented that none of her purses were big enough for him to fit in anymore!



Our sweet respiratory therapist also bumped into us. Ryan teared up when he saw Lincoln. I truly believe these little spirits come to teach us a lesson. Whatever that may be for whomever may need it. It was very rewarding for me, to show those who worked so very hard to keep Lincoln here, the fruits of their labors.


We had SO many warm people who cared for not only Lincoln, but for us as well. That's why it was so easy to call UVRMC our 'home'. I walked into the parents lounge, the smell smacked me in the face like I walked into a brick wall. A flood of feelings, emotions and memories came back. I didn't cry though, I could smile. What a journey!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Really....Nine?

Ah-hem.....six months adjusted. I often get the statement, "He's nine months old??? He's so TEENY!" Then in my mind I think, "hello...he was a preemie and technically he's only supposed to be six months old!" But then I remember it's only natural to point out the obvious and it's not being said in a negative way. I could tell people he's only six months old, but I have a hard time with that because I know that he's not...!




This was his first time trying rice cereal.....ummm not so sure about this mom!


He's getting so BIG

Some of the funnest times we have with him are when we're all in the car together and the kids make him laugh hysterically.

All of his therapy is coming along well. They are wanting to see more from him, but feel he is still making great progress. The nurse was hoping he would have beefed up a little more. He only weighs 13 pounds 2 ounces which puts him up 8 ounces from her visit three weeks earlier. Also, he is now 26 inches tall. From his physical appearance, she has no concerns about his weight. So, now I have to figure out how to plump him up some more. I guess there isn't any vitamin D milk coming from this Dairy Queen.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Bubbles

Ohhhh and how he was LOVING them!!


He wasn't too sure at first.



He had to test the waters and really discover something so new and different.


But it didn't take long to figure out how much he really liked them!

Silly Lincoln!!

Thanks Aunt Sarah!