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We are a family of fifteen: eight already with Jesus and seven in desperate need of Him. This is the story God is writing in our lives. Proverbs 16:9

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Update from the Hospital

Tiffany was admitted into the hospital on Friday night. The babies have not been born but are being monitored closely. She has also received 2 steroids shots that will help the babies' lungs mature at a faster pace.  The goal is to get them as many days as possible in utero before we must take them out. She is 30 weeks 3 days but her body measures about 41 weeks. For obvious reason she is in a lot of pain. However, the babies are looking very healthy. We are very thankful to our Lord for his mercy and for all the prayers offered up on our behalf.

Please pray that Tiffany will be as comfortable as possible and that the docs would have wisdom about the right time to take them out. 



Saturday, January 28, 2012

Admitted for Now

Last night, I began having some contractions and enough discomfort to contact the doctor on call at our practice. Thankfully, my doctor was the one who very quickly called me back! Within about 15 seconds, he decided to have me come on in. And I was so glad he did. I learned quickly that I was contracting every 1.5-2 minutes. Thankfully, he got them under control with two doses of medication. Long story short, I am here to stay~ at least until Monday. He has decided to go ahead with steroids and help the babies lungs develop more quickly and keep a close watch on us all. We would again appreciate your prayers. Again, we all~ the boys included~ feel very carried and cared for through each and every day. I read this familiar verse on a friend's blog early this morning and it reminded me of God's perfect knowledge and plans for us: In Your book were written, every one of them, the days that were formed for me, when as yet there was none of them.~ Psalm 139. May this day reflect His plan so clearly that this truth is obvious to us all.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Everyone looked great yesterday.  Our doctor was hesitant to go ahead with the steroid shots because he thought they may cause me to go into labor. We are going to wait as long as possible before attempting those.

The babies are looking more and more piled on top of each other as they all maneuver for space!  We have watched them "practice breathe" which is just fascinating.  Eliana particularly had a good amount of amniotic fluid and an even better doppler reading than last week.  We go again next week to have them measured again.

Friday will be 30 weeks!  We feel so humbled to have reached this point. 

All your works shall give thanks to you, O LORD, and all your saints shall bless you! They shall speak of the glory of your kingdom and tell of your power, to make known to the children of man your mighty deeds, and the glorious splendor of your kingdom.
Psalm 145:10-12

Friday, January 20, 2012

Watching and Waiting

At Wednesday's ultrasound, Isaac measured 2 lbs. 13 oz., Isabella 2 lbs. 12 oz., and Eliana 1 lb. 11 oz. Even though there is quite a size discordance between our two girls, we were so glad to see that Eliana has grown some and that Isabella and Isaac are growing so well. She did have another abnormal umbilical doppler reading (pointing to insufficient blood flow) but it wasn't higher than other readings. We are so thankful our doc will be back from vacation on Tuesday. We are meeting with him then.  There is a possibility of going ahead with steroid shots to give their lungs an opportunity to develop anticipating an early delivery.

We have had moments of speculation about what is going to happen in the coming weeks as we get closer to reaching communicated milestones for the babies regarding the TTTS.  I used to say, "If God would only reveal His future plans to me, then I would feel better prepared".  I am not so arrogant to think myself so capable of such preparation anymore:)  Walking by faith has never been so practical.  I know I would not have made it this far, in constant suspense taking one day at a time, if God would have told me just how difficult it all was going to be back then.  Once again, "Immortal, Invisible, God Only Wise" proves Himself to be the Only One capable of walking by sovereign sight. 
29 weeks
I am treasuring each movement, each hiccup, and each spirited kick. I never thought my body could stretch to this size! Let me just say, it is not comfortable, but holding three babies at one time is a blessing. I had another mother of triplets remind me that it will be near impossible to hold them all simultaneously when they are born. It is hard to believe that 11 weeks of bed rest have passed.  Andrew and Elijah officially cannot remember when mommy wasn't sporting a huge belly~ or when mommy actually cooked and did things around the house!

God remains faithfully merciful to us all~

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Moving Toward 29

Friday, Eliana's doppler reading was better than Wednesday's so she is holding steady in that regard AND I was thrilled to learn yesterday that I do not have gestational diabetes.  Praise God!

During a break in the three hour diabetes test, Micah pushed me in a wheelchair (actually, raced with me through the empty parts of the hospital hallways) up to the Neonatal ICU where the babies will more than likely be for a while.  I am one to do better when I see things ahead of time so this was exceptionally helpful.  It takes the ~wondering~ out of it a bit and definitely makes me feel more prepared.  We met several nurses and one gave us a tour.  She was so kind to us.  She introduced us to a few of the babies already patients there, some the size of our babies now, and answered several of our questions.  It was a peaceful place and the ladies we met seemed to really love their jobs.

Micah and I already go back tomorrow to have the babies measured.  This is a huge matter of prayer~ that our doctor (still persistent in following us from his vacation) will have wisdom about Eliana's growth and what is best for her as he continues to assess Isabella and Isaac.  As all of this is overwhelming, pray for us~ that our eyes will be fixed on Jesus as He continues to carry us along. 

I have to mention how very blessed and helped we have been by our church family and friends during the last several weeks.  There is such beauty in community and our family has felt and experienced this first hand.  It truly demonstrates to us the very heart of our Savior, Servant, Jesus Christ.

I must apologize if I have failed to communicate with everyone who has reached out to us.  My note writing/sending has been egregiously lacking and I hope you who continue to love us through words and actions will accept this as a huge, heart felt, Thank You.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Andrew Is 8!

We are so thankful for and proud of Andrew.  Today, on his 8th birthday, we celebrate the gift of his life! 

Wednesday, January 11, 2012

Today's Update

Just a quick update:  Today, Eliana's umbilical doppler result was abnormal.  She looked great though, moving all around.  She had changed positions... again:) and kicked the sonographer several times in the course of the scan.  We actually saw her profile better than we ever have today.  She seemed to have plenty of fluid around her face~ such a blessing ~and that made it easy to see her cute little features.  We go back Friday to check her again and assess what is best.  I am so thankful they are following our babies so closely.  They appeared to be having a big party for their big brother Andrew's birthday tomorrow. Andrew says sometimes my belly looks as if they are in a bouncy house!  Our doctor is on a planned vacation to Key West this week and next.  Micah and I were a little concerned when he shared this news last week (to say the least), but he had already temporarily given our case to another doctor and had a plan for following us on his iPhone.  He can view all our ultrasounds and even track information on hospital monitors from there.  Thank God for technology!

Another note:  I failed my gestational diabetes test today.  I am also being tested more extensively on Friday to see if this is another thing we are going to have to watch.

Thank you for the continued prayers.

Friday, January 06, 2012


Perspective is an interesting thing.  When I look out across the landscape of life and see situations out of context and circumstances unattached, I admit there are judgements I make that I am certain aren't completely accurate.  I try to judge based on truth, but most likely, I understand experiences in generalizations that primarily come from my own perspective.  I wish this weren't the case as much because I am sure I miss so much learning in living.   

For example, if you would have told me about a baby in a NICU born at less than 30 weeks weighing less than 2 pounds, I would have immediately thought, "Wow- that is really hard and sad".  I would have thought of the mother and father and their struggle as they watch their tiny baby and deal with the plethora of problems that come with prematurity.  I would have thought about all the posters in OB/GYN's offices that explain the symptoms of preterm labor.  I would remember my own experience with Andrew at 35 weeks~ showing up at a regularly scheduled doctor's appointment totally unaware that three hours later, I would be holding him in my arms. 

And yet, here I am, 27 weeks pregnant with these three precious babies.  I think of all the days and nights when waiting on the Lord was excruciating.  I think of all the ultrasounds, doctors visits, travel time back and forth to Cincinnati, and ups and downs of the babies conditions during this pregnancy.  I think of all the time I fought against the what ifs.  And then I hear my doctor's voice saying, "no one in this practice thought you would make it this far".  I also remember the stories of other TTTS mommies who have not had as many weeks with their babies.  The Lord has done great things for us~ and 30 weeks will be another great accomplishment. 

Yesterday's doctor's appointment provided a great deal of perspective for us and our babies.  Despite adequate fluid, normal heart rates and umbilical dopplers, there is beginning to be a large enough gap in the growth of our girls to warrant serious conversation about getting them out.  It is difficult to imagine that babies at such a young gestational age can do better outside than in, but with TTTS, that is precisely the case.  Eliana has only gained a few ounces in four weeks.  Isabella and Isaac are growing right on track.  Even though the thought of exposing a very small, premature baby to the world makes this mommy very concerned for her (as well as for our other two babies), I am beginning to understand that I should be more concerned about her development in a place where she cannot receive adequate resources.  It is a very different perspective. 

Micah and I have talked at length about technology.  The same advances in medicine and science that have caused there to be hundreds of thousands of embryos frozen in time are the same advances that have allowed for our babies to be cared for to this point with life-threatening syndromes.  They also provide the ability for them to live and thrive outside the womb at such an early stage if need be.  We are thankful for God's provisions in these things.  I ran across this devotion excerpt today from Spurgeon revised by Alister Begg that reminded me that my greater hope is in an even better Physician:   

He is the Physician, and if He knows everything, there is no need for the patient to know. What you don't know now, you will know later; and meanwhile Jesus, the beloved Physician, knows your soul in adversities. Why does the patient need to analyze all the medicine or estimate all the symptoms? This is the Physician's work, not mine; it is my business to trust, and His to prescribe. If He shall write His prescription in a fashion that I cannot read, I will not be uneasy on that account, but will rely upon His unfailing skill to make everything clear in the result, no matter how mysterious the process.

These words, while beautifully true and very persuasive, bring me to my knees. I should despair in my inability to be so faithful in trusting Jesus.  This is not descriptive of this gal who is in and of myself 4 needy patients at this moment in time:) Yet, it is descriptive in the way God sees me as his daughter as He invites me to trust Him.  I assure you that what you may see as trust in me is one of two things; complete and total exhaustion~ the kind where I am too tired to be anxious~ or Jesus working in me the kind of faith that takes my inadequacies in trust and submission and makes them show His perfection. It is truly compelling, coming to terms with oneself yet knowing how I am loved. Therein lies the means of moving forward with a thankful toast for today and rest in my Great Physician and His mysterious ways for tomorrow for us all.  Seeing Him offers the most valuable perspective. 

So please continue to pray.  God can choose to grow Eliana at a quicker rate or He can choose to care for her in a different way.  We and our doctors need wisdom in knowing how to best care for all the babies.  We also desire that Issaac and Isabella continue to grow well.  Andrew and Elijah are doing very well.  They have loved all the visitors we have received over the past weeks.  Having our church family and friends in and out to help with housework, take the boys outside, and bring meals has been such a blessing.  Micah is juggling!  I am so thankful for his diligence and love.  We are so thankful for his employees that allow him to care for me when he is needed at home or at the hospital.  So far, my body though stretched thin, is holding together remarkably.  I have had a few trips to the hospital, but to this point, I have been able to come home each time.  We as a family don't know all those reading and praying, but God does, and we are thankful He has brought us such a great multitude of encouragers for this season.  Blessings to each of you!