"For this child I have prayed." 1 Samuel 1:27 Welcome to our CaringBridge site. We've created it to keep friends and family updated. We appreciate your support and words of hope and encouragement during this time when it matters most.
Nelle's father and I decided to set up this site as a way to connect with and update all of the people who have been supporting us and praying for us during this ordeal. Nelle Raquel Vazquez was born on November 29, 2012 at just 23 weeks and 4 days gestation. Since she arrived into this world screaming we have been constantly amazed and awed by her, but still this has been a heart wrenching journey for our family. We so appreciate the kindness, concern, and genuine care that has been shown us. We know that Nelle is a miracle born of faith and prayer. She is evidence that one needs only 'faith as a mustard seed' and nothing is impossible! We hope to continue to update you all with the many ways Nelle continues to beat the odds.
Thank you all!
The Vazquez Family
This coming Wednesday, Nelle will be 14 months old and on Thursday, Mason will be 3 months old. Not a day goes by that I don't wonder at the fastest, longest year of my life having come to an end... Once Mason was born and Nelle reached 1 year old with no major complications I finally let out a sigh of relief. My life may be busier now than it has ever been, with two babies, working, nursing, doctor appointments, therapy appointments and a 'new' marriage to attend to. However, without the constant worry over a baby in a NICU or a pregnancy that may not last, things feel rather calm...
I've been back to work for two and a half months and have settled into a routine with that. Johnny has been doing the same at home with the babies. I'm so relieved that even though I have to leave them every day that at least they are home with their father. The babies are also settling into a routine, although as he points out, with babies no routine lasts very long. Once you get comfortable with a certain schedule or stage they are on to the next one. Right now Nelle is 'furniture cruising' and getting around the house with ninja like speed. You can't take your eyes off of her for even one second which makes it hard for poor Mason to get any attention. Luckily Mason doesn't have the lung issues Nelle did so he's quite good at demanding attention when he needs it. He tries to be patient at first and will start out with a squeak or grunt but if he doesn't get what he needs within a couple minutes he exercises those well developed lungs of his!
For the past month Mason has been sleeping through the night from about 11pm to 6am. This is a HUGE improvement from his first month home where he was awake every single hour. Johnny and I had such a strange/different experience with Nelle that we feel like Mason is our first baby. We had NO idea how difficult it could be to have a baby that was up all night or one that would scream and cry when he gets hungry or wants his diaper changed. But the difficulty is wonderful...it reminds us how healthy he is, how 'normal'. Mason continues to grow well and is now 10 pounds. He is on track to catch up to his sister by the time he reaches 6 months!
Because he was born early, had breathing issues and a heart defect, Mason was evaluated by Early Intervention. He qualified for services because the evaluation revealed that he was delayed in particular areas. So now, both Mason and Nelle get weekly physical therapy sessions. He is making great progress and is now smiling, laughing and making eye contact.
Nelle continues to amaze her doctors at every turn. She is now drinking regular liquids...so...we are not thickening her bottles anymore! Some of you saw her bottles and can agree that what she was required to drink for the past 7 months has been unappetizing to say the least. It looked like slop and probably didn't taste that great either. Now she is on 100% breast milk. We switched her back to breast milk 2 months ago because she developed some sort of allergic reaction/aversion to her formula. She was vomiting up to 10 times per day. However, once we switched her to breast milk she never threw up again. So now I am pumping for both babies since neither of them learned to nurse very well. I have to admit that I HATE pumping. It's annoying, uncomfortable, takes time away from work and the babies, wakes me up in the middle of the night....blah blah blah. But I know it's good for them. Having turned out to be bad at pregnancy, having very abnormal births, and having both babies' returns home delayed longer than I wanted, I had to find some way to make it up to them. Pumping has sort of become my solution...it's what I can do to bring a little 'natural mothering' to this situation.
There are so many details that I want to record here but I would never finish writing if I wrote them all down. I think it's enough to say that the last few months have contained the end to my desperate worry for my children's survival and the beginning of my excitement for each new day with them, each new milestone, each new 'first'. Life has become busier but simpler at the same time, I am more tired yet more excited to wake up each morning, and there are more loose ends yet I've never been so at peace in my life...
When I prayed to get pregnant I never imagined I would go through what we went though...and when we were going through it I never imagined that I wouldn't think twice if I was asked to go through it again.... The struggle pales in comparison to the reward... By turning our love into children we also turned ourselves into parents... The magic in that is hard to comprehend...