Look what I was privileged to be able to do this week in honour of another sweet heart baby named Peyton...
Yeah, that's me...the girl who used to be terrified of needles and who would faint at the sight of blood...Apparently I'm not like that anymore - all thanks to my brave heart warrior who has shown me what true strength is. Funnily enough, the nurse who was with me was convinced I was about to faint and when I asked why she said "well, you never had much colour to begin with!" Oh dear...I may need to hit the tanning beds before going down south next month. I apologize for the very uncool socks in my Toms, but it was a cold "spring" day and I didn't want to freeze :) I got to meet Peyton's parents the day before the donor clinic, and they are two very strong and special individuals who have faced incredible challenges for their heart baby, in particular because they are remotely located in Labrador. I'm determined now that I will be a regular blood donor, every 56 days or so, because it's such a small thing to do that makes a huge impact. One blood donation can save up to 3 lives...at least 5 blood donations are needed for one open heart surgery...as much as 50 donors can be needed for a car accident...and the shelves of Canadian Blood Services here in St. John's are almost bare....they truly are in desperate need of blood donors. It was said to me that day that if everyone who was eligible to donate blood made one donation a year, there would never be a shortage. I'm so excited to say that myself and another Heart Mom have been invited to speak at an event to celebrate the regular blood donors who are receiving certificates in May - I am really looking forward to the opportunity to say thank you to people who have made a difference in this way. My son would not be alive today if there were not regular blood donors - that is a fact. Also, our local Heart parent support group - NL Heart Support Group on Facebook - are now registered to be Partner for Life with Canadian Blood Services. It's so exciting! There was also talk of a possible blood donor day in honour of my own Heart Warrior - I will keep you posted if that amounts to anything!
The Anstey household has been going through a period of adjustment for the past week - we are now a one income family as I have been granted a leave of absence for another year from my work to care for Jake, and Georgia is no longer in daycare. Since Jon works from home it's quite a full house these days with all of us and our 100 lb dog. Today was the first day that Georgia needed to come to the Janeway with us for one of Jake's routine appointments. This was a short one, about 20 minutes long, and by the end of it Georgia was tugging on my sleeve and saying that this was "so boring". Oh my. Here are my munchkins in the waiting room at the Dietician's office:
Even during trying times when I am praying for patience, I am blessed. So blessed.
Jake has not been gaining weight well, despite my best attempts to give him fatty food. His milk is still extra fortified, with more calories than normal infant formula, and we have switched from using whole milk in his food mixtures to using 18% m.f. coffee creamer...and still, only 2 ounces were gained in the last two weeks. At least it's better than the two weeks before this, where there was no weight gain at all. Come on little boy, we need to fatten you up!
I'd like to ask those of you who are able to fit another baby onto your prayer lists to visit the page https://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Strong-Owen-Fund/501607656617461?ref=stream and click LIKE to be given updates on the progress of another little boy with half a heart. His name is Owen, and his parents are both Christians who are relying fully on God to help them through this battle - it's still early days as Owen is about 23 weeks gestation at the moment, but there is possibility of surgery in utero before Owen can be born. Please keep this family in your prayers and thoughts.
Remember baby Sara? I'm so happy to share that she is finally in her home with her parents and from the picture I saw of her on Easter Sunday she is more beautiful and happy than ever. What a trooper. Way to go baby Sara (and Mom and Dad!)
I love having happy news to share.
Here are a couple of pictures from Easter sunday - this was Jake's first Easter, even though he was over a year old. It's funny how that works...last year Jake was born 3 days after Easter Monday...and this year he had his birthday two weeks before Easter Monday...so strange.
Have a great weekend everyone. Life is beautiful, take advantage of every day - even the rainy ones!