Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Our Lives have Changed

One year ago, our lives drastically changed when we heard for the first time the words Chiari Malformation.  Our youngest daughter, Ashlyn, was 19 months old and she went in for a MRI due to some developmental delays and favoring of one side of her body.  We were thinking that MAYBE she had a stroke or brain hemorrhage when she was born, but we were shocked to find out differently.

I will always remember the moment I received the phone call from the doctor with the devastating news about Ashlyn.  I was at work and I ran to the office so I could hear the nurse as she spoke.  Tears rolled down my face as I didn't know exactly what the words Chiari Malformation meant other than my daughter had a malformation in her brain and she was being referred to a neurologist and a neurosurgeon.  I remember trying to take notes with my shaky hand as the nurse spelled out Chiari Malformation.  I also spelled out INCURABLE.  I remember trying to phone my husband and explain between sobs the results of Ashlyn's MRI.  I remember calling our families with the devastating news.  I remember coming home to see tears streaming down my husband's face.

Since this day, we have spent many hours at doctor's offices, at various appointments, at more MRI's, physical therapy sessions, occupational therapy sessions, and of course brain surgery.  We have spent many hours in prayer.  We have spent many hours crying.  We have spent countless hours rejoicing.

Ashlyn continues to be our little miracle as she fights this incurable brain malformation.  She is doing AMAZING and no one would ever be able to guess that she had brain surgery.  She continues to grow and develop and amaze us with her contagious laughter and personality.

To follow more of Ashlyn's journey with Chiari Malformation, please read my other blog Chiari Hope.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013


Ashlyn has been in a big girl bed for a few months now.  I was pretty emotional as I put away the crib bedding (and listed and SOLD it on craigslist, *tear) We took apart the crib one last time and I tried to hold back the tears.

Ashlyn and Ambria now share a room with bunk beds and Mariah has now obtained her own room.  At first, Mariah was a little hesitant.  She was unsure that she wanted to sleep by herself because she has gotten used to sharing a room for the past three years.  After a few days passed, Mariah warmed up to the idea and became excited with the thought of her own space.

This is a little sentimental for me as Mariah is sleeping in the same bed from when I was a child and we also put the matching desk and dresser in her room as well.  It brings back so many memories from when I was little.

Mariah looked around at her new room with excitement, and said, "I like it but it needs more toys.  I don't want it to look like a teenager bedroom."

My heart leapt.  YES, YES, YES!!

Don't grow up too quickly my sweet child!

Friday, January 25, 2013

In the Mind of a Two Year Old--More Artwork

"I like markers.  I like to draw on stuff.  I like pens.  I like to draw on cupboards and and chairs.  I'm not sure why mom doesn't like my artwork.  I told her I drew a 'baby' on the bathroom cabinet.  I'm proud, and she should be too."

Mom side note: The magic eraser does not get pen out of white bathroom cabinets.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Tea Please?

Since I have been sick so much this season, I've been drinking a lot of hot tea, just to help warm my bones.

The other morning, Mariah was so thoughtful and made me a cup of tea before I woke up in the morning.  She wanted to keep it warm so she put it in the dishwasher.  Interested idea, but thoughtful. :)  I thanked her for her generosity and told her I was going to warm it in the microwave in a little while.

At 8:00 I warmed my tea in the microwave.

At 1:00pm, I looked at the microwave and it said "END" and I thought to myself, "what is in the microwave?"

My cold tea.

Mom brain.  Mom daily craziness.

Friday, January 11, 2013

Kid Glasses

Ashlyn got her new glasses to help align her eyes.  She is so darn cute!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Winter Illness

We are alive and hanging in there.  The cold and flu season has hit our family hard this year.  We have been battling some sort of sickness since October and each time one person gets sick, it travels through all five family members.

Enough!!  I can't take it anymore!

We all got flu shots in a last ditch attempt to help fight against us getting didn't work.

Ashlyn ended up in the ER while we were visiting family over the holidays because of dehydration, flu, croup, and bronchiolitis.  That travelled through our family too.

Crappy cold and flu season for us.  I. am. ready. for. spring.