Shabby Miss Jenn

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

REPOST from 4/27/11: Dear Baby Girl or Baby Boy

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Dear Baby Girl or Baby Boy,

I have no idea what to even are a dream that is about to become a reality. There are so many reasons I think of why you were made possible. A little more than a year ago I did not think I would ever have the chance to be a mommy of three. I thought my time was already allocated. And then your big brother got the opportunity to move onto a better life. And as a good mommy should...when you see a better opportunity for your child you need to let them pursue it, no matter your own feelings.

In payment for letting your brother go...I got to have you.

Sometime tomorrow or maybe even the next day you will be born and I will get to meet you for the first time. I can not even tell you all the ways I have imagined this perfect moment. It may not be perfect by my own crazy dreamy definition, but it will be perfect in that you are finally here...after everything that has lead up to are finally here.

I have gotten to see you in photos and through those I kind of feel like I have met you. But really you will not be anything like your photos, after all I have not heard your cry, I have not kissed your lips, or felt your grasp. I do not know if you have hair, I do not even know if you are a boy or a girl. I can not fathom what meeting you will be like. By now you know me MUCH more than I know you...but I can not wait to catch up.

I am worried though, as you coming into this world is not going to be easy for either of us. I know there are no guarantees and that anything can happen. I know that you may struggle with a kidney issue and that you might have some scary moments...but just remember that I will be there with you...snuggling you. And that I will always be with you through anything life throws at you. I will be there on your first day of life...just as you will be on my last day years and years and years later.

I know that you will look up to your big brother and sister...they can teach you a lot about life...but if you are anything like any of will be teaching all of us as well. I have learned so much more from my children in their such young lives than I have learned in my 26 years before I met them. You are all amazing and much more than I could ever have asked for.

Thank you little one for being so strong and so healthy and for helping me get to a new chapter in my that starts with you and your big sister. One that will play on for pages and pages and years and years to come.

Mama loves you little one! I can't wait to meet you!

See you tomorrow!



  1. Tears of joy!! Praying for you, Ryan, Hayden and Baby tomorrow and always!
  2. Third time in one day this blog has brought tears to my eyes! What a sweet, sweet Mama you are! I cannot wait to meet Baby Ruhge #3!! Love you sissy!! In my prayers. . .
  3. Good luck tomorrow Lacey! I look forward to "meeting" your newest addition!

REPOST from 4/27/11: Dear Hayden

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Dear Hayden,

On the day before you become a big sister I wanted to let you know how special you are to me and what an important role you have played in the last two years of my life.

I hope you already know how smart, and funny, and beautiful, and amazing I think you are. I hope you know these things about yourself as well because self confidence is something every girl needs to have. But not too much self confidence...I am sure you will run into things in life that will humble you and I hope you take those lessons to heart. Life is not easy, but it is not horrible either... No matter the number of hard times you may have there are certainly twice as many happy just have to be able to look for them...they are no where near as obvious. Sometimes you have to force yourself to move forward, but you will do it because as your daddy has noted you are just as stubborn as me. And stubbornness is just as valuable as any other skill to just need to learn when to let go.

I know for a fact that the day your big brother became an angel in heaven you became my angel on earth. You have pulled me along through days in which I did not want to move forward. You made me see that there is more to live for. You made me believe that I can could move on and still enjoy life to its fullest. You have given me direction when I thought I was lost in a dark hole. You are an amazing strong little girl and you have done more for your mommy in your two years than I think I will be able to do for you your entire life.

You have been my one and only best friend for over a year now. It has been just you and me...I can tell that you (most of the time) love the "mommy and me" time just as much as I do. As independent as you are and even without words you find your ways to show your love for me. I know that the next few months are going to hard for you and me...we will not be alone any longer. As a team we will be helping to make your new little brother or sister feel at home and become part of our family and our routine. (Though we will most likely become part of his or her routine...)

I know you will do an amazing job as a big sister. You are very caring and are very loving to babies already. I know that as you and your new little sibling grow older that you will be a great role model for them...I know that you will help them along...whether they are learning to walk, being bullied at school, working on algebra homework, or working through harder adult problems much later in life. I know that you will be there for them because you are an amazing person and I have already seen what you can do for others.

I love you Hayden more than I can ever put into words...I will cherish these memories we have made this past year for the rest of my life. I would be lying if I said I am ready to see this chapter close...I have very much enjoyed the Hayden and mommy time we have was a very important time in my life and I wouldn't have come through it so well without you! Thank you for being there to push your mama along, as I most definitely will be there to push you along for as long as you will let me.

Love you to pieces Buggy!


REPOST from 3/10/11: Dear Buddy

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Dear Buddy,

I hope you know that I am thinking of you a lot. I hope you can read my thoughts, because most the time on the outside no one, not even Daddy knows I am thinking of you. I don't want anyone to think I am "too stuck on you". I am not handling things unhealthy, I am just not ready to give you up (I don't think I ever will be). Most everyone else has stopped talking about you and they get uncomfortable if I talk about I keep you to myself.

I hope on your "angelversary" (a new term I just learned tonight) ALL your friends and family are thinking of you too. The few people that have made notice of this day are more worried about how Daddy and I are going to handle this passing. We will be fine. I just really want this day to be all about you. I want everyone to think of you, and how hard you fought, and how sweet you were, and all that you taught those around you who would listen.

If I have any regrets it is that I did not stick up for you with your family. Too many family members were uncomfortable around you so much so that they did not come visit and when they did they came to see Hayden. There are plenty of times when they would come into our house and say, "Where's Hayden?". It used to make me so mad and sad! And it is even worse now because I didn't stand up for you like I should have. They missed out on meeting and enjoying a beautiful little soul. The second anyone took the time to really hold you and look into your eyes they knew how special you were. I saw it happen so many times...I think you surprised many people by how quickly they could fall in love with someone. You were an amazing little soul and as I have said before I can not believe you were mine. I do not even think of you as being part of me or part of daddy; you seem to have been made of something so much more special than either of us.

One thing I have wondered about a lot is if you knew me. If you knew I was there. If you knew it was me holding you and talking to you through every seizure, and every IV poke, and not so fun thing you endured. I wonder if you knew it was me with you for almost every single day of your life. I was your constant and I wonder if you knew it. I wonder if you knew it was me asking the questions and taking notes and making sure I understood you down to the tiniest detail. I wonder if you knew it was me giving you kisses, and snuggling you in the early mornings while we watched the birds. I wonder if you knew it was me who harassed everyone of your doctors until they gave you a chance to prove yourself. I wonder if you knew it was me who sang to you "mama's little baby boy" after your seizures. I wonder if you knew it was me who held you when you left this world behind.

I really do hope more than anything that you are happy and whole. But I do really really hope that you knew me. I hope that you knew that I was there to fight for you in every way that you needed me to. I would have done anything for you, because that was my job as Rowan's mommy.

I heard this song tonight and it literally took my breath is exactly what I want you to know about me as your mommy.

I will stand by you,
I will help you through
When you've done all you can do
and you can't cope
I will dry your eyes,
I will fight your fight
I will hold you tight
and I won't let go.

I love you baby boy and I hope you can feel it everyday no matter where you are.



REPOST From 3/7/11 Dear Buddy,

Monday, March 7, 2011

Dear Buddy,

I have been thinking of you today. A year ago today you were admitted. I regret not knowing how few days I had left to snuggle my face into your soft neck. I would have been there to hold you for days if I would have known.

Your awfully naughty sister and I went today to pick something out to bring you this weekend. It took WAY too long to decide on something and your sister was not being very got all the patience and she got all the drama.

I couldn't find anything that didn't look like something you would give an old lady. What little boy wants flowers? NONE. I finally found a blue sand bucket(what I always get you) and some small bright yellow flowers to go inside. This is from me. Your sister got you a sparkly dangle plastic blue flower to hang from the bucket handle. And Daddy got you a dump truck. I know how much Daddy wishes he could play trucks with you. We also got a bright blue flower pinwheel.

I hope all of this brightens up your area. Though I know where ever you are it is not on that hill all alone. I know you are someplace great...though I can't in my heart figure out if there really is a Heaven and a God. But that is a whole other discussion.

I hope you are playing with your puppies and your new brother or sister. I said the phrase out loud the other day "Rowan's little brother" and it gave me goosebumps. I can see you being an absolutely amazing older brother! Even though you were just a baby your personality and soul were so so much older. You taught ME, your own mama, so much! I know that if you end up with another little sister we all will be just as happy. I hope you share some of your patience and calmness with her, as I can't imagine TWO drama queens like Hayden in the house...I think Daddy would run away from us three girls!

I have been redoing your room and moving more of your things into boxes. I hope you know I am not moving you into a box and I am not trying to keep you out of my mind. I just don't want the new baby to feel less important. But I don't want you to feel less important either. This is a really, really hard thing to accomplish.

I hope you can read my heart every minute of every day. There are so many things I want you to know that I do not know how to say out loud or even write in words. I hope you just know them or can just feel them.

I really am doing well and really am very happy. I am so glad that you got "a way out" of the life you were living. It was not very good, huh? It wasn't for the lack of all your hard tried VERY VERY hard at everything. It is just something that happens I guess...I really have no answer for you on why your life turned out the way it did. God! I wish I did have an answer. I hope wherever you are you have an answer for all of this and you are at peace with it. I am getting less and less angry about it, but I am nowhere near being at peace with it. I don't think any mother can be at peace with what you were handed.

You really were a very beautiful (handsome :)) person. I look at your pictures and I can not believe you were mine. You were very, very angelic from the beginning...I guess I should have been paying more attention, maybe I would have seen all this coming. But more importantly you were so beautiful inside. I could not have asked for a better little boy. You were (are) so strong, so patient, and so selfless. I am trying to live up to you and all that you were.

Love you Buddy!

Love, Mama

Two Years Later: What Rowan Meant to me

I am getting ready to have this wonderfully detailed account of Rowan's life published into a hardcover book.  This will give such closure to his chapter, for me anyway.  To hold his history in words in my hands will be an unbelievable comfort.  Whenever I feel like I am forgetting him or forgetting what it was like to have him in our life I can open his book and refresh myself.  It accounts all of his great accomplishments, and all his hard times.  This will do wonders for helping me remember that it was the right decision in the end.  He is where he needs to be...he is happy, safe, warm, and comfortable...I have to believe that or I will not be able to be go on for my other little ones.

To put in words what Rowan meant to me and how he has changed me is quite overwhelming, but I have to try, for him, and for my 80 year old self when I am trying my hardest to remember him. 

Forever and always he will be:
  • my first born
  • my blue eyed-boy (1 of 2)
  • my role model
  • the person from who I draw my strength
  • my angel baby
The most important thing I learned from him):

The small things, the quiet moments, REALLY getting to know a person down to their soul that is what life is all about.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Link to Dance in the Rain

Here is the link to the new blog with a new post...please jump over there and follow our story there from now on.

Friday, November 12, 2010

A change out of the stagnatisity.

Stagnant- Not flowing or moving in a current or stream.

Memorial- something that keeps remembrance alive

Stuck- Caught or fixed

Life- the sequence of physical and mental experiences that make up the existence of an individual

Living- having life

Guilt- feelings of culpability especially for imagined offenses or from a sense of inadequacy

New- made or become fresh, having recently come into existence

Forward- of, relating to, or getting ready for the future

Overcome- to get the better of

There is a change that is (or needs to happen). I can feel it, I have been feeling it, I wasn't sure what it was. It was pointed out to me last night in one of I and Ryan's therapy sessions.

I felt it the other night when I watched my belly move from the tiny baby kicks from my new little one. I felt it yesterday when we went to grandma and grandpa's and didn't go visit Rowan first. I felt it when thinking about buying him a Christmas tree and solar powered lights for his grave. I have felt it when wanting to decorate for Christmas. I have felt it when thinking about getting Hayden's new room ready and getting the nursery ready for the new baby. I felt it when we got family pictures of just the three of us. I felt it when thinking about doing a Christmas memorial drive for Rowan for the Children's hospital. I feel it every time I think of the new baby, feel the new baby, or see the new baby on an ultrasound.

All these thoughts and actions provoke the feeling of being stuck and stagnant in a constant loop of grief. I am in the dangerous area of rebuilding myself and my life into a living memorial for Rowan. I am sure you all know people like this in your lives...maybe I am that person in your life. A person who is is constant reflection of the past and people who have died before them. A person who relates all events, all actions, and all conversations back to the loved one they have lost. Now this is fine for a bit even a year after their loved one's death. But the people who have become a living memorial are those who are still in this stagnant loop for many many years after their loved one's death.

I put up a Christmas stocking for Rowan. Every type of weather that we experience I wonder how it is making Rowan feel back at his grave. I fill the bird feeder so that he can "see" the birds every morning like we used to. I am constantly finding a way to work on a project that honors him, the pond, his hats, his Christmas drive. I was even naming it "Rowan's Christmas Gift" as if he is alive and the one doing it. Every holiday I go and spend a bunch of money on things that get ruined in the rain, wind, sun, or snow. I think about him everyday, everyday I find a way to honor him, everyday I wish he was here.

While all that is good and fine and sounds like how a mother who has lost a baby should be behaving...I have to think about the rest of my life around me, my other purposes. Is my only purpose in life to keep Rowan's memory alive? No, it is not. My purpose is to keep living as I am meant to, as I was doing before our crisis arose. My purpose it to be the best mommy to my living children, to be the best friend and wife to my husband, and to be a whole me. To live and move forward with out guilt.

Some thoughts about all of this:

The therapist equates our situation and our experience to the couples who went through the second world war hear me out. Solider who is about to ship out meets girl...he proposes...he gets sent to war a few days later...she stays in The States, works in the factory, keeps the house, and waits for him. He experiences all sorts of awful things, loses friends, comes near to death. They are both used to a crisis oriented life. This is just their way of life and then the war is over and he comes home. They then have to figure out how to be calm and get out of the crisis mode. Sound familiar. The therapist thinks that Ryan and I are just struggling to NOT live in crisis mode. We have been so geared for things to go wrong all the time that we are not adapting as a couple into normalcy. We are getting there...things between the two of us are really going great...I think it has a lot to do with the tiny new life we have created.

This next thought may sound so awfully cold at first...hear me out before you judge... You know that cleansing that needs to be done after a bad breakup, or even at the end of a rough school year? Where you pack things away or even give things away that remind you of those hard feelings. I used to pack every thing from a boyfriend into a box or a bag and shove it under my bed or into my closet and then proceed to clean and rearrange my bedroom. I would start doing my hair differently, wear clothes I never wore around him and even start to hang out with new friends. I so, so, so badly want to cleanse myself of the past and start living for the future. I want to be able to change some of his pictures out with the new family pictures we just took, and even make room for the new baby's pictures. I want to be able to get the nursery ready for a fresh new start for the new baby. I want to be able to let a holiday pass without the nagging feeling of needing to acknowledge him so that he doesn't feel left out. I want to be able to have a fresh start with out the guilt.

When he first passed...this is pretty dang close to where I was. I was so filled with relief that I was excited for our future. I was so excited for play dates, and to be a normal family, and to possibly have more children. I didn't want to decorate his grave it just didn't seem like that would matter much because he wasn't there he was somewhere better. I was happy, because he was happy. And then the guilt set in...and I did everything differently because I was trying to appease the guilt. I have been stuck in a loop of guilt...not moving forward and not paying much attention to the great things around me. It is time to overcome and move on.

We had planned on keeping Rowan a household name and making sure all of our children knew everything about him. Now we will inform them of him and talk about him to them on occasion and when ever they ask, but we won't involve him in every family occasion and holiday as I thought we would. It was pointed out to me that it may not be fair to our other children, who have never known him. They don't need to carry the grief over a brother they have never met. This is very different than what I had originally thought, but it feels right.

A noticeable change in myself...
I have rearranged myself and who I am because I lost my baby. Some of these changes are for the better, but most of them are not. I am very bitter about life, when I really shouldn't be...we had a much, much easier route than most parents of special needs children. I need to appreciate my beautiful daughter and all that she will become. I need to appreciate my wonderful husband and all that he makes possible, and I need to start getting really excited for the future...I am going to have a baby! And my gut instinct says, everything is just fine with this baby. Everything I do, I first think about what a mother with a baby in heaven should do. I think about what others expect me to do. I think about what I think I should be doing for Rowan, not Hayden, not Ryan, not myself. I need to make myself move forward. I need to overcome my guilt and my fear of judgment and start living, not as a memorial for my son, but as a whole person, mother, and wife.

I need to get into my head that he is a memory and that it is something that happened. And that no matter how much I may miss him I don't ever want him back here. Not the way he was. And in reality any moping, or honoring, or money spent on him is not bringing him is only going to hurt my family and myself. He is a memory not a living person anymore.

We will still go visit his grave and probably decorate it some still, but not go over board or make it a huge priority. I will continue with Rowan's Warmth, it will be my one outlet to honor him and help living kids that have hard issues to deal with. We will print the blog out and keep it as a memorial keepsake that will be packed away for Hayden to read someday when she wants to know about her first year and a half. We will have their videos and pictures, but they will not be a focus. I will learn to know that it is ok to give away and donate his things when we no longer need them for our living children.

Ryan and I have talked about this a lot off and on with out even knowing it. He is to this point. He has been at this point and he is pretty much guilt free. It is just the difference between a man and a woman and how each of us grieves. I will need to force myself into this new way of thinking for awhile and keep kicking the guilt out of my head.

One way of moving forward is to stop this blog and start a new one with a new focus. A focus on our family, our budgeting, our new life. A new blog with a new name and a new look. And of course once this new blog is ready I will post it here and you can all jump over to follow us there...and some of you lurkers can start following us too!

My therapist thinks (that sounds so hoity-toity), I should find a way to publish The Ruhge Duo blog into a book and sell it from the new blog. This would give my experience, my writing, my grief, and Rowan a new purpose. Other parents hurting from a similar experience could get encouragement from our survival.

Here is to repurposing my life, my grief, my energy. Here's to a fresh start!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Wednesday Run Down

It's been awhile since I have really posted. Thank you to those who keep on reading even though I am sure it is not so exciting (and that is a good thing!). I've have enough excitement for more than my one life time...hopefully. Anyway I have a lot to say about a lot of different things so here it all comes in my favorite format...lists.

#1. Week one of our new budgeting project...has gone well. Kind of...we have stayed on track I think, but it has been hard. We have already: Had a major "I don't think we can do this" meltdown, eaten a meal of pancakes, given up many things that we would have otherwise done or bought.

I really, really wanted to get a digital photo book of ALL of Rowan's great pictures. Snapfish had a deal going of buy one book get TWO free! That would have saved us $130. I would have given the other two books to the grandparents. We couldn't spring for the $65 at a the time and now the deal is over. But, it is all for a good cause...and I know sometime we will get the book! If you see this deal again TELL ME ASAP!

Meals have gone great! I have stuck to my written out menu very well. We are eating what we have in stock, and have eaten very well. Hayden is even eating what I cook almost every night! I love that she has not had mac and cheese in over a week!

#2. A wonderful friend, Patti is helping me get caught up with all the Christmas orders for the Rowan's Warmth Hats. I feel bad that I have "outsourced" my labor, but it is a good thing that I am swamped with orders. I have started including a written piece that tells Rowan's story and why Rowan's Warmth is something to be shared.

The other night Patti and I had a absolutely wonderful evening at Panera knitting and chatting away well after they closed. At one point in the evening a young mom came over to our table and complimented us on the hats. She wanted to buy one right then but she didn't have the cash on hand. I gave her one of the tags for the hats and told her to look us up on facebook. (Which by the way has 270 some fans. What a popular little man!) I told her his whole story from beginning to end. She was crying. I was overjoyed! I got to share my little hero with someone else in this world. And I knew for the rest of the night her mind would be thinking of my little man. And I know he can feel that love. It was moment full of goosebumps for all involved!

#3. I have been trying to make sure I spend some special time with Hayden as much as I can as I know it is going to be very, very cold and possibly snowing in a month or so. On Monday night we went to Fontenelle Forest here in Bellevue. It was a nice hike through the woods that maybe a pregnant lady with no cell phone and her toddler near dusk should not have been doing. I forgot how long and hilly even just the board walk is. And we had the big 'ol Step 2 wagon. I was huffing and puffing! I didn't realize though how connected I felt to Rowan there. I was reminded of him everywhere. I saw the bench that we sat at while I hooked up his feeding, I saw the hut that we took the babies pictures, I could see in my mind's eye the double snap and go stroller rolling through the woods. In the parking lot I got a major deshavu when I was digging the wagon out of the back of the van...I couldn't believing how real and fresh the memory of pulling out the stroller and all the medical stuff. It was tougher than I thought. This was the only place I ever got to take and show off my twins. This was the only place where I ever went with them where no one knew who we were or what we were dealing with. For a few hours last fall we got to pretend that we were "normal" and everything was ok. I wonder if Rowan ever goes and visits this place to remember that day just as Hayden and I did. Here is the post from last fall with a few pictures of our afternoon.

Last night Hayden and I also played in the leaves in our back yard. Here are a few pictures and a video...I don't think she had any fun at all.

#4. Here is a public service announcement: Get Your Flu Shot! Whether you "believe" in them or not, go get one. You have no idea how frightened parents of medically fragile children are to even jsut go to the grocery store, or out to eat, or get gas. If you get your flu shot you could be saving a young life. You never know if the person in line next to you is a mother, or father, or caregiver of a fragile little one. Use Your Sanitizer! We have jugs, and I mean jugs of sanitizer all over our house. It is used extensively. Use yours as well. Some say that sanitizer weakens your immune system as it doesn't get the chance to build up an immunity. That maybe true, but not something I am going to chance when it is a little one at risk. They will have plenty of time to build up an immunity when they are older and stronger. Keep Your Little Ones Safe By Keeping Them In! In our household we were very, very strict about not taking the babies out even to family events until we felt safe. We still do not bring Hayden to large indoor events unless we have to. Babies systems are not as capable of tackling viruses. My personal opinion is that everyone should be a lot more careful about bringing their new babies out and about no matter the season or if they were a preemie or term. Their little systems are just not ready for all the junk that is out there.

#5. Today is Hayden's last therapy session at PTC. It is going to be very hard to leave that place for the last time. I feel pretty connected to Rowan and other like him while I am there. And today I get to take her as the twin boys are getting picked up early. I know it is a good thing that she is done. She has worked hard to get where she is and many children are working hard there for years and years. I just love the people there. They have been such a support to us...way more than they will ever know! No matter what type of child we had they ALWAYS treated us with respect and ALWAYS respected and appreciated Rowan for all that he was. I can not say enough good about them.

#6. I am insanely obsessed with Christmas this year...our tree is already up and I love it and I don't care what anyone else thinks. So many people have said, "By Christmas you will be so sick of the holiday.". I do not think so...I think that we get a whole month more to enjoy it and look forward to it. I already have a ton of shopping done and most of it is already wrapped and under the tree. And Hayden is doing pretty good with the tree. She is a good listener most of the time.

#7. I am fifteen week pregnant today! I am weaning myself off the progesterone...which is worrisome, but I am sure it will turn out ok. I just get to spend two weeks paying attention to any sign of an impending miscarriage. I have already started feeling the little one kick and wiggle. I love it! I am really really starting to feel like this is real and that in less than six months we will have a tiny one here again! I am looking at the bassinet in our room much differently...I just can not wait until I have my baby here to love and snuggle and rock.

#8. I have been organizing all the babies' videos getting them ready to put them on a DVD. There are so many of them that I have never even watched before. There are a bunch that were from the NICU. Giving baths and doing cares. They are great to have and I am glad that we do have them, but they were very hard to watch. It reminded me so much of how hard it is to be in the NICU and how for us almost everyday there was a decision to make about our baby boy....decisions that effect the rest of his life. Another round of steroids or have a trache put in, to keep trying to feed orally or to get a G-button. Not a single day was easy. And those videos really show that. You can hear so nurses talk us through some of these decisions while we are giving baths. The sound of the C-pap machine gave me chills.

#9. A few weeks ago Ryan and I plants 15-20 yellow and red tulip bulbs around Rowan's headstone. Hopefully this spring it will be a great show of color.

#10. Hayden had her 18 month check-up the other day. She is still 18lbs (she has been for six months). And she is 30 inches tall. She is doing great with everything. We are starting vocab with the potty training...just getting her used to and giving her the knowledge of what that is all about. She has about 10-15 words and she has about 10 teeth. The doctor is very happy with her. She goes to the eye doctor next week for a check-up. That should not be anything too interesting, just a check-up.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Two Years ago Today

I tested positive on a pregnancy test. I was pregnant for the third time. This time though they stuck...and a few weeks later we found out it was twins! Today I have an ultrasound to see our newest little family member (3.8 inches to be exact). I can't wait! I hope all goes well.

Friday, October 29, 2010

A Couple of Super Cute Videos

I have been video taping like crazy lately, here are a couple of my favorites from this week.

This first one is of her and I working on her words. She was not cooperating with her word Block...she knows it, but would not pick one up for me. On most days everything is a block.

This second one is of her painting her first picture. I LOVE this video. She painted 8 of these scarecrows for friends and family for Halloween when we visit them for Trick-or-Treating.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Can I Brag for a Minute? turning into a wonderful little girl. Not that she wasn't before but man I just can't get enough of her most days.

Her mood in so happy and content 90% of the time. She cries when she needs something (ie food, nap, change) or is not feeling well. Other than that she is either happy and talking up a storm or is quiet and soaking up the world around her. I get much of nothing done some days because I am just watching her discover her world. It is amazing to actually watch her learn something new with no help from anyone.

She eats! And she eats well! She eats a big breakfast (two packets of instant oatmeal and a full sized yogurt) and a big dinner(whatever we are having), but not much for lunch. She snacks throughout the day one cheerios and bananas. I am so happy that she eats so well and so easily.

She sleeps so so so well! We have been so lucky with this since the beginning. A month after she came home (she was about 2 1/2 months old) she started sleeping through the night. We would rock her or bounce her in a vibrating bouncing chair and then carry her to her crib. This was the same for naps except that she would sleep in her bouncy chair in the living room. I was never too careful about noise waking her up...she learned to sleep through it.

At about 11 months she started to rebel a little about getting put in her crib at night. We started the Cry It Out method. After only three nights of about 1/2 hour of crying she was putting herself to sleep like a pro. I think it has to do with the strict routine we put in place...jammies, brush teeth, three story books, and then she is put in her crib with her monkey soother she's had since she came home. She has had her bad weeks but for the most part she has been a model child for this method. I know the grandmas and some others close to us weren't too thrilled with the idea of not rocking our sweet baby to sleep, but I think now that they have seen the results they are completely on board. Lately for naps and bed when she is put into the crib with her puppy and her blankie she smiles and rolls over. Not a singe squeak is heard from her after that! What an amazing girl! Some say it is just her personality and it may be, but I also think it is our commitment to helping her learn this skill.

She is starting to build her vocabulary. The word block went from "Ott" to "Ock" in about a week. She is also saying duck, puppy, ball, yummy, and of course mama, and daddy. She recognizes a ton of words, but does not say them yet. When we say Lucy she gets very excited and points to the kitchen(where our patio doors are, and where Lucy is often times seen begging to come in). She babbles and babbles and babbles.

And last but not at all least....SHE CAN FINALLY WALK!!!!!!!! She is almost 18 months and is finally walking!!!! This goal has been wearing on Ryan and I for a long time. She has had the skills for the longest time, she just needed the confidence. Here is a video of her showing off her new skill at the Children's Museum last Saturday.

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Today is the day!

Today is the day that I have hoped to reach,
today is the day that throws us over that threshold,
today is the day that we can start thinking about the future,
today is the day that I can tell the world what I have been hiding...

84 days...
2.2 inches long...
Lots of moving and groovin'...
12 weeks...
3 ultrasounds...
due to come just 3 days before the twin's 2nd birthday...

Ruhge Baby #3 is coming!

There are so many feelings and emotions and actually already a scare of a blighted ovum that I have wanted the blog about, but couldn't. I am glad to be able to tell everyone of the little bean that is growing and growing inside me. I am positive that before conception babies are assigned to you and that even while in utero they can move freely between heaven and earth. I believe big brother Rowan has already met this little baby and is enjoying his time getting to know him up in heaven (or where ever Rowan's spirit is).

The really fun part of all of this is that we are not finding out if this is a baby girl or a baby boy. We do have names that we are not telling, the boy's begins with a R and the girl's begin with a H.

Now I know the question that is running through all of your minds (as it is in ours)...Is there a risk of a genetic abnormality?

When we were tested while in the NICU none of us (Ryan, Hayden, or I) showed any sort of markers or silent carriers or anything of the such. Therefore there should not be anymore of a chance of it happening again than there is for anyone expecting a child. But we worry still. We did not do a CVS, because our doctor strongly advised against it because of the risk of miscarriage and my history of miscarriage. We will be seeing a perinatologist again around 20 weeks and if they see anything questionable(as they did with Rowan) then we will do an amnio...or just wait as we did with Rowan.

Scared...yes. Excited...yes. hopeful...yes.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Today is an Important Day.

I should be cleaning and getting ready for the almost 50 people we are expecting in 4 hours...but I am here blogging. No really Ryan is mowing, Hayden is happily watching him, I have a caramel apple pie in the oven, diapers in the washer(a must when you are having even one guest over), and all that is left to do is pick up, scrub a little, vacuum, set up all the tables and chairs, and polish myself a little. The list sitting on my kitchen counter right now is a lot more intimidating than that list above. So I will keep blogging...

Today we are having a pie social to celebrate the finishing of the pond that was built by Ryan and his dad in Rowan's honor. We wanted to share this with all our family and friends that supported us in the last seven months since he has been gone. Many of them came out of the woodwork so to say, to stand by our side through this.

I have been thinking about him so so so much lately...I can not dwell on it for more than a minute at a time or I will break down. It has become very sensitive again. As if another layer of numbness has been peeled away. I can't understand why...I know I need to move on from the why, but I am a "why" sort of person. That is why math and I never got along...I needed to know why I did each step to a formula and there is not a why it was always a, "you just do it, that's why".

Today a permanent sign is being put into place that says "Rowan's Pond". This is the last thing. Not only the last thing for the pond itself, but the last thing for Rowan's death. We have had: his visitation, his funeral, his quilt being made, his headstone being placed, his medial at the zoo being put in, his tile being finished, and now the pond. This is the last thing. Should I all of a sudden move on?

I realized the other day he has been gone longer than he was home with us. He was home with us for around seven months. He has been gone seven months. And in just three months he will be gone longer than he was alive. All this before we even hit the one year mark of him being gone. A lot to soak in. He was only here for such a little time...does that mean I should not be so hurt about him being taken away? I think mostly I grieve for the life he didn't get, the years he didn't have, the events he didn't get to experience. All for what, what was so important that he needed to be the way he was and had to leave when he did? There is that "why" again.

I think Rowan was saying hello to me last night. I know...weird... but I do what I can to feel him near. I was cleaning the spare room, getting ready for the welcomed infestation of family and friends. I have rearranged, and vacuumed, and cleaned this room many times since he has been gone. This room was where he slept at night so that his seizures didn't wake his sister. This room is where we got him ready for bed every night. Where we treated his button site, where we put his jammies on, where we slathered him in his Baby Bee lotion, where we started his night feeding and his morning feeding. Sometimes when I can't sleep I go into this room and sleep in this bed and imagine he is in the pack and play next to me. I try to hear the "rrrrrrurrrr" of his feeding pump, and his grunts and squeaks, and the sound of his breathing. I try but most the time I have forgotten what all that sounds like.

Anyway last night I found the clear white cap that went on the red plastic plug of a brand new feeding bag. Those of you Tubie moms and dads out there know exactly what this is and probably have them littered in odd places in your child's room. It was just sitting there in the wide open space of that carpeted room, not under something, not behind something, not under the bed. It was just sitting there as if I just dropped it there earlier that day. And if that wasn't I was making the bed I found a piece of his medical tape stuck to the fitted sheet. Now I am a cleanly person and these sheets have been washed countless times since he has been gone. And yeah it could have been stuck there even through the washer and dryer those many times, but to see the tape and the cap with in minute of each other...I think my baby was saying "Hi mama! I am thinking of you too!" at least that's what I made myself think anyway.

Well...Ryan is done mowing and is now doing my I really should get up and help him or at least check on my pie.

Thanks for letting me get that out.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Lots of Fall Fun!

In the past few weeks Hayden and I have hit up some of the local pumpkin patches for some weekend fun. Last weekend we went to Vala's Pumpkin Patch with, Grandma Ruhge, Aunt Erika, and cousin Lexi and Daddy.
I can honestly say I think a goat is at the top of Hayden's "I Want!" list. She absolutely loved them.

Riding on the Barnyard Adventure ride with Aunt Erika, cousin Lexi, and Daddy.
Chillin' in Storybook Land with Cousin Lexi and Bo Peep.
Playing in the tepee.
Sharing a stroller ride with Lexi while waiting for the Hayrack...neither one of them enjoyed.

Grabbing and talking to the camera on the Hayrack.
Picking out her pumpkin.
Two Cute Pumpkins.

My little and friends look for this one in your mail box soon!
I want this one!

A few weeks earlier we went to the Bellevue Berry Farm with some friends.

Here she loved the horses!

And the horses loved her!
Almost my favorite picture ever!

Hangin' in the Tepee!Snack time!

The girls on the Hayrack!

Ready to get this ride going!Baby girl fell asleep on the Hayrack.
The pumpkin I picked to take home with me!

Hayden and her two baby pumpkins she picked out...she is still (two weeks later) very attached to them.

The Special Mother

The Special Mother

by Erma Bombeck

Most women become mothers by accident, some by choice, a few by social pressure and a couple by habit.

This year nearly 100,000 women will become mothers of handicapped children. Did you ever wonder how mothers of handicapped children are chosen?

Somehow I visualize God hovering over earth selecting his instruments for propagation with great care and deliberation. As He observes, He instructs His angels to make notes in a giant ledger.

"Armstrong, Beth; son. Patron saint...give her Gerard. He's used to profanity."

"Forrest, Marjotie; daughter. Patron saint, Celcelia."

"Rutledge, Carrie; twins. Patron saint, Matthew."

Finally He passes a name to an angel and smiles, "Give her a handicapped child."

The angel is curious. "Why this one God? She's so happy."

"Exactly," smiles God, "Could I give a handicapped child to a mother who does not know laughter? That would be cruel."

"But does she have patience?" asked the angel.

"I don't want her to have to much patience or she will drown in a sea of self-pity and despair. Once the shock and resentment wears off, she'll handle it."

"I watched her today. She has that feeling of self and independence that is so rare and so necessary in a mother. You see, the child I'm going to give her has his own world. She has to make her life in his world and that's not going to be easy."

"But, Lord, I don't think she even believes in you." God smiles, "No matter, I can fix that. This one is perfect - she has just enough selfishness." The angel gasps - "selfishness? is that a virtue?"

God nods. "If she can't separate herself from the child occasionally, she'll never survive. Yes, here is a woman whom I will bless with a child less perfect. She doesn't realize it yet, but she is to be envied. She will never take for granted a 'spoken word'". She will never consider a 'step' ordinary. When her child says 'Momma' for the first time, she will be present at a miracle, and will know it!"

"I will permit her to see clearly the things I see...ignorance, cruelty, prejudice...and allow her to rise above them. She will never be alone. I will be at her side every minute of every day of her life, because she is doing My work as surely as if she is here by My side."

And what about her Patron saint? asked the angel, his pen poised in mid - air.

God smiles, "A mirror will suffice."