Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Some Recent Shots...


Serious time...

Uncle Jeff time...

Aunt Leslie time...

Night time...

Discovering his hands for the first time-time...

Sittin with Daddy time...

More sleepy time...

11 Week Old Update...

I already know what you're thinking... at least someone is thinking it. Where was the 10 week old update? Well, things have been hectic, and we were kind of holding out last week hoping to find out what would happen this week with Jackman's upcoming surgery.

Well, we're still waiting. We were told last week that "they are going to check him out again" this week. It's amazing how ambiguous that phrase is when it applies to your 11 week old baby who happens to be living in the hospital waiting on surgery.

We have been relying on our past experience since we have been there to decipher exactly what that means. The short of it is that they normally call (very short notice) the day they plan surgery. That means we don't know it the day before. We just have a time slot, like now, that we are waiting on that call to come.

So ever since the wee hours of Monday morning, we have been anticipating a call (that obviously hasn't yet come) informing us that today it the day.

That's a strange feeling. Think about it; how many of you with children would look forward with anticipation, excitement, and hope about having one of your own go in for surgery. Really, it's a trick question, because in the same scenario, I believe anyone else would as well.

Regardless, the boy is doing just fine. He's happy as can be, he's getting big, and gets all the attention in the world. He even had his own photographer come get some shots (which you will get to see soon enough). He had the nurses in a collective swoon as he hammed it up for the camera. They were all doing their level best to get smiles out of him. As soon as we were finished, I laid him in his bed and he was asleep in literally seconds.

Anyway, I will post again when we know something. That could mean after surgery, depending on when it is. All three of us appreciate all the prayers. Stay tuned...

Sunday, October 18, 2009

His First Trick...

Well, we're just over nine weeks old, and he's got his first trick down pat.

Really, he can't take all the credit... it's a team effort. Maybe you have already figured it out from the picture, but if not, I will try to explain this amazing feat of concentration and synchronization to you.

First, I stick out my tongue and smile and make a noise. I do it about three times. Then Jackman smiles and sticks out his tongue. This may sound easy, but I challenge you to try this with a stranger on the elevator, or a cop, or your boss, and see if you get the same results. I doubt it.

I know everyone thinks they have the smartest kid in the world, and when they do something it's more special than what other kids do. I'm not going to try to get you to believe Jackman is the smartest baby in the world. There are approximately 133 million babies born each year. I concede that it would be a stretch to say he was the very smartest baby born this year (even though he is most certainly in the top ten). Likewise, newborns account for 327 bajillion acts of cuteness a year. Jackman's trick probably isn't the cutest thing ever (even though it is the cutest thing ever done by a baby in the Americas).

Okay, I'll admit, now I get it why everyone's baby is so cute and so smart. I really try to be objective about all this, but when we figured out that little trick the other night I was amazed. I immediately started telling Lisa "he's brilliant, and only nine weeks old..." (as if she somehow forgot how old he is). Lisa brought me down a few notches when she told me it was perfectly normal. In my head, I started trying to figure out how normal was exceptional in his case. I thought it was just amazing.

I can't figure out why something like that is so meaningful to me. It's such a simple little thing. I'll be honest, when people have told me in the past about the "amazing" little things their youngsters have done, it didn't have any kind of impact on me.

I know it partly has to do with the fact that he's my young'n. That explains a lot. Maybe another part of it is that he seems to like me. It made me feel really good when he was smiling, and responding to me. But that doesn't fully explain why I feel like my boy is extra-ordinary.

I think it has everything to do with my hopes and expectations for him. What parent doesn't start out raising a little major league ball player, or beauty queen, or whatever. I know that in the back of my mind, I want him to accomplish more, and better things than I have. But I actually thought about that for several years before we ever got pregnant. I have even loftier goals than that for him.

I want Jackman to make God as happy like he made me when he copied what I did the other night. I know for a long time that will depend on me, copying what God does so the boy can see it, and do it also. But then I want him to realize Who I am copying, and choose to follow the Lord. That would truly make me more proud than watching him on TV one day.

He's off to a good start with the copying thing, and I have to be extra careful now that we have a little copycat on our hands. Stay tuned for the next amazing Jackman moment.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Nurses' Pet...

Well, Jackman turned two months old Monday, and nine weeks old on Wednesday. There's not really any news to update. We are all still waiting while Jackman is growing. He is growing by the way; over 11 lbs now and almost 23 ins long. If we're not careful, he's going to outgrow some little outfits before we outfit him with them. We're looking at waiting another 2-3 weeks before there's any re-evaluation or surgery. Sow we're all just being patient, and enjoying life.

Apparently, Jackman is really enjoying life. It sounds like he's got it made, and got all the nurses wrapped around his little- little finger.

One of the nurses has been planning Halloween outfits for him for a month. You would think it's her kid. She can wait to get him fixed up in something. She given us a list of all her ideas, and if we don't bring her something to dress him up in, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised to come in and find that she's taken it upon herself to provide a costume.

It's painfully obvious at this point that Jackman has become the top dawg in the NICU. All the nurses love him, and they are spoiling him rotten. It's like having teams of grandparents tending a baby 'round the clock. Just tonight, when we got there, he was propped up in a baby chair watching a DVD. Last night he started fussing, so one of the nurses sat with him and started studying with him... apparently he likes to study.

Tonight was the best. We had just got him to sleep, and started to head for home. When we left and got off the elevator, Lisa realized that we left the camera under his bed. She went back to go get it, and when she got back in the NICU, our nurse had gotten him out of bed, got in the rocker, and was watching another movie with him. Caught in the act.

We understand now why they are getting so fond of him. Several of the nurses have told us it's rare for them to have a baby in there they can "play" with. Most of the babies really need intensive care, hence the IC in NICU. Jackman really looks out of place there now. He's really in good shape.

I think another reason they are all hooked on him is due to the fact that he's smiling at them now. Once one of those nurses gets a smile from him, they are hooked. One nurse was working on the seventh floor NICU about a week or so ago, and on her break came down to our NICU to see Jackman. He's almost laughed a few times too. I will make him laugh within two weeks, I'm so close now. He's doing everything but actually making the laughing sound. Whenever he starts laughing, he's really going to have a following. I bet they never hear that up there.

There may be one more reason for all the nurses swooning over Jackman... the name. I think it does something to them. It must have some sort of associative value. His new nickname (according to the nurses) is "Hugh", if that tells you anything.

Yep, Jackman has got it made. He wants for nothing. I think I can speak for Lisa when I say that we don't worry about him being up there. We are really thankful for all those nurses up there. Almost all of them treat Jackman like he's their own flesh and blood. I think when our time at Children's Hospital is over, the three of us are going to miss all those nurses... I'm sure they will miss "Hugh" too.

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Test Run: Posting a Video

Jackman enjoying his Mobile...

A Few More Pics...

It's a rough life

Check the hair... and the hint of attitude

Jackman's bachelor pad... looks like he's in jail when the side is up.

Hair has gone brown, but still sticking straight up

I still don't know how he gets those eyes opened up that wide

8 Week Old Update...

Well, Jackman turned 8 weeks old Wednesday. I doubt we'll have any new news to report for a few more weeks. We are in much better spirits than the last time I posted on the blog. I didn't really want to fool with it for a few days after that.

But Jackman is doing good now. He didn't feel very good for several days after the endoscopy. It irritates his little throat, and I think it causes him to produce more mucus, which his suction tube doesn't get out very well. Basically, he spends the next few days after the endoscopy choking on phlegm, and that wouldn't put anyone in a good mood.

Now he's starting to get happy and playful again. I would almost swear that he is trying to talk, and all the nurses say so too. When you talk to him, he moves his mouth and his tongue, and makes little sounds. I think it drives him crazy that he can't talk yet. And he could beat anyone in a staring contest; he refuses to break eye contact.... very confident.

Anyway, we didn't get to see him tonight because the NICU was closed again. They were waiting on a family to get there, so that didn't sound good. I hope it's nothing too bad, but we'll be checking all our little neighbors beds when we get up there tomorrow. They told us Jackman was okay, so we are thankful.

On the way out of the hospital, me and Lisa were a little surprised that we didn't feel like we had to stay longer (even though we were told we wouldn't get to visit). We just decided that we had done all we could, and might as well come on home and rest a little. If this had happened a month ago we would have been so sad and disappointed. Don't get me wrong, we really wanted to see Jackman tonight. It just wasn't devastating this time; we were stronger.

That got me thinking. I prayed several times that God would make us strong parents (and especially me). I believe we all tend to think that when we pray for something like strength, patience, wisdom, etc., that God will just zap us with it, and we'll have it forever. I don't discount that God will give us a boost every now and then, but I don't think he just automatically loads us up with those disciplines. I think he cultivates them in us.

For example: I prayed fro strength, several times, but I never got zapped with it. But I have noticed (to God's credit) that me and Lisa have gotten increasingly stronger over the past several weeks. God has been cultivating strength in us.

It makes me wonder how many things I have prayed for in the past, and then complained when God started the cultivating process. Like wisdom for example. I know I have prayed for wisdom in the past. I would have to admit that what I expected was to wake up the next morning with all the answers, so to speak. But in reality, God orchestrated a series of events that was intended to cultivate that wisdom in me. Looking back, and can actually see how that happened in several cases.

Plain and simple, Jesus said if you ask for something in His name, you will have it. I don't think those are magic words. It means if you ask for something in line with His will. That means if I ask for something (like wisdom) that lines up with who Jesus is and who He wants me to be, He's going to make sure I get it (assuming the motives are pure of course). The thing is that the receiving it process is as valuable the having it.

So now I'm really on the lookout. I know that in everything God is growing me by either teaching me or simply building character in me. It kind of reminds me of the Karate Kid. Daniel-son didn't know it at first, but everything was a lesson. Later Mr. Miyagi showed him how every little monotonous thing really meant something, and it was a lesson for him to use later on. He didn't just tell Daniel-son what to do when he was in the big fight; he began preparing him before he even realized that's what was going on. Then, when it mattered most, those moves flowed out of him naturally.

Anyway, I'm trying not to be in a hurry. I want to enjoy the ride, even if it is a little off the beaten path. I believe God is going to show us a sight we wouldn't see otherwise.