Friday, December 18, 2015

Update on Our Crazy Caed!

And I'm back! I have been slacking on my posts lately about our crazy Caed! Caed has hit so many milestones since I last posted. He has blown his speech therapist and Early Intervention therapist's mind, which makes us so very proud and blessed parents. He is now walking, pointing, recognizing a few facial features, making a few animal noises, and getting himself into the standing/walking position from sitting position all by himself! It all has happened so fast. 

Caed started walking about a month and a half ago and we haven't been able to keep him still or in one place since. He follows me everywhere and has had a few rough run ins with mom's feet and other hard objects ;) his poor mouth has been through the ringer as far as bumps go. I'm prepared now with a frozen passy always available ;) 

Our Early Intervention therapist, Mrs. Serena has been blown away with Caed's cognitive skills. Caed loves any kind of animal but especially dogs and cats so I asked Caed to find a kitty in one of his books and he turned right to the page and pointed to the kitty. Mrs. Serena went crazy! She was so excited and said he was way above where he needs to be and is so smart(I already knew that but I am rather biased ;) and although Caed hasn't been saying words(just dada, yeah yeah, and uh oh) his speech therapist was so impressed that Caed does have the "yaya" sound down and said most kids don't pick that sound up until later. So he said shouldn't be long until we hear him spouting out words. He communicates so well though with a few sign language signs like more, done, and bye bye. He definitely lets us know when he is done and ready to go home when we are out. He waves his arm like "I'm done, bye people!" It's so cute. Can't wait to hear what words are first! No "mama" at all right now but he can make those "mm" sounds. If you ask him what a cow says he goes "mmmm" and "mmmmm" every time he eats something good or drinks his water. So shouldn't be too long until we have a nonstop talker ;) His Early Intervention review is next month, and he is ready to show off all he has been up to.

Caed has officially built up those muscles to get himself up into his standing and walking position from a sitting position. This just happened three nights ago! So proud of him! He is also getting in those canine teeth top and bottom(broke through last night actually)! These will be his 13th, 14th, 15th, and 16th! Crazy! So happy we are almost done with teething! These have been rough as he has been waking a couple times at night crying. Oh and best of all, he's been sleeping 6:30pm-6:00am!!!!! Hallelujah!!!! It would be even better if we can move that to later but for now I'll take it! He's pretty stern about going to bed before 7pm. So evening outings are still rather difficult, so apologies to those we have had to turn down invitations to due to this fact. Caed is still on O2 and a Pulse Ox every night so when he gets tired we have to get him hooked up to it in the evenings. Hopefully with His sleep study in April we will see if he has to continue with it or not. So prayers appreciated for that when the time comes. Would love for him to be cordless as he moves a lot when sleeping now and makes keeping the cords from tangling around him more and more difficult. 

Overall though he is thriving and doing well! He's a busy busy boy! His favorite things these days are magnets(goes back and fourth between fridge and dishwasher), balls and kicking his soccer ball around, WALLYKAZAM!(we will try to put anything else on and he finds his Wally DVD case and brings it to us, kid loves it, I don't argue because it teaches words and I love bobgoblin;), goldfish, remotes, waffles(eats two every morning), red sauce(still), kitties and doggies, mac n cheese, following mom EVERYWHERE, and being outside. 

We are enjoying this Christmas season so far with an official toddler. He has done so well with our Christmas tree and presents. Helps that he responds to "No" really really well and "come here". He did pull the bows off the presents because he just doesn't like to have stuff on things or on top of things or open. He's kinda OCD and I have no idea where he got that from lol every time I open the fridge, dryer, or dishwasher he is right there to close it and he gets into our Tupperware cabinet now but takes one piece out then closes the cabinet and repeats. Makes me laugh. He is so good though and we are so blessed :) We love our Caed! Still can't believe he is a little over 15 months old now! Where did the time go?! So excited to see what the next year brings. So blessed to be able to watch our boy grow in personality and stature :) being a parent is the best thing ever! It may be exhausting and some days you just want to scream and cry, but the good out weighs the bad doubly! 

So from our crazy Tripp family to your family! Merry Christmas! 
Remember the reason for the season and your life, Christ! 

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

On This Day One Year ago.....

On this day, one year ago, we welcomed a precious 9lb, head full of hair, baby boy :) God has blessed us with much joy and showed us just how special our son was and how much He thought of us to send us such a gift. 

After a long hard two days of labor, at 4:03am, September 9th, 2014 we got to meet our hunk of an amazing bundle of joy and sweetness :) He was perfect. Shortly after he was born we were transferred to a room where we began to make ourselves comfortable and soak in this new chapter in our lives, parenting. 

Of course not long after Caedmons debut into the world, was his pediatrician check. The pediatrician entered the room, took a look at Caedmon, checked his heart rate, etc etc. Then there was a little silence as he stared at Caedmon and then looked at us. The next words he would say, would stay with me and echo in my head over and over and over. "We believe your son has Achondroplasia, a form of dwarfism, there are a few tests I would like to run". I of course am in a state of shock and denial and outraged at this pediatrician that he would even think such a thing and then push for these tests. He told me after I had told him that my husband and I would like to discuss this and as of right now we see no need for these tests( personally just thought he was trying to get money out of us)that "what kind of parent am I to not have these tests done?" and started to argue with me. First off don't argue with a woman who has just went through 2 days of hard labor and given birth to a 9lb child and secondly don't question how much we love and care for this child. I was fuming mad. After many calls back and forth we finally decided to get a scan done of Caed's neck and head, but while on the way down the nurse noticed that Caed was breathing very hard and rapidly and called the pediatrician and they admitted him into the NICU. This was Wednesday late morning( the day after Caed was born). Josh answered the phone call telling us what they had done and then he broke the news to me. I took it well at the moment but, when I was getting ready to be wheeled down to the NICU I had a moment of overwhelming emotions and tears. I had never been in a NICU and all I knew was pictures of children in the big clear cribs with all these tubes hooked up to them. I wanted to see my son and knew he was alone down there and I had no idea what I was going to find. 

I hadn't heard much about what was going on with him but I knew that when we got down there hopefully someone would tell me what was going on. Once we arrived, after washing several layers off our skin, we found Caed just chilling under the warm light on his back arms by his head and legs spread out. Looked like he was just chilling on a beach somewhere. After a good little laugh at the that fact and the fact that he was the biggest baby in there and that the nurses loved his hair, it made things a little more bearable. He was admitted for respiratory issues due to small lungs and nasal passages. They knew he had dwarfism but didn't push that on us as they knew we were dealing with denial and of course were blinded to the obvious signs medically because we didn't know. They kept referring to Caed's hands as trident hands, basically an obvious sign of dwarfism which we later would realize and come to a state of clarity.   

The hospital allowed us to stay an extra day in our room while Caed was in the NICU and then the next night we were given a parent room. Caed was put on O2 and a feeding tube as we had problems with breastfeeding and bottle feeding. He wasn't a fan of either. I was given the cursed pump and so began my great bond with I and Medela(the pump) The doctors and nurses were so nice and encouraging during this time. 

The first night that we had to go home without our son was very hard. New parents never think about that as a possibility. You pack your bags and the car seat and all those cute little outfits that you can't decide which you want to put your new little one in. You look forward to the wheelchair ride down holding that car seat full of that little bundle you had pictured in that empty spot for weeks leading up to their perfect arrival and venture home. Our first trip home was empty handed and a few errands to Target to get some needed baby supplies. It was hard and my heart goes out to any parent that has to endure that. Walking into your home with all the baby gear empty and room just waiting to be filled, I can't imagine how a parent who has lost their child feels because in that moment I felt so empty and my child was only in the NICU. I knew we would get to bring him home but just didn't know when and that killed me! Josh and I went to the NICU everyday(Him until he needed to go back to work). We always hoped that today would be the day! But, It was a long 2 weeks of weaning Caedmon off his O2, feeding tube, and getting his stats and weight up, and of course a failed car seat test. Thought we would never hear them say those three words, "you're going home!". 

September 22nd at around noon we got word that Caed was going home! Not in the car seat that we pictured and not free from wires and tubes(as we would find out later)  He was sent home on an a sleep apnea monitor and in a "car bed" basically a car seat that lays flat to help with his respiratory issues. We were sent home with many scheduled appointments to see a cardiologist, speech therapist, and a geneticist just to name a few ;) 

November 6th was Caed's geneticist appt where his diagnosis was confirmed. We went through a time of denial and after the confirmation we couldn't do anything but love our son more and seek God for wisdom on this new journey. It's been a rough year with many a doctors appts, new devices(O2 and pulse ox), a weeks stay at UVA and a sleep study done. We have jumped many hoops and are blessed that there haven't had to be any surgeries thus far and that he is doing wonderfully!

This next year of Caed's life we have no idea what it could hold medically but we do know that our little guy has us wrapped and that we would do it all over again! He has brought so much joy into our life and lives of others with his goofiness and scrunched nose smile. He has opened our eyes to how God creates us all differently. Caed may be shorter in stature and may have to work harder at things that come so easily to us average height people, but God has given him a personality and temperament that will do nothing but persevere and overcome. We are blessed by so many who have already helped and encouraged and prayed for Caed and us along this path. We are grateful for all the outpouring love you show us daily, through sweet comments or private messages sent to me. We are proud of our son and all he has overcome and accomplished already in a short year's time. He is right where he is supposed to be as far as physical and motor skills go. Every small thing is a huge celebration! Thank you for being such big cheerleaders along the way! We ask for continued prayers as we enter this new year in Caed's life. Next Month(October) is Dwarfism Awareness Month. Please pray for all the families that are raising these precious miracles :) and Happy 1st Birthday, Caedmon. Mommy and Daddy love you to the moon and back and we wouldn't change a thing about you or how you entered the world! God has amazing plans for your life!

Monday, August 10, 2015

1 More Month until 1!

The One month countdown is here. Cannot believe we are almost to the BIG 1! These past 11 months have been the best, hardest, and most full of no sleep and joy that Josh and I have ever experienced! Everyday there is something new and exciting that Caed has learned. His therapist, Mrs. Serena, has been so impressed with all the goals he has met and how fast he has met them. In just 2 weeks time he started saying "da da" and started pulling himself up on things all by himself and standing with little help! Now he thinks he can beat me to anything. I say "no" as he is crawling towards something that he knows he shouldn't and then as soon as he sees me, he starts speeding up. Excited and nervous for when he starts walking. He is going to be so fast and EVERYWHERE! He still wears out really fast, so frequent naps are had ;-) And he is still on oxygen at night. He has gotten to the point where he moves a lot in his sleep so the cords have become a little issue. He's a busy busy boy even in his sleep. He has a pretty set schedule as to when he wakes now at night(still wakes for bottles 9pm,1:30am,and 5:30am, then finally up and at 'em at 7:06am, yes every morning). He won't take any bottles throughout the day anymore so I'm assuming he is weaning himself off of it. He never was a fan of the bottle anyways. I am excited that I don't have to force bottles down his throat anymore. Hoping he takes well to milk. We have tried it but he's definitely going to have to get used to it. These day's his favorite foods are Mac-n-Cheese, fruit and oatmeal, waffles, YELLOW veggie straws, rice teether cookies, veggies, and still anything that consists of red sauce and noodles :-) He loves his Mac-n-Cheese though! It has been such a joy watching him grow into his little personality and overcome these many goals of his! We have been so blessed to have not had to have as many complications and medical issues as other children with Achondroplasia have. We keep praying that he doesn't have to endure many in the future as he grows. It has been hard as Caed is quite the social bug(if mom is around), he enjoys other kids and watching them. He is still so little and kids around his age are twice his size and a little further along with walking, so it has been a little hard for him to interact with them. He just sits and talks to them though hahaha. It's just something that we will have to overcome and he will too as he grows and interacts with kids his age. I am sure he will be able to overcome it quickly ;-) So excited to see what the future holds just wish it would slow down! Planning his 1st Birthday party is so fun and exciting and makes me a little sad. He's getting so big so  fast! This past year held so many uncertainties as we progressed not knowing what complications could arise with Caed's diagnosis. It has turned out to be amazing and incredible! Looking at it all and into the future, God is in control and has BIG plans for our boy ;-) So blessed to have our little spunky boy in our life! 1 here we come!

Friday, June 19, 2015

Our Superman, A Father's Day Post

He Never Looks for Praises.
He's never one to boast.
He just goes on quietly working
for those he loves most.
~Karen Boyer

This is a special Father's Day as we have the honor of celebrating our true hero on his first Father's day. On this day I get to brag on my husband and father to our little spunky boy. My husband is no where near perfect and neither am I. We have our struggles as we parent like many new and seasoned parents do. Lack of sleep, special medical needs for Caed, crazy schedules, crying baby, worn out mom, exhausted dad, but we manage to keep our sanity and a very happy baby most of the time ;-) 

We are a team, we function as a team and have since this little guy arrived on the scene. I couldn't survive without my other half and I mean that with all honesty! I knew when I married Josh that he would be a great dad but I quickly find out he turns out to be an AWESOME dad.  From day one, Josh was there to snuggle the chunky little guy and help out with him in any way possible(dealing with 3hr fussy times every evening, waking for feedings at night, tackling those newly baby dirty diapers...etc etc.). We had a hard and what seemed like a LONG start to Caedmon's journey with him being in the NICU for 2 weeks. The nurses were so impressed with Josh and how everyday immediately after work he would come barreling in throwing on that yellow gown and ready to bottle feed and hang out with his son. Caedmon at the time (well still does haha) was fighting his bottles and daddy was the only one that could get him to drink it all. I grew to appreciate Josh more and more as I saw other dad's in the NICU and how they had no clue what to do, how to help or some were just there taking up a seat playing a game on their phone. Josh was hands on and wanted to be a part of everything that involved Caedmon. I know it killed him to have to go to work and not be there for support for Caed and I during that time. He continues to be very hands on and Caedmon is all about his daddy. Their bond has been amazing to watch grow over the past short 9 months. As soon as Daddy walks through our door Caedmon turns into a ball of energy ready to play and spend time with him. I am proud to say that I have a man that accepts his role as a husband and father with great respect for the title and knowing what it entails. So many men these days are so distracted by the world that they lose sight of the relationship with their family and what matters most. They come home and plop on the couch to play a video game and wait for their wife to feed them like another child to take care of. Josh is juggling school, providing for our family, being a very present and involved father, and keeping up with all the many bills and financial stuff. Caed and I are blessed to have such a super and godly man leading our family. He is not a man chasing a worthless dream of becoming the richest man, owning the coolest truck, biggest house, traveling the world, or the man with the highest score on a video game. He works hard in a job that he may not love but he realizes that God has provided the job in order for him to provide for his family so his wife can stay home and raise their son. I see how he depends on God and longs to know Him and lead him and our family. It is hard to find that in a man these days so Caed and I count ourselves again blessed to have this man in our life. He was raised by a man who also works hard to provide for his family and a mother who taught him how to respect his dad, others, and his own family one day.  He gives 110% in whatever he does and is far from lazy. The Tripp's raised a boy into a man. Caedmon has an amazing godly role model to look to for the rest of his life. Josh you may not be the richest man or see much of the world, but know this, you are leaving a legacy behind, you are rich in how much we love you, and you are our world! We love you! Happy First Father's Day!

"American Dream"~ Casting Crowns

All work no play may have made Jack a dull boy
But all work no God has left Jack with a lost soul
But he's moving on full steam
He's chasing the American dream
And he's gonna give his family the finer things

Not this time son I've no time to waste
Maybe tomorrow we'll have time to play
And then he slips into his new BMW
And drives farther and farther and farther away

So He works all day and tries to sleep at night
He says things will get better;
Better in time

And he works and he builds with his own two hands
And he pours all he has in a castle made with sand
But the wind and the rain are comin' crashing in
Time will tell just how long his kingdom stands

His American Dream is beginning to seem
More and more like a nightmare
With every passing day
"Daddy, can you come to my game?"
"Oh Baby, please don't work late."
Another wasted weekend
And they are slipping away

'Cause he works all day and lies awake at night
He tells them things will get better
It'll just take a little more time

He used to say, "Whoever dies with the most toys wins"
But if he loses his soul, what has he gained in the end
I'll take a shack on the rock
Over a castle in the sand
Now he works all day and cries alone at night
It's not getting any better
Looks like he's running out of time
'Cause he worked and he built with his own two hands
And he poured all he had in a castle made with sand
But the wind and the rain are coming crashing in
Time will tell just how long his kingdom stands
His kingdom stands

All they really wanted was You

Matthew 7:24-27English Standard Version (ESV)

Build Your House on the Rock

24 “Everyone then who hears these words of mine and does them will be like a wise man who built his house on the rock. 25 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat on that house, but it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock.26 And everyone who hears these words of mine and does not do them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. 27 And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell, and great was the fall of it.”