Thursday, April 30, 2020

E's 7th Birthday!

My sweet boy turned 7 today! It was a pretty epic day, quarantine notwithstanding. 😉 It was a fun Ninja-themed day filled with food, fun, and family! From breakfast pancakes and Ninja swords, to Papa John's pizza and drones! He planned the entire day, and we had so much fun!

It was a little different opening gifts, but we FaceTimed with each of the sweet family members who sent our birthday boy a gift so they could watch his excitement as he opened it! He loved the attention, and I think we all enjoyed getting to see faces that live outside our four walls! Mona and Aunt Jo even stopped by (to deliver a certain 12yo addict more yarn from Hobby Lobby) and it was so lovely to talk to them through the front window! 💙

Here are a few pics from our day!

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

COVID-19 + Math = Perspective

Y'all should be worried. This self-proclaimed "word girl" is doing "math numbers" for a minute. See what the coronapocalypse has done to me? Be very afraid.

Check out this website: This site shows the COVID-19 death projections by August 4, 2020, assuming full social distancing through May 2020, for the United States. Another almost 8 weeks of social distancing? Yes, y'all, we can do that.
So this website estimates 81,766 deaths caused by COVID-19 in the United States. According to (however reliable that site is, though it is likely a very close estimation), the population of the United States is currently estimated at 330,552,344. Let's see how this looks when you make it all math-y:

81,766/330,552,344 = 0.000247

And if I'm able to go one step further, and put my mad 4th grade math skills to work by converting my answer from a decimal to a percentage, the result is 0.0247%. That's significantly less than 1/4 of 1%.

So if my math is correct, it tells me that significantly less than approximately 1/4 of 1% of Americans are projected to die from COVID-19.

While EVERY death is a HUGE and UNIMAGINABLE loss of someone's parent, child, grandparent, friend, neighbor, or co-worker, that number gives this entire pandemic a little bit of perspective to me.

Based on the media hype, it feels like we've been thrown into the midst of a pandemic close or equal to the most devastating pandemic ever recorded: The Spanish Flu of 1918.

Wikipedia estimates over 675,000 deaths in the United States from The Spanish Flu.

We're talking significantly less than 1/4 of 1% of Americans. We can probably agree that while the loss of 81,766 lives is incredibly devastating, it's not the same as losing 675,000+.

Even if we look at the highest point in the shaded area of uncertainty in the graph provided, we're still looking at a very small number:

136,401/330,552,344 = 0.000412

That's 0.00412%.

Y'all, I KNOW this pandemic is BAD. I know there are hotspots all over our country that are experiencing death and devastation the likes of which have never been seen before in our lifetimes.

But significantly less than 1/4 of 1%?

I guess what I'm saying is that I'm tired of living in a world overshadowed by fear, worry, and concern. Especially considering I will be 28 weeks pregnant tomorrow, and I have to take on the added anxiety that comes with bringing a new life into this world at such a chaotic time as this. But it was so nice for my non-math self to experience a tiny breath of fresh air from realizing we're talking about significantly less than 1/4 of 1% of our country's population succumbing to COVID-19.

Let's take a quick peek at the math for my home state of South Carolina, shall we?


The site estimates 442 South Carolinians will die from COVID-19.
There are an estimated 5,210,095 people currently residing in South Carolina.

That math?

442/5,210,095 = 0.000084

That is a whopping 0.0084%.

And the worst-case scenario projections?

645/5,210,095 = 0.000123

That's 0.0123%.

I can barely even comprehend numbers this small.

You guys.

I'm not saying that COVID-19 isn't bad.

I'm not saying that the loss of lives is inconsequential.

I'm not saying there won't be a "second wave" or more that will result in a greater loss.

I'm not saying these projections are fact or reality or 100% to be expected.

I'm not saying the difficulties we all are experiencing right now should be shrugged off.

I'm saying we can be encouraged.

I'm saying we can get through this.

I'm saying we can try to look for the good in the midst of so.much.bad.

I'm saying we can get through this by the grace of God! He knows the numbers. He knows His plans. He knows when our lives will return to some semblance of normal.

We can hang in there.

We can follow the directives to keep our families safe... our neighbors safe... our communities safe... and our country safe.

I hope this has been somewhat encouraging to you!

I also want to take a moment to say that I simply do not have the words to adequately express my gratitude to the individuals across our country and across the globe working hard on the front lines -- putting their own lives at risk -- in fighting this undetectable, invisible enemy and saving countless lives. There truly are no words to properly express how much you mean to us all, and how grateful we all are for the work you are doing. God bless you and keep you safe!

Friday, April 3, 2020

Squish's Big Day!

Here in the midst of coronapocalypse, I thought it would be nice to share some fun news to take my mind off everything going on in the world right now.

So last Saturday, our sweet little Squish had a big day! He {finally} transitioned from a crib to a toddler bed! This sweet boy will be 3 in about 10 weeks, and while he was fine in the crib for the most part, there had been a few instances where he found his way OUT of the crib. Most recently, about a week ago, we heard a loud T-H-U-D during afternoon rest time, followed by Squish casually walking out of his room and heading downstairs. We thought it was hilarious, and while we were super grateful he must have stuck the landing, we figured it was about time to get him transitioned to a toddler bed.

My mommy heart was dreading it just a little bit. Squish has been our littlest baby for so long! But alas, with his little brother's pending arrival in less than 12 weeks (!!!), I begrudgingly decided it was time to start referring to him as my "big boy" instead of my baby. *cue tears*

When I went upstairs last Saturday to get him up following nap time, I was armed with a set of 1,382 different sizes of allen/hex wrenches, prepared to remove the four screws that held the front panel of his crib. He sat in his bed and was all kinds of curious as to what I was up to. I managed to successfully remove the screws, and then we counted to three! Check out the video below. Please note the insanely adorable sound he makes when the front panel is first removed. LOVE.

((Please disregard the missing section of wall paper on the wall behind his bed and the fact that his crib was in the center of his room. He pulled off little sections of the paper when his crib was against the wall, so hubs cut out a large rectangular section to replace it. That will be done... eventually.))

Squish was super excited about the new bed situation! He loved the freedom to get up and down as many zillion times as he wanted. I did put up a white mesh panel that covers 3/4 of the side so he wouldn't fall out of bed at night. Here he was the first night at bedtime. He couldn't be more proud of his big boy bed!

And get this, y'all: he didn't make One. Single. Attempt. to come out of his room after we put him down for the night. Not one. He played in his bed, and I'm not even sure he got out of it at all that first night. And apparently it was a great situation for him because he slept very well. In fact, he was still out cold at 9:21 AM the next morning!

The rest of the week has been just as awesome! In fact, after rest time, he will wait for hubs or I to talk to him through the monitor to give him the a-okay to open the door and leave his room. How courteous, amiright? And most mornings he just chills in his bed until we either come up to get him, or tell him to come downstairs through the monitor. This kid is winning, y'all!

I just love this crazy sweet boy of mine, and I'm so proud of how well he's been doing with his new bed! He loves to play with his cars (and shoes in the closet) during his afternoon rest times, so he pretty much no longer takes any sort of nap in the afternoons. He might be a little bit more grouchy than usual by bedtime (aren't we all?), but it doesn't matter to me! He goes down each night so well and sleeps so soundly!

I'm glad we were able to make this happen now so he has a good three months to settle into this routine. Once Cinco arrives, things will change up again as we add a crib to their bedroom and start (eventually) making preparations to welcome our newest and final family member!

Wednesday, April 1, 2020

27 Weeks

Yesterday, I had to venture out of the comfort and safety of my home quarantine to go to an appointment with my high-risk perinatologist. I really didn't want to go, but I knew I had to. It was necessary for myself and for Cinco. I was scheduled to have a growth ultrasound, a consultation with my diabetic nurse, and a visit with my favorite maternal-fetal medicine specialist, Dr. G.

I want to take a moment to note that this is my fourth pregnancy that has included visits to the MFM office. It all started with Chase's heart defect diagnosis back in 2009, and we continued to be followed with each subsequent pregnancy with E, Squish, and now Cinco, as high-risk pregnancies seem to be my jam. However, this was the FIRST TIME I wasn't able to have my husband by my side. That's a pretty big deal, y'all! For starters, we didn't want to risk having anyone in our home to keep the kids while we were at the appointment, but even if we did, the doctor's office was not permitting ANY visitors with patients. Our hands were tied. It was disappointing and very different for sure, but I understand and appreciate the logic. And to be honest, my heart was breaking at the thought of not having my spouse there with me had this been my very first appointment and I was about to find out the details of a possible defect in my unborn child. I can imagine there are mothers-to-be in this exact position right now, and it breaks my heart just thinking of them experiencing that life-altering news all alone. My prayers are with these precious mamas and the journey ahead.

I was quite anxious to leave the house, and even more so to head to a medical office. The MFM office had me call them when I arrived, and wait in my car. I appreciated this so much! They came out to my car and took my temperature with a contactless device, handed me a check-in questionnaire to fill out, and asked me to call them when I was finished. Then they came out to my car to take me directly into my exam room. I should add that on Monday, my aunt was super awesome to drop an N95 mask in my mailbox that my mom gave to her, which apparently came from my brother-in-law (thanks, y'all!). I put it on in the car when I arrived for my appointment, and left on for the duration of my 2.5 hour visit. It was terribly uncomfortable, and quite unfashionable, but it provided me with added peace of mind for which I was quite grateful! I was cautious not to touch any part of my face, not to touch anything in the office unnecessarily, to sanitize my hands at every opportunity, and just make smart, healthy overall decisions as much as possible. I felt terrible that the nurses were jealous of my N95 masks as they all were wearing the typical disposable paper masks, which really don't provide them with much protection, especially when they're around so many different patients each day.

The diabetic nurse met with me first, and overall she was very pleased with my numbers. Not unlike previous pregnancies, I find myself checking my blood sugar with finger sticks 4+ times per day, and dosing two different insulin medications anywhere from 2 to 5 times per day in my stomach. That's a lot of poking, folks! But it seems to be keeping my levels where they need to be, which keeps both Cinco and I safe, so I'm happy about that!

After the nurse left, the ultrasound tech came to take me back for the u/s. Cinco cooperated quite nicely! We got a few precious pics of his adorable profile -- check out that sweet little button nose!

His growth measurements literally came in at 26w6d, which was exactly how far along I was yesterday! One of the biggest concerns with gestational diabetes is that the baby will grow too big, but for now, he's sitting at a perfect 2ish pounds (I forgot to write down the exact number -- hubs usually handles all.things.numbers. 😔). In addition to the growth measurements, Dr. G wanted to check the position of the placenta. At my previous ultrasound, they noticed the placenta was located right next to the cervix. Obviously placenta over the cervix would result in a C-section delivery, which I would very much like to avoid. Based on the ultrasound yesterday, the placenta was moving away from the cervix as the baby has grown, which was exactly what I had been praying for! Praise the Lord! I'm so grateful He hears our prayers in the midst of all that is going on in the world today. He is so good!

After the ultrasound, they took me back to my exam room to meet with the doctor. He was pleased with everything, and said he wished all of his high-risk patients were like me! LOL! While I have several reasons that cause me to fall into the high-risk category (old lady age, gestational diabetes, overweight, autoimmune disease), I am managing to maintain all of the risks well... at least so far! Dr. G was especially awesome because he wanted to eliminate the extra visits between his office and my OB's office, and we basically made the decision for me to continue to be seen exclusively at his office, eliminating the additional appointments with my OB. I will see him again in 3 weeks around 30 weeks, and then again around 33 weeks. Once I'm at 34 weeks, I'll likely start weekly appointments for growth ultrasounds and NSTs.

As for baby preparations at home, I haven't even started, y'all. 😳 Hubs and I had originally thought about closing in our upstairs loft and turning it into a 5th bedroom. This would allow us to put Chase in that room, move Squish into E's room, and leave the nursery for Cinco. However, we recently switched up our plans and are now planning to keep Chase and E in their room, keep the upstairs loft open, and put baby Cinco in the same room as Squish. I'm a little nervous about this because we've NEVER put a baby in a shared room. If you've successfully done this at some point with your kids, PLEASE send me some encouragement that it's going to work and it's going to be okay! All tips and suggestions are welcome! That said, I have no clue what I'm going to do with this combined room. Squish is in a toddler bed now (as of earlier this week!), and Cinco will obviously be in a crib. They will share a dresser and the closet. I have no idea how to decorate the room, what bedding to make/buy/use for Cinco, etc. I don't think I've ever felt this behind with preparing for a baby's arrival! There are only about 12 weeks left, so I'd better start figuring things out soon! Send virtual help and hugs my way, y'all!

Thanks for reading along with me on our journey! I'm grateful to the family and friends who have remembered us in prayer as I am dealing with pregnancy and a pending delivery during the COVID-19 pandemic. This is scary territory that I've never found myself in before now. I'm praying for the health and safety of my sweet baby during this scary time, and would covet your prayers as well.

Hugs, all!