Dear Sweet Pip..Time to kick some heart surgery arse...Love mum

I cant help soaking in my little family right now...Every moment... Noal giving Pip a squeeze & saying My Reeeee, Pip giving the biggest smiles yet, Deac cuddling up to us all when we're all snugging in...I'm just trying to freeze ever moment & kiss my little hooligans cause our little lives may be forever changed in the next few days...

I'm wishing with everything in me that we didnt have to go through what we are about to...I wish I could take all this away – I wish I could wake up & the next 2 weeks of my life & my families was over...I wish we didnt have to be in this scary, unknown place to begin with...

Everyone keeps  telling me it will all be better once Pip has her heart surgery....That everything will be okay- That God has her in his hands kinda thing or that shes so strong & a fighter... And I want to believe all that- I do believe all that- I think... But what if thats not the case...What if everything isnt okay? What if God or Fate or whomever has different plans- What if shes tired of being so strong & doesnt want to fight?

I can barely write this through my tears, my constant need to be touching Pip & my fear that Im jinxing it all by sharing my darkest thoughts...I am just so scared right now...I have never in my life been more fearful of losing something so damn precious to me...

Pip has only been in our lives for 4.5 mths but shes changed it so completely- Our little family NEEDS her- Shes such a core part of it now- I feel like my whole purpose in life has changed because of her...So, although I said Dear Sweet Pip was going to be letters from yall- I feel today I need to write her one myself...

So, once again friends- actually Pip heres my heart....


My Precious Baby Girl...
Listen up Buttercup- You my darling in 4.5 mths have given me more heartache & fear than any other time in my life...In the same breath you’ve given me more hope & strength than I could ever imagine having...
When you had your eye surgery at 6 weeks old, I thought that would be it- I somehow mustered up the strength to get through that with you, thinking that would be all you would have to endure...When I found out the hole in your heart then needed to be repaired & you were in heart failure, I can’t even begin to describe how devastated I was...You had already proven to me & to everyone what a sassy little fighter you were but for some reason fixing a heart just seemed so scary...
Since then we’ve been on quite the path to beef you up & make you big & strong...I’ve tried my very hardest the last 2 months to do anything & everything I could to help get us to today- I just didn’t realize it would be here so fast- I’m proud of you baby girl for putting on some pounds & defeating the odds...You amaze me with how determined you are in life...That my darling may be a trait you inherited from me- I’m a stubborn little ox according to your father...I like to think of it as a good thing...I mostly get what I want...And listen up Pip, I want you to kick this heart surgery’s bloody arse...Literally...You show those docs what a stubborn, determined, strong little mouse you are...
I need you Pip, now more than ever- You’ve changed my world, my heart & our little family...We aren’t complete without you now...
Your big brother loves you so much & really missed you when you were in the hospital before- So, he’s wanting you to get better & home soon so he can play with you again...He’s been trying to wear an eye patch so he can be “like Reee”...He loves you & is already so protective of you...When we pick him up from daycare & other little kids gather around you, he proudly tells them that’s “my Reeee”& protectively puts his arms around you...
Now, your dad, he’s a softy- always has been when it comes to me & Noal...But, you sweet Reid have somehow gotten so deep in his heart- He's mesmerized by you...He loves you so much & is in awe of your strength...You have one proud papa there baby girl...He’s just as scared as I am but he literally is my rock & I’m  certain I couldn’t have done any of this without him by my side...The way he looks at you Pip, ahh just gets me every time...So much love...You are so his baby girl...
So, here we are Reid Layne- tomorrow we go to  CHEO & the next day you have heart surgery...I will be right beside you the entire time...I will anxiously be waiting to hold you, sing to you, tell you I love you & get on with being your mumma...
Be strong my darling one more time...Okay? I need you to- For me – For Daddy- For Noal & even for Deac...Not to mention the thousands of people you inspire- Let’s show them how truly strong you are...
I love you so very, very much...Don't be scared- You got this- And we'll be right there when you wake up...Be prepared for days of  snugs & kisses, cause you're getting them....
Love mum 

So, friends there you have it...I'm scared beyond belief just hoping/praying all goes well...Thank you for all your thoughts/messages/calls & please, please think of Pip on Thursday....Also just a reminder that Dear Sweet Pip is open to anyone who wants to write her a letter- If shes inspired you or made you look at life a wee bit differently- Feel free to let her know- these letters are for her & one day will be such a precious treasure to have...

Pip + Heart Surgery = One worried, scared & hot mess of a mumma

Well God, Fate, Sweet Jesus, Ellen or whomever doesn't seem to want to be on our sides lately...First, Reid has a little miracle, then it gets snatched away...Then we are given hope that Reid is a candidate for a less envasive heart surgery & like our little miracle that too gets snatched away...Have to say I'm getting a little mad at this game...

So, we finally got the call from CHEO/SickKids & the outcome isn't what we were crossing our fingers so tightly for...Looks like Reid will have to have heart surgery where they go in through her chest- This just means a bigger surgery, longer recovery & hospital stay & harder on our little mouse...But if anyone can do this, Pip can...She's proven over & over already in her short little life that she's our fighter...




However, Pip's mumma isn't nearly as strong...Had myself some major meltdowns yesterday...When the surgeon told me, I started crying & you could tell she was just so uncomfortable & wanted to get me off the phone as soon as she could- Had one hell of a day trying to wrap my head around what this means for Reid & my little family...Then later in the day I got another call, telling me they would like to do this ASAP & have Reid scheduled for surgery MAY 2nd!!!! Hello, that's in a week...

Had myself a good old cry & when my sweet little Noal came over & just crawled up in my arms for a hug- I could barely keep myself together...Just so many emotions going through my head...I mean forget about all the fears/worries I have for my daughter...All the stress & sleepless nights I'm about to endure...I'm dreading being away from my Bubba for that long...I've only been away from Noal a few times {when Reid was born for 2 nights & one night when she was in heart failure in the hospital- all the other nights I made sure to come home to at least spend some time with him & put him to bed}...But I don't have this option as the surgery/recovery will be in Ottawa...So, not only am I dreading all that comes with Reid in this situation, but it will kill me to not be with my son...


So, expect a real hot mess of a mumma this next week leading up to her surgery...We leave on Wednesday as Reid has to be there for a bunch of pre-op test & such...


I probably won't be blogging much but will try to update y'all on Happy Soul Project's Facebook page...


Once again, friends, I beg ya to think, pray, wish, do WHATEVER good & positive thing you can, to lift up my baby girl...

The deaf would hear & the blind would see if they were in my shoes right now...


Well if that's the case, than Hallelujah Sweet Jesus, all those around me would be amazed at the loud noises & bright lights...Kindness, my dear friends, has been pouring in all around me & I am utterly humbled, touched & forever changed by y'all...
 
From little things like sending me an encouraging message, or making us dinner to extraordinary things like holding fundraisers & raising some moula to help with Reid's expenses...{ShoutOut to Justina, Mel & Shel- my God girls, just amazing what y'all have done...And to all those who donated & businesses who helped out- THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU-}
 
All of it- every single act- has changed me...Has shown me in a way how to be a kinder person, how to reach out to others when their going through something & most importantly has taught me about HOPE...That although days sometimes are dark & scary- there is HOPE...Hope that people out there truly care for us- Hope that others, {whole communities really- Liskey City, hello how amazing are you?} are thinking, praying & supporting us & hope that others are really touched by Reid & are inspired by her life...
 
So, as we wait in hope, today to hear from SickKids regarding Reid's heart surgery, a BIG ShoutOut to all of you dear friends... 
 
Thank you for the HOPE you've given me...Hope that I will make sure Pip knows all about one day...

Nobody is a trooper like Reid Layne...

As mentioned many times, having children has definitely taught me a thing or two about patience...But with Reid now, its at a whole new level...The wait game she's made me play about her heart is something else...

Last week, we went to CHEO, to meet with the doctors there who ran a bunch of tests to see if Reid was a candidate for a less evasive heart procedure...Thankfully, my gentle little dove was so chilled she didn't have to be sedated for the test & this mumma just got to hold her through them instead...I wish I could explain what goes through your head in a moment like this...My mind went to some dark places & I had to hold back full on breaking down & sobbing...

The CHEO doc seemed to think Reid would likely be able to have the less evasive procedure {Thank Sweet Jesus} but had to meet with the team of docs/surgeons to confirm- We were suppose to find out last Friday & here we are Tuesday still waiting, testing my much worked patience into a frenzy...Reid is now being presented to SickKids on Thursday to get a second opinion & HOPEFULLY we will know more then...Here's hoping SickKids agrees with CHEO because my fingers are getting sore from crossing them for sooo long...
 
 
On another note about teaching me things...Reid has got to be the best patient around- At CHEO, she was a happy little thing even though she was hooked up to things & poked & proded all morning long...Since then she's also had 4 doc appts back home, had a fever of 102.2, went to the ER, had her eye dilated & lens replaced...
 
She's such a bloody trooper...You amaze me Reid Layne...EVERYDAY...

Come on Sweet Jesus, God, Fate, Karma, Ellen we're due for some HOPE....

My mind is a racing...Literally...From all the amazing support yall have given, to the tragedy in Boston, to tomorrow & all that my little Reid will have to endure...Feels like my mind is just spinning- So, just a quick post to ask once again to think about Pip tomorrow...We head to CHEO for a pre-op & a bunch of test in which they will be sedating her- Not something most would say they look forward to...Pip definitely isn't...


But fingers crossed, horseshoes polished & all the thoughts yall got hoping Reid is a candidate for a less evasive procedure to fix her heart...Were due for some good news- So, come on Sweet Jesus, God, Fate, Karma, Ellen- be on our side on this one...

Salmon Fishing in the Yemen ended my 32nd birthday...

I dont think my hooligans got the memo that it was my birthday...The day certainly didnt start with a celebration- Or maybe it did- Maybe it was Reids own special way of saying Happy Day Mumma...At exactly 4:08 am {after just falling back asleep at 3ish after pumping & filling Reids feeding bag}I awoke to a loud explosion & a lot of grunting...My darling little Reid was giving er & gave er good...So good, she exploded through her sleeper & blankets unto her bassinet- Fun little early morning clean up & start to the day...
 

Then my usually happy, cuddly little boy was instead a clingy, whinny completely irrational toddler...At one point Noal had a tanti because Deac ate his dog food too quickly for his liking...Deac had finished eating before Noal was at the door to let him outside & this just set him off...

 
At one point I was juggling pumping while Noal was clinging on to me, Reid was snuggled in between my feet & Deac was going insane cause the medical delivery guy was knocking at the door with supplies...This then caused my almost breaking point- As I raced to put the precious pumped liquid gold in the fridge I dropped the entire 150ml bottle on the kitchen floor- FANTASTIC-Another amazing cleanup for the day...Have you ever tried to clean up breast milk? AWESOME

So, at this point in the day my floors are sparkling, the bassinet is newly washed, Noal's had probably more arrowroot cookies than a toddler should & big birthday mumma needs lunch- Or wine- No judging...Neither happened because I then dropped a full jar of salsa all over my just cleaned kitchen... 

Good Times eh? You jealous of that birthday or what? And just when I thought the day was a wash it turned around- A play date for Noal with his best bud Aidan, a lovely visit with my gal Sam and a generous offer to watch my hooligans so the hubs & I could do dinner...


AMAZING...We did the "Early Bird Special" shift- because of Noal's bedtime & Reid's feeding schedule we had to sneak in a date from 4ish to 6:30- We were the only ones in the restaurant & it was still light outside but let me tell you it was AMAZING...It was like it was just me & Craig & it was just what I needed...Well,that & a crab risotto & good couple glasses of Pinot Grigio...


My big day ended with one of the worse movie picks of all time- the title would throw most people off but I had remembered Ellen {damn you Ellen- why do I listen to everything you say?} saying it was a great film...Salmon Fishing in the Yemen ended my 32nd birthday...



Wow birthdays have changed...Last year on my birthday, I was celebrating at home & just so happy finally being a mumma...Noal was only 9 months old &  I had no clue but I was a few months prego with Reid- Year before that I was just coming off weeks of bed rest pregnant with Noal- Years before that I was having a surprise party in Ireland with my gals Janey & Elsie May & my Irish Mam...And years before that I was skydiving in Australia...Point is years role by, each one different from the last & I'm thankful for each & everyone...

To end the day snuggling with my little family that I so desperately wanted & love, I'd watch Salmon Fishing in the Yemen anyday...

Happy Birthday to Me!!!

Put your moula away you amazing, kind, generous people...I mean it!!!!

You people amaze me...Honestly...What was meant to be a small jewelry fundraiser to raise a bit of moula to help with Reid's surgery stuff has become a massive out pouring from friends all over the world...

The intent of the Stella & Dot fundraiser & what I truly thought it would be, was a handful of my gal friends jumping at a chance to have a good excuse to buy cool jewellery... Never did I expect it to reach so many people who have generously wanted to give...Just amazing friends...

 
But while I'm utterly humbled & touched by the generosity you've all showed, please know it is not necessary or needed...

To those who have joined the Stella & Dot fundraiser, thank you but please truly only contribute if you really want some jewelry...

 
And to those who have messaged me privately about making a donation- Thank you, I can’t even explain how moved I am by all this... But I had no right or need for that matter to ask in the first place...Your kindness has moved me to no end, but I truly think that someone more in need or a cause that really touches you would appreciate & need the money more.


Therefore, you kind, amazing, generous friends- Put your chequebooks away- Honestly, those that wish to have some jewels, cool- that money will be used for Reid's surgery stuff but any extra from the Stella & Dot fundraiser will be kindly donated to our local Down syndrome group...I hope that’s okay with y’all...
It's a group I've just recently met, all with young families who have young kiddos with Down syndrome...That's who needs it... Not us...


So thank you, thank you,  thank you... But keep your moula please, because trust me,  when Reid beats this heart thing, I will be bugging y’all for donations for her first 5km walk or something like that...

Much love dear friends- thanks for the huge amount of support- Just knowing you all are willing to help means so much...


I need to shop...But for a feeding pump...Help?

I seriously have been humbled, touched & just flat out amazed at the love that has poured into my life since Reid has been diagnosed with Down syndrome...As mentioned many times, the love & support yall have sent has in turn given me hope & strength...I can never thank you all enough...

Many of you have asked what you can do to help- And its touching what friends have done & Ive never felt more supported in my life...Even friends of the blog who have somehow fallen in love with Reid have been amazing...A lovely reader in Calgary even sent Reid this adorable hat...
 
I mean come on right? Just amazing to know Reid is touching lives in her own way...That truly is the best gift in all of this...Seeing how she is changing peoples perspectives, bringing a bit of hope in the world & generating so much love...I knew shed change my world but its amazing to see shes changing so many others...

So, the biggest thank you I can give...Really, yall have amazed me...My friend & Guest Blogger Justina Phippen has been kind enough to run a fundraiser to help with Reids medical supplies & such...


In a few weeks time we have to give back the rental pump for her feeds & will be forced to buy one & all the supplies that come along with it- The government gives us some funds to help but it isnt nearly enough to cover the cost of all the items...We will also be back & forth to CHEO for Reids heart surgery & have to cover those costs as well...


I absolutely hate asking anyone for anything, especially after all the support weve already received...That is why Ive turned down some friends suggestions to have a BBQ fundraiser or such- I wanted a way for friends to help by donating but also be able to have something in return...

Therefore, when Justina approached me with this Stella & Dot fundraiser idea it made the most sense...If you want to help & donate to Reid, in the next few weeks, you can purchase beautiful jewellery from Stella & Dot...I personally love the pendants & charms...I've already convinced my mum to buy my birthday present- two charms one with Noals initials & one of course with Reidsters...

  • The fundraiser will be held online only from April 8th – 15th
  • You can donate & buy yourself a lovely little piece HERE
  • For more information & to sign up for the event on Facebook click HERE

Big thank you to all those who have helped in their own way so far...Much love...To those that have asked & have wanted to help...Appreciate it dearly...And to those that will help now by donating-  Just amazing & THANK YOU...

And to Justina- thank you for always being so kind & generous to my little family...

Thanks friends- I will never forget all the love in my life these past few months...