Sunday, October 7, 2012

Happy 3rd Birthday, Sam and NICU Reunion 2012

Samuel was born 3 years ago TODAY! Here's his birth story, and it has some humor to it even though it was a very sad week that he spent in the neonatal intensive care unit. We missed the first two NICU reunions that the hospital holds, mostly because Aron was working both years and I couldn't fathom taking all 5 little kids to a super busy place outdoors plus, let's face it, I was still sad about the whole situation. Of course I am grateful every single day that he lived because some kids who have meconium aspiration don't. It stumps me every day why he got to live and other kids don't. Then I wipe the tears away and move on, giving all my kids extra hugs.

So this year we finally went to the NICU reunion! Instead of being held at a park, it was held at our local children's museum called Wonderscope. A pass there goes for like $7 per person plus we got a free hot dog/chips/cookie/drink meal so we could not pass it up! And Sam even got a Rock Star t-shirt! Here are some pictures!

Sam had on his cool guy sunglasses and his Mischief Maker shirt.

Here we are with our free meal. When you have 5 kids you take all the free food you can get!

Me and Samuel. He recently potty trained all by himself and insists on doing things all by himself. I joke that NICU kids are tough.

They had all sorts of cool blow-up bouncy things!

Joel helps Sam get into the bouncy train! They also did a bounce house and I chatted with another NICU mom. It was interesting to be around a bunch of people who went through something so emotional and life-changing. I sailed through childbirth four times, then the 5th hit me like a ton of bricks. You can have PTSD from NICU experiences. I've written 2 articles about NICU life during and after to try to make sense of it all and help others.

Anyway, the other mom had one son. He was in the NICU 7 weeks. Before he was born she had had a daughter who was born early and died in the NICU. What strength that she went on and had another. I don't know that I am so strong. I looked the death of a child in the face and I don't want to go back there.

Sorry to be such a downer. It's Sam's birthday! I am happy he is with us! Above, he loved the golf ball room at the museum! He loves life and eats it up!

Here he is at the end of the night. We wore his butt out and he crashed on the couch! We thank God every day for all of our children and that they are all alive and well. We are grateful for every day we get to spend with them. HAPPY BIRTHDAY, SAMUEL!

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