Monday, January 3, 2011

Full-Day #1 in Chicago

Well we had (& survived) our first full day in the Chicago area today!! We had a great day, but I'm super tired today for some reason.

We got up pretty late...around 9:15am... But I'd already been up with Brooklyn twice in the night cause she was hungry. Dustin had slept in the living area part of our room & I was in the bed with Brookyn. We did it that way because there was no light that we could keep on in the room for Cali in the middle of the night...and it gets pretty dark. We wanted to go to a grocery store today to get a nightlight but just didn't make it. It definitely WILL be on our list for tomorrow. So anyways, to avoid a total freak-out by Cali if she just so happened to wake up in the middle of the night, Dustin decided to sleep with her & then I slept with Brooklyn. But as soon as we have the nightlight she'll be in the bed in the living area (the couch that turns into a bed) & we'll be in the room.

We (well Dustin) tried out the breakfast here at the hotel...not bad he thought. Then we got up, got dressed, & left for the day. Our first priority was to get the horrible road salt off the car. Our car was literally WHITE from all the salt. We probably should have done it last night, but that wasn't about to happen! We weren't in a hurry it wasn't a bad thing that it took us about an hour to find a hand-wash place. We needed a self-serve hand-wash car wash cause we have the rack on top of the car. We tried doing a drive through but they wouldn't let us, so we had to keep searching for a hand-wash. Dustin did a fantastic job washing the car while the girls & I watched him through the windows!! ;o)

We wanted to scoop out where the doctor's office is & where the hospital that we kinda/sorta would know where we're going when appt times & surgery times come. We found the doctor's office great. Then we met up with friends of ours...another Nevus family...the Melton's. Mom & Dad are Adam & Christine who have Katie, who is going to be 3 in just 2 days, and Joshua, who is 8 months who just had his very first expander-insertion surgery last week. (This is the family who did the cookbook at the same time as me.) Josh is doing alright, but has been fighting a fever for a few days now. Prayers are needed for their family as they try to figure out what's going on. He had 2 expanders inserted in his back, so he's a little uncomfortable too. Poor baby.... :(

After lunch we drove by the hospital. It was nicer than the picture looked online, which I was happy with! Then we decided to just drive around for a little while looking at the houses & the area. About 4pm we came back to the hotel & then left just 40 mins later to go meet up with our other Nevus friends! It's like a big reunion here. We got to meet the Moller family (who is staying next door to us in the hotel). They have a 5 year old daughter & an 8 month old son. He is having surgery the same day Brooklyn is. We'll probably actually be next door to each other in the hospital too. It's nice going through this with other people...but especially nice having someone that close too. His nevus is on his back. We also got to see the Nagel's. (Mom, Beth, is who I got the idea from to do the cookbook.) They have a son Lincoln & another son Sully. Sully just had his 4th surgery (removing the expanders) last week - the same day that Joshua had his surgery. Beth Nagel got a meeting room at their hotel & we all hung out in there. It was really nice to catch up & see everyone!...and nice for them all to meet my family as well!

In the back: Christine & Joshua, Amie & Zac
In the front: Beth (son Sully was in the room), and Brooklyn & I

Unfortunately though, Cali decided that she wasn't going to act like her normal Cali self. Figures. Long story was good we came back to the room cause that's when she started acting like herself again. I'm sure she's just so confused at what's going on. Long car rides, new places, new people, poor girl is just so confused. Hopefully she'll start acting like normal soon.

Probably the best part of the day was a HUGE surprise from Beth tonight after we ate dinner. She got out presents...which was, first of all, SOOO nice of her to do, but second of all it was amazing to me. Almost brought tears to my eyes. She has talked about Wonder Capes for a while now. ( You can read a post on her blog about them here: You need to go to the "Archive" on the right, click on "2010", then "August", then "Celebrating Kids with Capes". Brooklyn is even mentioned in that post. I've heard all about these capes ever since I've known Beth. Her son, Sully, wears them in the hospital before he has his surgeries. When he got his it was dragging on the ground...but now he wears it & it flaps in the wind when he runs! Well imagine my surprise when Brooklyn got a present...and it was a cape!! She has officially joined the Nevus superheroes with her adorable pink, sparkly cape. Of course it's big on her, but I'm so excited for her to wear it & grow into it...and then it can flap in the wind like Sully's! HUGE thanks to Beth for the cape...I hope someday I can express what it means to me!!

To many of you this may sound different... but tonight just before I started writing this I was unpacking the diaper bag...putting the formula back in the fridge, etc. Well right there on top was Brooklyn's sparkly superhero cape. In an instant I felt a rush of one feeling in particular..."she's going to be ok". Not that I didn't think she'd be ok this whole time, but now I really know it. Taking that cape out of the bag & just staring at it & remembering what she looked like when I put it on her for the first time...I just felt at peace. It brings tears to my eyes as I sit here typing...   SO again....thank you Beth!

So tomorrow...we're going to eat breakfast & then Amie Moller (the family staying next door to us) & I are going to go to the grocery store with the babies while the dads stay & swim with the older girls. Yay...I'm actually looking forward to that! Then who knows. It's another free day (what was supposed to be her MRI day) so we'll see what the day brings... Lots of prayers are needed as we inch our way closer to surgery day...


  1. D & M, I looked at Beth's post.I will certainly keep little Sully and his family in prayer. Now I am a little more aware of the road ahead for Brooklyn and for each of you. Our sweet Jesus will certainly be with you, giving you comfort and peace...and the right words to speak to Brooklyn and to Cali. Cali will certainly learn to be tender and compassionate, gentle and caring. I love you all. Gram

  2. Another message from 'anonymous': I like the picture. Good.