Saturday, July 2, 2011

State of Wonder

State of wonder.  It is both the title of the book I am currently engrossed in as well as the best possible way to describe my every second, every minute and every day existence right now.  We are, in this moment,  living in a state of wonder.  We are post-surgery-- we made it!  Some days it is hard to believe, difficult to imagine that for over a year we prepared and waited for this huge event that is now almost a month ago long gone.  Was it life altering?  Absolutely, but only in the best way possible.  Happiness and beauty come after the struggle and despair.  It's incredible.

Last night we were talking about how we will also be able to tell how old Joey is in his baby photos because they will also be B.S. (before surgery) or A.S. (after surgery).  We took a quick trip down memory lane to look at the photos of our journey to Michigan.  It seems like a million years ago.

But speaking of surgery... this bubba needed some serious cutting of another kind...his first hair cut.  Here are some lovely before photos.  He is rocking out in what I call his "rooster".  We still can't totally figure out what color his hair is, so we seem to be settling on strawberry blonde.  In some photos it looks red.  In others it looks Billy Idol blonde.  Unfortunately, some days it also takes on a strange resemblance to Donald Trump's outrageous coif.

Side view of The Rooster.

Speaking of surgery again.  I am here to say that teething is probably worse than open heart surgery.  This poor little guys is cutting them left and right and he cries more over his sore mouth than he did over his busted open sternum!

He has been gnawing on fingers, stuffed animals, teething rings and our favorites for teething babies-- frozen bagels.  We also let him try some Rockne's pita bread (thank you for the awesome dinner, Dana!!!) and who doesn't love Rockne's pita bread?  Joey sure loved it!  Well, he loves it all until he actually rips a piece off and then sits there with in his mouth not knowing what to do.  Eating is a highly supervised activity when it involves items other than pureed baby foods or bottles.

Buttery and delicious Rockne's pita bread. Yum!

Joey also got to meet our old neighbors who came over with literally oodles and oodles of food.  They fed us for at least a week and it was all amazing deliciousness like the pickle/pasta salad, which Tricia reverse engineered from Mustard Seed.  YUM!  These four gorgeous ladies stopped by with dish after dish and bowl after bowl of salads, chicken, wine and brownies.  They had all piled back into their car when I realized I had forgotten to take their photo and I felt so bad for asking them all to get back out of the car, but I am so glad I did.  They are just beautiful!  

This week we finally got around to addressing Joey's helmet situation.  And by situation I mean that his face turns bright red every time we put it on and then he proceeds to sweat profusely and I freak out because I can't figure out if he is just so angry that despite being inside an air conditioned house he is sweating his anger out or if it is early signs of congestive heart failure (profuse sweating/blue lips/rapid breathing-- probably need all three to really cause a concern, but at the slightest indication of any of them I get a little crazy).  Among our multiple visits to various doctors/specialists this week, we checked in with our friends at Hanger who made Joey's helmet and have been adjusting it along our journey.  

Photo 1 is pre-helmet where he had a 10mm difference-- you can see how the left side is flatter and less rounded than the right side.  This image was taken back in March.

Photo 2 is post-helmet (but pre-surgery) and Joey's difference is now down to 5mm!  Our goal was 3-4mm, but after having the big blue bucket off for about two weeks, our little guy has figured out that he has a preference, and that preference is to go helmet free.  I'm kind of (okay- I am totally) okay with his preference.  The helmet ended up not being as traumatic and big of a deal as I had made it out to be in my mind.  We got fewer funny looks than I expected and only a couple off the wall comments.  See, sans helmet, allows me to kiss his sweet cheeks much easier, stroke his sweet head when I rock him before bed, and just love up on him without gonking myself or getting my hair stuck in the velcro attachment on the helmet.  I've been rooting for the helmet removal for awhile now.

So, seeing as it seems that our helmet wearing days are numbered and probably over (at least until he starts to ride a bicycle), it was time for the big, big day-- his first haircut!

Oh yes-- "The Donald".

Thank you, Miss Maureen!

In addition to ditching the helmet and getting a haircut, our baby boy has started down the path of all the other men in the house-- sleeping on his tummy again!  We were told by the kind doctors after his heart surgery to not put him on his tummy for tummy time, but if he rolled onto his tummy and tolerated it, to allow that.  Well, tummy sleeping seems to be the way he rolls right now.  The first few nights I would go in and roll him back over.  Then he would go back on his stomach.  I finally gave up.  This is how we find him every morning, when Tommy walks in and says, "Joey, are you awake?" 

Happy Fourth of July weekend!  Coming soon will be more information about the 2011 Buddy Walk and how you can support Joey's All Stars.


  1. Love this post! Chalk full of both info and pictures. Muppet hair a la Rooster or Trump. I love it! Such a handsome boy with such lovely locks.

    I like the frozen bagel and pita idea :-)

    What a relief the helmet days are almost over. Whew!

    Also, I love the Buddy Walk Team name. Joey's All Stars :-) When is the big walk? Ours is in October. Last year we were The Ellie Bears. Hum, maybe we need something more mature. What do you think? You are good with words and ideas :-)

  2. Good grief, Anna, you completely took my comments right out of my mouth! LOL.
    I really was going to say how much I like this post, how glad I am for you that end-of-helmet-is-in-sight, what a great head of hair Joey's got AND about the buddy walk - when is yours? Love your team name. We need to do one this year too.
    xo - m


Thank you for your comment! We read every comment!