Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Miss Aubrey

Saturday morning I hopped on a plane to a state I had never been, to meet people I had never met. As soon as I landed I was welcomed by my friend Suzanne and her two girls Sophia and Ella.
It was like we had been friends forever, and her girls ran right to me :)

We had planned on going to the hospital to see Aubrey, but she had had a really rough night on Friday. So we ended up going out to dinner with Lacey and her friend. We went to go meet Lacey and I of course gave her a big huge hug. A few minutes later it comes up that she isn't a hugger. Ha! The one thing I've been saying I want to do all the time is give her a real life hug. She stuck her hand out and gave me knuckles in the car. I was cracking up. (Don't tell anyone, but she gave me hugs the rest of the weekend.) ;)

suzanne, lacey, me

After dinner it started snowing. And of course like a little girl who had never seen snow fall before (I know, I know. But I live next to the beach.) I jumped out of the car to stand in the snow. It was just as beautiful as I had imagined. I agree, it was quite annoying the rest of the time, but it is just so pretty to look at!
watching the snow fall.

We all talked like old friends at dinner. It was nice to have some girl time, and it is nice for Lacey to get some breaks every once in a while.
Then we headed back to their Ronald McDonald apartment and hung out with her parents. They are super fun, and you can tell they are such a close knit family. We all just talked about Aubrey and life into the early hours of the morning.

Sunday night we went to the hospital. We were afraid we wouldn't get to see Aubrey since every little move, noise and light would wake her up and cause her to start moving around uncomfortably. She had happened to have a really good night Saturday night, so Lacey said it was okay to go in and see her. Just walking in to the hospital brought back memories of Parker. The red wagons the kids get to ride out of the hospital in when they get to go home, the gift shop where you don't know if you want to buy something to remember this horrible time, or if you should so you can remember where your baby got better. We spent the worst week of our lives at a children's hospital, so I can't even begin to imagine what spending over five months in one feels like for Lacey and Dustin.

We suited up in a gown, gloves and mask and went to in to Aubrey's room. I teared up the second I saw her. I feel like I've known her forever, and I care for her like my own. It takes everything I have to not imagine Hudson in her place since they are the same age and they remind me a lot of each other.
Aubrey looked like a little sleeping angel. She is so beautiful. I just wanted to kiss her little cheeks and scoop her up and snuggle. Hopefully some day soon!
She had a breathing tube (which is out now!) and she kept trying to swat it out. Poor thing. But other than that, she looked so comfortable, and would get calmed down so easily by her mama's touch and voice. It was a relief seeing her in person. You just get the overwhelming feeling that she is going to be okay. She is going to be a healthy little girl soon.

one of the most precious moments ever.

We stayed in there a few hours just talking, watching Aubrey sleep, staring at her adorable face. It was just lovely feeling the love surrounding that little girl. If you wonder why she's such a miracle, just look around. She has thousands upon thousands of people praying for her every day, a family who never leaves her side, and an amazing support system.
I pray that no one has to go through this, but if so, you are blessed with an amazing family like the Deno's.

I wish I could have stayed longer. I loved being with those girls, but we have already decided they are going to make a California trip when Aubrey is all better. :)
I soaked up playing with three little girls all weekend. Painting nails, doing makeup, playing with Barbies. I missed my boys, but I really needed a break from the tractors and dinosaurs!

I cannot wait to see Aubrey leave that hospital and run around with her sister like she should be doing.

Thank you, Lacey, Dustin, Suzanne and everyone else for welcoming me. I had an unforgettable weekend.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


So you remember that sweet little girl named Aubrey I've been talking about? She has been fighting for her life against Leukemia? Well she is cancer free, is now 100% of her donor's marrow, and is now fighting for her life again. She has a condition called SOS caused by the bone marrow transplant and it affects her liver. There is one medication in the world that can save her, and it hasn't been doing it's job. Her bilirubin numbers have been steadily climbing (meaning the liver isn't working), meaning the medication isn't working. That is until today; her mom, Lacey's birthday. They saw a DRAMATIC decrease in her bili numbers (from 17.3 to 13.3).
This is the miracle we have all been praying for and continue to pray for!

Even though I've never met Aubrey, I just know she is a fighter. She does everything on her own time and in her own special way.

I have been telling Garrett how much I want to go see Lacey and Aubrey for months now, but it just didn't seem really practical. Last Wednesday night I started searching for flights to Indiana. I had never felt the "God is telling me to do this" feeling, but I did that night. As I was looking at flights a friend randomly messaged me. I told her what I was doing and she told me that she was flying there on the 22nd to see her family and to visit Lacey. She generously offered for me to stay with her family and her.
This all fell in to place within an hour, and I booked my flight. I am not the type of person who does this. I don't fly alone, travel somewhere I've never been with people I've never met. But I am. And I love it.
I have talked to Lacey so many times and I've always offered her virtual hugs, but I have said so many times that I can't wait to give her a real hug. That might be one of the things I'm looking forward to most about this trip. And I can't wait to see the little girl who has changed thousands of lives. She is still just a baby and has no idea what kind of impact she has had on me and my family, and I can't wait to tell her.

I am really nervous about being in a Children's Hospital again. I haven't been in one since Parker's one week stay when he was a newborn. When I thought I might lose my baby. He proved to be a miracle baby, and I hope that Aubrey is too :)
I know that what we went through was so much smaller in comparison, but to think you could lose your child is the worst feeling in the whole world. We had a lot of rough days and nights in that hospital and I can't imagine being there for months without my other baby like Lacey and Dustin are doing.

I can't wait to experience the love of the Deno family, and to see sweet Aubrey's face.
This is going to be an unforgettable weekend.

If you want to keep up with how Aubrey's doing, you can follow her Caring Bridge page.

Monday, January 3, 2011


We had such a good time on vacation. It was such a nice way to spend our four year anniversary in the very spot we honeymooned... and with friends this time.
The weather was a little funky the first couple of days, but it was fun to just lounge in the lobby bar and play games and drink fruity concoctions!

LOVED the time alone, but we discovered one thing: we're bringing the babes with us on the next vacation. We missed them too dang much ;)