Saturday, May 01, 2010

Scrap Matters [inter]National Scrapbooking Day BLOG TRAIN!

Hi everyone! Welcome to the next stop on the ScrapMatters [inter]National Scrapbooking Day blog train. You will get to meet some great scrappers AND designers during your journey around the world on the SM blog train! You have probably just arrived from Suzanne's blog! I hope you're having fun checking out all these freebie goodies!

Our iNSD mega-collab at Scrap Matters this weekend is called "Moments that Matter" and the whole theme of our celebration is all about those moments in our lives that really matter. At each stop you'll find a story about a Moment that Matters along with a freebie!! There are TONS of stops on this blog train, so you can pick up a LOT of goodies!! You don't want to miss this train!

OK, so the 'moment that matters' which I've chosen to share with all of you is . . . the journey that we took on the day we brought our sweet babies home from the hospital.

In 2004, after a couple of years of unsuccessfully trying to get pregnant, we found out that we were having TWINS! We were so excited (and scared to death) at the prospect of having TWO infants to care for! Those early days of my pregnancy were like a dream. I was so excited and we were busy getting prepared for the twins to arrive. Unfortunately, I had a very difficult and high risk pregnancy. I ended up being put onto hospital bed rest at just under 28 weeks due to eclampsia. That was the most difficult thing I've ever been through - all I could think was that my body was failing these sweet little babies. And there was nothing I could do. I was so scared that these babies that I had waited on for so long were going to come too early. Fortunately, the doctors were able to keep me and the babies stable for forty-one LONG days after my being hospitalized. In that time, our sweet babies were able to grow stronger and healthier.

Eventually, however, our good luck came to an end and my eclampsia began to rear its ugly head again. Yes, it was time for the twins to arrive. I was scared to death. It was still very very early. They weren't even 33 weeks yet! I'd read tons of medical stuff about premature babies so I was full of scary information as to what could go wrong for our babies. Yet, I put on a brave face and just tried to focus on meeting my two little babies. Telling myself over and over that they were ready, that it was going to be fine. That we were all going to be fine.

During one of the most incredible afternoons of my life, Meighan Rose and Alexander Thomas were born - Meighan weighed just 3 lbs 11 ounces & Alex weighed in at 3 lbs. 8 ounces. The miracle was that they were both completely healthy, breathing on their own, each with a fairly high apgar score. The doctor said they'd need to be in the NICU for a while, until they'd gained more weight. But, that overall, they were doing extremely well and should be home in a month or so. Paul and I spent almost all of our time in the NICU with Meighan and Alex, wishing that we could just take the babies home but trying to remind ourselves that they were where they needed to be right now. It was the most difficult time of my life. Trekking back and forth to the hospital every day, dealing with the NICU regulations, trying to bond with our babies in the most artificial environment imaginable and, worst of all, having to leave them at the hospital every night when we went home.

And, then one day, just two weeks after their birth, the NICU doctors told us what we'd been waiting for, hoping for, wishing for ... that we could take them home, that they were no longer in incubators and that they were ready to leave the hospital. You cannot imagine how that felt. We were so giddy with anticipation at this new journey.  We couldn't wait for our journey to start ... by going home. With our babies, our miracles, our family. It was a moment that I'll never forget ... when we walked into our house together, the next phase for our little family, a new beginning for this family I love so much. This is a photo that we took as soon as we came home and showed the babies their new home. I will cherish that moment forever. It was the best feeling - pure joy, exhilaration and excitement. Our family was healthy, happy and HOME. After everything that we'd been through to make, grow and love these babies, it was truly a miracle to have them home with us. Finally. It was a moment that I will remember for the rest of my life - looking down into their crib and seeing their sweet faces, knowing that our babies were healthy and at home. And we were finally complete ... as a family.

And that's my "Moment That Matters" story!! Thank you so much for sharing this special moment in our life with me today!

And now, your freebie!! Which you've been so patiently waiting for! And, ta da,  I have a beautiful layered paper for you!!

You can download the layered paper that I created for you HERE!

Please note: link above will be active until midnight Thursday night, May 6th. After that, all of these incredible blog train goodies are getting gathered up and put into the Scrap Matters store! So grab them before they go into the store and grabbing them costs you something!

I hope you are having a fantastic iNSD today!

And now you're off to the next stop on the blog train . . .

Chelle's Blog!!!!

Have fun shopping and chatting and joining in all the NSD fun!


lavatea said...

That is such a sweet story, and those are two BEAUTIFUL babies!

Thank you!

Nancy said...

Beautiful story of your journey and that photo is so precious! Thank you for the gorgeous paper!

Becca S said...

Loved reading your moment that matters Amy...I know what the days in the NICU feel like. What a blessing to be able to bring your babies home! Thanks for sharing!

kmkarayannis said...

Amy, thank you for sharing that wonderful story!!!

maria said...

oh I realy love the idea of sharing stories on special moments. Thank you

hoopesfam5 said...

Loved your story, heart melted seeing the photo. So tiny and precious...I love looking back on the few photos we have of the girls from those first few month. Thanks for sharing!!

Beautiful paper stack, too!!

Anonymous said...

Thank you for freebies. Link on your post was added to Lori's freebie list

ivymay said...

many thanks, loved the precious moment

SONDRA said...

Beautiful story! Beautiful paper! Thanks for sharing!

CBH said...

Thank you so much for this post. I want to let you know that I posted a link to your blog in CBH Digital Scrapbooking Freebies, under the Page 15 post on May. 02, 2010. Thanks again.

Heidi D. said...

Oh man, you made me cry! My long-awaited baby was born at 33 weeks, too, due to eclampsia. It took an emergency C-section - they thought if we had to wait any longer one or both of us might die! I don't know if anybody else around me - even my husband - can really understand what it feels like to know your body didn't work. You truly feel like you failed your baby! Anyway, thanks. :)