We have much to be thankful for today, this Thanksgiving day. It's been more than two months since Jane spent a day in the hospital being poke and prodded. Today we are far from home at my Aunt and Uncle's bed and breakfast in California wine country. Jane is napping in the cottage and we're telling stories of too much wine and what's for dinner.
I can't help but use phrases like "long road" when talking of the time between Jane's first surgery and leaving the hospital after her second. As Jane has taught us repeatedly, one shouldn't put too much emphasis on what is planned. What was to "only" be open heart surgery became a series of procedures including abdominal surgeries for malrotated bowels and hernias. It was an imperfect storm, including a bout of pneumonia, that stretched what was to be a relatively brief hospital stay out to six weeks. Most of those days you could find Erin and I huddled in the ICU trying to ignore the bells and whistles of too many machines, doctors, nurses and technicians, trying to pretend that Jane wasn't repeatedly a moment from not being alive. In the midst of all of this, I was desperately trying to finish a remodel of our humble house. We weren't even, when not in the hospital, living in our own home. It has been a difficult year.
But today, our impossibly tough Jane is thriving. She's only had a small window of time to just be a baby and she's making the most of it. Smiling more than any baby should, let alone one with a zipper like scar running from from the top of her sternum to just above her navel, she's eating, laughing, pooping, deciding which toys are the best toys, and, of course, telling us with her simple and raucous vocabulary when she's not happy. She is, in other words, being a baby. Did I mention that she's more than a little cute?
It is a long and rough and hazardous road. We're very thankful that we're still on it. We're thankful for the friends and family that have so generously helped us stay sane, solvent, and alive and still able to laugh at the absurdity of all of it. I hope you and yours enjoy this day. We are. Thank you. Thank you.
We will be starting a "Jane" blog in the next few weeks.
And now, a few of the photos:
After months of battling feeding issues, Jane was ready. A few days before the second surgery...
A day or two after that surgery.
Nearly home, we thought...
She made it home for most of a day before things turned for the worst...
It's a surreal life in the hospital. "Quality" time with the baby...
Finally, more than a month later, Jane seems to come out of it. A big smile for her mother...
Does she understand what she's been through?
Being a baby...
Jane says "Thank you" in her own peculiar way
There are MANY more photos are available in Jane's smugmug gallery.
Amazing story, incredible strength in that whole family. Go Jane Go…
Yay Conary’s! Wishing you all more happiness!
Thank you for sharing. You’re right about Jane being a cute baby. What is hard to believe is that she will get even cuter! We miss being in Portland but the weather—not so much.
You have such a way with words Scott. I am happy for you, Erin and Jane. You have such a beautiful family! Happy Thanksgiving and safe travels.
Thank you for sharing - Jane is absolutely beautiful. I miss you all; I hope that you enjoy your holiday weekend in California. XOXOXOXO.
Well, Oklahoma is impressed although I feel the girl could use a napkin once in a while. Good job, keep sharing.
She’s an inspiration. I love to hear of her progress and that she’s hanging in Napa? Awesome news.
This year has been an emotional war zone. Many parents that have gone through what we have end up being diagnosed with PTSD. I have no doubt that I would have been or could be. But life is sorting itself out. Jane’s working her way through lunch at the moment. Her feet are bouncing and she’s cooing as she sucks down a bottle.
Everyone, thank you.
I’m impressed to Jane. I’m so so happy through seeing her smiling face. I’m so glad through knowing that she is now perfectly fit as like a healthy baby. I’m so satisfied to the Almighty God that Jane is now in her mother’s hand. I wish for her long and long healthy life.
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