3rd & Goal

Even though I am writing this at 1:45am on Sunday morning, my internal clock is still thinking it is Saturday– well, let’s be honest. My internal clock is all sorts of crazy right now! So, come back to Saturday with me!

I woke up today (Saturday) to Andrew pulling the covers off of me. At 7am. Why punish me? He knows that pulling the covers off of me is something I highly, highly detest. Especially on a rainy, Saturday morning that makes you want to stay in your warm and toasty bed! I can’t blame my husband for his excitement as his work week was coming to an end, and we anticipated we were one more day closer to bringing the girls home! As I cuddled back into my warm and toasty covers, I sent him off to work. What a blessing it is to have such a hard-working man!

On my way to Apex to visit Amber and Amanda, I did a routine check-up with the NICU on the girls. I was informed that the girls had a few apnea/bradycardia episodes over night. The girls had their two-month immunization shots yesterday, thus, the doctors think that their shots could be a cause to these episodes that occurred so frequently last night. Therefore, I learned our ‘sleep-in’ stay would again be postponed to closely monitor the girls for the next 48 hours. After hearing the latest news, I called Andrew at work to let him know what was occurring in Chapel Hill. All the while, as I am telling Andrew our ‘whirlwind’ called NICU, he is having to face his own ‘whirlwind’ in North Raleigh. I praise God tonight that Andrew, his employees, and his customers were all safe and sound as the storm braised through North Raleigh. Also, I learned that my new phone gives me emergency alerts! That is reassuring. And believe me, I could have heard that alarming sound a mile away.  After a wild afternoon, Andrew and I finally met one another back at home. He got home right in time for kickoff of the Saints vs. Seahawks game at 4:00! We spent the rest of our afternoon watching Russell Wilson and the Seahawks advance in the playoffs.

As the game came to an end, we gathered our things to drive to Chapel Hill tonight to see the girls. On our way to Chapel Hill, I was telling Andrew how I was tired and so ready to have them home. I was sharing with him how I have been digging and digging to find that inner strength to keep moving forward, and I was on my last limb.

[And let me just say, as their mother, I know that Chapel Hill is the best place for them to be right now. Our mentality is that if they need to dependent on a monitor at home, they still need to be in the hospital. While they are growing so beautifully (6 pounds, 5 ounces, y’all! woo!)– reality is, they are still our 29 week baby dolls!] All I am saying is, this Mama has mixed emotions. I am thankful for our wonderful team of doctors and nurses who are taking such good care of my babies, I am glad they are continuing to be monitored and have immediate attention to these apnea/bradycardia episodes, but I am so so ready to bring my sweet girls home.

In true Andrew fashion, his response to my moment of weakness was sports-related. I truly love this man, y’all. He compared our NICU journey with the girls to the final plays of an intense football game. You know, like Auburn vs. Alabama. It certainly can not be compared to any NCSU football game this season, that is fo’ sho’! You see, we had a beautiful line drive to make it 1st & Goal. After a month and a half of waiting to hear the word ‘discharge’ we finally heard it! Leah had passed her countdown, Amelia had one more day to go, car seats were taken to Chapel Hill, we were going to have our ‘slumber party’– it was setting up to be an easy drive into the end zone. One minor set back, and we’re 2nd & Goal. Like any 2nd down, the team usually likes to ‘rev’ up its fans with 3rd & Goal momentum. We all know these moments– when you are on the brink of losing your mind, your fingernails are being chewed to death, and the Jumbo Tron is screaming at you to MAKE SOME NOISE!! We are here. 3rd & Goal. Our first two attempts at driving into the ‘end zone’ have failed, but we have been given another chance at driving the ‘girls’ to the very end. 3rd & Goal. These girls are fighters, and have been so strong throughout this season. Let’s see if we can pull this ‘game’ out on 3rd & Goal.

Pictures from tonight– I am holding Amelia, and Andrew is holding Leah. Happy 2 months sweet girls!

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So, as you watch the NFL Playoffs continue tomorrow (or today rather!) think of our “team” as we are on 3rd & Goal. Pray that our girls can complete this drive into the end zone. We are SO CLOSE. We have been told tonight that due to the severity of their desaturations, the apnea countdown will be restarted. So, another eight days in NICU for our team!

On our way home as I was thinking about writing this post, I remembered a prayer that my Nana found in my Papa’s bible. For those of you that knew my Papa Toots you are aware of his love of sports. This prayer is a prayer for bad times. It says:

Dear God: Help me be a good sport in this game of life. I don’t ask for an easy place in the line-up. Put me anywhere you need me. I only ask that I can give you 100% of everything I have. If all the hard drives seem to come my way, I thank you for the compliment. Help me remember that you never send a ‘player’ more trouble than he can handle. And, help me, Lord to accept the bad breaks as part of the game. May I always play on the square, no matter what the others do. Help me study the Book so I’ll know the rules. And when I finish the final inning, I ask for no laurels. All I want is to believe in my heart that I played as well as I could and that I didn’t let you down.

Needless to say, my strength is renewed. With the help of my husband’s positive outlook on this game to my Papa’s prayer, I know in my heart that with God as our head coach we will end this game victoriously. Whether it is 3rd & Goal, 4th & Goal, or if we have to head into overtime— we will beat all odds.

Ready, Set, Hike–

TEAM WHITE

“AND LOVE WILL HOLD US TOGETHER, MAKE US A SHELTER TO WEATHER THE STORM”

3 thoughts on “3rd & Goal

  1. Brooke Thornton says:

    Love this Mary Kate! You are such an inspiration! And that prayer from your grandaddys bible!!! Ohhh how I needed that this morning!! Praying for you all!

  2. Althea says:

    Just reading this, tears are strolling!!!! Thanking God for the growth of your babies and Praising God for the faith that you and Andrew have. You have our hearts and prayers.

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