Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Time flies, huh?!

Wow, time has really flown since our last post. We are so sorry it's been so long. I'm going to do my best to get you caught up on what has been going on in our lives.

In our last post, we had just covered the big ultrasound, found out all is well with Bumblebee, and we are having a boy. Well since then, our little guy has grown a ton and Allyson's belly has grown as well. We just had maternity photos done by the same photographer that captured Oliver's arrival. You can check out RHEMA photography's F*cebook page to see them. They turned out awesome and were so fun to shoot. 

(At 31 weeks...)

We had a couple rounds of 4D ultrasounds to hopefully see what our little guy looks like (pictures below). Bumblebee didn't really want to cooperate completely, but we still got some great pictures. He was continuously showing us that he is most definitely boy. It was quite funny! Allyson's parents and my parents were able to come along for the first 4D ultrasound, but for the second session it was only Allyson and I.

We were hoping once we saw him in some 4D pictures we would know what to name him, but we still haven't decided. Allyson likes one name and I like another, but who knows what he'll end up being named this point.

(First 3D/4D Ultrasound)

(Second 3D/4D Ultrasound)

In the last few months, we have had what we call our "Oliver moments". These are times when we get sad or upset because we miss Ollie. It has also been tough because at times I have a feeling of guilt enjoying or being excited about Bumblebee's arrival. We are experiencing things we didn't get to with Oliver. It has been exciting getting to have baby showers and get baby stuff, but at the same time, we are reminded on how Bumblebee's big brother isn't here and how we never got to do these sorts of things for him. We definitely have more good days than bad ones, but it has still been a challenge. Please remember Oliver this Friday, March 30th as it would have been his 1st birthday. We plan on making it a happy day and celebrating his short life which impacted many. It's hard to believe what all has happened in the last year and a half. We know now more than ever that everything that happens has a purpose. And sometimes only God knows what that purpose is...

Anyway, many people have blessed us with so many gifts and support it has been awesome! I have learned a lot about baby stuff I didn't even know existed. New products to me like a Bumbo and a Boppy! As a guy, I never thought I would be excited about owning things with these names. Also, who knew one could get excited about receiving plastic baby spoons, baby bottles, and something called a Wubbanub?! I definitely have a lot more to learn still yet, but Allyson is helping me get up to speed on all this baby stuff. A week and a half to go until Bumblebee arrives. I'll try to make sure we post more often.

Thanks for reading!

Rob (and Allyson) 

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Merry Christmas!

We would like to wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and Happy 2012! May God bless you in the coming year, just as He has blessed us this year. We love you all!

Rob, Allyson, {{Oliver}}, and Baby Bumblebee

Here is a picture of Ollie's decorated headstone...I'm sure he loves it! :)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Are you ready for this...

 Get your bottle of water...maybe a snack...and get ready to settle in for a little bit because this is going to be a long post! :) I mean, I have a lot to update you on.... 
...All of us at my brother's wedding (Nov. 25)...
Alright, I'll cut to the chase--our little Oliver Junebug is going to have a little Bumblebee to look after from Heaven. That's right, we are expecting another bundle of joy. 

...Introducing Bumblebee...
We had our first ultrasound on September 9 at 8 weeks. Everything looked great...which it did with Oliver, too. So we tried not to get our hopes up too much. We were still being cautiously optimistic. Loving this baby, but still guarding our hearts. Our OB told us she isn't worried about anything and she is going to treat this as a normal pregnancy because there is no reason to think otherwise. Especially since Oliver's issues weren't something genetic that was passed from Rob and/or I. 

I had (well, still have) mixed emotions about this...we've already lost one precious baby. We can't do it again! We were strong and made it through Oliver's stuff...but I don't know that we could do it again. I don't want to find out! But we are trusting God...this is His plan and He knows what is best for us. And He got us to this point...He blessed us with this little Bumblebee. 

Anyway, we went on with life like normal. We still didn't tell many people of our exciting news except our parents, family, and close friends. Then...well, I couldn't hide it any longer. Let's just about 13 weeks...people began to notice. ;) So we started telling more and more people...especially if they asked or looked at my belly with a funny/thoughtful look. 

Well, we went on November 21 for the big ultrasound. As expected, we were very nervous, excited, and scared for this appointment--especially in the days leading up to it. (In case you don't remember, it was this ultrasound that we found out Junebug didn't have any fluid and our world fell apart...) Luckily, we have wonderful family and friends who prayed for us and the appointment. By Monday, we weren't even nervous...we had a great peace about what was to come. God was holding us...and Oliver was comforting us, like he was telling us "Daddy and Momma--don't worry. God is in control and He's pretty awesome! He's not gonna let you down!" :) ...And to be honest, I was more worried about peeing my pants than anything...sorry if that's TMI! 

They finally called us back to the room and I laid down on the table. The ultrasound tech put the wand on my belly and immediately, Rob and I knew things were better than with Oliver. We could see the baby! And there was lots of fluid around it! :) After the tech made me get up to "let some out" 4 times because my bladder was 3 times the size it should be and was interfering with her "picture taking", we were able to see that the heartbeat was strong, there is a 3 vessel cord (which is normal, but unlike Oliver's), and the baby was moving all over. She measured the head, brain, abdominal cavity, and femur.  We watched the 4 chambers of the heart beating. We accounted for stomach, kidneys, and bladder--all of which looked like they should. And Bumblebee is just as active as Junebug--I love feeling the baby move!! Then, it came time for the fun part...the gender reveal! See the picture below to see if you can figure it out... 

It's pretty obvious, huh?! :)
Here are some other pictures from our ultrasound. Enjoy!
Bumblebee's Foot (So little and cute!)
Bumblebee's hand...waving hello to Momma and Daddy
Bumblebee's deep in thought...and swallowing the fluid (if we could upload the video, you could see it)
Oh, and for those of you who are wondering, our official due date is April 14 (which is Rob's birthday)--but our C-section is scheduled for April 9, 2012. :) Can't believe we are over half way...

And there is still more to say...but I will stop there for now. :) Thanks for checking in...and check back soon. Hopefully, we will be more regular again...


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

It's been a while since we've posted...

First off, Happy Oliver Day! Sorry it's been so long since we have posted anything at all. It's been a crazy couple months for Allyson and I. Allyson is still trying to keep up with her kindergarteners and I feel like we always have something going on, but yet don't know what we've been doing. Don't worry though, the blog is going to start be more active again real soon.

Today it has been 33 weeks exactly since we said hello and see you later to Oliver. There isn't a day we don't think about him and thank God for having him in our lives. We look forward to each moment we get to share about our little guy and those opportunities have become less frequent over the last few months. People probably think we should be moving on, but I don't know how you move on from something which changes your life and the lives of others. Life will never be the same, even 33 weeks later. We miss Ollie more than ever, but know he's got the best baby sitter.

Check back soon...

Rob and Allyson

Friday, September 30, 2011

Happy Half Birthday, Baby!

Dear sweet Oliver,

You have been in Heaven for 6 months--sometimes it feels like just yesterday we were holding you in our arms, and other times it feels like an eternity. We wonder what you would be like here on Earth...we look at other 6 month old babies and wonder what you would be doing. Would you be crawling? Babbling? Smiling? But then we remember that with all of the anomalies that you had, you wouldn't be crawling or would hooked up to machines just to keep you alive. Not to mention, all of the surgeries and procedures. Oh baby, we believe that you would be miserable and in so much pain. You know we miss you terribly, but would never want that for you! Daddy and I are very glad that you are in Heaven and not in any pain. We know you don't need to crawl--you can fly! You don't need to babble--you can talk! And we know you are smiling all of the time because you are hanging out with some pretty awesome people, including Jesus! :) Like Daddy always tells me, you ARE with the best babysitter! Happy Half Birthday, Baby!

We love you so very much!
Daddy and Momma


On a side note, we went to visit our OB this week to find out the results of Oliver's KateCares report. Everything came back just as we had been told in Cincinnati--no new findings. As you can imagine, that is a huge relief. The medical staff on the KateCares panel diagnosed him with urorectal septum malformation (URSM) sequence. It is not something that is genetic from Rob or I--it was just something that happened in his early development. The recurrence risk is less than 1%. We are very grateful for the time and research that many doctors and nurses put into figuring out what happened with our angel.

Thanks for your continued prayers and thoughts over the past 6+ months! We still feel them!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Happy Oliver Day!

Happy Oliver Day to everyone! It's Wednesday--so as most of you know, we refer to it as Oliver Day since it is the day when our little guy was born. And, every Wednesday, I do the same thing I did on the morning we were on our way to the hospital--I drink a Vanilla Frappuccino. I know it may seem a bit ridiculous, but it is another way I can remember back to the day when I got to meet our son. It's not that I really need a reminder because we think about him every day, but it has turned in to something special for me. (And I really like Vanilla Frappuccinos, so it's a great "excuse" to put one away weekly.) 


The last few weeks haven't been too bad, but the next week or so is going to be rough--I mean really rough. We are coming up on six month-versary of the birth and loss of Oliver. For some, this tends to be the hardest milestone--more so than say a month after, or even the year anniversary. We will have to wait to see what this will mean to us and how we are on that day. It's hard to believe six months have already passed! We've gone through a lot in life in these past six months, but we have made it because of the tremendous support we have gotten. Unfortunately over these past six months, we have had to learn about friends and others who have lost babies/children either through miscarriage, medical complications, or life situations. We pray they get the type of support we have received. We have been praying for them all and trying to help in any way we can, but it takes more than just us. So our advice to you--if you know of someone going through a tough situation (a loss or not), just let them know you are there and are praying for them. It will do more for their heart and soul than you will ever realize. 

On a side note, the concrete has been poured for Oliver's headstone and it should be placed at any time. We were hoping it would be there this past weekend when we went to visit his grave, but it wasn't. Bummer! The cemetery was actually closed on Saturday when we went there because of the local festival going on, but we managed to "find a way in" to visit Ollie's grave. ;) No gate and lock is gonna keep this daddy and momma from their baby's grave. 

On October 1st, we will be doing the "Walk to Remember", which is an event put on by St. Francis Hospitals. I'm sure it will be a great day, but also quite emotional for us since it will be one day after Oliver's 6-month Birthday. It's awesome this will be the 26th year for this event! I designed some special shirts for us to wear as our families walk to remember Oliver.


I hope everything is going well for everyone. Thanks for reading and being a part of Junebug's Journey.

Rob and Allyson

Monday, August 22, 2011

Walking and a Happy Birthday!

Allyson or I haven't posted for a while, so I thought now was a perfect time. On the 20th we both got to be a part of the Run 4 Everett to help raise awareness for Infant Loss, and the event also raised money for the great organization Kate Cares. We took part in the 5k at Fort Ben Park and for the inaugural event, and they had over 400 participants! It was truly amazing. Allyson’s mom, dad, and brother joined us as well, so that was nice. Before the race began we got to hear Oliver’s name read off and as it was read, we both released green balloons for our little guy.
It was an emotional but great moment for us both. We both wore little green Junebug hats we custom made for the walk to show support for Oliver.

Also, we drove the Junebug Beetle to the event. The day was perfect for our walk and the paths could not have been nicer. Overall, it was a great day and I feel the event was great for people to have the chance to celebrate, honor, and remember the little ones they have lost in their lives. I think of the event of another great example of how people can turn tragedies in their lives in to something positive.

The second part of the weekend was Allyson’s birthday. I was able to get a card and a gift for her from Oliver which I think will be special to her for a long time. I would tell you more about it, but I want her to be able to tell everyone. With this being her first birthday since the loss of Oliver, it was tough. Not only tough for her, but also for me. I know the only thing she really wanted was to have our little baby boy here with us, and I wish I could have given her that gift. We still know he is part of a bigger plan, and the only way for him to be healthy was to be in heaven, but it is still tough. It’s hard to explain how much you miss someone that you only got to spend an hour and 41 minutes with outside the womb.

Through all we’ve been through, I’ve learned a mother’s love for their child is unlike anything else, it is almost impossible to explain. And to think that Christ’s love for us is greater than a mother’s love for their child. Christ’s level of love for us is so big, I don’t know if we can truly grasp and understand the magnitude.

With all of this being said, I hope and pray that everyone gets to experience both the love of being a parent and the love of Christ. I also hope nobody has to feel the sorrow we have felt with the loss of Oliver. I can’t imagine how Christ feels when someone strays away from Him and He loses one of his children.

Wow, I didn’t expect to get all deep in this post, but it happened. Anyway, Happy Birthday to my beautiful wife and wonderful mother to Ollie, I look forward to the many more birthdays we get to celebrate together.

Thanks for reading,