Monday, September 29, 2008

Oh Atlanta

If you live in Georgia and you’re either family or friends of mine, you’re probably wondering why I haven’t called or anything yet. Well I am here now and I’m safe, but really I might as well not be here yet. My goal for this week is strictly work. They didn’t have room for us in military housing so this week I need to find our new place, get an appointment with my primary doctor, get a referral to an obgyn, and then figure out who will be Austin’s surgeon. Also the only phone I have right now is my sisters and I hate asking for it. Besides I have no car at all and either does my sister for the most part, so I couldn’t come see anyone anyway. After I get all this stuff done, I’m going up to New York until Chris comes out.

Once he’s here we’ll have a place to stay, we’ll be able to rent a car, and we’ll be more capable of seeing everyone! I think he’ll be here October 22nd. It all depends on his orders though.

I took the MARTA to the base the other day and signed up for Tricare South, ACS, and went to check on the housing list. I’ll tell you one thing GEORGIA IS HOT!!! I was sweating like crazy walking around that base! I brought mostly winter/ fall things, because in Belgium it’s getting cold. I forgot that it doesn’t get cold till way later out here! Also I was SO excited to get away from GA allergies and now I’m dying once again! Seriously, I wish I could rip my face off! My throat is itchy, my nose is running, I sneeze constantly, my teeth feel extra weak. I just feel so BLAH!

Also Lily and I are still having a hard time with jetlag (sp?). We’ve managed to get it so we wake up around 8am and go to bed around 9 or 10. But I WISH we could go to bed at like 5. I feel tired all day and so does Lily. This is a really hard adjustment.

I found two townhouses for rent that I’m going to look at this week. I hope they’re nice and SAFE! One’s in Avondale Estates… less than a mile from the Marta, and one’s in Stone mountain (but in a Decatur area code) right on memorial Dr. It’s about 12 minutes for the Marta. The one in Stone Mountain is a little cheaper rent. I REALLY hate this pay cut we’re taking by moving here. We’re going to lose our COLA and our free housing… EVERYTHING! I really hate it! But Austin is so worth it… plus we’re still a young married couple. We should be struggling more than we do. It’s a part of marriage!

Anyway friends and family in Georgia… I’ll come see you guys in October! We’ll be LIVING here so there’s no big rush and I HAVE to get some things done!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

i'm gonna cry!

Goodbye Belgium.
I hope that we meet again one day!

we have been blessed

The army has blessed us in SO many ways it's unbelievable! They were there for us when we were newly weds, with a baby, and Chris had just lost his job due to a car accident.
They gave us a job, a home, pay, health insurance, and a chance to live beyond our expectations!

Then they sent us to Belgium where we got to travel Europe, met some of the best people out there, and gave us the chance of a lifetime! I think if we weren't stationed out here then Austin's heart problem would have not been seen and he would have died after being born.
Because they never caught it during all the ultrasounds they gave me at the normal appointments! It was the 3D ultrasound that found the problem and they don't just give those in the states. There's a tube in his heart that's keeping him alive right now and when he's born that tube goes away naturally and he wouldn't have made it, but since they know about it now they can give him a prescription to keep the tube there!

Then the army decided that we need better doctors and that Chris needed to be there to support me so now the army is paying for us to move close to our families and a great Children's hospital so we can feel comfortable bringing Austin into this world! It's a compassionate reassignment! What other companies have something as awesome as that!? The army really does care! They are going to pay for his birth, all his open heart surgeries, and EVERYTHING else that comes along! They are going to give Chris all the time he needs off to be my support, and they are just wonderful! The fact that they let us CHOOSE this new duty station makes me so thankful!

OF COURSE we are planning to retire from the army, and I know that the army can be the greatest thing is the world and then other times it can be the worst thing. They can screw with you a bit, but SO WHAT? It's a job... they don't have to cater to your every need! I can't wait to get back to Atlanta!!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


I've been looking at apartments, houses, townhouses, etc. And I think we're just going to live on base. It's so much easier and stress free... and TRUST ME I need SOMETHING right now that is stress free!! I know we will lose our BAH, but Chris will not have to commute to work everyday so hopefully things will workout!!

Plus I LOVE wasting electricity, running the water, and not having to worry about paying anything!

We're going to look at it first, but I've been stressing myself out too much and right now I am done.

Besides we have WAY too much furniture to live in an apartment.

So HOPEFULLY we can get into on post housing!

(These are the E-1 to E-7 housing)

Monday, September 22, 2008

We got our Orders!!

And our new home for the next few years will be:
They are trying to get me there this week.
Chris has to report there Nov. 10th.
I'm now SO excited!
It's a base IN Atlanta... they're closing it, so we thought we couldn't get stationed there...

We were wrong!

Happy Birthday to me :)

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Birthday in Belgium

It's my birthday!!!!!

and it will be my birthday in like 6 hrs. in the states!

And I've just entered my 30 weeks!
Only 10 more weeks to go!

Hopefully this week we'll get our orders to the states
or atleast hopefully they'll tell us where we're going!
I'm about 90% sure we're going to GA...
but you never know... after all it is the army!

I've had a CRAZY first 20 years.
And I'm ready to start my next!

...okay good night haha.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

I took a nap

And i guess I feel better. I just feel like things re happening too fast. I have to make so many choices without having much time to think it over. And things are just adding up by the second. I don't know if we'll end up at Ft. Gordon, but hopefully everything will turn out for the best.

why can't they hear me?

I don't think I've been this stressed out in my entire life! I almost feel numb. I just want to fall asleep. The army wants us to go somewhere like Ft. Gordon... FT. GORDON??? How will that at all be beneficial to Austin. This is a compassionate reassignment... it's FOR AUSTIN. If they send us there, they might as well keep us here! I love it here and the ONLY reason I'd go to the states is for him... but if they send us there it's pointless! It really bothers me that they are trying to help us out but not actually doing what needs to be done. They said both Philly and Boston are out of the question. Not close enough to a base. But i mean does he really HAVE to be on base? The top three hospitals are Philly, Boston, and Atlanta. So we are trying for Atlanta... NOT Augusta! I'm just really about to blow! I mean seriously my baby's life is at risk. I know it's not commands baby so they don't understand, but it's MY BABY! His life is depending on us to make good choices! Sending us to an army installation where we'll most likely be forced to use their on base hospitals is outrageous! If it were just a normal pregnancy then whatever, send me wherever! But that isn't the case. This is bigger than them. I need the best healthcare. I want to be CLOSE to the hospital. A CHILDREN'S Hospital! I wish they could understand... I wish I didn't feel like a complete wreck.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

moving to the states?

Well we signed up for EFMP (exceptional family member program) today. I met with the doctor on base and he told me that he thinks we need to get a compassionate reassignment to the States. We are hoping to get assigned in either Philly or Atlanta. The hospital is probably better in Philly, but there's a really good hospital in Atlanta too, AND Chris's and some of my family live there. The doctor recommends being around family, but we're going to talk to his command tomorrow and figure everything out. I mean we may not leave here at all. It's all up to the command. They decided where we go if we go. So who knows where we'll end up. But I'm hoping for one of those two places. Preferrably Georgia, just because it's more comfortable and people are generally nicer in the south. But I'll let you know how the meeting goes tomorrow!

Monday, September 15, 2008

busy busy

So it's a new week and I'm feeling MUCH better. I think I offended some people though, because I was talking to like 5 people about everything, and the second I posted my last post everyone stopped talking! I hope I didn't offend anyone! I was just stressin'. Anyway this week is going to be a busy one. I have to get this house spotless, and HOPE Chris keeps it that way, or atleast cleans again before he comes out! I need to pack everything I'm going to need for the next 3 to 4 months. But since I'm going to be pregnant for the majority of the time, I'll probaby just pack a bunch of sweats. I'm having a hard time knowing I have to leave chris, but I guess we're in the army now so I have to get used to us being apart a lot. But it really sucks. I REALLY wish I could get our Vontage working so I can call Chris, but for some reason it just won't work! I need to get all my medical records and I STILL need to find a doctor! Just so many little things!

Also my friend LeAnn's daughter had a seizure so shes been in the hospital since thursday or friday. She won't get released till ATLEAST wednesday. I really hope that Brianna is okay! We've been going over there to keep them company and to bring them food, but I really don't know what else i can do! I wish there was! I'm REALLY going to miss them when I leave!

So I must give BIG props to Chris for coming through last night. I put him in charge of dinner so I could just stay with LeAnn all day. I told him what to make, but he made it GREAT! He brought the food up to the hospital and we all devoured it! We had Chicken marinated in Itallian dressing, both ranch and itallian pasta salad, and garlic bread. It was WONDERFUL! He did a great job! Then when i finally got home he had cleaned the downstairs (for the most part) and he put together Austin's new Highchair (thanks again Karen and Steve)! It looks GREAT! I just love it!

Also I'm 29 weeks!

Friday, September 12, 2008

yall need to chill out!

You know I'm under so very much stress right now I REALLY don't need people to put extra stress on me right now. I'm already worrying about Austin, where I'm going, if I'm going to have to pay a lot of money... I REALLY don't need the extra stress of making everyone else happy also. I already stay up half the night worrying at it is! This is not about seeing everyone and letting everyone be apart of things. If you want to be apart of this then my mom will open up her house to anyone who is willing to come out to NY. Honestly, I'd be perfectly fine having my Austin out here in Belgium. I met the doctors and they seemed like really good doctors. I'm sure they could do the surgery just a good as the doctors in the States. Well wherever I choose to have the baby and the surgeries will have to be the same place I spend the rest of my pregnancy. From October to January. Mainly because I can't switch my tricare that many times... once I'm stateside I can only change it once. So my OBGYN, hospital, and Austins surgeon will have to be in the same area. I want to find a place that Austin can get a great surgeon, a place where I can feel comfortable for a long period of time, and a place where Lily can be watched for days or weeks at a time. So I think that first and foremost if I find a GOOD surgeon in NY then that's where I'm going. I don't want to be mean or make anyone unhappy, but in the end I must do what's best for my little family.

Thursday, September 11, 2008


I'm going to the States to have the baby! I'm leaving Belgium September 23rd!

It's times like these where I wish my parents still lived in GA!

Austin's due November 30th.

And Chris is TRYING to get leave to be there!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

i could scream

You know, one thing that I really dislike about Chris is his obsession about saving minutes. I understand that my cell phone is my only way to communicate and should be used for emergencies, but sometimes I just need to talk! I need to vent and to have my husband be there to just listen. I mean I can't just call up my mom at anytime. So the only other person who I like to vent to is Chris and he gets so upset if I call him at work for no GOOD reason. Well my GOOD reason is that I have a freaking lot on my mind and nowhere to put it. I need him to reassure me and to support me! I'm just so aggravated with everything today! Lily is annoying me, the fact that my mom isn't home makes me mad, and just everything! Today is just not a good day at all. Any sound at all, the tv, Lily's voice, the dog next door, ANY noise twists up my insides! I just need some peace and quiet!

My summery of those videos

Being straight about it-
Austin does not have Tetrology Of Fallot (TOF), he has a heart defect LIKE TOF, but it is more rare and more severe. So pretty much they will need to do the surgery as soon a possible. The chances of the surgery working is a 70% to 95% chance. The doctor also said that the first surgery will be the hardest, depending on how small the Pulmonary valve is (I think that's what it's called I just looked at a picture of a heart and guessed the name. Th hearts in google look more complex than the one he drew for us. Anyway since he doesn't have the part of the Pulmonary valve (I think) that connects to the other valve the are going to have to switch it throughout his life, because it won't grow with him. They said that they'll have to be from doners. He'll have to get one as a baby (a few weeks after the first surgery), one as a child, a teenager, and an adult. I mean They'll monitor him to see when they need to switch it. The doctor said that once he's an adult he will only need one surgery and then he'll be done. But he isn't going to have as normal of a life as we had hoped for him. But he will probably life a good long life so that's all we hope for. I REALLY hope the first surgery isn't as hard as he thinks. He think that the part of the pulmonary valve that he does have is really thin. He said he couldn't really see it in the ultrasound. So that has me worried.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

better than words

The doctor apointment went really well and I like the doctor just fine, but even he said that it would be best in my situation (with Lily) for us to go back to the States. I mean he said that they are just as good and can do the surgeries fine, but home is always the best place to be during his. Dr. Watkins agreed with him. So I will probably go to the States to give birth and to have the first two surgeries. Then go back to Belgium to have all the others (I'll explain in a minute). He said that that would be fine.

The Heart

Austin's heart

the fix

So far...

Okay well I don't have my appointment in Brussels until later tonight, but I did some other research today. First off I went to Tricare on base and they told me that all I need to do is switch to Tricare North. I need to call them this week to see if I will be fully covered, but the lady I talked to said that she thinks I will be. Also I talked to Dr. Watkins, my gynocologist (sp?) and she told me the flying will be just fine and that she write me a permission slip and get all my papers together to give to my new doctor. She said that she'll have them ready at our next appointment on Sept. 19, but if I want to leave earlier to just call her and she'll have them for me. So to go to the states is possible, but I'm going to go to this appointment anyway! OH! And Dr. Watkins said that the results from my amniocentesis came back and they are good. So Austin doesn't have anything else, just Tetrolgy of Fallot. I'll update later today!

Monday, September 08, 2008


First off here are a couple pictures from today...
It looked clearer in the came :(

We went to the hospital in Brussels and I guess there was an emergency, because the doctor couldn't make the appointment so we have to go back tomorrow. But just from that visit I think I'm leaning more towards going home. Chris and I talked about it and neither of us got a good feeling about the place. It looked really trashy. You wouldn't have known it was a hospital unless you saw the sign. The whole facility was dirty and smelled bad. It was REALLY hot in there! There seemed to be no order. There were pregnant people and people with babies scattered everywhere. It just was so gross in there! I felt like we were going to catch something! I just don't think I'll feel comfortable putting my child in the care of people who can't seem to keep a facility clean and presentable. I don't want to seem picky, but that's my child we're putting in there! My child with a heart problem! Chris agrees with me 100%. In fact he was the first to say that this place is no good. I guess we'll go back tomorrow and meet the doctor, but I'm pretty sure that we'll be better off if I'm in the states. The question now is will my doctor write a permission slip to let me on that plane or am I too far along?

home or home?

Last night I stayed up contemplating on whether I should stay here or go home to my parent's house for the rest of the pregnancy. I wish so badly that I could do both, but I really do have to make a choice.

The main reasons I'd like to stay here in Belgium are well I already have a doctor here and I know I'm fully covered, Chris is here and I really want him around for this. Plus if i go out to the states I don't know how long I'll have to stay out there for the surgeries.

The big reasons I want to go back to New York are that I really want to be with my mom during this. She's been through rougher pregnancies than I could even imagine. Plus I have 4 sisters that I miss terribly and I really want to see them. Also during recovery and during Austin's surgeries I'm going to need people to watch Lily. I can't put that kind of burden on my friends here!

Mainly if I stay here I get to have Chris in the picture, but if I go home I get to have my mom.
This is the hardest decision!
No matter what Austin will be taken care of.
I've heard the hospital out here is a good one and Stateside is always a good option too.
So it pretty much comes down to me.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

28 weeks

Austin is in his last months of being "hidden" from the world.
Today I start my last trimester!
I'm sure Austin agrees with me when I say that both of us are excited for him to get out.
I feel like I'm as big as I can possibly get, but according to babycenter I still have A LOT to gain!
I will miss pregnancy, but I'm very excited for him to join our family!
Tomorrow I'm going to Brussels for that ultrasound.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

saturday morning

Saying "Hi" to Austin
Daddy's little girl
Big Sister
Kisses for Aussie Poo
Chris made us waffles last night!
(thanks Nat and Sco)
I braided her hair for the first time ever...
Playing with Brianna
They are so cute together!
I LOVE this... they're so goofy!

Friday, September 05, 2008

The Little Engine That Could

Chris's friend from work gave Chris a bunch of his little girl's old toys and this was one of them.
It's a little battery powered car. There are two buttons on the handles... one makes it go and the other turns on the headlight. She wanted FULL control... we tried to get her to put her feet up, but well you'll see!

Diaper Bag

This is the diaper Bag I want!!!
From Baby Gap!

Thursday, September 04, 2008


My birthday is coming soon!
on the 22nd :)
I'm not expecting anything, but if you're wanting to give me a little something...
  • gift card to dillards (I'm in need of a lot of things there)
  • Some new MAC eyeshadow and eye primer
    in natural tones and browns
  • Mac eye brushes
  • money to go towards a new camera
  • Hollister giftcard
  • gift card to Victoria Secret
  • any really cute maternity top (size S)
  • Ikea Gift card (I don't know if they have GCs)

    and if you don't want to get me anything that okay, but you better say Happy birthday in a comment or email or something :)
    I'll finally officially be out of my teen years.
    20 years old
My Address
CMR 490,BOX 2328
APO AE 09708

my selfish side...

I just want to bring up a few issues that are on my mind. Quite a few people think that it's best if I go to the states to deliver Austin. Well I see their point, but there are SO MANY reasons why I think staying here is best.

First off, if i go to the states than I'm going to have to go to Fort Drum to see a doctor and they're military trained doctors. The doctors out here are not military so they're better trained. I mean I COULD go off post in the states, but Tricare wouldn't fully cover all the expenses... and I have a feeling this is going to get expensive!

Also I've heard that Belgium has some of the best healthcare in the world, and could very possibly be more advanced than the states. But I'm still researching on that.

I know this part is selfish and if going to the states is for the best than I screw this, but I REALLY, REALLY want Chris to be here for this pregnancy and birth. He wasn't there for Lily and he wasn't in the room for her birth, and my guess is that any other kids we might have will probably be born while he's deployed. This is the only time he's guaranteed to be there! Plus being in the states sounds fun for a visit, but not having any friends or social life will get old fast! Plus I was REALLY looking forward to having a baby shower! UGH! This part is SO SELFISH! But this is my blog so I'll be as open as I want!

Another thing is that Chris was talking to his commander today and he said that it is possible that because of Austin's situation that we may be PCSing out of Belgium really soon if the help he needs isn't here. I REALLY hope that we can find the right help here! I'm not ready to leave Belgium! I mean I'm finally making friends, I love how Chris can't get deployed here, I love how relaxed it is here, I love our four day weekends every month, and Chris is doing SO WELL here! Plus I don't think I've had my fill of Europe yet! I haven't traveled as much as I want to before I go! I just hope that the right healthcare is available for him in Belgium so we don't have to go yet. I mean I get homesick for the states, but I know that a few weeks will be long enough to get satisfied and then I want to come back home.

No matter what though, in the end, Austin comes first. If he will do better in the states and we need to move then so be it. I'm just hoping that it doesn't come to that.

last trimester

I can't believe I'm almost in my last trimester of pregnancy! It seems like the first two trimesters were so short! But I already know that the last trimester is going to feel like two trimesters put together. I'm not excited for Austin to leave me yet. He's just so safe and warm in my little belly. I love having kids, but there's something about being pregnant with them that is really special. I mean I'm his home! I'm his guard from the world! Nobody can see or touch him without coming through me. They can't even feel his movements unless I decide they can. Austin and I are more connected right now than we will ever be again. Soon he'll be running around wanting to be free, then wanting to go to school and friend's houses, then he'll be wanting more freedom, and before I know it he'll move out and have his own family! All life is is a long process of letting go of your mom. But it goes WAY too fast for the mom! I'm so sad that he's already trying to kick his way out of me! He wants to stretch out and be free! He wants to leave me already! My little baby! Lily's already wanting everything her way and she wants to be completely free... she's not even two yet! That's it... Austin is not allowed to leave my belly or grow up... ever! He's safe and healthy in me... his heart beats regularly and is very well taken care of in my womb. The world is far too scary of a place to let him come into. I hate letting go! My babies are way too amazing to have to grow up in this awful world! I just hope that in the end I get some grandchildren out of this... but not for ATLEAST 26 years! Anyway Aussie and my belly time is coming to an end. I just hope he gets to live a healthy, happy life. I hope his heart doesn't stop him from becoming all he can be in this world, and I hope he's happy... really happy. I KNOW Lily's happy. She tells me everyday. You can't looks at her without her smiling, laughing, or wanting to play a game! She's seriously a goose! Austin is so lucky to have such a fun big sister! I can tell she sees the good in things and I hope she can see the good in being a big sister. We'll see! I just will miss being pregnant... I'm belly mourning! I'm going to have to let go sooner or later...

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

A rockin' friend

My friend, LeAnn asked me last night if I wanted some brownies.
She said she would make them and then bring half of them over for us.
Just look at what she brought me and you'll know that she's a GOOD friend!

EVERYONE knows that I LOVE the corner pieces the best. At home, all the girls fought over these pieces. Pretty much LeAnn rocks!

I want this!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

i could go for some...

considering the possibilities

I've been thinking about this heart problem of Austin's and what it might turn out to be. I had a cousin with downs and let me tell you... Holly was my favorite cousin! I lived with her for a few months and we seriously bonded! The died in her sleep at age 8, I think it was, and I just don't know how I could handle my baby having a short life. Also every morning and maybe night... It's all a blur now, but her mom had to take that poor girl in the bathtub to give her shots. I think that would break my heart! But other than that I think I could be a great mother to a little boy with downs. Lily would probably grow up extra fast so that would be another disadvantage, because I want her to stay as young as she possibly can for as long as she can. But as far as Austin goes, I think I'll be okay... I just hope he will be!

Monday, September 01, 2008

Update on Austin's heart

I had my appointment today and it didn't help my worrying at all! Austin has something called Tetralogy of Fallot. It basically means that his heart has four pieces that didn't come together correctly. My doctor said it's not fatal or anything, but he'll have to have two surgeries after he's born to correct it But she said that's all they know as of right now... so basically they don't know how serious it is. But on Monday I'm going to some special doctor in Brussels to get it checked out, and today they took this long stick and poked it into my belly and took out amniotic fluid (amniocentesis) to check the baby's chromsomes for any kind of down syndrome or any other problems, because since he has this heart problem it's more possible for him to have other problems. But basically I'm on bed rest for the next couple days. I keep having the contractions and it's freaking me out. And Austin is being EXTRA active. I know it's because he's not used to what happened, but it still scares me. I wish I knew more. And I wish I would stop having the braxton hicks, because they're getting me all worried!

I love that Chris is taking care of me though! He hasn't made me move a muscle since we got home! I can tell that he's a little worried too. I broke down and cried to him in the car, because it was just too much to handle... and he just was very supportive and caring. I love him so much!

Thank you guys for all yalls support and concern. I'll try to keep you guys updated as much as I can!