Friday, October 31, 2008

30th and 31st October 2008 - At Patty's family dinner

Hello little Em,
Wednesday was a strange day. It was warm in the morning , then it got cloudy in the afternoon, started thundering and a very strong wind - like a mini-hurricane - came from the north-east. It blew and rattled our blinds, sent branches and leaves flying over the house and within half an hour the sun started to come out and a beautiful double rainbow arced across the horizon. You will love rainbows - they are so pretty
and they tell us that the rain is almost over.

What a lovely surprise to have you and your Mom and Dad at Patty's family dinner last night! I didn't think Mark and Tammy would want to drive all the way from Glen Anil with a tiny baby but they had you warmly wrapped up and you spent most of the evening swaddled in your little orange carry chair like a cocoon!
Patty is my only sister and is your grand-aunt. She is 3 years older than me but she is quite frail. Patty has COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disorder) and feels that her years are numbered - so she really values her family nights on a Thursday. She was so thrilled that Mark and Tammy brought you to her place. Her little Yorkshire Terrier, Muffin, was very confused by your little whimper noises. When you gave a little 'meow' sound, she ran to the door and started barking! We are sure she thought she'd heard a cat! You will love Muffy - she is a sweet little dog and just the right size for a little girl.

Every Thursday Patty prepares a big meal for all of us - last night there were nine people at the table. Greg and Sharon sat at one head and Patty at the other. Finn, Richard and I on one side and Mark, Tammy and John on the other.
Richard had cooked spare ribs on the braai, Patty made chips and I made a big salad.
Now about John. John is my walking friend - he is 75 years old and has walked many thousands of kilometers around Europe. We have made him an honorary great-grandfather! Last night Tammy asked John if he would like to hold you. He was very nervous and quite overawed by the experience. (John is a bachelor and has never had children). He thought you were a miracle and told Tammy that he thought she was wonderful because she knew how to care for you.
Richard - Mark's 20 year-old cousin (my brother's oldest son) also held you. He lives in Johannesburg but has been staying with Patty for a few weeks. Richard idolizes Mark and couldn't wait to hold his baby. He was so thrilled when Tammy asked him if he would like to hold you too.
You were so good little 'Milly. You slept and only woke up for a feed and a change of nappy and then you went back to sleep again.

31st October:

We've just had an sms from Mark to say that they took you to clinic today and you have put on 300g!! That is wonderful news - you have no regained all the weight you lost while you were in hospital.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Tuesday 28th October - Birdie

Hello little Em,
We went to visit you all this morning - Grumps cut the lawn and tidied up the flower beds and I helped Mark and Tammy by washing the dishes.
Mark cooked dinner last night - roast beef and Yorkshire pudding. It was their anniversary so he wanted to do something special for Tammy.

Tammy calls you Birdie - because when you are hungry you open your mouth and cry just like a hungry little bird.
Actually, you are almost full term now. Originally the gynae set your birth date at 5th November - then 29th October. So, you should only have been born tomorrow.

You are growing before our eyes! You are only 12 days old but already your eyes stay open longer and you seem to follow sounds. I chatted to you and you smiled at me! I'm sure it was a smile and not just a burp face!
I wonder what colour eyes you will have Em? At the moment they are like little kitten's eyes - slate grey and unfocused. Your Mom has dark brown eyes and Mark has hazel/green eyes.
It is going to be wonderful when you look at us and recognize us - so many people who love you, darling little Em.
You are feeding well - now you must get into a day - night routine so that your Mom and Dad can sleep!
Big hug,

Friday, October 24, 2008

23 OCTOBER 2008 - I held you

Hello little Emily,

This is a picture of you sucking your Daddy's finger.
Finn and I visited you yesterday and it was so nice to hold you, to look at you and just spend some time with you. I was able to hold you for a while and talk to you. It seemed as though you were listening - perhaps you recognized my voice? I told you that you were my little 'Milly and that I was your Silly and that we would be friends forever!
You are tiny! You've got fair hair - quite a lot of hair. You have got a straight nose - Mark calls it a plastic surgeon's nose because it is so perfect. You've got Mark's little pointy chin (perhaps that is the Aadnesgaard genes? Your fingers are long and you've got perfect fingernails. Your little arms and legs look so skinny and your feet are long! I counted your fingers and toes just to make sure that they are all there.
After Tammy fed you I held you against my shoulder to burp you and you fell asleep! We stayed for a little while and then put you down so that Mark and Tammy could also have a lie down or sleep. Mark told us today that just 10 minutes after we left you woke up and that was the end of their afternoon sleep!
You will get into a routine soon. This stage goes by so quickly and before they know it you won't be a tiny baby anymore.
I am going to visit you again tomorrow afternoon - can't wait!
Try to sleep Em so that your Mom and Dad get some rest.
Love you baby,

Monday, October 20, 2008


Hello little Em,

You've had quite a rough time my darling.
First you developed Jaundice and had to go under the blue light.
Then you lost 300g, which is a lot for a little body that only weighs 2.9kg.
You've had X-rays, blood taken and a feeding tube up your nose.
Because you have been under the blue light, we haven't seen you since Friday.
Tammy was discharged but is staying in the hospital as a boarding mother so that she can still feed you and be with you when you need her.
Mark phoned this morning to say that Dr Roos had checked you and was happy that you had put on 110g and might be able to go home later on today. Mark has been sleeping over with us - we are only 7km from the hospital so he gets to stay longer with Tammy at night.
We all want you to go home now sweetie.
Love you,

Thursday, October 16, 2008

16 October - WELCOME EMILY ANN!!!

Today, my baby had a baby,
Today, my child became a Dad.
Yesterday I was a mother, 
 Today I am a Gran!

Mark phoned us early this morning to say that Tammy had been admitted, Doctor Batchelder had examined her and said that you were on the way.

Now, I had planned on taking photographs of the sunrise on your birth day. Sunrise today was 05:18 but it was misty and raining so I went around the garden taking photographs of some of the flowers that are blooming now. It is springtime and the Azaleas are spectacular: the Wisteria is in bud, the Petrea is a cloud of blue and the wild Iris are all pregnant with white buds.
A theatre was booked and at 9:05am you were delivered weighing just under 3kg - a perfect size for a little girl! Mark was there and he and the
anaesthetist took many photographs of your first few minutes in the world. Dr J Roos, the paediatrician, was there and he examined you and did a special test.
Then they wheeled you away to the nursery, with Mark following close behind, where special baby x-ray were done of your skull, chest and spine. There was an anxious wait for a couple of hours (they were very busy this morning) and then the results came through - there is no evidence of OI.
We only caught a quick glimpse of you as you were wheeled through to the nursery but at visiting hours, between 3 and 4 for visitors, and 4 to 5 for grand-parents, we finally saw you in Tammy's arms.
I wore a mask so that I could hold you. You are so tiny. You have got long fingers, with perfect nails, and long feet. We jokingly said that you wouldn't need flippers to go swimming! You have the sweetest little profile. Because you didn't have to push through the birth canal, your face doesn't look all squashy like some new born babies do. I think you look like your Dad - you have his chin and the same colour hair. Mark stayed with you and Tammy until after 8h30pm and then came home to us to sleep the night (we are only 7km from Parklands). He told us then about the caesarean and the baby test which they do at 1 minute and 5 minutes after birth which you passed 10 out of 10 both times.
Mark asked me what it felt like to be a grandmother and I said, "I don't know yet." I think I felt more like a grandmother when he told us that he and Tammy were pregnant. I don't think the actual 'you are my grand-daughter and I am your grandmother' has actually registered yet!
We are going to visit you again this afternoon and I think Tammy might go home tomorrow, Saturday.


Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Two weeks to go!!

Hello little Em,
Officially there are two weeks left until the date you are due to arrive - but, if Tam has a Caesarean on 27th October, there are only 12 more sleeps left!!
Finn painted a chest of drawers for your room and the nursery looks ready - all it needs now is a precious little girl to occupy it!!

Mark phoned to say that they think you might be trying to make your way into the world tonight! They phoned the ante-natal sister and the hospital and they were to wait an hour, see if there are any changes and then make a decision later.
Everything is ready for you Em.
I actually hope you don't come tonight - or even this week because I've had a cold and it is still there and I won't be allowed near you until I'm 100% better. So, wait a few days my girl! Let me get rid of this sniffy nose and irritable cough before you arrive.
I can almost hear your voice now!
Stay safe, we are all longing to see you and hold you,

Friday, October 10, 2008

10th OCTOBER 2008 - Your first Party!!

Good morning Little Em,
Last Saturday we had a 'Baby Shower' for you and your Mom and Dad. Usually only women go to Baby Showers but Mark wanted his friends to be there too, so we had a few Daddies and wanna-be Daddies and a few guys who seemed bemused by the whole thing!
Lauren brought her precious little 5 week old Taylor. I kept looking at her and wondering if you would like like her!
The party was at lunch time so we served a light lunch. Patty and I found Polka-dot plates, place mats and serviettes so the theme was Polka-dots - just like some of the accessory in your nursery.
You got so many gifts Em - I don't know where they are going to put them all. You have already got enough clothing to last you three years at least!
It was a lovely party and you were the main attraction! You are going to be welcomed into a community of friends and family who all love you already.
On Monday your Mom went for another scan and it showed that you have moved sides. They have estimated that you weigh over 3kg already and, with three weeks still to go, you could be a big baby.Everything is well with Mom and Dad so now it is just a matter of time before you make your appearance!
The Paediatrician will be present at the delivery to do a physical check. Your Dad will go with you to have x-rays of your limbs, spine and skull. They might be able to tell from these x-rays whether or not you have osteogenesis imperfecta. So far there is no sign - no fractures and no deformities. We are all praying for you little Em.
Lots of love,