Saturday, May 30, 2009


The girls have really begun to smile and today was actually Cameron's first day really smiling and I caught it on camera! Had to share those and a few other pictures of our little angels!



Here is a picture of Aubrey enjoying some yummy chicken parmesan that a friend made for us a couple of weekends ago - thanks Jill! We have had so many sweet and generous people make us dinner that I don't even know where to start. Thank you all so much! This night I gave Aubrey her plate, turned to pour her a cup of milk and when I turned around...this what I saw - she said, "Mommy this good! I LOVE noodles!" Aubrey has loved all of the meals and I have appreciated not having to worry about cooking...and Seth, well, he hasn't enjoyed it at all except the guy who can't gain weight all of a sudden can't fit into some of his pants anymore - THANK YOU ALL!

I almost forgot. The girls were weighed yesterday at the doctor. Reagan is now 8 lbs. 3 oz. and Cameron is 6 lbs. 15 oz. We are still working hard to be sure that Cameron maintains good weight gain. Hopefully she will be catching up to her sister soon!

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Cameron's Hearing Test Results

Today at Duke we found out that we are about to enter even more unfamiliar territory with Cameron. She went in for a more specialized test for her wasn't successful so they redid the original hearing screen - she failed again in both ears. So, this time she had more diagnostic tests done. The diagnostician found that Cameron has moderate to moderate/severe hearing loss in her right ear and severe/profound loss in her left ear. We asked if there was any way of knowing the cause and she said no. This was her first diagnostic test, however. We will go back for another test in three weeks. On that same day we will meet with an ENT, who will determine if there isn't a blockage of any sort that could be the cause...however, after the tests today, the diagnostician said that she did not believe that it was. She believes that this is pretty permanent hearing loss and doesn't expect for the results to change much. On that same day, Cameron will have molds taken of her ears to be fitted for hearing aids. We will go back a few weeks later to learn how to use the hearing aids. We will begin to work closely with a speech and hearing therapist to learn how we can best serve Cameron.

The audiologist said that she has a very positive outlook for Cameron right now because her hearing loss has been diagnosed so early and that with therapies and hearing aides that she hopes that Cameron will be able to achieve normal communication skills. Seth has been so amazing and positive through all of this - the perfect husband. Today he said, "You know why I have always liked things like x-men and stuff? Well, it is because they were all unique because of their special powers. That's kind of how our family is." I almost started crying because I thought that it was an amazing way to think about all of this. My prayer is that the hearing aids would be an effective tool for Cameron to be able to hear and that Seth and I would be able to learn how to make our family and our home a supportive environment to nurture Cameron in the skills that she needs to acquire.

As a precaution, Reagan has to go back in for additional hearing tests - since the girls are identical but they do not expect to see much right now. They will just do what is called an OAE (I have no idea what that means) and if she passes, she will not have to have any additional tests.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Update from Doctors

Not much to report...sorry the posts have not been coming as often but life is very hectic here. Today is Seth's birthday and for his birthday he won a trip to the hospital for the girls checkup on their eyes. Reagan's look great and Cameron's also have no ROP...however, when the doctor was looking she kept saying "very interesting" - words you never like to hear from a doctor. Evidentally, Cameron has had a hemorrhage in her eye and we cannot seem to find the cause for it. The doctor said that it may have been the stress on her body with the formula change. She said it is not alarming right now, they are going to watch it but she just found it "interesting." That's us Carter's - never boring! Anyway, we have to go back now in two weeks and she will check it again. Cameron's hearing test is next Thursday - so we will be back and forth to Duke for three weeks in a row. Hopefully, all of it will end with clean bills of health.

Both girls have finally adjusted to the new formula. They both are great eaters right now (we are wondering if they are just really taking off or if they are hitting a growth spurt) and Seth and I cannot wait until next week when they have a weight check at the pediatrician. They have slept pretty well the last couple of days but I almost don't want to say anything to jinx it! They are both smiling and Reagan is really cooing and talking now. They are tracking things with their eyes some - which the doctor said might be a little delayed. She could not believe how loud Reagan's cry was - her exact words were "Wow! That's a big girl cry!" I just wanted to say - You're telling me - you should hear it at 2 in the morning!

All in all, life is going great for the Carter's right now. We are enjoying being one big happy family! Aubrey has been behaving really well and I have goals of potty training and moving to her big girl bed this summer - we will see if it actually happens. She kind of seems to be fighting me on the potty thing right now. That's okay...when she is ready! She is loving playing with friends, the sandbox, sliding, painting, and playdough. Right now, the messier the better!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

I Am Amazed...

-at how many dirty clothes our girls can produce in one day
-at how many bottles we go through a day
-at how the girls can still gain weight considering how much comes back out
-at how I can clean the house and in less than an hour it looks as if a bomb has gone off
-at how one tiny baby can cry so loud and so hard for so long...just because she needs her pacifier back in her mouth
-at how quickly the girls and their abilities can change - yesterday Reagan only smiled in her sleep and today she will coo a little and smile the biggest smiles ever - Cameron is on the verge of following her sister
-at how much the hospital actually cost - the stacks of explanations of benefits is unbelievable - even more unbelievable are the numbers on those papers - thank goodness for insurance!
-at how much the girls can look so unbelievably different and yet so much alike
-at how beautiful of a sight it is to see my family together and loving on one another
-at how if I stop and let myself think about it - I still cry like a baby when I think of where we have come from and how blessed we are to have our little miracles

I am sure that the list will continue to go on but here is the newest update from the visit to the doctor this week.

Both girls are doing well. They saw the doctors and the physical therapist. Both girls are making good growth. Cameron had a renal ultrasound and still has one small kidney stone remaining. Both girls are now on the same formula. They have placed Cameron on Alimentum with her sister - they thought that the major specialty formula was not really giving the results they felt were necessary to continue on it. So, we have had an interesting couple of days adjusting.

The girls are doing so well they don't need to go back to the doctor for another couple of weeks but still this month we have an eye checkup and Cameron's recheck on her hearing.

Sunday, May 10, 2009


What a day. Happy Mother's Day. Who would have guessed a year ago that I would be a mom of three instead of a mom of one? What a blessing. Today was a good day - Aubrey is very good at saying Happy Mother's Day - except she doesn't get who you are supposed to say it to. She said it to my dad, to other kids, anyone that would listen! We had an awesome afternoon visiting with family here at the house! Here are a few more pictures of the girls -

Friday, May 8, 2009

Hope from the Unexpected Places

Just a quick note. Last night I was standing in the checkout lane and picked up a People magazine to leaf through as I waited. Inside I found an article about micropreemies that were born at 25, 25, 27 weeks along. They weighed anywhere from a pound to 2 pounds. One of the overriding questions that I had and that I think others have is...what does the future hold for the girls because they were so premature? We were never quoted rates or given any specific diagnosis from the doctors (that may come later) but I have chosen to chalk that up to the fact that God was in control and chose my girls - He chose them for something unbelievable and He chose them to help teach me about Him, about love, and about hope. In this magazine it goes on to show how successful these preemies have become...athletic, intellectual, motivated and I have to say that I almost started crying right there in the store. What an amazing way for God to give me hope in one of the most unexpected places. Last night I was reminded of how God chose to show me the true meaning of Cameron's middle name - Hope. All through our journey in the hospital - both girls defied the odds and as a result, we chose hope and as we continue to go through the ups and downs of our first year together, I pray that we continue to choose hope. I realized that if we don't choose hope then we get bogged down by the little stuff, the stuff we cannot control, or the stuff that doesn't really matter and so I am thankful that God gave me a reminder - hope still remains. I find it funny that after all that we have been through, I still need to be reminded - guess that shows how stubborn I am.

Thank you all for your prayers. The girls go back for the first of many appointments at the hospital next Tuesday.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

6 Pounders

Well, both girls are officially over six pounds now. Cameron has gained 7 oz. in 6 days (6 lbs. even) and Reagan has gained 6 oz. in 6 days ( 6 lbs. 12 oz.). This is completely baffling to me because the last few days they both have done nothing but spit up and cry...a LOT! I am so pleased with their progress and pray that they will continue. They are now officially out of preemie diapers and can wear some newborn clothes as well. As I type this right now Cameron is playing on her boppy playmat that was Aubrey's. She has figured out that she can hit the toys but still doesn't seem quite sure of herself. She really seems to be having fun! Both girls are doing well. Here is a picture of the girls yesterday before they got their shots - ouch! I decided to take a before picture instead of an after! There are also a couple of other shots from earlier in the week...including Aubrey who has now discovered that not only does she LOVE strawberries but she loves picking them - if she could just figure out how to do it without putting her finger right through the middle!

Monday, May 4, 2009

Thank You

I just wanted to write a quick note...thank you thank you thank you to all of you who have been so generous to us. I know we will never be able to remember everyone and I apologize if you do not get a formal thank you but I just wanted to let you know what an encouragement and blessing you have been to our family. Thank you for the gas cards, gift cards, gifts, hugs, prayers, and the meals - oh the meals! Let me just say that we have had some amazing meals over the last month or so and our family has enjoyed them so much. In fact, I just said to my mom today... not having to worry about cooking in the midst of all of this chaos has lifted a huge burden from our shoulders. Thank you! Seth also says thank you because thanks to all of you, he has gained some weight over the last month or so. Seth and I continue to learn from all of you about what it means to be cheerful givers and to love on another in Christ. Thank you!

Saturday, May 2, 2009

The Monitor

Oh, the monitor. From what I hear, you either love 'em of hate 'em. Well, to be honest, I pretty much hate it. ...and not because it goes off all the time either - because I hate having cords still attached to my baby. Don't get me wrong - I know it has a purpose and everything but that was one of the best things about bringing Reagan home was no machines or cords...just us and our baby. Cameron handles it pretty well...I think I am the one being a baby about it but every time we want to go somewhere we have to lug this box and these cords around. The monitor has only gone off twice for bradies and they were only a few seconds long - by the time we went to do something...she had resolved herself. I am praying for the doctors to be very pleased when we go to clinic on the 12th and that they will say "good more monitor."

The last few days have been full of craziness and add in a pretty big helping of sleeplessness and it makes for a fun time at the Carter house! We experienced taking the girls together to the doctor - NIGHTMARE!!! I definitely need more practice with that one. Reagan really seems to have gotten her days and nights straight and for a night or so I thought Cameron had too but... I just keep reminding myself how far Reagan has come since coming home from the hospital and Cameron is just still getting used to being at home. We are learning together what works. According to the pediatrician's scale on Wednesday: Reagan is weighing in at 6 lbs. 6 oz. (close to typical newborn size!!) and Cameron is 5 lbs. 9 oz.

Please pray that Cameron's weight gain will be as good as Reagan's has been. I pray that the comfort of being at home will be all she needed for a consistent weight gain...however, she spits up A LOT! and has been pretty cranky the last day or so, so I am hoping that the doctor will be pleased on Tuesday.

I am hoping to post some photos soon of the girls! Thanks for keeping us in your prayers!