Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Eleven Months

Quinn recently turned 11 months.  Eleven months!!!  

With the boys I remember thinking wow, that really went fast - how exciting!!

With Quinn I keep thinking wow, that really went fast - this sucks!

happy birthday kisses from Colin <3

But not to Quinn.  Nope - in true Quinn fashion, she did up her 11 month birthday in style.  We celebrated with not one, not two, but three different bashes!

After her regular Feeding Therapy session, we packed up finger sandwiches, a box of tea and some special decorations courtesy of andreap|designs and flitted off to Quinn's great-great aunt Shirley and great-great uncle Murray's house so she may host her very first Tea Party.

(It's right - I counted twice to make sure I had the correct number of 'greats'!!)

We were also joined by GiGi (great-grandma Rae) and Grandma.  We had sandwiches of cucumber & hummus, tuna & arugula, chicken salad & craisins, cream cheese & jelly...  We had yummy tea... We had a delicious chocolate cake, provided by our venue hosts - aunt Shirley and uncle Murray.  And a lovely time was had by all - which is just about the highest praise for a tea party, of course!  

super cute banner made by andreap|designs
the table is set
dessert.  yum!!
Quinn always has the perfect dress for the occasion!

having so much fun!!

After a (not-so) quick exchange of car seats, Grandma was off to pick up Colin & Reid at school and Quinn and I were headed to aunt Michele and uncle Ricky's house for a super special ceremony.  

Quinn became ...

...wait for it...

...a Brownie!!!!  I always wanted to be a Brownie, but they weren't doing it in our area back then for some reason (or so my mom says lol).  A friend of my sister-in-law's contacted her to see if we would be interested and we (I) definitely were (was).  The original plan was to have Quinn come to a regularly scheduled Brownie meeting back in the beginning of April.  But then that pesky flu cropped up, and Quinn's hospital stay, and everything was put on hold.  I was so glad to have a second shot, and this one probably worked out for the better.  Six adorable little Brownies were waiting with their moms at my brother and sister-in-law's house for us to indoctrinate Quinn into the age-old tradition of the Girl Scouts.  She looked adorable, and all these little girls and their moms did was so touching.  They even went to Build a Bear together to create a special Girl Scout bear just for Quinn <3

she even wore the beenie :)
with the whole troop, plus cousin Katie and aunt Michele
the world's cutest Brownie!!

But that was not all.  Oh no - that was not all.

The Brownie meeting was set up to coincide with our trip out to the island for Quinn's first concert!!  My very talented niece Katie was competing in an American Idol-type competition at her high school and she asked Quinn to come see her sing for her very first concert.  (I was a mere add on.  It's ok - I'm used to being her chauffeur; it gets me into some very cool places!)

Katie.was.AWESOME!!!  There were 14 students and only 7 made it into the second round - she was one of them :)  Only three advanced to the finals and unfortunately that didn't include Katie (though truth be told, I think she was gypped - but that's neither here nor there, I suppose haha).  But it was so much fun and apparently the entire high school had been apprised of Quinn's impending presence.  At intermission we were surrounded by about 20+ kids - seriously.  Maybe more.  They kept swapping - someone would leave and a new one would pop in their place.  We also got to meet my niece's (in)famous best friend and my nephew's adorable girlfriend - it was really a fun, fun day and a great way to spend an 11(mon)th birthday :)

screenshot of the video of Katie singing Love the Way You Lie

What ensued the following two weeks was not so much.  That night, Quinn was up all night long with a very high fever.  I took her to the pediatrician the next day to get her checked out.  She had a double ear infection, which accounted for the fever.  But, as with every doctor's appointment Quinn has, her lungs were checked.  And the dreaded news was delivered.

We had a crackle.

It was localized to the upper left lobe. The ped even gave me the stethoscope and let me hear where it was, and where it wasn't.

There was no question, even to me.

This is quite literally some of the worst news an NPA child can hear.  And to hear it now, at 11 months, is just awful.  

So home we went, Augmentin in hand, all forthcoming plans cancelled (DC trip, NYPD Harbor Seals boat ride, playdates - the works).  Quinn, for better or worse, did not seem to register the additional stress the pneumonia was putting on her little tiny body.  Once the ear discomfort was cleared up, she was basically back to her old self.  Which is great.  

And not so great.  Her body is so ravaged that pneumonia - pneu-mon-IA - isn't much different from how she normally feels.  That's just a bunch of bullshit right there.

I am happy to report that the Augmentin has seemed to work. Her lungs were clear when we returned to the doctor last week, which is fantastic news.  But we know.  We know that every thing that Quinn goes through takes a little more out of her.  And at a whopping 14lbs, 8oz (approximately 20-25% of which is now estimated to be her abdominal mass), she doesn't have much left in reserve.  

But we're getting what we wanted - within our current context.  From day 1 both Brett and I made our hopes and wishes clear.  We would rather see her physically frail but mentally sound right up until the end.  And we have it - Quinn is so very much a one year old.  And for that we are very grateful.  

Silver linings, right?



  1. I have been (im)patiently waiting on an update! Happy 11(mon)th Birthday, Quinn! What an inspiration your family is!

  2. I want to thank you for continuing to share your/Quinn's journey. Not only does it make me realize how blessed y'all are to have an amazing daughter and family, but it continues to remind me how bless I am with my own family. Much love and blessings being sent your way from here. :) Happy 11 (mon)th, little Miss Quinn!

  3. Little Miss Quinn is so beautiful!! Happy 11 month Birthday sweet girl!! Sending you lots of love and Hugs from VA!!

  4. What a wonderful way to spend her 11 month Birthday!! I just love that this little girl is doing more in such a short time than most people will do in their "long" lifetime! Keep up the good work - the world has a lot to learn from your little girl!

    Nancy W

  5. what an amazing 11 month birthday sweet Quinn had!!! I loved all of her celebrations:) I am so sorry your sweet baby is so sick. It breaks my heart-this should not be. I am so glad she has such loving family to make her days so happy and comfortable. sending you all so much love ,Chelsea

  6. What a birthday! Little Quinn knows how to celebrate and always has the perfect outfits for the occasions. I am sorry to hear she got an infection, but like the (brownie) trooper she is ... She got through it! You all are always in our hearts. Happy 11 months Quinn!!!

  7. Quinn is the cutest little brownie ever!! Happy 11th Month Birthday to your sweet baby girl. She is so precious. Thanks for sharing this update. Sending hugs and prayers from Buffalo.

  8. I have something for you! Our girl scout troop was supposed to contribute to Quinns basket as we are in the same service unit and unfortunately when it all got cancelled and I didnt know when it was going forward I never got around to handing it in! Oh if you can I would love to send it to you somehow! You can contact me if you have time at jessjh@optonlline.net

  9. I love the caption on the last photo. Beautiful.

  10. You are wonderful. The brownie pics are adorable.
    Andrea-decorations were perfect

  11. Happy 11 month Birthday! She is so sweet and such a gift to all of us...even those who'll never meet her or her parents. These are the memories that will continue to bring joy and comfort for all your life.

  12. Happy eleven months Quinn! Eileen, I was wondering if you had an e-mail address I could reach you on, Ciara

  13. Happy 11 months Quinn and Congrats on becoming a brownie! Glad to hear you are feeling better!

  14. Happy 11th month Quinn. Hi Eileen. I have been reading your blog since it started and I must say it is such a thrill to see new pictures of you guys! As a mother of 3 kiddies myself, I know your hands are full. Of course yours a fuller than mine. I don't know the best way to reach you but I would love to contribute something to Quinn's list. When I told my 8 year old daughter about your journey and I told her about the list she squealed with delight when she heard "American Girl." You see, she has an American Girl for quite some time now and she adores her. It is her best friend after all! I would love to, on behalf of our family, send baby Quinn an American Girl doll. Since I don't know any other way of contacting you, I am going to be brave and put my email her. PLease get back to me as soon as you can, but I understand you are extremely busy! ghaz9135691356@yahoo.com

  15. Happy (very) belated 11 months, Quinn. Such wonderful celebrations! I LOVE the picture of you and your BFF - you and your family are in my heart always! xoxoxo