Sunday, February 26, 2012

32 Months of Tyler

Today was Tyler's 3rd birthday. All week it got harder to think about. As people have told me, I had a harder time during the whole week leading up to his birthday than I actually had today. All those memories came back, the good and bad. It's also very hard because many kids that I know are finishing up treatment or their transplants and are doing great. I love that they're doing great, but it's hard thinking of how quickly things turned bad for us, after all that he managed to pull through previously.

For his birthday I wanted to do something. I took the kids to my parent's house and just had a nice day together. My sister and her fiance came, and one of my aunts made a surprise visit as well. Dan decided to stay home, he felt like getting something done and wanted to keep busy. So he did laundry, dishes, vacuumed, cleaned out the playroom and a bunch of other stuff. 

In honor of Tyler's birthday I wanted to post some pictures of his life. So I decided to do a pic for each month he lived. 32 months.

The night I went to the hospital for induction. Tyler was induced the day after his due date since he was measuring big and he was stubborn. He hadn't even dropped yet. I was so huge! Everyone I saw asked me if I was having twins.
 At 4:17pm on Feb 26th, after 14 hours of labor and 17 minutes of pushing, Tyler Daniel was born. 10 pounds 2 ounces and 21 inches long. He went home in size 1 diapers and a 3 month sleeper.
 1 month old! He was the best baby! Never fussed unless he really needed something.
 2 months old! So adorable.
 3 months old! He started sleeping through the night at 3 months. I felt like the luckiest mom ever!
 4 months old. Tyler had been diagnosed 4 days previously and was recieving his very first dose of chemo here. My big tough guy suddenly seemed so very small.
 5 months old. We'd already almost lost him at 4 1/2 months, but he came out of it strong and with a great attitude. Even with the feeding tube that he hated so bad and all the tubes and lines, he was still ready to conquer anything.
 6 months! He had been knocked down a couple times, so he had to re-learn to sit a couple times, but he kept on going strong! His Drs and nurses were amazed at his determination.
 7 months. Still in the hospital and not letting that stop him from smiling. It was his home now and he was enjoying life.
 8 months, at the Ronald McDonald House
 9 months, we got to take him HOME for a bit!
 10 months. We were home for Christmas! So exciting.
 11 months old and at the clinic.
 Happy First Birthday! We were home for his birthday party, though his actual birthday was spent at Children's clinic the entire day getting transfusions and chemo. But we had fun with the cake and presents. :)
 13 months. More exciting news! He started Maintenance and got to have his hickman line removed. This was the last day he had the line.
 14 months. Finally eating real food! He had no appetite or desire to eat until this point.
 15 months. Having a blast at home. He woke up happy everyday and was just so fun to be around.
 16 months. Spending his days with Dawson was the best thing ever. They adored eachother. When they weren't fighting over toys. ;)
17 months. Tyler got to walk the Survivor Lap in Relay for Life. He was by far the youngest survivor there.
 18 months, more days at the clinic but we were mostly home.
 19 months. Loving the outdoors! We made a point to get to every park and cool outdoor place in town. We had the best summer and lived life to the fullest.
 20 months. He loved walking around in the crunchy leaves.
21 months. Giving me his cute look. This boy was so adorable!
 22 months, having a crazy fun time indoors. We set up the plastic cube slide and he'd been sliding and running around. Thus the crazy hair.
 23 months. A very common sight, Tyler with his sippy, riding on his car. He loved anything to do with cars! We also found out this month that Tyler might possibly be relapsing.
 2 years old! He's just too adorable for words.
 25 months old. Got a new brother! Gabriel was a perfect cord blood match for him too! A very hard thing to find.
 26 months old. A 2nd biopsy confirmed that Tyler had relapsed and we went back to the hospital to get him back into remission and head for a bone marrow transplant, using Gabriel's cord blood.
 27 months. We got out of the hospital for 1 day, so we went to the zoo! He was so very excited to see the outdoors again, and animals too!
 28 months. Still living at the hospital. Days are best spent watching Cars and being with Dawson.
 29 months. Still here. We are very bored, but we are tough and can do this!
 30 months. We got to go HOME for 2 weeks! So exciting. I miss seeing the 3 of them together.
 31 months. In just 1 month he went from a happy, healthy (as you can be with cancer) boy, to the transplant, then quickly took a turn for the worse and Tyler ended up in the ICU. Intubated, sedated and paralized so he couldn't rip his tubes out.
 32 months, 1 week. Tyler was not going to get better. He was declared brain dead this morning and we went ahead with our decision to remove all life support and say goodbye. I got to hold him for several hours as he passed.
 It's nice to think that he is no longer suffering. He's in a happy place and will never have to worry about relapse, meds or any troubles again. It's just so hard being without him. I miss his smile and his giggles. He brought a lot of life to our family and was such an amazing little guy. I'm sure he had a great birthday in Heaven.
Thank you everyone who has been so supportive to us. It has helped so much. I have so many new friends and am so grateful for everyone in our life. Thank you to everyone who has checked up on me via text and on facebook today. It was so good reading all the messages. In honor of his birthday we've gotten a few people signed up for the Bone Marrow Registry, one donated her hair, we have a heaping bin of toys waiting to be delivered to the hospital. We are waiting on some more things that are coming.

Yesterday I was a total emotional mess, but today I end this day with renewed hope of continuing on and being ok. Talking to other parents who are many years out from their loss, they say you never move on or get over the loss of a child, you just learn to live with the pain. "Ok" takes on a new meaning. It doesn't mean we are truly ok, because living without Tyler will never be ok. It just means we are not on verge of a breakdown and haven't been a crying mess all day. That is our new "ok".

1 comment:

Serena said...

I think of you all often and keep you in my prayers. I only became aware of Tylers story shortly before he was called home to heaven but he touched my heart and my life and he will forever be remembered as a true fighter, a strong courageous warrior who never gave up. Hugs and prayers always.

~Team Donavynn~