June 22, 2011

June 2011

Hello All:

Life is still good here on the Livingston front.  Max is officially three which is still crazy to think about.  His labs are still good and he continues to do very well both developmentally and in growth.  He has gained a little bit of an attitude since his third birthday which means that his new favorite word is "NO!"  Mommy and daddy are NOT very excited about it.  He spends a little more time in time out these days as well.  He is testing his boundaries more and more each day and mommy seems to be loosing her patience with it a little more than daddy is, but that's a three year old for you.

June has been keeping us busy so far.  We started the month off with the birth of my best friends baby girl.  Miss Harlow made her debut late in the evening on May 31st.  She is absolutely perfect and beautiful.  It's possibly the coolest thing to see your best friend become a mommy.  To see the love in her eyes as she stares at her daughter is one of those moments that I will remember forever.  Congratulations Rick and Allie!

My immediate family took a trip to Gatlinburg this month as well.  It was so nice to be able to get away for a long weekend.  We all had a great time and can't wait to get another trip in soon.  This was our first weekend away since Max's transplant- it was long overdo.  During this trip we were able to meet up with 3 of our transplant buddies.  It was one of the coolest experiences of my life watching these four little miracles running around and playing with each other.  I had met all but one of the families before this weekend, but you would've never known that we all just met less than a year ago.  Something just felt right about being with this group of people.  You didn't have to explain anything to anyone- they just knew.  They don't judge if your child is behind the other kids his/her age- they celebrate the progress that each individual has made.  We talked about gtubes, granulation tissue, PD catheters, eating/drinking issues, therapy sessions, dialysis, medications, labs and feeding pumps and no one had to ask what the other person was talking about.  No one looked at you like you had three heads when you asked a question about something kidney and/or bladder related, because they all knew exactly what we had been through and will continue to go through for the rest of our lives.  These are our people and it felt oh so good to be able to communicate with them face to face about every day challenges without feeling like we are the "odd" ones.  I can 't wait to hang out with these wonderful families again and to see the milestones that each of our kids have made in the time that we will be apart.  Those few hours that we were together was another one of those moments that I will never forget.

On June 6, we were invited by Dr. G to join him and another transplant family at the Cincinnati Reds game to surprise Dr. Ben.  This was also one of those moments in life that we won't ever forget.  Dr. Ben is unfortunately leaving us at the end of the month to take an attending position at CHOP (Children's Hospital of Philadelphia).  As most of you know, Dr. Ben has been with Max since the beginning of his fellowship.  Max was only 6 weeks old when we met Dr. Ben.  Little did we know that on July 1, 2008 we would meet one of the doctors that would not only make a huge impact on our lives with his bedside manner and easy going personality, but we had just met someone who was going to have a huge part in saving our son's life.  Dr. Ben never made a decision about Max's care without confronting Tim or I to ask our opinion.  If we were unsure of something, Ben would be there to answer any of our questions and if he didn't know the answer he wasn't afraid to say so.  If he didn't hear from us after a couple of weeks he would call or email us just to check in and make sure everything was still going well.  He went out of his way to come to the dialysis unit every time Max was there for a treatment to make sure he was doing well and to see if we needed anything.  He came in on his day off once because something unexpected happened to Max.  Guys, these are just a handful of the things that he did for us as a fellow.  Can you imagine what kind of attending  he is going to be?  Dr. Ben is going to be one of the best attending doctors that CHOP has ever seen.  We are so devastated that we aren't going to be apart of it, but we are overjoyed that we got him for the three years of his fellowship.  As heartbreaking as it is to lose a doctor like him, we wouldn't have traded the time that we have gotten with him.  He got Max, Tim and I through the hardest 3 years of our lives.  It's impossible to repay someone for saving your son's life.  All we can do is take comfort in the fact that what Dr. Ben learned in his three years of being Max's fellow will help him in saving another child's life and that is enough to put us at peace with him leaving CCHMC.  Dr. Ben- you will never be replaced and will be missed greatly. Remember that you are always welcome to come back :)

On June 20th, Tim and I signed a contract on our new home.  We got word that our financing was approved and that we will be closing on July 29th.  We are so very excited about our new adventure in our new home!

Enjoy the rest of your June!  We will see you all again in July.

PS: For some reason I am not able to load more than one picture at a time due to computer issues.  I promise to get pictures of our Gatlinburg trip and of our night at the Red's game up as soon as my computer will allow me to do so. I just didn't want to delay the update any longer :)