Life with Alicia has been fantastically, exhaustingly normal. Looking at her now, other than the fact that she's a bit smaller than other kids of her adjusted age, you really wouldn't know that she was ever a preemie. In fact, it almost takes a conscious effort to remember those first few months when our little girl was in the hospital.
Our little girl. Such a precious, precious gift.
I have to say though, there were several moments over the past few weeks, when I really nearly lost it on her. For the most part, Alicia only cries when she's hungry. Which is a huge blessing. The problem was that there were a few days when though she was hungry, she wouldn't eat, and she just kept crying and throwing a tantrum. It was so frustrating.
I couldn't help but think back to one of my earlier entries where I was ranting about wanting Alicia home with me. I think I even said, "Wake me up in the middle of the night. Cry! I don't care." Haha. Yeah... well, I had no idea what I was talking about.
I mean, don't get me wrong, I cherish each and every moment I have with my darling little girl. In fact, right now, she's sleeping soundly on my chest as I type. I treasure these moments. But there are definitely those moments that just drive you crazy.
Thankfully, the biggest blessing came last week when she started sleeping "through the night". For the longest time, I was starting to wonder if we were ever going to sleep for more than three hours at a time. But by God's grace and amazing providence, if we feed her at 12:00, Alicia has been able to stave off the hunger pains and let us "sleep in" until 5:00 or 6:00 a.m. We've been trying to keep her on the "eat, wake, sleep" schedule and so far, it seems to work pretty well. I think the key is consistency and putting in an extra bit of effort to keep her on schedule.
Speaking of which, I have to say that my wife has been doing an amazing, amazing job being the sole caretaker of our baby girl. Linda's life is pretty much 100% wrapped up in taking care of Alicia now. These days, she doesn't step out of the house but one day a week to take Alicia to the hospital. I mean, I don't know how she does it, but she literally doesn't go out 6 out of 7 days. I would go stir crazy, I mean seriously. But she does it, and I barely ever hear a peep of complaint out of her.
God's grace is amazing. AMAZING. I tell you. God told me before Alicia was born that the word over this next generation of our family would be grace, and he confirmed it, when my father on his own accord chose "恩" (grace) to be the recurring character in the name of all the kids in Alicia's generation.
It has been an amazing privilege and satisfaction to watch my little girl get bigger and bigger each day. She's even started to out grow some of her preemie clothes which at once gives me a sense of pride and also comfort knowing that we must be doing something right.
At this point, she is still growing a bit slow, but we believe that she will catch up soon. She's doing so well all other areas, we have no doubt that she'll continue to thrive in all aspects.
Her eyes are stable and ROP hasn't gotten worse, so that's a praise. She's continuing to go through her rounds of vaccinations and she takes each shot like a pro. She is also absolutely social and loves to interact with people. She's even started to smile in response to our voices or faces, which just absolutely melts my heart. She's also so, absolutely smart and full of life.
I couldn't be prouder of my little girl! =) She is a miracle and a testament to the power of our great and MIGHTY GOD! =)