Today Josephine is 40 days old. Wow. I can honestly say I didn't expect to make it to today. I wasn't trying to be pessimistic. I was just bracing myself for the harsh realities of what we are going to have to deal with. The last 40 days have and haven't been a large adjustment. We all expect the adjustments of bringing a new baby home, and we've definitely had those. As I've said before, our major adjustment is the feedings and the feeding schedule. I've loved getting to know her and her personality, which is really beginning to show. She has two to three times a day when she's wide awake and alert. She's so much fun to watch. She either reclines in my lap or lays in her swing or sometimes on the floor and just looks around at everything. And I've noticed her responding more to my voice. This is another something to be thankful for. T-18 babies have hearing problems, and Josephine was marked as a "refer" on her newborn hearing screening. But seeing her respond to my voice means she's not deaf. She still doesn't make much noise, but I have noticed her squeaking a little more often. It's usually close to feeding time. She also does this cute little thing where she sucks on her feeding tube right before and while we're feeding her. And because it's not like she's sucking on a straw (the other end is closed off), she ends up making this cute little clicking noise. Her mouth is all puckered up and her lips are nice and pink and she just looks perfect! (Of course, I'm not biased or anything!) She also enjoys tai chi. She does this cute little thing where she stretches and bends her arms to a rhythm all her own. It's incredibly cute.
As I'm sure you understand, some days are better than others. Today wasn't exactly one of the others, but it wasn't one of the better days either. I'd say that the hardest days are the ones when she isn't doing well. Those are the days when reality feels so much closer. Most days I really am okay, and I feel so very blessed. It's on those days that I am the very happy and cheerful person that most of you know me to be. It's on those days that I do feel the peace and comfort of knowing that everything will be alright.
And then there are days like today. Most of the day I had that wonderful peace. But every once and awhile when I was thinking about how lucky we've been to have her for so long, I'd begin to wonder how much time we have left. We're living on borrowed time, and with each passing day, I feel like the time is less and less ours. So I am making the most of the time we do have. Taking more pictures, holding her more, as well as doing things for her.
Some of those things are little and incredibly unimportant, like making blankets for her. (I found this fabulous pink, yellow and black argyle flannel that I'm using to make a baby blanket for her!) Other things I'm doing for her in that round about way. I'm doing them for her because she has inspired me just as much as she has inspired each of you. I have been strengthened and humbled by her. I have been touched and inspired by her, and I have been amazed and encouraged by her. I am thankful that she is a part of our family and our lives.