Saturday, December 17, 2011

A new experience

I was so pumped to get the opportunity to share the book in Michele's 3rd grade class! What an exciting first experience it was for me. I couldn't believe the good questions they asked..."who illustrated your book", "How many did you sell", "How long did it take you" were just some of the questions;).

I sat there and couldn't believe that this was really happening- it was so cool to sit there sharing a God Ordained project helping them better understand what my son is blessed to have. I only hope and pray that they will get to experience a true "Peter pan" in their lives one day!

But one of my favorites was when I was sharing in the book how Logan loves hugs but sometimes doesn't like to let go... A girl raised her hand and asked in a very serious tone, "When you are done hugging him... How do you get him off!?". Haha... I love kids;)

Monday, November 21, 2011

The All So Familiar Hallway.

We had been so excited to get the unexpected news that we were adding another crazy Vaughn into the world.  Although a complete surprise, it was something we felt that God obviously wanted for our family.  We found out super early in the pregnancy and Jada happened to be with me when I got the news from the Doctor's office.  She immediately began telling random strangers that she was going to be a big sister again.  We knew right away that we were not going to be keeping this a secret for any amount of time.

So we announced it over facebook the exciting news...and the response was to be expected..."No way!!!"  "Serious!!??"  "Four?!?!"  Yep...that is what we thought to!  Excited, nervous, but ready if that is what God had planned.

We had no idea the due date and on November 7th we had an appointment for an ultrasound to figure out when number 4 would debut.  The lady doing the ultrasound was beyond quiet and seemed standoffish even with us trying to engage a conversation.  She said that my doctor would contact us and she wasn't allowed to give any information.  Um...okay?  The Doctor called and asked us to go in.  I wanted her to tell me over the phone, but she didn't want to.  I knew something wasn't okay.  I had to wait a few hours for me to see her and we then waited a horrible 45 minutes for her to come in and tell me news I didn't want to hear...ever.    She explained that the baby had died at 7 weeks, and we needed to schedule a D & C.  I didn't believe it and wanted a second opinion and blood work.  So the whole week I went in for blood work and another ultra sound.  The baby was now measuring 5 weeks and there was no heartbeat or any signs of blood through the baby.  I knew it was a reality now.  I was so confused.  Not sure why God would allow this to happen, not only to us...but mainly Jada.  You see, when you tell a little girl that she is about to be a's a comparison of us winning the lottery- everything didn't matter, cause she was going to be another sister!

Telling Jada was the worst experience I have ever had to do.  There was a lot of tears, questions that she wanted to have answered, confusion of what this really meant.  She did understand, not that she wanted to, but she got it.  Asher didn't.  He was still praying every night that the baby would grow.  He will though, it just wasn't real to him yet.

The day had come that we scheduled the D & C.  We arrived at the hospital and began walking down the very same hallway that we did just 3 years ago with Logan.  The wall was covered with pictures of new born babies.  The halls echoed of small little cries from the babies and laughter coming from the new parents and families.  The smell was even recognizable to me.  It was so surreal.  We checked into the room that I would then recover in...this was not what I had expected when the Doctor told me 10 weeks prior that we would be having another baby.  It was somewhat quiet between Jody and I...which is not normal.  There wasn't too much to talk about I guess.  We felt sad.  I was brought back to the room that I actually delivered Logan through a C-section.  That same room had brought me life had also ended it.  It was a routine procedure to them with no emotional tie, I get that, but I would have loved a hug in that moment.  I was so glad that the anesthesia happened so quick cause I started to cry.  It was over so fast.  I had told Jody to make sure he recorded me coming out of the anesthesia...I knew it would be hilarious.  And yes, it was!  There is about 15 minutes of pure comedy...let's just say it involved- an elephant, umbrella, knock knock jokes with no ending, tears and songs- possible a new YouTube sensation.

I then came out of a 30 minutes deep sleep, and when I came to- it wasn't what I expected.   I felt a peace.  Not sure why, but I felt relieved that it was over.  I didn't want to be consumed with this anymore.  It was a new day.  There is nothing I am more thankful for, than my 3 amazing kids I get to go home to.  This was not what I would wish on anyone, nor do I understand why this has happened, but I got what I was praying for...Peace.  When you loose something, it really helps you appreciate what you still have.  I really have never had trouble with this department...I have always loved my kids every second of the day...but now, there is a new outlook.  I am more Thankful than I have been for the blessings that God has given us here on earth.  And now we have a little one in heaven waiting for us!  Then tonight at dinner Jada prayed, "God I pray that you would be with the baby in heaven".   I truly believe that she has that peace now to.  We may never know why we experienced it.  I think sometimes you go through things to give other people sympathy going through the same situation.  Maybe it's just to   have an attitude of gratitude.  And now being the week of Thanksgiving and looking around with what God has overly blessed us with...I will not question why, but I know that God Always has the best life planned for us and sometimes gives us opportunities to see that.  Maybe you are sitting at home and going through something difficult and you don't see the light at the end of the tunnel.  I would encourage you to look around and start thanking God for the smallest of things, and you will start to see things a little different.  This difficult time will pass and He will give you the strength for the next day to come- but enjoy it...cause a new day is a blessing as is.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

It's Here!

I am so excited to release my first Children's book "I live with Peter Pan"!  Click to purchase "I live with Peter Pan"  This has been a year in process.  My son was born with Down Syndrome exactly 3 years today.  And boy, has it been an amazing 1,095 days that we have learned more each and every second.  Questions came into our mind every now and then - Why us?  What's next?  How can we do this?  It was never "we don't want this" or poor us.  It was just a challenge that we knew God had wanted for us to grow from...and we have.  Logan has brought our whole family together.  Everything about him is unbelievable and we couldn't be happier!  I do believe one of the reasons that God had placed an extra chromosome in Logan was to order the steps of this book.  My kids asked me what Down Syndrome was.  I tried to explain it to them, other than the obvious features of the characteristics that come with the diagnosis...but I was failing.  The questions came back a little harder and needing more details of what their brother had.  And then I thought of the analogy that helped them understand it.  Logan is like Peter Pan...he kinda always wanted to stay young [referring to the song "I won't grow up"], everyone loved him, and he was a lot of fun to be around.  And that was it...they got it!  Which then started the idea of the book.

It was a complete God thing that I had bumped into an illustrator at a Comedy conference.  I happen to sit with my sister at this one table in the morning.  We were introducing ourselves when it became Earl Musick's turn to introduce himself.  He stated that he is a cartoonist and was a Disney illustrator at one point and is a stand-up comedian!  I was anxious to ask him if I was able to use the word "Peter Pan" in a book.  He stated that Peter pan isn't copyrighted, just the actual character and Never Never land.  He asked why.  Telling him about the book idea, we exchanged information and the rest was history.  Earl has blessed me more than you will ever know with his gifts God gave him to illustrate and brings things to life with a  picture...and I thank God for my sister, Dorie, pushing me to go to this convention...or I would never have met Earl.

I am so thrilled that there will be siblings, schools, peers, families, that will read this book and help them understand what an amazing fulfilling life that comes with the words Down Syndrome.

Friday, January 7, 2011

In the Hollow

In the Hollow

My kids are a lot different from each other.  Each of them have such different personalities.  It's so crazy how different each of them are that came from the same two people.

 Jada is our sweet little princess.  She is creative and constantly imagining things that she can be… from a princess that likes to eat pizza through her feet to becoming a teacher to the household.  She can bring any ordinary situation and make it interesting when you get inside her head.  Although quite shy if you don't know her, when you give her the time of day...she will blow your mind with her creative juices that flow and sweet spirit.  She is also extremely compassionate and a true prayer warrior.  Praying for people who don't have any food is in her daily prayers each night.  She lives up to her name, "God has Heard".

Asher is hilarious.  He can make Jody and I laugh at all times.  Even when he's in trouble and you could be as mad as can be...he raises his eyebrows, makes a goofy face, or says an outrageous statement that you can't stay mad at.  For example, after him hitting Jada, I said, "Why did you do that?!" he states, "Because I love her!"  His constant costume changes makes it hard to know if you are talking with Captain America, Snake Eyes, or just crazy Asher.  He brings a lot of life into our home each day.  He lives up to the meaning of his name..."Happy, Blessed". 

Logan is amazing.  He is what I would see as a true sweetheart that wouldn't hurt a fly.  Although, I wouldn't get to close to his Kung Fu Grip he has with his paws...he would never purposefully hurt you.  He is an explorer and Houdini.  One minute he is right there in front of you, and blink...he is mysteriously closing a door and giggling.  He has the best laugh and smile.  When having a rough day- just look at Logan and you are good to go.  You can't be sad around just can't.  His name means "in the Hollow".

 Wait...what?  How did you come up with that name if Jada's name means "God has heard" and Asher's means "Happy, Blessed".  Let me tell you something cool about Logan's name.  We did not know that Logan had Down Syndrome.  We didn't take the test that would have determined didn't matter the outcome of the results, it would not have changed our feelings toward the baby inside. Meanings to names mean a lot to us.  We prayed a lot to determine which name would fit each child.  We loved the name Logan but couldn’t get over or understand the meaning of the name.  Although Logan’s name would be the same as the super hero Wolverine’s real name…it just didn’t do it for us.  In talking to one of our friends about the meaning “In the Hollow” he began to explain an old myth about how Fairies would bring babies that had special gifts and place them in the hollow for the kings to come and raise them.  Now that is cool.  That is what we are talking about…a baby with Special gifts…that would be his Name.  Little did we know that Down Syndrome would be what was so special about Logan.  And trust me, I view it as extremely special and not a burden or a hindrance…but as a challenge.  I know that not many people would look at it like that, but I do.  God placed him in our lives to teach us a lot.  To slow down and enjoy each moment.  To view life a little different.  He makes the smallest things exciting.  He already has put smiles on so many.  He has already put tears of joy in so many people…he is a gift.  

Each one of them are extremely different,  crazy awesome and are a gift to us in their own way. 
Although they are very different from each other…they are VERY similar when it comes to music!  We all LOVE to dance.  We have a dance party almost every day, whether in the car or in our living room…music moves us!  And although Logan can’t yet communicate very well, he seems to do a pretty good job trying to sing the Justin Bieber song “Baby”  Thought you’d enjoy this video of him singing and going crazy with his bad self!