Wednesday, March 19, 2014

SO MUCH Love & Service!

Oy. I don't even know where to start. I don't think I have ever cried so many good tears in my life. Tyler and I have been so overwhelmed by the love and support that we have been shown the last few weeks. We are so grateful for each and every one of you, and your generous acts in our behalf.

The thing that we have come to realize, and learn, (this last week especially) is that our Heavenly Father is looking out for us, even when we don't realize it. He has a plan for each and every one of us, and has given us amazing people to help us along our way.

Tyler and I have been struggling lately, mostly because of financial reasons. We have been stressing about hospital bills, and worrying about how we are going to be able to be able to pay for Brenna's other bills (she does not have insurance as of right now...long story--Tyler and I are both covered on our parents insurance until we are 26. We can get insurance through work, but it doesn't make sense to pay over $500 extra a month when we are both already covered, and pretty healthy.). The bills have already started flowing, and have been quite the eyeopener, considering we did not think we would be in this situation. (I know, I shouldn't worry about the bills--all that really matters is for Brenna to get here, safely, and as healthy as possible- we will pay any price we have to, to have her in our family, but it is always somewhere in the back of my mind.) We decided, that selling the bracelets would be a good opportunity for us to come together as a family to support each other--and Brenna, and be able to save up a little bit of extra money to help with the incoming bills. We ordered 200 bracelets, thinking that would be more than enough--but boy were we wrong! We had so many people contact us, and we sold all 200 bracelets, in just a couple of hours! We placed another bracelet order, because there are still so many people who want them!

There are no words to describe my feelings, toward all of you, who have contributed to our cause- many of you we know personally, but also those who we do not know. Over the last few days, we have received many anonymous donations, and contributions in our behalf. It is truly amazing to see and feel the love and concern of so many wonderful people. I wish I knew who you were, so I could thank you! It is overwhelming to think that there are so many good people, who want to help us, and are willing to do so.

We have never experienced anything like this, it is all new to us. I can't even to begin to describe the feelings we have felt being on the receiving end of so many wonderful and generous acts of kindness. You have all been an answer to our prayers. We have been so blessed, and we know there are many more blessings coming to us, and to each of you because of your willingness to help us in our time of need.

I have made a promise to myself, that I would try to be better in helping those around me. I want to give service to those in need, be a friend to those who need a friend, and be a listening ear to those who are facing hardships. I want to be a person that others can rely on. I may not be able to do much right now, but, I know that in the future, I am going to reach out and help others in any way that I can.

Heavenly Father has put us in this situation, knowing our full potential, and has placed angels along the way to help us. I have been inspired by so many of you and hope that I will be able to help and inspire others along the way. I want to be an influence for good, and return the favors that we have so generously been given.

One of our many callings in life, is to reach out to those around us, love them as the Savior would love them, and do everything we can to serve them. It really is a simple task--the Savior does not ask much of us. If we all try a little harder, we can do amazing and marvelous works. I have seen it, and have felt the spirit testify of the sweetness and miracles that occur because of service. I am working on being better, and will take advantage of any opportunity I can, to serve others to the best of my ability.

Once again, THANK YOU all, for your love, support, concern, and the examples that you have set for us. We can't possibly imagine facing this trial without so many wonderful people behind us, to help us, and strengthen us. We love you all--

"We are Children, holding hands around the world; like an army with the gospel flag unfurled. We are led by His light, and we love truth and right; WE are BUILDING the Kingdom of God."
-Holding Hands Around the World  (LDS Children's Songbook)


Friday, March 14, 2014

Our Second Primary Children's Visit

Wow. What a day! We left home at 9:30 this morning, and we are just getting home! It is now after 7pm.

We started off the day in the Cardiology unit at Primary Children's Hospital--for a routine Echo-cardiogram. Lynn, the same tech we had last time, did this echo as well. She is very nice and friendly, and she remembered us--probably because Brenna was so naughty last time! Anyways, we sat in the room while she did the scan. It was a surprise when she said we were done after only 40 minutes! (last time it took over two hours!) Brenna cooperated for the most part, and everything went well.

We met with Dr. Miller, and Dr. Polkchowski, as well as our two social workers, Kim & Lisa. The Echo-cardiogram showed the same thing as last time (which is a good thing) . No new worries or concerns, which we are grateful for! From the looks of things it looks like Brenna will more than likely have to have a shunt put in her heart, to take the blood to her lungs. They are still very hopeful, but it is still a very serious procedure. We were glad to not hear any more bad news!

I also got to go over to the University of Utah Hospital, to have an ultrasound, and meet my new OB. The ultrasound went great! Brenna looks very healthy, and is right on schedule with her measurements! She is full of personality, and wouldn't sit still-probably because she had been poked and prodded at all day! She weighs just over 2.5lbs, has chubby legs and cheeks, and already has lots of hair!! We were actually able to see her face, so we were thrilled! We can't wait to meet her, and see what she looks like for reals!

My new OB seems so great! Her name is Dr. Erin Clark. She delivers at the University Hospital--mostly High Risk Births. She was very sweet, full of energy, and was very reassuring. I'm glad I felt comfortable with her, I know we will get along, and that she will be amazing!

Overall, it was a good day! We are in such good hands, and I am so thankful to be able to have so much support and love. I am so thankful for modern technology, and the amazing things that are able to be done because of it--Brenna will be very well taken care of, and for that we are so thankful!

This is Brenna, our precious little babe. 
She is already so sweet, and we are SO EXCITED to meet her! 
(The white stuff on the back of her head is HAIR!) 

Once again, we appreciate all of you--your love and support mean the world to us, and to Brenna. We couldn't do this without you. Please keep praying for our family--especially Brenna! We LOVE you all, thanks for all you do! 

"Don't use your energy to worry. Use your energy to BELIEVE."


Monday, March 10, 2014

The Waiting Game

It seems as though the days pass SO SLOWLY, but the weeks usually pass a little bit quicker. I feel like the last 2 months of our life have dragged on and felt like an eternity. We have been waiting and waiting, to find out more information on what to expect, and what we need to do to prepare ourselves (mentally & physically) for Brenna's arrival.

On Friday, we will be going back up to Primary Children's Hospital for another echo-cardiogram, we will also be visiting the U of U hospital to meet with a few potential OB doctors, have an ultrasound, possibly meet with a surgeon, and tour the Newborn Heart Intensive Care Unit. I am really nervous, but at the same time, excited, and a little bit scared. I'm hoping that things have improved, and that we wont have to hear any more bad news. I am trying to prepare myself for what I will see and experience in the Heart NICU. I know it wont be easy, but I am hoping that going now, and seeing what things could potentially be like will help ease my mind, and help me prepare better to be able to help Brenna as much as I can. There is a possibility that we could be spending a lot of time there (we are hoping only to be there for a few days, but you never know.) and the more comfortable I feel, the better off I will be.

I am hoping that when i have my regular ultrasound, we will be able to actually see her face. We have not been able to see her face in any previous ultrasounds because she is a wiggle worm, and she hides her face! She likes to be a stinker, and not hold still long enough to get a good look at her. We are pretty sure, that she might come out looking like a monkey, both Tyler and I had loads of dark hair when we were born, and if the whole "having heartburn" really means you are going to have a hairy baby, then Brenna might look like Chewbacca! I am SOOO excited to meet her, and finally be able to see what she looks like! It is so crazy to think we are only 11 weeks away!

On a side note, Tyler and I decided that we wanted to do something special--just for her. We had custom  bracelets made, that we will be selling. Our motto throughout this whole experience has been "Believe In Miracles". We had that printed on the front of the bracelets, with her name printed on the back of them. The cost of the bracelets will be $3, we are trying to save a little bit of money--as the medical bills have already started coming, (and it doesn't really help that our little miss doesn't have insurance...) and they probably wont stop for quite some time. The picture below shows what they look like. (it shows the front and the back of the bracelet) They are adult sizes, and will fit a man's wrist! If you are interested, please contact me or my mom. Thanks for all you do, and for your love.


Sunday, March 2, 2014


With it being Fast Sunday, I have felt like I should write down and share some bits and pieces of my own Testimony--as well as some other experiences that have happened this last week.

On Friday morning, I had to opportunity to go to the Temple with my Mom, and Grandma & Grandpa Cowan. That morning, it seemed like nothing went right! (My alarm didn't go off, so I was running late, I cut myself shaving in the shower, I couldn't find my shoes, and then my keys went missing!) I was so excited to be able to go to the temple, but my thoughts and feelings quickly turned into down and discouraging ones with all of this happening. It was a rough morning! I definitely know that someone DID NOT want me to go to the temple, and that he would do anything he could to distract me and not let me get there. Even though we were a few minutes late, we did get to the Temple, and I am beyond grateful and happy that we did! The Temple is definitely the House of the Lord, and I truly feel like I am in his presence there. All of my earthly cares and worries wash away when I am there, and I am able to focus on the things that matter most to me--my savior, my family, my husband & sweet baby girl. While sitting in the Celestial Room, I was overcome with the spirit, and tears filled my eyes as I felt Brenna's special spirit. I know she was there. As I felt her spirit near me, she started moving inside me like I have never felt before! It was as if she was trying to say that she was there, and she wasn't going anywhere. She reassured me that everything would be ok. I am so grateful for the experiences and the peace felt in the temple. Many questions were answered, and much needed peace and comfort was felt as I was there. The temple is so important to me, and I am so glad that because of the covenants Tyler and I made in the temple, we get to be with our children, and each other, FOREVER.

I am beyond grateful for so many good examples in my life. I am surrounded by so many wonderful people who know who they are and what they stand for--even in a world full of filth and distractions, they stay strong, and find the good in everything. I have to admit, that I am terrified for my own kids. The world is getting to be such a negative influence--everything I believe as a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, is completely opposite of what the world now views as "correct" or "acceptable". Nothing is sacred anymore--there is so much hate and opposition that we all face on a daily basis. I hope and pray that I will be an influence for good, and that I might be able to help my own kids see and be the good in the world. I hope I will be able to teach them, and that they will always feel like they have somewhere to turn in times of trouble. I know I will never be able to shelter them from all of the evil in the world. Sadly there is no way to avoid it, but I will do everything I can to teach them, to help them develop their own testimonies, and have a desire to choose the right.

I am so thankful for the Priesthood. It has always been such a huge blessing to me, and has helped me in times of trouble. I am so blessed to have such righteous men in my life, who are worthy to hold the Priesthood, and use it to better the lives of those around them. My dad has always been an example to me, and I look up to him--he has always been there to give me a blessing whenever I need it. I am so thankful for Tyler, and for the blessings, advice, and council that he has given me. I am so glad my children will be able to grow up with the Priesthood in our home. I am also so grateful, that when Brenna does get here, that she will be able to have Priesthood blessings, that will hopefully help her through the trials she will face so early in life.

Prayer is one of the many things that I have really come to rely on throughout my life, especially when facing hardships. It is the only way I can communicate with my Heavenly Father, if I need something, or am looking for an answer to a question I might have, or even just to thank him for all he has given me. It has been such a help to me, to know that no matter where I am, or what I am doing, that I can pray and he will be listening. I know that prayer will bring me closer to my Heavenly Father, and that no matter what I am feeling, or going through, I can turn to him. Every time I pray, I know that he is there, and that our relationship is being strengthened and he is sending blessings my way.

Fasting goes hand in hand with prayer. I have had many experiences with fasting, and witnessed many miracles because of it--both in my own life, and in the lives of those who were struggling. I am so thankful to all of you, who have fasted in Brenna's behalf. We have seen miracles already, and I know that we are going to see more! It is so great to know, that all of you are concerned for her, and want to help. My mom told me last fast Sunday, that my sweet 8 year old cousin, fasted a FULL 24 hours just for Brenna. Fasting isn't easy, especially when you are so young (let's be honest, it is never easy no matter how old you are!). I am amazed everyday at the willingness of friends and family to fast and pray for us. There are no words express our gratitude.

My heart is so full today, thinking of the many blessings we have, and are still receiving. We are so lucky to have such good family, who have taught us, and loved us, and helped us in hard times. I am so grateful that Brenna will be surrounded by such good people, who already love her, and care for her. My testimony truly has been strengthened, and I hope it will continue to grow, as we continue on this journey. We  love you all! Thanks for all you do.

"Believe in Miracles"