Tuesday, June 9, 2009


I'm leaving early tomorrow morning for North Carolina to visit my son J, and his wife and son, who I'll call j (see, there's big J and little j). j is 10 months old, and I last saw him at Thanksgiving time.

j is a healthy little guy, but was born with a cleft lip and palate. Soon after he was born, my son and I talked frequently about what they were going to be able to do and how they were coping with all of it. We knew surgeries would be required, but didn't know quite to what extent or when they would be done.

I'm not a mother who gives advice often without being asked. But I couldn't stop thinking about that poor little boy having to go through such an ordeal already. So I urged my son to take care of things as early as possible. I told him that I thought that if they waited until j was closer to a year old, that it would be so difficult on all of them. I knew that the older he got, the more attached to mommy and daddy he would become. And I remember telling my son that it would absolutely break his heart to see j afraid or to hear him cry when the doctors and nurses were taking him in to the operating room.

His first surgery was at four months old and was to fix his lip. I waited all morning for a phone call to say that things were fine. I didn't get a phone call, but I did get a text message or two. The phone call came the following day. J told me that he'd been unable to talk on the phone because he knew he would cry. I said, "See?" He laughed then and told me that he'd said to himself, "Mom was right!" several times the day before.

j had his second surgery on the 20th of May. According to his wonderful doctors, he should be done and not need any other surgeries in the future. I hope they're right!

In recovery after surgery.

Just in the last year or two, I'd finally gotten to the point where I didn't cry when it was time to say goodbye whenever one of us was visiting the other. But this little guy changes everything (why must they be clear on the other side of the country?)

About 10 days after surgery. (picture is not great

but was taken with a phone) I think he's feeling better!

I'm not sure if I'll be able to post anything while I'm gone. But if I can't, I'm sure I'll have stories to share when I return next week. Till then, be happy!


  1. Janet, little j is so cute I can see how tears come when it is time to leave. Have fun and enjoy your visit. I will keep my fingers cross all the surgies are behind him. Enjoy! xoxo

  2. Oh, when children learn how much they can love their own children it causes joy and pain, doesn't it? Pain when they know how much their parents loved them and how they might have taken it for granted. But joy since they can now redouble their efforts to show it to them - and pass it on to their own kids. Thanks for your comment on my blog. We all love visitors! Thanks so much for your story. We all hope your visit with little j goes just swell! - Jeanne in Oregon

  3. Enjoy your time there with your family, and the little guy looks like he's doing great, considering he's climbing the dishwasher... boy's being a boy ;)
    Have a safe trip

  4. Adorable! Travel safe, and come back with plenty of stories and photos for us!

  5. Sweet j...how lovely he is! Hope all will be well with him. Wishing safe, happy journey, Janet! :o)

  6. i'll miss your posts while you're gone, but i'm so happy you get to go be with your kids. yea for happy, healthy babies!!!

  7. Janet, he is beautiful! And I'd say he's doing great! From this shot I don't see any sign of his surgery although there is probably some scarring. He can always grow a moustache later ;-)

    And you are only about an 8 hour drive from me!!

  8. Hey, Janet, Athens is NOT that far at all from N.C. Next time, we need to confer... lol!
    Oh yeah, that kiddo is feeling much better since he's crawling up into the dishwasher to help Mom with those dishes. What a cutie!

    I will be thinking about you. And say, Mom is ALWAYS right.
    Take care and get what you love.
    Candace in Athens.

  9. Absolutely, Mom is always right. Still it doesn't take away the pain and suffering like it should, huh? I What a beautiful little boy. j is definitely a gift for you, as all babies are.

    Awesome blog.

  10. i hope everything went well!! i seem to recall seeing some tweets, so i think it did. :-)


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