A Note From Mandi

Kind of Like My Christmas Letter

As my faithful followers should know, 2019 brought the pregnancy and birth of my son. I’ve danced back and forth on the decision of whether or not to share his story here and I find myself landing on the side of “do it”… So here’s the plan for my 2020 project – Yes, I will be telling the story of my second pregnancy. We’ll call it the third installment after the pregnancy and preemie stories of 2017 told in 2018.

(Two) Down

March of Dimes

One last post on this year’s March for Babies (though you can still donate to this year!).

While I didn’t meet my personal goal of $2000 this year, I went into Walk day at $1655, which felt pretty good! Plus, our team went in with $4060 – over $1000 more than our goal of $3000! That kept us at a proud, third place finish overall.

(Two) Weeks

March of Dimes

With just two weeks to go until the March for Babies, I’m excited to report that we are in the Circle of Champions, having raised over $1000! We had a goal to raise $2000 this year, and I don’t think we’ll get there, but I am so happy to be able to give any amount to an organization that is fighting for the health of moms and babies in need.

Baby(‘s) (Two)

March of Dimes

Kevin and I know all too well how blessed we are to have brought Oaklee into the world in the twenty-first century. Even 25 years earlier, things would have gone so differently. The research of organizations like March of Dimes is monumental in the care of preemies like Oaklee. Please consider making a contribution towards that research. No parent deserves to lose a child they’ve barely had. While we are incredibly lucky to have Oaklee with us today, there are thousands of parents every year who cannot say the same. Let’s change that together. 

(Two) Years Ago

March of Dimes

Kevin and I know all too well how blessed we are to have brought Oaklee into the world in the twenty-first century. Even 25 years earlier, things would have gone so differently. The research of organizations like March of Dimes is monumental in the care of preemies like Oaklee. Please consider making a contribution towards that research. No parent deserves to lose a child they’ve barely had. While we are incredibly lucky to have Oaklee with us today, there are thousands of parents every year who cannot say the same. Let’s change that together. 

What is 69 Days?

What is 69 Days?

Remember reading about Oaklee’s date of discharge – the happiest day of my life? Or do you remember reading the post “Homegoings” from the very next day? Those heavy hitters seem so long ago, but that’s what 69 days feels like. Just short of 10 weeks, it’s almost 1/5 of a year, 1/20 of my husband’s and my marriage, an entire summer… My greatest mental battle in those 69 days was knowing we would never get those 69 days back…

NICU Awareness Day

NICU Awareness Day

If you’ve had a child in the NICU, you’ve seen something you can’t unsee. Even when my child was on the up and up, I sobbed listening to the grandma sing Jesus Loves Me to the three pound baby whom doctors had been swarming just hours before as he came out of surgery. Even when my child was coming home, I watched a mom and dad spend their last day with the daughter they’d never bring home. While our NICU stay was long, I truly believe you could have the peachiest, little NICU stay and still be changed by your experience. If your child has been in the NICU, your child has been a patient in an entire area of a hospital dedicated to saving the lives of the freshest of babes, often too fresh. The things you see, the vibes you feel, the stories you hear… you don’t get these anywhere else. 

Book Review – For One More Day

For One More Day

For One More Day is about Charles “Chick” Benetto, a product of a divorce, forced to choose between his mom and dad. His thirst for his father’s love leads him to baseball where he has a very short, very successful stint before getting injured, falling into a deep depression, surrendering to alcoholism and, eventually, attempting to end his life. Within the attempt, he enters the space between life and death where he spends one more day with his deceased mother and gets the chance to tie up loose ends and make wrongs right before living to tell about his experience.