This summer Tom and I created a type of bucket list of things we wanted to do with Tera. We've found out the hard way that if we just wait for available time to happen and then try and think of something to do, it never quite works out. So we created a list of places we've either heard about or have been wanting to go to as Tera is old enough. We either try and put them on our calendar or when an upcoming weekend looks to have some free time, we try and figure out something on the list that might make sense. We've both had to make the decision that even though we also both have our own "to-do" lists of home projects, our time as a family is more valuable and more important. Despite the fact that we don't have much free time, there will be time to get "chores" done, but we don't want to look back on a weekend, a month, or a year and regret that we didn't do more fun things as a family.
Last week was a stressful beginning because of Tera's cardiologist appointment, her six month review, and then the headache of having more scheduling to do and trying to figure out when it's all going to happen. But as the week went on, it got a little easier. Tom was home with me on Tuesday so he could work on his car and I finished up a few house projects. Wednesday my mom took Tera for the day so she could visit with Tera and I went to my sister's house to help her with my three week old twin nieces. It was a really nice day with my sister and nieces as I mostly got to snuggle with them. Then Thursday I worked around the house in the morning and then actually made time for myself and went to see my chiropractor for a massage and then got a pedicure before we headed to my in law's house for dinner.
Then there was Friday. Tom's favorite day of the whole year is ComiCon (for those not familiar with the term, it is a comic book convention). He's never been a huge comic book reader, but a large part of the convention is vendors selling collectibles of various types and he is a big fan of that. Yes, my husband is an avid collector of Star Wars memorabilia and is just completely in his element at this event. I've gone with him every year that he's gone and since Tera's birth, we've also brought her with us. He looks forward to the event every year and literally starts counting down the days as it approaches. It's not something on our list, but it's definitely a tradition and one that I hope Tera can start to enjoy a little more each year to give her something to bond with Daddy over. She was of course appropriately dressed in her R2D2 dress.
We had already decided that as long as the weather cooperated, we would try and go to the Chicago Botanic Gardens on Saturday morning. Fortunately we were able to spend a really nice morning seeing all the beautiful flowers and grounds there and Tera was able to run around a little. We were also able to get some really nice pictures and it's something we'd really like to bring her back to soon.
At the end of this little excursion I took Tera to the bathroom before we left and Tom was waiting outside for us. When we came out he told me Tera had been "spotted" again. Apparently a family that we had passed on our way out had seen Tera and while I was in the bathroom with her, the dad approached Tom and asked him if Tera had DS, which Tom confirmed, and he then explained that his wife is due with their second child and the baby has DS. Tom kind of briefly explained what it's entailed so far, like therapies, specialists, and medical issues (none too negatively). The other dad said they were already aware of the therapy situation and that their baby already has a confirmed heart condition. They chatted briefly and that was the end of it, but it was Tom's first solo conversation and it's just still a little surprising every time it happens.
These next two weeks are full of appointments and all the preparations and meetings I have to get ready to go back to work. My main goal is to try and take one day at a time and enjoy the time I have left with Tera. Each day will tell how successfully I'm able to do that.
By the way, anyone who has fun things to do as a family (both indoors or outdoors) and from now through the rest of the year in the Chicagoland area, feel free to share. We'd love to add to our list!