Posted by: Matt and Jenna | June 22, 2009


Eli is lovin’ life these days. His happiness is such a blessing! We often find ourselves thanking God for his contagious smile, because life has drastically changed since the dark days during his first few weeks of life. I know we seemed like everything was fine during that time, but that’s how Matt and I get through tough times–hold it together for each other and focus on the positive. Don’t get me wrong–we have loved our sweet boy more than we could have ever imagined since the moment we first saw him, but let me provide a little background for those of you who weren’t around during that time.

From the time we brought Eli home from the hospital, we felt like something wasn’t quite right. We were told that we would have a week or so of a honeymoon-like phase, where our new baby would be so sleepy that we may not even be able to keep him awake for feedings. Well, that phase never occurred in our house, to say the least. The first couple of weeks were manageable, but things really got rough a couple of weeks in. Eli would scream on and off for hours during the day. Matt and I would sit in his nursery holding him, rocking him, doing everything we could think of to try to comfort him. He rarely slept during the day at all. And if he did sleep, he would only sleep while being held upright. If we tried laying him down, he would wake up screaming 90% of the time. If he did stay asleep he would wake up screaming after 20-30 minutes. The crazy thing was that he slept well at night from day one. He only woke up every 3-4 hours to eat and would immediately go back to sleep. Matt and I were just talking yesterday about how blessed we are that we’ve never had a bad night with our boy. We talked to his pediatrician several times trying to figure out what was going on. She assured us that he was fine. She said that any kind of medical problem would bother him at night as well, which made sense to us. We thought we just had a baby who hated life and was going to grow into one of those people who is just inherently grumpy. We never said it out loud, but we were both thinking, “What have we gotten ourselves into?” Finally, we decided to switch pediatricians when Eli was 6 weeks old. Our first visit was a “sick visit” to figure out what the heck was going on. I was on the verge of snapping. Seriously. Based on what we were describing, Dr. Graham (who is an angel in my book!) diagnosed Eli with reflux. Just like that. REALLY?? (Just an FYI-Acid Reflux is a common condition and an abnormal one in which acid in the stomach rises up into the esophagus. This occurs because the valve separating the contents of the stomach from the esophagus does not function properly.) We started Eli on Prevacid that day. Within a week the percentage of time he spent screaming was cut back. Two weeks-drastic difference. He was still struggling with naps. As he would start to fall asleep, he would kind of gag and then cry out. He just couldn’t relax enough to get into a deep sleep. Dr. Graham recommended that we add Zantac to see if that would make a difference. Within a couple of weeks, Eli was taking naps! Thank you Jesus!

We can’t pinpoint the moment in time when things changed, but Eli is like a different little boy these days. He loves life! He smiles with his whole being! There’s not a day that goes by that some stranger doesn’t stop me to ask if he is always this happy. Reflecting on this journey is extremely emotional for me. I can’t stop crying and praising our Heavenly Father just sitting here at the desk as I think about how He has blessed us through all of this!

Ok, so that “little bit of background” turned into an epic reflective journal entry. I just have to publicly acknowledge that God’s hand has been with us through this journey. We sincerely believe that Eli was healed, even if that healing involves medicine at this point. I also want to say that I firmly believe that the medicine won’t be needed one of these days. We try about once a month to wean E off of one of the medications. At this point he still needs both to keep the pain at bay, but I know that our attempt will be successful one of these days and he’ll be medicine free!

If you’re still reading, thanks for hanging in there! The original point here was to post these pictures of our happy boy. These smiles are typical, but we’re usually in Whole Foods or Target and I don’t have the camera to capture them. I thought Eli was taking a nap yesterday when Matt called me upstairs. When I walked into his room, this is what I found. Matt couldn’t resist getting the camera out. So yeah, he STILL doesn’t always take naps like he’s supposed to, but these days it’s for a very different reason…

Am I in trouble?

Am I in trouble?

I promise I've been sleeping.

I promise I've been sleeping.

Oh good--we can play!

Oh good--we can play!


Kelsey, I'm gonna getcha!

Kelsey, I'm gonna getcha!

Look Dad.  I'm a lion!  Rrrroar!

Look Dad. I'm a lion! Rrrroar!

Ok ok.  I know it's time to go night night, but first let me give Mom a kiss!

Ok ok. I know it's time to go night night, but first let me give Mom a kiss!



  1. Oh…..I want to get my hands on him! It has only been a week but I miss him so much. He is at such a cute stage & I don’t want to miss out. His smile melts my heart. Love you all!

  2. I loved the pictures he is on the move now and he will keep both of you jumping. We had so much fun with him when we came to Charleston. Hope to see you soon.

  3. Great post, Jenna. You guys are warriors! And you have such an amazing, sweet boy with the sweetest spirit. God is good!

  4. What a great blog entry. What an inspiration you guys are to others. Eli is so precious and adorable. We hope to see you guys soon.

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