Three questions on Friday #5 – what’s your F word this week?

It’s Friday – so time for three questions and an F word

My F word for the week is FAMILY

What made me happy this week?

Need you ask? Spending time with my daughter, son-in-law and baby Dottie. I still can’t cuddle Dottie but I can touch her and talk to her. And the book I made for her, Dottie and the Wombat, has arrived – more news on this soon!

Family Smiles
Family Smiles with Dottie

My daughter wrote an update on Dottie’s 3 month birthday this week which made me very proud and happy. For those of you who have been following Dottie’s story you might like to read her update.

Dottie is 3 months old 😱

Day 92 in the NICU house. 92 long old days but that said this month feels to have gone quicker and the last 2 weeks someone seems to have hit the accelerate button.

I missed all of autumn my favourite season but instead of getting to watch the leaves change colour I got do so something far more beautiful which is seeing Dottie growing bigger and stronger. It was world prematurity day on Sunday and looking back to how she was vs now was staggering to see how far she’s come and how lucky in someways it’s been that we’ve watched her grow in front of our eyes instead of tucked away in my womb.

It’s been another month with milestones hit. She had her first bath, mastered low flow for her breathing, had all of her grandparents visit, broke the 3kg mark (currently 7lb 3oz), dressed up as a pumpkin for Halloween, they took our big monitor away, replaced it with a little monitor, took our little monitor away and replaced it with nothing 😱. She’s had her 2nd round of immunisations (which she coped so much better with), met her children’s community team and health visitor. She had her first trip off the ward hanging out with mummy for a couple of hours in our parents room. That was the first time I’ve had with her completely on our own. She was signed off by the eye doctors for ROP which is amazing especially for the gestation she was born at and passed her hearing screening with flying colours. 13 weeks of expressing paid off and kept my milk in so she is now exclusively breast fed and lost her feeding tube. She’s learnt how to cry loudly (a skill we could probably do without) and decided that she likes to be nocturnal and have her own little Dottie Discos in the wee hours of the night.

Sadly however this month we said goodbye to a very dear little friend who left this world far too soon. Her parents strength and courage throughout this time has been not only heartbreaking but also so inspirational to see. We’ll think of little Georgie every day and Dottie will know all about her NICU friend who she used to have daily competitions as to who could set off their monitors first and who she’d wave at from her cot at all hours of the day.

As always it’s been tough and full of the inevitable up and downs however we are starting to see the end of our hospital journey and if things continue as is we should also be home soon! She will be coming home on oxygen so that will be a challenge but one I’m sure we will cope with it, it might just mean we hibernate over the winter but at least we’ll get to do that at home as a family and off the unit.

Thank you again to everyone for your continued help and support. We wouldn’t have got this far without you all and know that we are so lucky to have you all in our lives.

One major shout out and the hugest of thanks to our DIY SOS superheroes Craig, Uncle Dave, Uncle Mike and cousin Nick who have been dead set legends with helping finish the house ready for Dottie’s arrival. I don’t even know where to start in thanking you all for what you have done and are still doing for us.

What made me sad this week?

I’m not sure that anything has made me sad this week – except hearing of the heatwave conditions back at home and the continuation of bushfires. It seems weird to hear about the hot temps, while I’m feeling the cold over here in England.

What made a difference this week?

It was World Prematurity Day on Sunday 17 November and it was very fitting that it was the day I got to see Dottie again since my last visit, and it was the Mathematician’s first meeting with her. He was thoroughly smitten!

Did you know there was such a thing as World Prematurity Day? I certainly didn’t before this and I applaud any organisation that promotes awareness of the many issues related to premature births. It makes a huge difference!

World Prematurity Day
World Prematurity Day

As my daughter and son-in-law prepare to take Dottie home after so long in hospital, the nurses and staff have been amazing in getting them ready for what lies ahead. They have all made such a difference to our lives and we can’t thank them enough for their care and support.

They also love practicing their Aussie accents on us, which is always good for a laugh!

OK it’s your turn now – what would your answers be?

I always enjoy reading your responses to these questions so please leave me a comment and tell me how your week has been.

I’m enjoying this weekly reflection as it makes me stop and think – what about you, do you do something similar?

What would your F word be?

All the best for the week ahead.

Deb xx


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43 Replies to “Three questions on Friday #5 – what’s your F word this week?”

  1. I love getting your updates, Deb. Keep em coming! As for what made me happy this week, a complimentary, confidence-boosting performance evaluation at work. What made me sad: my mother is struggling with health problems and she is going to spend some time in a rehabilitation center. What made a difference? Having my big, loving family gathered together in support of my Mom and each other. #MLSTL

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh that’s nice to hear Christie, I really love just writing them down for my memories and to get out what I’m feeling at the time so it’s always nice to hear that others enjoy reading my updates! Thanks for letting me know 🙂
      Happy for you re your confidence boosting performance evaluation at work – so good for you to feel on top of things and that you’re doing well. Sorry to hear about your mother’s health issues and you can’t go past family for support, especially at times like these! Take care x

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  2. I sense it has been a time of heartbreak and stupendously happy moments all rolled into one. There is no doubt a small sense of guilt and a great sense of thank goodness Dottie has got this far and will continue to go further.
    When I think of the whole process of birthing, it is a wonder that we all survived!!

    You are in the perfect place for Christmas, and all we have on our minds is camping 🙂 More on this later. Have fun Deb and Grant xx

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You are so right Suz, lots of different emotions all rolled into together. I am more worried about now than i ever was when i was younger and had my own girls- how bizarre is that?? We are looking forward to lots of Dottie time and the cold weather is growing on me (now that I have bought some gum boots) it’s a special time of year over here. Camping sounds interesting!! Thanks for all your support and understanding, you have a lot on your plate too and we often talk of you both xx

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      1. I don’t think that’s bizarre Deb and I do understand even though not a mother. Off camping today to a quiet bay for sone R and R. Thanks Deb and we chat about you both too when thinking about our time in the UK and Oz 🙂 xx

        Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi Debbie – I’m happy to hear Dottie has been doing so well with her milestones and is now home. I didn’t know about the World Prematurity Day but I know there are support groups formed by families with premature babies. Thanks for sharing your family updates and lovely photos. #MLSTL

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Frustrated – I don’t get people aren’t angrier at the Government when they cover for someone so obviously caught up in the wrong thing. And if not the matter the Police are investigating, how about just plain old conflict of interest? We’ve fallen a long way as a nation.
    Sad – all those animals flooding SM injured in the bushfires, the populations wiped out, and the fact that it won’t stop (and we don’t seem to understand we need to do something to be better prepared – if only adequately fund the Fire Service.)
    What made a difference? I don’t know. Took a friend for her last Chemo, So I guess that sort of made a difference, in one way or another.
    I just realise how negative I sound. Because of the air quality, I haven’t been able to exercise, so I’m guessing that might be affecting my mood….:( #MLSTL

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Oh Lydia, I hear your frustration and I can understand it. I think frustration is a great word but it’s hard to have to deal with all that’s going on. I’ve heard that the air quality back at home is terrible and I feel for you. What a lovely help you must have been to your friend with genie chemo treatment. Thanks for your comment and I do hope things improve for you.

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  5. I can only imagine how your daughter felt at the passing of little Georgie. Dottie is certainly a special little girl – and that lead photo is fabulous. What made me happy this week? Sarah coming home from Sydney and then me coming home from Sydney. What made me sad? The air quality down there at present, and what made a difference? I’m not sure, synchronicity maybe? A few things I’d read in blogs and books this week came up in unrelated conversations.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Hi Deb, I can see how Dottie is getting bigger and thriving. I greatly appreciate you sharing the photos. Your daughter’s update brought happy and sad tears.

    This time I was mentally prepared and I thought about you today even before I read your post. At the end of my Hot Yoga class I realized I had a simple thing that made me happy today: splashing the cold water on my face at the end of the class. It is the best feeling.

    Another immediate memory: We took our three-year-old daughter swimming and then to White Spot (a restaurant) for lunch. She loves our undivided attention. Unexpectedly, she yells out “The Best Day Ever!” Everyone in the restaurant turns to look at us. Everyone has a huge smile.🙂 Sending you continued good wishes and hugs for you and your family.💕

    Liked by 1 person

  7. A lovely positive post Deb and your daughter’s words were beautifully written too. So wonderful that Dottie is on the home straight (literally!) and she can sing “I’ll be home for Christmas” with Bing Crosby xx

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m so pleased to read of Dottie’s progress and the fact that they are now talking about when she can come home – what a huge milestone that will be. Although I am sure that will be a scary day after so many days in the NICU – but it is the start of her next chapter. We are so lucky to have such great medical facilities over here and I have nothing but admiration for those NICU nurses who support not only the babies in their care but the family unit as a whole. Big hugs to Dottie and all her family!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Deb, it is both an amazing and scary prospect having her come home soon. Their house is still being renovated so it’s a race against time at the moment. The NICU staff have been wonderful and I’m so pleased with the medical facilities and support they’ve given Melanie, Craig and Dottie. Thanks again for your support it means a lot.

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  9. So many answered prayers and blessings that we often take for granted with babies born to term. My heart is warm reading about Dottie’s milestones. She has become a regular little chunk weighing in at over 7 lbs. Cannot wait for her to move home and begin life like a regular little baby. But there is nothing regular about this little fighter. Please plant a kiss on her nose for me.

    What made me happy this week? The book I’ve been reading.
    What made me sad this week? A devastating situation facing my MIL.
    What made a difference this week? Hope that the little pup and kitty treats that I took to the animal shelter made a difference to them for a short time.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for all your positive thoughts Leslie, it’s been amazing to me how many people around the world have been thinking of us all. I will definitely plant a little kiss for you when I’m allowed near her!

      I’m sorry to hear about your MIL and hope you can find a resolution soon.. Good on you for helping out some little animals, you are such a kind and thoughtful person 🙂

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    1. Thanks Donna, her words made me happy too! Yes Georgie’s family are struggling and Melanie is staying in touch with them, they all formed a lovely bond while in hospital together. It’s been great to share Dottie’s story with everyone and I’m blown away by all the support and love from you all. xx

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  10. I’m so pleased you’ll all have Dottie at home soon, and although we didn’t get to know Georgie via your posts, it was never-the-less heart wrenching to hear she didn’t make it.
    I guess my F word this week would have to, ‘finally’. It’s taken three years to finally catch up on some medical issues that I had ignored while travelling. I can now see the light at the end of the tunnel.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Yes Chris I know what you mean about Georgie’s story, I only knew about her recently but it has affected Melanie, as you can imagine.
      I’m so happy you have a light at the end of the tunnel in regards to your health issues – there’s nothing worse than ignoring issues and then worrying about them. Thanks for joining in!

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  11. F for Facetime and Family – chatted to my mum and sister in Australia on Tuesday. Even though Mum is 93 and getting very frail her brain, hearing and eyesight are excellent. The three of us lamented climate change, the terrible fires and the attitude of political leaders. Well done to Dottie and her mum with the breastfeeding.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Isn’t Facetime the best thing? I’ve already facetimed my daughters back in Australia while I’ve been here. I’m so happy to hear your mum is going well and is able to facetime with you!
      Yes I’m so pleased that Melanie has managed to continue feeding, it’s a real credit to her after all she’s been through.

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