Yesterday, the four of us traveled up the road to Durham for the Duke ICN reunion. They do this every year for the "graduates" of the Duke Intensive Care Nursery. We've been looking forward to this pretty much from the moment Riley first arrived at Duke, because that meant we made it. They have an Album of Hope in the waiting area of the ICN that we perused several times and teared up at the thought of Riley making it through what he was going through and being at a reunion. When we met the Myers, it changed to Riley and Carter running around after each other one day at the reunion.
Well. They aren't running (yet). But here they are!
The day began early
Brigit spotted us as soon as we walked in and all we heard was her squealing and then there she was!She scooped Riley away, but between teething, and all the commotion, he was kind of overwhelmed through the whole event and preferred to stay close to mommy, although he did give away a few snuggles.
(see big bird in the reflection, he would prove to be a problem!)
Brigit and Rachael...words can never describe the gratitude for all these 2 have done for Riley.
Carter and Riley, together again. a little funny...when Brigit walked up with Carter when he first got there, Rachael turned Riley towards them, and Carter reached right out and snatched Riley's paci from his mouth. That alone would be cute and funny, but those of us in the know, know that Riley LOVES him some paci...and he looked at Carter soooooo serious that we all just burst out laughing at them.
Forever a part of our family....we LOVE you Brigit!!!
Also forever a part of our family....Rachael rocks and will be a GREAT NNP one day!!
As usual, Carter and Riley were misbehaving together
Little baby....big church...we prayed more than once inside those big heavy wooden doors for his healing
It was so good to see several families that we met during our stay there. And to see the older children that came before us, running all around. It has to be such a great feeling for these doctors and nurses to see all these children, some of which were thought to not make it, running around, laughing, giggling, crying....LIVING!
We saw, not only our friends Brad, Kellie and baby Carter, but baby Mercy as well. These 3 babies went through a lot "together" at Duke. But they are all doing so well now. Not without their own individual struggles, but compared to where they were, those are 3 thrilled Momma's your looking at!
Earlier in the day, Riley and Mercy got a little friendly with each other
And it was all cute and fun until Riley squealed loudly at Mercy, spooking her, and then the fun was over. Nurse Lindzie wasn't surprised. Riley was always pretty much the loudest baby in not only the unit at Duke, but at NHRMC also.
Everyone thought not only Riley had grown, but Travis as well. We heard that comment over and over.
Travis finally got to go to the play area outside the children's health center and play (its always locked up on the weekends, when he was typically there). It was kind of short lived though because it was HOT out there.
We were also one of three families interviewed for the Durham Herald Sun newspaper. It was published in todays edition. You can read it online here.
After the reunion was over, we had lunch with Rachael and then visited with Scott, Michelle and Jason for a bit. It was a long day, a late night and lots of driving, but it was worth it!