Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Let that sun SHINE!

This a page for the Studio Calico 4th Anniversary song lyrics challenge. I felt it was time to pull out my newborn Lola photos again as I do every year around this time.

Have you ever (this should be a regular column!) gotten a random print "just because" or maybe it was a gift or part of a kit- anyway- you didn't recognize it's TRUE BEAUTY and HIGH ART POTENTIAL till months later when it's no longer available because everyone else was like "WHAAA? That print is AWESOME! MINE times 50 please!" 
You are my sunshine- Studio Calico Lyrics challenge
MATERIALS: Sassafras Lass Starters- ABC, Maya Road kraft die cut doily and kraft doily die cuts (black),  Studio Calico wood grain butterfly run ons , Fancy Pants Filter paper in pinked edge, American Crafts Polka dot alphas, Mister Huey in Calico Cream and Sunshine yellow, Studio Calico yellow script alphas stickers, Kaiser Craft mini alphas in kraft, Jillibean Soup Watermelon Gazpacho circle journaling tag, Martha Stewart Punch all over the page pinking circle, SC exclusive journaling tag and heart wood veneers. Epiphany Crafts Vintae surrounds, American Crafts Zing in Mustard .
Like the body builder in that annoying commercial for Planet Fitness, I picked up and put down Sassafras Lass' Starters ABC print dozens of times but I had seen it in so many fantastic pages I just didn't feel up to the challenge. Ah the heck with it- it's JUST PAPER Michelle! SHEESH! 
Lo and behold- it's the PERFECT shade of warm beige and now I'm in LOOOOVE. Naturally it's sold out everywhere but that's ok as I'm broke anyway.

Ok back to story behind the page:
Love how I can't control my "new" Smith Corona typewriter.
I was seriously freaked out by the lyrics to the song "You Are My Sunshine" during the first few weeks of Lola's life. The song is so eerie for a family in our situation. I just could not get the words out without choking back fearful tears. So I changed them.
You are my sunshine
My lovely sunshine
You make me happy when days are grey
I'll always love you and take good care of you
When you come home I'll hug you every day
Miss Lola was diagnosed with a 9mm Cystic Hygroma at 19 weeks (she was barely double that size herself!) and was given very small odds to survive. I was told she would most likely be severely disabled but no one could tell me for sure- everything was a set of odds like I was gambling in Las Vegas. So Dave and I stuck it out. We ignored all the scary genetic probabilities. She was born 6 weeks early and stayed in the intensive care unit for 2 months. I did not get to actually hold my baby for 2 weeks and my breast milk made her fluid retention condition much much worst. Yet Miss Lola is completely fine today. 

I post about this at least twice a year to encourage parents whose baby has been diagnosed with Cystic Hygroma or Fetal Hydrops to try to stick it through and give the baby a chance. Lola was given a 1 in 10 chance of survival. Well she survived and she's STRONG- no genetic, developmental or health defects. 

The numbers are scary and the genetic counselors have to focus on the scary news in order to protect their practices from lawsuits but no one can give you a real yes or no answer on whether the baby will survive, be severely disabled or not- we simply do no know enough yet. All we have is probability. Yes the chances were small and the risks were great but I ask myself what if I had given in to my fear of the unknown? Ahh it's too awful to contemplate.

Here's last year's page:
I worked on the stitching for DAYS. I wouldn't pile so many small details into a page now but I still really like this page. I wonder what next year's version will look like? :)
I love that photo and scrap it repeatedly because of Lola's expression- intelligent life- brave life- that's my kid. This photo makes me want to FIGHT to make sure Miss Thing gets every chance to survive and thrive. This is my NEVER FORGET photo.

Window were I shoot most of my pages- the light is sporadic and weak but it's Brooklyn, I should feel lucky I don't face a brick wall. Lola approves of the page- she says OOOO OOO. :)
MuChoS SmOoChEs!


  1. wow. had no idea (obv.). brave you. and i love that the only hint of scrappy self-doubt in this post was in the inverse - 'I've got over the hurdle'. hugs x

  2. I knew from a prior post that Lola had a rough start, but I didn't know how rough. I love your positive attitude in the face of such adversity; and your story made me a little teary this morning. So glad she is well! As to the LO, I love the journaling along the rays, with a few words added in kraft alphas. And the stitching on last year's project is awesome!

  3. I had heard and read that Lola is a blessing baby. I love these anniversary pages you put together. She is gorgeous and wonderful.

    As for something fun in common....we are gonna RAWK the SAWKS of peeps! Can't wait!

  4. Thank you for sharing Lola's story. Truly inspiring. Such a little angel. Actually two angels...Lola and you.

  5. This layout is absolutely breathtaking. Lola looks so tiny and fragile in the photo, I can only imagine how scary that must have been for you and your husband. Thank God Lola is so healthy, beautiful & full of energy.

    BTW, I love your rewrite of the Sunshine Song...totally perfect! :)

  6. love it! and the heartfelt and still painful words...of all people, you know I so get it. I'm jsut amazed at how brave you are to scrap taht time in your life; my photos are still lying dormant cause here we are, 7 yrs later and I'm STILL not ready. ps-love the typewriter words :)

    (Kate)( I'm doing admin work for True XOXO)

  7. oh Michelle! *hugs* you're a brave mama.. Lola is lucky to have you and Dave. That page is awesome.. every bit of it.

  8. Wow Michelle an inspirational story and page!! But the most important is that Lola is fine!! GAD!!!!
    You're very brave!! I love how you wrote the journal...como si los rayos del sol cantaran la cancion!! Dios bendiga a Lola!! Un abrazo!! :)


Ok peeps lets CHAT! You tell me what you REALLY think and I PROMISE to keep it open minded here.