Kip, Angie, Noah and Lily

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Memories of Hogan's journey.....

Angie is ready to have this beautiful baby boy Hogan!

Hogan Sayer Dominy (God's Little Warrior!)

Good Memories!

Hello World!


Hogan's eyes that could light up the city!

Hogan was a fighter!

"Our Angel"

A very interested older brother (Noah) and little sister (Lily)

Happy to see Baby Hogan!

Wow! Baby Hogan is here!!

Thank you God for this memory!

Lily wanted to check out her little brother!
A proud mom with her miracle baby!

What is faith? It is the confident assurance that we hope for is going to happen. It is the evidence of things we cannot yet see. God gave his approval to people in days of old because of their faith.

By faith we understand that the entire universe was formed at God's command, that what we now see did not come from anything that can be seen. Hebrews 11:1-3

Dear Hogan,

I sure do miss you!

Hogan, you were an amazing little baby. God had a plan for you during your short life and I know that you are now in a much better place. You are in a place that we all want to be some day! I know that as I have mentioned to you before... Heaven has a new face now than it did a few weeks ago. I have got to see you again. I don't want to miss out on today or wish time away but I am not going to be upset one day when God's plan calls me home.

I wanted to thank all of your friends for all the kind messages, the many prayers for our family, and the continued prayers and thoughts. We can't thank your friends enough for their kindness. I have started about 8 different letters but haven't posted any of them until tonight. This letter is "new" and different from the others. I think I am going to write you letters periodically and let you know what is going on with our family. I will also update you on how God is continuing to work through your 3 pound body. Although you have gone to be with Jesus in Heaven you will never be forgotten!

Hogan, everyone that has stumbled onto this blog has done so for a reason. God has used your little life for His glory. God used you to change our family in a good way. Yes, it ripped my heart out and it continues to hurt because I miss you so much but I know deep down that everyone will have the same fate one day.

I have been thinking back on our journey together. It is clear to me that God is a good God. He is a loving God. I believe that the closer I am to God that the more I saw Him working in your life. Isn't is neat how that always happens! The closer our walk with Jesus by our side the more we see "Him" at work!?

I was so happy that so many of your friends showed up at your visitation and your funeral. The visitation was very nice. You had a long line of people that were all telling us about their life being better because of you! Although it was nothing like being in the NICU with you, your little body looked great that night. You were dressed up like the best looking little baby warrior I have ever seen. Your mother picked out a beautiful casket and we had "dog" and your car beside you. The only good thing about your little body being there was being able to admire your little face without all of your tubes. Hogan, you looked great.

Your mother and I also were thankful for your friends that came to celebrate your life at the funeral last Wednesday. The weather couldn't have been any better. It was one of the toughest days since saying good bye to you on Sunday morning but your mother and I made it through the day. I believe that we both were so exhausted because of lack of sleep and the emotional roller coaster that we have been riding with you the past couple of weeks. I was thankful that I was able to pull a video together that I titled "Hogan's Journey" to be played at your service. It was something that I wanted to do in your honor. Hogan, you might have only lived 16 days but the time you spent on this earth will be remembered forever. You brought people together to pray that didn't normally pray. God allowed you to help people grow closer as a family. God also used you to help kids that are only a few years older than you pray and learn about your condition. Hogan, I am so thankful for your life.

I can't wait for you all of your friends to meet you again one day but until that day comes I think we should try and focus on the lessons that God showed us through your time on this earth. Your were a warrior that never took a day for granted. You woke up enjoying that day and focusing on enjoying the simple things. Your heart was too big for your little body so eventually it cost you your life. You had a huge heart that was full of love. I believe I need to focus on my heart too. I don't think your mission here was to tell us to eat right either. Although that is important, your heart was the issue from the beginning. I believe as a Christian that our heart should always be the focus. It's not about what people see on the outside. It's all about what is on the inside that counts. I believe that you were used by God to show many important "life lessons" like this! I hear things every day that make me think about you Hogan. I will never forget going to a local Kroger the morning after you went to be with Jesus. I said hello to the cashier as he slowly slid my items across his scanner. I asked him how he was doing and in a very depressing tone he said "I'm alive". Hogan, it was all I could do not to "go off" on him. I just smiled at him and said "it could be worse". I believe that most of us can say that about our life situations. I know we, as a family, went through a very difficult time with you over the past few months but it could have been worse.

Hogan, I am so happy that you are with Jesus. Yes, I want you here with me and it makes me sick to think about not holding you or seeing your little eyes looking at me but it could have been worse. I thank God that you weren't 18 and a non believer and died. That would have been much worse. We have been blessed with three beautiful children. You are with Jesus. Now, we have to pray that Noah and Lily will be there one day too. We are going to enjoy every day with them just like we enjoyed the days with you Hogan. We will do that in honor of your life. I know we would have tried to do this before we were blessed with your life but I have no doubt that enjoying Noah and Lily are even more of a priority now. Thank you for opening my eyes to see things more clearly.

There are many things that are "ironic" or things that make me think our God has an amazing sense of humor. I was sitting in a hotel room in Scottsdale, AZ on a business trip last November. I had finished my meetings early on Thursday was very bored. I couldn't get an early flight back to Atlanta so I just hung out in Scottsdale that afternoon. I remember just thinking to myself and praying... asking God to give meaning to my life.... I asked God to show me if I had any talents and for any talent to be used for his glory. I had never had a feeling that God used me for good. I am a financial advisor, not a "full time" minister. (that is another letter later Hogan!) All of this took place at a neat little hotel called the "Hotel Indigo". I will fast forward this story a few months. We have just planned the visitation and the funeral. My mother asked if she could help us find a place for the family and friends from out of town to gather to have lunch after your service. She talked to our office and they discussed different places. I was told later that they found a place that would host the lunch. That location was the "Hotel Indigo" in downtown Athens, Georgia. I had never been there before. I think this is a little ironic. The place where I cried out to God in Arizona, before we found out about Hogan's condition, was the same hotel that we had our lunch here in Athens after the funeral and graveside. I mention all of this because I feel it is ironic because I prayed that God would would show me any talent that could be used to glorify him. He did something much greater than any talent I might have been blessed. He blessed me by letting me sit beside a little warrior named Hogan Sayer Dominy. He blessed me by allowing the opportunity to watch Hogan help change lives in many people that have never met our family. If you have been blessed with children then you know the feeling when your child does anything that makes you smile. Hogan, you made me smile many times. I love looking at your pictures and watching your videos. God allowed me to be by Hogan's side on this journey. He also allowed many others to join the journey. God is so good.

One last thing...I also wanted you to know that many of your friends have donated funds for the "Hogan's Hero's" children's area for the library at Prince Avenue Christian School! It was a great idea by a friend of yours. Hopefully your older brother and sister will be able to enjoy reading with classmates there in a few years. It will also be something that will last forever! I pray that God will continue to use your story and your life. Hogan you beat the odds. You fought like there was no tomorrow. I pray that I live my life as passionate as you. I thank God for your life. I also thank God for every breath.

I will always love you!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Thank you Hogan, thank you friends, thank you God....

April 2nd (Hogan's Birthday!)
Our "Angel" the warrior
One amazing little baby, one amazing woman.
Hanging out with "Dog" under the lights
"Grandma Hogan" getting to hold Hogan
Nana Skelton and Papa Skelton holding Hogan
Bright eyes.... Hogan and "Dog"
Proud Parents!

Hogan, My Hero

Big Brother Noah loves Hogan
Thank you

For I can do everything through Christ, who gives me strength. Philippians 4:13

Dear Hogan,

Good evening little guy. I sure do wish I was back in the NICU having our guys night out right now with you. Thank you for giving us a complete day to hold you before you had to leave. It was not easy to walk back into St. Mary's and clean your room out today. I loved being there with you over the past 16 days.

We all know that our time to leave this world will come but yesterday we saw a few hours before you left that you wanted to say goodbye to us. I am thankful that your mother and I were able to kiss your beautiful lips yesterday! You have amazed many people for over two weeks and you continued to amaze them with your fight to live and impact lives until early this morning. I like that fact that you had a sense of humor all the way up until midnight. You played with your numbers on the monitors all day. Nurse Lisa came in to say good bye many times when you just wanted to say hello to her. Hogan, you know she didn't want you to leave either but we all noticed that you were ready.

We are so proud of you Hogan. I can't thank God enough for giving us these wonderful days to spend with you. Yes, I naturally wanted more time and I have never felt pain like I feel typing these words but I am focusing on our "point"! (And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28) I am so thankful that I got to be your dad here in this world. I was honored to hand you over to your Heavenly Father last night but it hurt so bad. I know you are in the best hands now! I thought I did the best I could for you on this earth but now you are with a perfect Father!! You have no more cords coming out of you or attached to you! You have probably met many of our friends that have gone ahead of you. I have met many other families that have lost children during our journey together and I am sure they are all happy to have you there. You are a special angel. You are a special baby that was sent here to make a difference in this world. You accomplished so much in your short time here.

Hogan, you were a great role model for young children! I know you heard me talking about all of the children that were praying for you and that were asking about you every day! I know you want those children to know that you are all better now. You want all of those children that sent you all of those sweet notes to know that you are now perfect! You are probably up in Heaven creating havoc like you did down here. I know that the doctors offices or the staff at St. Mary's won't forget your beautiful eyes or your sense of humor. You loved with your spirit, your eyes and your will to live. You made the most of every day. You didn't take one breath for granted. You gave us the chance to hold you in our arms until you were ready to leave. I am so thankful we got to hold you in our arms and tell you how much we loved you all day. You let me hold you until you took your last breath and let you mom hold you until your last heart beat. Thank you Hogan. Thank you God. We love you so much.

I am still amazed at how many people have been touched by your life Hogan. I have been on facebook for 3 years asking people to be my friend and a few hundred were nice enough to accept my invite. I put a couple of random messages on this blog to "friend" me to follow your journey more often and I had more than 1500 new friends in a matter of days. Hogan, you are a hero. God used you for good. I am sure He is continuing to use you!

I am so thankful that your mom is so strong. Did you notice how she held you close and cried out to you while you were saying goodbye? She was asking if you were seeing angels. She loved you like only a mother can love a child. She took over most of the "nurse" duties in the NICU for you over the last few days. She is an incredible mother and an amazing wife. I am so blessed.

Hogan, you have no idea how much Lily and Noah wanted you to come home to see them. I think they were a little upset when some people came to take away your isolette and accessories from our house. Noah said "that's Hogan's bed" when they were rolling it away. You will have to tell Jesus to help me explain your mission to him!! Lily loves you too! I think she was making sure there was nothing to eat around your isolette! She likes to eat like I do... she is a cutie!

I was so happy that your Grandparents and your Great Grandmother Granny Blanche got to see you and get kisses before you went to be with Jesus. I am so thankful that my mother, your "grandma Hogan" got to enjoy your life too. I believe that God used your "grandma Hogan" over my life to prepare me for a major storm like this one. Although God didn't always calm the storms that she encountered in her life, He always calmed her and gave her peace and strength. I also know that it was Angie's grandparents and mother and father that God used to give her the foundation to stand firm in the middle of this storm. We are so thankful for our families.

Your friends have become family to us! I read your messages on your blog and my facebook page and I see so many people mention how although they have never met you they feel like they know you. I think the feeling is mutual. Although we haven't met your friends "face to face" in person. I feel like I know them. We are all brothers and sisters in Christ. I believe that is where the connection has surfaced. We have all prayed together. We have all laughed together and celebrated the good times and we have all cried together and felt pain together in the bad times. We all know that just because we are believers that it doesn't mean we don't hurt or go through tough times. Sometimes God uses these tough times to make us better and we can learn so much from them. I feel like God has taught me so much by being with you over the past two weeks. He has used your life to connect Christians in Denmark, England, Canada, Germany, Australia, Africa and in most every state here in the United States. I am overwhelmed by how big God really is. I am also thankful that we will soon celebrate and honor your life with your friends. We are going to celebrate your life with a funeral service on Wednesday at 11AM at Prince Avenue Baptist Church with a short graveside at Oconee Hill behind Sanford Stadium in Athens. Your mother and I have asked Lord and Stephens to have a visitation on Tuesday night in Oconee County for any of your friends to come say hello to us. You mother and I already had decided before your birth no matter if you lived 1 second, 1 week, 1 year or whatever that we would do this for you. Like I told you in a few blogs over the months. You are no better or no worse than any other person on this earth. I do believe your time management skills were a little above the norm though :-).

Hogan, it has been a long journey. Your journey took a turn on April 2nd when you entered this world and it took a turn early this morning when you left it. It is amazing the feeling of the secret chamber in your heart that opens when you have a child. You can't explain it. It's just a feeling that you didn't know you could love someone that much or like "that". Then when child number 2 comes along... another chamber opens that you didn't know exists. You never thought you could love your second child like your first. When number 3 comes along that next hidden chamber opens... it feels so amazing. These hidden chambers are hard to explain because they are so big but yet so tender. There is so much love there but yet it doesn't take much to hurt those hidden chambers. I now know what it feels like when one of those chambers suddenly vanishes. There is a hole there that is worse than any other feeling in this world. I tried to get ready for it and plan for it mentally but I couldn't. As good as that chamber suddenly opens when a new child enters this world it is more painful on the opposite end when the child leaves. I know that God will get us through this time. I am not doubting God and I know that God wouldn't allow more than I can handle. I am going to focus on our "point", Hogan!!

Your mom and I read in books about Trisomy 18 and asked many physicians about this condition over the past few months. There was very little hope for a "wimpy white male baby" (all white male babies get tagged this).. to make it to birth with this condition. I think every person knows now that you are not the "normal" wimpy white male baby!! You were God's baby Warrior! You were on a mission to get here and when you got here you were on a mission. God used you so much in your days on this earth. It was an honor to be beside you on your journey here on this earth. You are now in Heaven and I believe that you are still on a mission. I believe that your story will live on. I pray that God will continue to use your love and your passion to live. You made an impact in this world Hogan!! You put a different face on Heaven for me. It was a place that I wanted to be before you were born. Now, its a place that I have got to be. I can't wait to see you again.

I miss my little warrior with the huge heart.

I love you.

Hogan Sayer Dominy

Hogan Sayer Dominy
4/2/2010 - 4/18/2010

Dear Friends,

Hogan fought an amazing fight for the past two weeks. He honored God with every breath he took and changed our lives forever. He passed away early this morning in our arms. Our hearts are heavy with love for him. We will continue to focus on the point and thank God for allowing us this special time. He was and is a miracle. Thank you all for loving on us and him. Hogan was God's little warrior with a huge heart. He has no problems now. He has a new body. We would love your continued prayers. We love all of you for joining Hogan on his journey. I could tell how bright his eyes got when I would tell him about the messages that were sent to him. Thank God for his little life and the impact that he made on this world.

In His Love,

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Hogan, you are an amazing warrior!

Hogan Sayer Dominy

...we are perplexed, but we don't give up and quit...we get knocked down but we get back up and keep going. Through suffering, these bodies of ours constantly share in the death of Jesus so that the life of Jesus may also be seen in our bodies. Yes, we live under constant danger of death because we serve Jesus, so that the life of Jesus will be obvious in our dying bodies. So we live in the face of death but it has resulted in eternal life for you. II Corinthians 4:8-12

Dear Hogan,

I am enjoying being with you again tonight in the NICU. I know it's a little different because your mom and I have been holding you all day. We even let your dog, "dog" out to hang out with us today. I am pretty sure that you have liked being in our arms because you have thought about leaving this world a few times but you keep coming back.

Hogan, you are such a blessing to so many people. You are an amazing little warrior that has fought to be with us and accomplish your purpose here on this earth. We are so thankful that God has given us this time to be with you. Your mom mentioned earlier to me today that she wished so badly that she could have held you in her arms like she did with Noah and Lily. Guess what!? You are letting her hold you like that tonight. She is letting you lay on her chest while she sleeps. I am so proud of you Hogan. You dropped your stats all day long and always came fighting back again and again. I think that you might be up to your tricks again. Nurse Lisa was running back and forth all day for you. I know you love her! You get to play tricks again with Nurse Laura tonight! Also, your grandparents, aunts and uncles were called to come to the hospital at noon because it didn't look like you would be here much longer. They stayed with us all afternoon and watched you almost leave a few times and have now all gone home to rest. I was glad they all got to kiss you and tell you how much you were loved by them.

I don't want you to be afraid Hogan. Once you leave this earth, your little body will not have all of those accessories that you have now. I know, I know, you like them and you think that is normal. It's not normal buddy! You will have a perfect body one day! Once you leave this earth you will go and be with Jesus in Heaven. It will be a happy time for you. I am sure you will have many buddies there!

I wanted you to know that people are being so good to us. They are sending messages, prayers and love your way Hogan! I hope you heard me this afternoon when I was telling you about all of those amazing people that love you.

We have hugged and kissed on you all day long. I know you are tired from fighting. I know you are probably tired of us telling you how much we love you! I want you to rest tonight buddy. I know you are probably worried about the people that you might leave behind if you choose to go be with Jesus but I want you to know that I am so proud of you. I want you to be here tomorrow night for me but I want what is best for you Hogan. Your mother and I will miss you more than you will ever know if you decide to leave but we will see you soon when we meet again in Heaven. You have done so much in your 15 days, soon to be 16 days! God is so mighty. You have let God use your little body to do more good than I thought was ever possible. Hogan, you are my hero. I love you with all of my heart.

I will write you another letter tomorrow night but right now I am about snuggle up beside you and your mom. I am so thankful for you.

I love you.

Friday, April 16, 2010

"baby Hogan"

Teresa Vickery - Incredible Nurse, Incredible Photographer, and NILMDTS angel!
14 Day Birthday!!!
Noah loves his baby brother Hogan.
Handle with Care!
Thank you for all of the Auburn prayers.... thanks Wynne, Hogan loves the blanket!

For the Lord is good. His unfailing love continues forever, and his faithfulness continues to each generation. Psalm 100:5 NLT

Let them all praise the name of the Lord, for his name is very great; his glory towers over the earth and heaven! Psalm 148:13 NLT

Dear Hogan,

I am so glad that you are here. Happy 2 week birthday!!! I hope you liked all of the balloons that were flying above your isolette this morning when you woke up. Your mom and I enjoyed getting to share that moment with you.

I am sorry that those old heart problems started acting up again early this morning. I know your medicine made you a little sleepy but we wanted you to relax. You have been fighting so hard it was evident you needed some rest. Hogan, you are a true warrior. Thank you for letting us hold you so much today. I hope you enjoyed being out of your isolette more than normal. Did you see Noah's eyes when he saw you this morning!? Wow, Noah was so happy to see you. I am so thankful that Noah loves you so much. Did you like the blue race car that he brought you? I saw that he had a package with 2 race cars in it when he came into your room. It made me so proud when he told me that one of the cars was for "baby Hogan". He wanted you to have the blue car and Noah kept the red race car. That is the cool automobile that your "dog" has been checking out all day. I am starting to think that "dog" is wondering if you are going to take that race car and get out of this place sometime soon!!?!

Hogan, if you don't have a problem with it... then I think I am going to let your mom hang out with us tonight and join our "guys night" in the NICU. I know, I know.... no more peanuts, popcorn and making the alarms go off so that we can see which nurse is the fastest to get here. You did give "dog" your stop watch right?? Remember when you kept doing flips in Dr. Rosemond's office during your appointment? I wish you could have watched Ms. Candace's face when Dr. Rosemond sat down to check you out and you had flipped. You are quite the prankster! I have noticed that you have trouble picking out your favorite nurse to pick on every day and night. They are all fun and they all love you so much. I guess we will let your mom into our little "guys piece of Heaven on earth" in the NICU tonight.

Thank you for two wonderful weeks Hogan. We have laughed and cried together. I will never forget our times together and we will never lose the friendships we have made. Do you think you can go for three weeks!?!? How about we just focus on our point and see what happens? I am starting to even think like you Hogan! You are such a good influence on me. Thank you for being here another night. Let's take one minute/hour/day at a time. I look forward to writing another letter tomorrow night. I am going to put this computer down tonight and hold you for a while and tell you all of the things that people are saying about you. I am going to pray with you. I am going to let you know how many children just a few years older than you are loving you and praying for you every day. I am going to tell you about grandparents and parents and teenagers that are praying for you. I am going to tell you about all of different states and countries have people praying for you. God isn't in a box Hogan. God is amazing. He allowed a baby named Hogan who only weighs 3 pounds to come into this world and be an amazing disciple. Let's thank God for the journey that we have been on and for the people that we have met and brought along with us. Hogan, your journey is not over. Let's make some more memories!

I love you.

Hogan, the warrior with the big Heart!

Angie and I have really enjoyed holding Hogan today.
Nurse Lisa loves Hogan and Hogan loves Nurse Lisa!
Big Brother Noah stopped by to say hello to Hogan!
Noah wanted to kiss Hogan, tell him that he loved him and he gave him a blue race car!!!
Happy 2 week Birthday Hogan!!

Hogan, my hero

Dear Friends,

I wanted you all to know that Hogan is having a really tough time. He is in no pain and has an amazing peaceful look about him that only God can give. He is alive and in no pain right now. I have eluded to his heart being big so many times in my past blogs and it looks like the little man just has too big of a heart. I know you can tell by the way he has lived his life and has loved so many. His eyes have been so peaceful since day 1.

We are enjoying today just like the other days with him. We have thrown the isolette out as the official "holder" today and have been soaking up ever moment that we have been able! We are so blessed with so many friends and followers of Hogan and we appreciate you being on this journey with him. The journey has been a long one but has been filled with blessings that I can't count. We have Romans 8:28 on Hogan's white board here in the NICU at St. Mary's today and it is so true. Although it rips my heart out to see my son like this, it is also a blessing to have been able to be with him on this journey and to be able to be with him today. I wish I could trade places with him. I don't understand some things but am trusting God and focusing on the "point' which is Him. I pray that we do this every day. Hogan is alive today and I don't want to give up hope but I want what is best for Hogan and not me. My hope and prayer that we would have a live birth was a miracle. Every day of life is a miracle. The human body is a miracle. God has taught me so much by using this little warrior! He has fought and won many battles. He has brought Glory to God's kingdom. He has changed our family for the better forever. He has made so many people proud and gave so many people inspiration. I am so thankful to God for him. Angie and I aren't leaving his side for the rest of this journey.

Angie is holding Hogan right now and I have to get back to my time with him!!!! I have many more kisses to give him tonight. I will look forward to writing the little guy a letter later tonight! God Bless all of you and thank you for your prayers!! I wanted to send this "update" out to you so that you would know what was going on with Hogan today. I can't tell you how thankful we are for the love and support that you have given us. I have gotten so many notes from you which has been so uplifting. I will try and update this blog later tonight. I hope you all have a great weekend and enjoy God's greatest gift... life... here on earth and then with him for eternity! That is the greatest gift. Hogan may live another 50 years or he may live another 5 minutes or 1 day. We all have this prognosis! If there is one thing I have learned from God through Hogan is to live every day like its your last and fight every battle with a focus on your "point" Jesus Christ!

We love you all.

Kip, Angie, Noah, Lily Rose and Hogan (God's little warrior!)

A little Miracle from God...

Hogan Sayer Dominy
Hogan loves his Mom!
My hero!

"For I know the plans I have for you," Says the Lord." They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope In those days when you pray, I will listen. "If you look for me in earnest, you will find me. Jeremiah 29:11-13

And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. Romans 8:28

Have you never heard or understood? Don't you know that the Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth? He never grows faint or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding. He gives power to those who are tired and worn out; he offers strength to the weak. Even youths will become exhausted, and young men will give up. But those who wait on the Lord will find new strength. They will fly high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint. Isaiah 40:28-31

Dr. Hogan,

I am so happy to be sitting here with you only a few hours before we will celebrate your 2 week birthday! I know you have had a roller coaster ride over the past couple of weeks but we are so glad that you keep fighting to live. God continues to use your little body in such a miraculous way. I am so proud of you. I tell your brother, sister and your mom how proud of them I am too. God has blessed me so much. I am so thankful.

I am so happy that you had such a good morning and afternoon today! I know things got a little crazy for you tonight and you got to take some new medicine to calm your heart problems but I am so thankful that your body seems to be tolerating the medicine and it seems to be working. I was so happy that I got to hold you late tonight too! Your mom went home tonight to be with Noah and Lily but she has been checking on your very often. She is such an amazing woman. I know you are so proud of her.

I almost forgot to let you know that Ms. Teresa sent us your "coming into our world" video today!!!! I wanted to share it with you and all of your blog followers! Click on the link below:

You are a special baby.

It is late as I type this letter to you and I am not sure I know just what to say to you tonight. I have been praying so hard for you and I have also been busy thanking God for you and your friends. Hogan, you have some incredible friends that follow your blog and that have become my friend on facebook so that they can follow your story. God has gifted you with an amazing strength. It makes me feel good to hear the nurses talk about how impressed that they are with the strength that you have shown on your journey. Thanks for being so tough. Thank you for showing me how to love. Thanks for showing me how to show compassion. Thank you for showing me how to enjoy the simple things in life! The only thing you are looking for in life is a little oxygen to breathe and for someone to love on you. Thank you God for using Hogan to make me a better man. Hogan, thank you for being so easy to love.

I love you.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Heart of a Warrior

"How precious are your thoughts about me, O God! They are innumerable! I can't even count them; they outnumber the grains of sand! And when I wake in the morning you are still with me." Psalms 139:17,18

Dear Hogan,

You continue to amaze me. I am so thankful that you are here. We are celebrating our 13th guys night out in the NICU together and they just keep getting better! Hogan, you are a warrior. You are my hero. I am so thankful that you have fought so hard and won so many battles. I continue to thank God for being able to be with you on your journey. I am thankful that I am able to watch God use you to grow families closer like you have done to ours. I am so thankful. I praise God that you are being used and that people have told me that their lives have been changed forever because of you Hogan. I know it is hard for you to think about or understand things like this because you are just hoping to make it to the next minute, hour or day.

I wanted to let you know I had a person who I don't know ask me today how many more days the doctors were giving you to live. I thought to myself, don't we all wish we knew the answer to that question?! It is the same question I asked Dr. V after you were born. He told us that you would live 5 to 7 days at best and that his life would probably end sooner. He gave this judgement on his observation of your work of breathing and his weight and his lung and heart size. We can change the number of days that you are alive on our board every day but we can't put the end date on the board yet. We don't know when the last number will go up on your board. We don't know the last number on anyones board though Hogan. Nobody knows when their last breath will be taken. We do know that everyone will take a last breath though. It is important to understand that what is important is how you honor God with the days you are given in this life.

Hogan, please keep fighting to live. We were told we probably wouldn't have a live birth. We were told that most people terminate T18 babies. We were told that T18 babies weren't compatible with life. I am so thankful that we are able to spend this precious time together. We couldn't dream of missing out on the miracle of you. We are so proud of you!

I can't believe that your day was so crazy. Did you know that we set another record here at St. Mary's today? I guess it wasn't me.... it was you and your mom! Your mom got up to the NICU to see you an hour after having gave birth to you by c-section. We were told that the fastest that any mother made it up here after a c-section birth was at best 3 hours but probably more like 4! Your mom holds a record here Hogan! Aren't you proud of her? She wanted to see you so much! Today was your day to set some more records. I had left to run home to get your big brother and take him to preschool for his class pictures this morning while your mom hung out with you. Well, I hadn't even gotten Noah to preschool when your mom called me to let me know you were having heart issues and asked me when I could get back to the hospital. Nurse Lisa thought that I might want to come back here just in case. We were told that you were having "PVC's". These "PVC's" aren't a big deal to a normal person or a normal baby if they happen periodically. The problem was that you were having them constant and after every heart contraction. Your heart is already compromised so the extra stress isn't good.

Dr. Morales and Dr. "V" wanted to get blood work and also monitor you for a little while to determine what step to take next. I was able to get your brother to his school to take pictures and get back to the hospital just in time to see Dr. Morales and get the report with you mother. He told us that they had decided to cut back down the volume of food you were getting to see if that would help you. Your heart would start having these "PVC's" periodically on and off all morning and early afternoon. Your work of breathing wasn't good either. The good thing is that late this afternoon you started to get better. Your heart stopped having the irregularities and you actually started breathing a little better then you were earlier. Your mother and I are so thankful that you have improved. We understand that this problem could come back tonight and that your breathing could get worse at any minute but right now you are stable.

I also wanted to let you know that Noah and Lily are so proud of you. Noah asked your grandmother to tell you that he loved you the other night. That was really neat to hear but when your grandmother told me that the first thing that Noah asked her when she returned home was if she had told you that he loved you. You make our family better Hogan. You make me a better person.

Your mother and I are praying that you have a good night tonight. I also don't want you to think that we are the only people praying for you Hogan. You have an army of prayer warriors. The army keeps growing every day. God is using your fight to live and your life story to change lives Hogan. I know I have told you how much you have changed our family but you are changing other families. I get messages all day long from people that have been impacted by your 3 pound body. It warms my heart to read messages of children that are praying for you and asking about your health. They love you Hogan. You are a hero to many. You are a warrior for God's kingdom. I know you have got to be tired. I know you have got to be exhausted. I can't thank you enough for continuing your journey. You have been on a mission since you started this journey and I pray that your journey continues. You are special Hogan.

I love you.

Hogan's Heart

Just a quick update. Hogan started having PVC's this morning. This normally isn't a big issue for people but the problem is that they were happening after every normal contraction of the heart. Hogan already has heart problems and being so small this isn't a good thing. The PVC's aren't happening as bad at the moment and we hope they stay away! The Dr's did more blood work which were "ok". They have now decided to cut back on his volume of feeding amounts. They hope this will help. He is currently better for the moment. I will update later if anything changes. Just pray that the PVC's go away!! He is breathing is a little tougher today but not as bad as it was after birth. Again, for those of you that want "quicker" prayer requests or updates please "friend" me at "Kip Dominy" on Facebook. My facebook page has turned into Hogan's page! God Bless you and thank you for your prayers and love for Hogan.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Hogan is on a mission! Thank God!

Hogan and his new blanket!
Hogan was so tired tonight.
Hogan was very alert today during lunch!

Consider it all joy, my brothers ans sisters, when you encounter various trials of every sort, knowing the testing of your faith produces endurance, steadfastness, and growth. James 1:2,3 NLT

Dear Hogan,

I am so thankful that we get to hang out in the NICU again another night. Can you believe that this is our 12th night here?! I am so thankful that we can hang out together another night. I appreciate your fighting to live another day. I am so happy that you are here! I know you like to attack every day like it is your last and that you glance at the long term but focus on the short term. Keep fighting buddy. I might have a surprise for you soon!

I am so glad that you had such a peaceful day. You were pretty sharp in your mothers arms at lunch. I haven't seen you so alert in a while! I can easily see that your stats are always best when you are in our arms... especially in your mom's! I pray that we get to hold you again in the morning. Isn't it amazing that when you have a good day after a bad day that it feels even better than normal? You are experiencing the same thing that your mom and I and many others experience.

Sometimes it takes going through tough times in life to appreciate the good times. It never means that God is with you in the good times and leaves you in the bad times. Hogan, God is always with you. He is with you in every moment of every day. Please never forget that God has you in the palm of his hand at all times. I know you see your mother and I outside of your isolette when you don't feel good and it's hard to breathe. I am sure that you have trouble breathing sometimes and you can't see us. Always know that we love you even if you can't see us sometimes. Thank you for being you Hogan. Thank God that he loves us unconditionally. It doesn't matter that your not "normal". I actually think that the ladies think you are cute. I have heard them talking when I am out and about around the hospital. :-) I also wanted to let you know I have put pictures of you on the internet. The pictures are on your blog and on my facebook page. I know, you have no idea what I am trying to tell you but just know that so many people that think you are a good looking little man! I love you Hogan Dominy!

Did you hear Dr. Morales talking to us this morning? Dr. Morales didn't have much to say today. He told us that you were stable. He told us that we wouldn't change anything at the moment. I can tell you like Dr. Morales. He tells us what he sees and what we can probably expect to see in the future but he does so with and enormous amount of compassion. He is such a blessing. We do have to keep changing your oxygen flow periodically but that isn't a major thing. I am so thankful that the nurses are so quick in getting to you to bring you back if you start forgetting to breathe or if you need a little help in the oxygen department! I still haven't quite figured out if you are playing with your "stats" and you just like to see them come back here and care for you or if you are really in trouble. You are pretty crafty little guy! I know how you like to play games with those that love you. I love how you enjoy life and laugh knowing every minute could be your last! I am thankful that God has used you to remind me of that Hogan. I can see you fighting through the tough times and enjoying the good times.

I wanted to let you know that since I told everyone that followed your blog to "friend" me on facebook that I have gotten to be friends with hundreds and hundreds of people because of you. I have been on this earth for almost 39 years and have been on facebook for a few years and in 3 days you have many, many, many more friends than me. I think that is awesome. I am so happy that God is using your little life. I know that we are your parents but I feel like all of these people are family now. They love you so much. I get messages all day long from all over the nation and all over the globe from people that I don't even know that are praying for you. It is amazing that God has brought us all together for good and to glorify God. Hogan, you have a purpose here. Everyone is put on this earth with a purpose and can make a difference. You are only 3 lbs., you have very small lungs, you have an enlarged heart, you only have one ear and God is using you. There are people that have perfect bodies and perfect hearts that don't live to glorify God like you. You have convicted me to be my best and to honor God along the way. I am so proud of you. I am so thankful that you are who you are Hogan. I love every thing about you. I love the fact that you can bring people together for good in the name of Jesus. This world has a lot of bad in it but you are a very bright light in a world of darkness. God has used your life to give me hope.

I am not a political activist by any means but way back in November when we found out you had this condition called Trisomy 18. We read and heard that you were incompatible with life. You mom and I chose to carry you to birth praying that we would get the chance to hold you and kiss your face before you went to be with Jesus. I think you are full of life Hogan. I am so glad that God has used you to change our family over the past few months. We are better because of you. I am so glad that we are so blessed to spend these days with you. I know many people don't get this chance. God is all over your life. I am so glad that you are here and I am so glad that your prayer warriors have joined together to pray for you and to grow closer to our Heavenly Father. I am proud of you Hogan. I am proud of Noah, Lily and your mother. God has truly blessed me.

Keep fighting to live little guy. Thank you being a warrior. I pray that we have our "guys night out" again tomorrow night!

I love you.

It's a good day so far!

God Bless all of you for your continued prayers. Hogan is having a good day today. He slept most of yesterday and this morning but was awake for a while during lunch today. Dr. Morales came by Hogan's room for his daily visit and was pleased with his observation. We are still minute to minute and hour to hour but.... isn't everyone?!! :) We thank God that Hogan is still here with us and that God is using the little warrior with the big heart!

I also wanted to remind some of you prayers warriors to please "Friend" me on Facebook at "Kip Dominy"... I have Hogan's picture as my profile picture. I appreciate those of you that have already done this! I will give quicker updates and prayer requests for specific needs on FB. I look forward to writing my letter tonight to Hogan. I hope you all understand! Again, thank you for loving Hogan and for being on this journey with us. We are very thankful for you.

Have a great day!
In His Love,

Monday, April 12, 2010

Hogan's heroes

Angie and Hogan
Angie getting Hogan from Nurse Laura tonight for our 9pm holding time!
Handle with care!!

..."My gracious favor is all you need. My power works best in your weakness." So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may work through me. II Corinthians 12:9 NLT

Don't worry about anything; instead, pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. Philippians 4:6 NLT

Dear Hogan,

You are something special little guy! I can't believe how much you have slept over the past day and a half but you need to rest after your rough weekend. I am so thankful that we get to have another "guys night out" in the NICU tonight. Can you believe we will be celebrating your 11th day birthday in the morning!? Your mother and I thank God every day for allowing us to spend this time with you. We had prayed for 5 months for a live birth and now are overwhelmed with the blessing of your life.

Did you hear Dr. Morales talking about you today? He was telling your mom and I that you were going to have good days and bad days. I know the bad days scare you because they bother me too. Remember what we have always talked about though Hogan.... take every minute/hour/day at a time. Don't miss today by thinking about tomorrow. You have taught me these things Hogan. God has used your 3 pound body to teach me to trust in him and to not worry so much about the little things in life. You are teaching me so much. Remember last week when we thought today would be the day we could take you home from St. Mary's? We even got some of your equipment set up for you. Obviously, that didn't happen because of the tough time you had over the weekend. It will happen in God's timing though Hogan. We might have been forcing something that we wanted before it was supposed to happen. I know it doesn't make much sense to you because you are just trying to enjoy every breath but sometimes God doesn't always give us what we want when we want it. He may never give us what we think we should be able to have. I know it's a little confusing but just know that even though we didn't get take you home with us today doesn't mean that God doesn't love you. Just trust in Him! Let's focus on him and I will assure you we will make it through any storm together! We are just happy that you are still here. Like your brother Noah told me tonight when I went home to check on him. He was just glad I was there. Hogan, I am glad you are here.

We are thankful that you look better tonight than you did last night. Although you aren't breathing great, I can tell you are breathing better than last night. I pray it continues through the night for you buddy. I could tell you were tired and didn't feel good last night. You needed your rest. We are hoping for good results from your culture that was taken on Sunday morning. Thanks for continuing to fight Hogan. You are a true warrior. You are God's little warrior with the big heart!

I also wanted you to know that the reason your mom and I both slept in your room last night was because we were concerned about you. Do you remember having such a hard time breathing last night? It broke our hearts to watch you work so hard to catch your breath. We were so happy when we got up this morning and you were not having to work as hard to breathe. We thank God for giving you rest.

Hogan, can you believe that more and more people are praying for you?! I can tell that God is using your little body and it warms my heart. It is an awesome feeling to watch God work. I have gotten so much encouragement from the messages being sent to you. Hogan, you have young and old people praying for you. I told everyone that was reading your blog and praying for you to "friend" me on this thing called Facebook and now even more people are praying for you and I think you are finding strength through your prayer warriors. I think we should call them your heros! I think that everyone that loves you and prays for you is a hero to me and your mother. I know you feel the same way because I can see it in your eyes!

Hogan, I have no idea why God has blessed us with the blessing of being your parents. We don't deserve it but we are very thankful. You are the most amazing baby. Thank you for being you. I love your unique characterstics. I am so proud of you Hogan. Keep fighting!!

I love you.

You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, whose thoughts are fixed on you! Isaiah 26:3 NLT