Thursday, February 28, 2008

Lilo pictures

I was getting things together for our trip and got my camera out to check the battery. The battery was almost dead so I used up the rest of the "juice" taking pictures of Lilo (Caroline). I asked her to pose and she got her blanky and loved on it for her pictures. Here are my favorites. I love her eyes in these, they are so big. The first one is the best, I think. What do you think?

I didn't do any editing on these just added a vignette to two of them using Picnik. Picnik is a free website and it does some pretty cool stuff, check it out!

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

She's gone ducky!

We are getting ready to go on a weekend trip to the Wisconsin Dells on Friday. We are going to be staying at a hotel that has a water park inside. So we got out our swim stuff today to get packed. Caroline wanted to put her goggles on. I about wet my pants laughing so hard!

We are going to the Dells to attend the Annual RTS Midwest Reunion. This will be our first time attending and are really looking forward to meeting some of the families that I have known through emails for a year and a half. I will be posting pictures when we get home on Sunday or Monday.

Did they just say Poop???

So Caroline was watching Nick jr. today after school and I got busy and forgot to change the channel when Spongebob came on. I normally don't let Caroline watch Spongebob because the little bit that I have watched it was vulger and not appropriate for a little girl to watch. I went to change it and Caroline begged me to leave it on because she was in the middle of the show. I agreed, not sure why, maybe because I didn't want to deal with the fit that would have occurred if I wouldn't have agreed. I then went about my business doing my house cleaning. I walked through the living room and heard them saying poop!!! I asked Caroline what they just said to which she proudly responded "poop". I quickly got the remote and changed the channel.

What the heck is wrong with people??!! Why do they think that this type of stuff is okay to have in CHILDREN'S cartoons? Give me a break, would ya?!

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Video clip of William

So we got the video camera out tonight to document Will doing some of his new stuff. This one is of Will trying to stand and then giving up, he opted to get Mr. Cow instead. Then the video shows you how William "loves" on Mr. Cow. Oh, Mr. Cow just come out of the dryer. He had to have a bath today. He was so gross! If you want to learn more about Will and his Mr. Cow click here.

Patty Cake

Here is a video clip of Will doing his new trick! We are so proud of his new accomplishments that he has done over the last few days. We think he is pretty cute too! Enjoy!

Got the giggles?

This is a video of Will's cute laugh. Whenever he gets to laughing like this it is hard not to laugh with him. That is Josh behind him saying a word that Will thinks is hesterical. Make sure that you have your volume on, you have got to hear the laughing! Enjoy!

Monday, February 25, 2008

Turning the corner

I think that Will is turning the corner on this whole eating thing! He has been working on it for awhile now but I didn't want to post and jinx it! LOL!

Anyway, since we have started with the pediasure a few weeks ago he has been increasing his daily ounces. With his formula we would struggle to get 20 ounces a day in him, with the pediasure he is easily getting 24 ounces down a day. With the formula we were tubing feeding him with every bottle, since we have started the pediasure we have not had to tube feed him at ALL!!!! Yup, you read that right! We have not had to tube feed William in over 2 weeks!! He is DRINKING 24 ounces a day! I think that he likes the taste of the pediasure better than the formula. It is a nice vanilla flavor (he smells like a vanilla bean most days, sometimes, me too!).

In addition to the pediasure he is also eating stage 1 baby food a lot better now too. He will eat about a full jar of the baby food at each meal. He is eating almost three jars of baby food a day. Of course the stage 1 baby foods are the really small jars but nonetheless, we will take it! Before he would let everything that we would put in his mouth just fall out. Now he is holding it in his mouth and swallowing it, letting nothing come out!

You have no idea what an accomplishment this is for William. It is time to start packing on the pounds!! Just kidding!

James is 2!!

My nephew, James turned 2 on Friday and we went to his birthday party on Saturday afternoon. He had a "Dog" party. He is really into the Air Bud movies right now, so he wanted to have a "Buddy Party". Here is James while we were singing Happy Birthday to him. He was so cute and was smiling from ear to ear the entire time. He was really excited to blow out the candle too!

Here he is opening gifts. He would open one and then say "One more!" He is so funny!

James with his new puzzle. When he got to the last present and there was no more he kept saying "just one more!". I think he would have been fine with us putting the presents back into the gift bags so he could open them all again!

Thanks for the pictures Andrea! I forgot my camera, again!

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Dare Devil

First of all, who could not love this face!!!!

Then take a look at Will's new favorite trick. I moved his favorite toy, his chair under the window yesterday to vacuum and forgot to move it back. This is what I caught him doing today. He is a dare devil. He enjoys looking out the window.

This is the look that I got when he heard the camera.

Puppet Show

Today while Will was taking a nap Caroline and I made puppets. We spent about an hour making our puppets. We each made two. After we were finish and let them dry Caroline put on a puppet show for Josh and I. She is pretty cute!

Here are our puppets. We made two monsters and two princesses.

Here is Caroline showing off her Monster Puppet!

Here is Caroline putting on her show behind the chair in the living room.

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Daddy and Me Night

Caroline and I (Josh) went to Daddy and Me Night at her school on Tuesday. Caroline was so excited about this night. She was almost giddy with excitement.

Caroline and I went to her classroom. She had to show me every detail. "This is where Cameron sits, Seth sits....This is where I hang my backpack"...etc. She was very proud.

She also colored a picture for me. It read...."I love my daddy because ". Of course, she loves me because "I make cinnamon rolls for her on the weekend." That was really cute. She does enjoy having me home on Saturday and Sunday mornings and really loves her cinnamon rolls. It is interesting to discover the little things that make impressions on her.

Next, we went to the chapel where the kids sang a variety of songs. Her favorite song was the "Little Bitty Fish" Song. One of the pictures show her growling during the "Dinosaur Song" and the other shows the kids wearing sunglasses during the "Cool ABCs".

Finally, we went down to eat ice cream. We had ice cream sundaes. Caroline put chocolate syrup and sprinkles on her sundae. She didn't really eat a lot of ice cream. She preferred to skim the syrup and sprinkles off the top.

Caroline and I had a great time. It was nice to spend a some time with Caroline (by ourselves).

Eye Doctor Appointment

Yesterday Will had his annual opthomology appointment. He had to have his eyes dialated. Last year when they did the drops they put in drops then waited 5 minutes and put in another round. He was dialated for 4 days! This year I asked if we could only do the one set of drops and they agreed. Though he is still dialated today! Everything checked out fine and the doctor doesn't need to see him back for two years!! WooHoo!

I was also pleasently surprised that the eye doctor knew of RTS, he had even given a lecture on RTS during his residancy. This information put my mind at ease when I questioned not being checked next year. He told me that if Will had gluacoma (many RTSweeties do) then I would be able to see his eye actually buldge. So at least now I know what to look for.

Yesterday's appointment went well, we were only there for about an hour and a half. I wish we got more "see you in two years" reports!! ;-)

Monday, February 18, 2008


Yesterday (Sunday) we went to my Grammy Abell's house (My Mom's Mom). My Uncle Terry was in town from PA for the weekend so everyone wanted to get together and see him. Grammy had a good turnout, there were lots of people there. It was nice to see Uncle Terry.

I have a cousin that has a little boy that is two days younger than Will. It was really hard for me yesterday. I could not help but look at B. and compare Will to him. B. is walking, eating table food, trying to talk, etc. Will is doing none of those things.

I am not sure if I am sad for Will because he doesn't fit into the "normal" mold or if I am sad for myself. Before both of my children were born I would dream about what they would be when they grew up, the things that they would accomplish in life and things like that. I still have those dreams for Caroline but my dreams for Will are now altered from what they used to be. I dream now that he will someday be able to walk and to be able to communicate with us, whether it be vocally, using signs or a communication device. I want my child to be able to tell me what is hurting or what he wants. I want him to be able to tell someone if they hurt his feelings and I want to know for sure that he is understanding what I am saying to him.

I realize that each child is different and I should not compare but it is so hard not to do. I feel like I have excepted my "Holland" but sometimes it is hard to stay.

Welcome to Holland
c1987 by Emily Perl Kingsley. All rights reserved
I am often asked to describe the experience of raising a child with a disability - to try to help people who have not shared that unique experience to understand it, to imagine how it would feel. It's like this......
When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.
After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome to Holland."
"Holland?!?" you say. "What do you mean Holland?? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy."
But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.
The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.
So you must go out and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.
It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around.... and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills....and Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.
But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy... and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes, that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned."
And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away... because the loss of that dream is a very very significant loss.
But... if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things ... about Holland.

Please do not think that I am completely grateful for my William. I think that he is a true treasure. But sometimes I miss being "normal" (what ever that means!).

Friday, February 15, 2008

I am a Rebel!

Okay, I am sort of embarrassed to even be blogging about this but I have never claimed to be the best house keeper! I have been rebeling against some of my house keeping duties for the past week. Have you ever got in a mood where you just didn't want to do it, I know total 2 year old behavior, but true. I have not done any laundry for over a week (I know, I know). Today I noticed that I was running short on clothes to wear so I decided to bite the bullet and do some laundry.

This is the chair in the living room with all of the laundry that I did today. Holy Laundry Batman!!! Now I just need to muster up the energy to put it all away!! Maybe tomorrow...


Will had his appointment for the fitting of his smo's. Our appointment was with a company called Hanger. Brian, the person helping us today was so nice and patient with Will. Will had to sit still for about 10 minutes in order for the castings to set. The process to make these braces starts with taking a cast of his feet. They casted him as if he had broke his feet and had to have casts on them. It only took about 5 minutes per foot for the cast to harden, so it was a pretty quick process. Brian said that they should be ready in about 2 weeks.

The problem that I see us having now is finding shoes that will fit over the braces. Will has a very wide foot so with the braces I am sure that he will need a double or triple wide shoe. Where do you find those???

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Happy Valentine's Day!!!!

Happy Valentine's Day Everyone!!!

We had a great day today. This morning we woke up and made Caroline a heart shaped blueberry muffin. Caroline gave Will the Valentine gift that she picked out for him. She picked out an Elmo blanket (that is really soft) because she has a blankey and thought that Will needed to have one too. Here is Caroline giving Will the blanket.

Caroline went to school and had a great time at her Valentine's Day party with her classmates. They exchanged Valentines and had special treats.

After school we went to a Riverbend Bounce House. It is an indoor facility with the blow up bounce houses all over the place. I think that there were five different bounce houses for the kids to play on. I am a member of our local chapter of Moms Club, check out our website here. Today was our Moms Club Valentine's Day Party. There were lots of Moms and kids in attendence. Caroline had a blast, Avery was there and she loves playing with him. I think it is safe to say that Avery is Caroline's best friend. Will had a great time too. He loves to bounce so this was right up his alley. At one point he had a whole bounce house to himself and Caroline went in to help him bounce a little bit. She would gently bounce and he would giggle and laugh out loud. There was one that I could help him with. I would hold his hands and he would jump and giggle and laugh. He was wore out. We all had lunch together and had a great time. It is always nice to have adult conversation during the day and it is nice to have the kids burn off some energy and sleep well! Sorry I don't have any pictures from the bouncing party, I forgot my camera at home!!

When we got home the kids took a "rest", Caroline says she is too big for naps so we have to call them "rests". Anywoo, while they were doing that I made heart shaped cakes for dessert tonight.

Josh got home from work and Caroline gave him the gift that she worked extremely hard on. She was so proud of herself. Josh loved it. Here is the gift...

That is Josh and Caroline holding hands with a bunny nearby. She stamped all of the hearts on the border. They are in a pattern of 2 big hearts then 2 small hearts (she took alot of time with that to make sure that it was just right). She even signed her name.

She made it for him to put in his new office at work.

Then we had supper. As a treat, Josh stopped at Papa Murphy's and picked up a pizza. They were having a special today, a heart shaped pizza!

If your not familiar with Papa Murphy's, it is take and bake pizza. When Josh got home from work we popped it in the oven and 15 minutes later, DINNER!

After dinner we had our heart shaped cakes. We had a "hearty" dinner! LOL!

Caroline made me "Valentimes" all day long. She drew me pictures with hearts and flowers on them. Josh and I exchanged cards this morning. Josh and I gave Caroline a baby doll and baby bottles (she is really into playing with baby dolls right now). And Will gave her a small goodie bag with various things in it. Josh and I gave Will the book by Eric Carle, Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you see? and a matching puzzle with the animals from the book.

We had a really fun day with lots of love. I hope that everyone else had a great day!

Lilo's Amazing Memory...

Lilo (aka Caroline) has an amazing memory. She can remember things that I have long forgotten (I can't remember what I ate for dinner last night!). Here are some things from the last few days...

I had to get gas the other day. When I got back in the van she asked if I had got her a treat. When we lived in Indiana and her and I would be driving back by ourselves (a four hour drive) I would stop and get gas and buy her a little "treat". The treat could be cookies, goldfish, candy, anything that would keep her happy for awhile on the road.

Okay, here is the kicker. In March we will have lived in Illinois for 2 years! Caroline was 2 years old when I did this! I think that is amazing.

A few days ago she said to me "Mom do you remember the last time we went to Jose Jim and Barbara's house and we played hide and seek." Okay, Jose Jim (he would always jokingly say "No way Jose" to her, hense: Jose Jim) and Barbara where our neighbors in Indiana. The time that she is talking about is when Jim and Barbara watched Caroline for us while Josh and I went and closed on our house. She even told me where Jim was hiding and that it was a really good place because she couldn't find him. She was 2, this all happened 2 and half years ago. Amazing.

And she is always remembering specific playdates with her dear friend Walter. Caroline and Walter share the same birthday and they lived four houses down from us in Indiana. Caroline and Walter grew up (for 2 years) together. She can remember toys that he has, games that they played and lots of other things. She often says to me "Mom do you remember when Walter and I...".

I can't believe some of the stuff that she says. She is completely amazing.

Monday, February 11, 2008


We are all trying to adjust to life without Madi today. I missed stepping over him in the morning when getting out of bed. He slept on my side of the bed on the floor many nights. He always slept on his back with his legs up in the air, it was kind of funny to see but he slept like a human! Will missed him this morning when we were coming downstairs. Will thought it was hilirarious to watch Madi come down the steps. Will would laugh out loud when Madi would follow us down the steps. Caroline missed Madi when she didn't have to let him outside this morning. She got used to letting him outside when we got up in the morning.

I can hear the neighbor's dogs outside barking, it brings tears to my eyes.

Josh told Caroline last night that Madi went to "Doggy Heaven". Caroline took it very well. She told Josh that she was right. Josh asked what she meant and she said that she knew that Madi would not be coming home because he was so sick. He told me that and I wept, still weaping. When I was leaving to take Madi to the ER she wanted to go out to the car and tell him good-bye. She petted him and said her good-byes.

We have not had much luck when it comes to having family pets. Before Caroline was born, Josh and I got a dog named Molly, a shih-tzu. She had many health problems in her short life. She passed away this past March, on St. Patrick's Day. Josh didn't want to get another dog but agreed to let me take in Madi (I think to help heal my heart and to make me happy). Madi was my parent's dog. They were going to give him away because their hearts were still healing from the loss of our beloved family dog Sheba. They felt that they were not offering all that they could to Madi so they decided to let us take Madi in. So even though we only had Madi for six months, he has been in my family for several years.

Madi was in perfect health the day before last. I would have never thought that something like this would have happened. Madi loved to play fetch. We would throw a tennis ball and he would chase after it and bring it back and drop it at our feet, every time! He would play this game for hours if our throwing arm would last. Madi loved to sneak a nap on a pillow (remember he slept like a human!). He was very friendly and very gentle with the kids.

I am taking this harder than anyone. I would have never thought that I could get so attached to an animal, but Madi was a gentle soul and a wonderful friend. I miss him.

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Our dog...

Just got a call from the vet. We had to put Madi down, he was in a lot of pain and was not responding to the medication or treatment. The vet said that he had an acute pancreatitis attack.

We are very sad. It is a very sad day.

Need a prayer...

Our dog, Madi fell ill today. We are not really sure what is going on with him. He got sick around 2pm today and we put him outside so that he wouldn't get sick on the floor anymore. I went to the back door to check on him (we can usually hear him barking at the neighbor's dogs when outside) because I didn't hear him. I found him laying in the corner of the yard and not responding to me. I got Josh to go out there and check on him. Madi would not respond and was breathing really heavy and fast. I call our vet and they were closed (I knew that!) so I called the animal ER (yes, there really is a place!). They wanted me to bring him in right away. Josh had to carry Madi to the car, he could not walk. I took him to the ER, Josh stayed home with the kids.

When we got to the ER, I had someone go out and carry Madi inside (he is too heavy for me to carry). They took him to the back on a gurney and started working on him. They said that his body is responding to shock. They gave him an IV and pain medication. They took x-rays of his chest and abdomen to check for internal bleeding and whatnot. There was a "gray" spot near his splen area, so they are going to watch that area very closely. He had to stay overnight so that they can do blood work and watch him. They are going to call me when they get the results of the bloodwork.

I don't have a good feeling about this. I think that Madi is gravely ill. Please pray for our family pet, Madi.

Saturday, February 9, 2008

New Bloggers

There are several new bloggers added to the "Other Sites and Blogs" section on Lilo and The Stitch. Many parents of children with RTS (the syndrome that William has) are blogging now. The trend is catching on! Check out Carla's blog (Corey's site) and Michelle's blog (Austin's site). They have joined Terri (Addie's site), Tena (Caden's site), Cindy (Natalie's site) and Jessica (Alex's site). Jessica is the Mommy that I resently met at Cardinal Glennon. I hope to meet Terri and Tena in March when we go to the RTS Midwest Reunion. I am very excited to meet both of these amazing women, I feel as though I have known them forever although I have never met them in person! Maybe if we get out to CA I will be able to meet Cindy!
It is really cool to read everyone's blog and learn about each one of these special kids. It is always nice to know that there are others in this world who know how it is to raise a child with special needs.
Check them out!!!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Mikkah Jo's Birthday Party

Ok, so I am a little late with this post but I thought better late than never, right??!! My nephew Mikkah turned 2 on the 30th of January. He had a "Cars" birthday party and the kids all had a great time. He got some really cool toys and he REALLY liked his cake. My sister was getting everything ready for the party and set the cake on the table. Mikkah really wanted to get to the cake and had to be told several times to not touch the cake. Leslie (my sister) had set the ice cream scooper next to the cake while getting things ready and Mikkah figured out that the scooper was long enough to get to the cake! He was picking in the icing! It was really cute. Anyway, here are some pictures from the party.

Here is Mikkah eating the icing...

Here is a picture of Mikkah's Cars cake...

Singing Happy Birthday...

William with my sister Marcea (Aunt Marty)...

Caroline with Mikkah's construction gear on...

HAPPY BIRTDAY MIKKAH!!! Love, Aunt Me (that is what he calls me, melts my heart!)

Dress Up

Caroline was playing dress up today and this outfit was to die for! It took all I had not to start laughing. The picture says it all...


I just got a call saying that the prosthetics company has the authersation for the smo braces. Yippie! Now we have an appointment for next Friday (that was the soonest that they could get us in) at 2pm to have a mold made. She said after we have the mold made then it usually takes 10 days for the braces to come in. So we are going to have these braces within the month!

Monday, February 4, 2008

GI today

Today we had an appointment with Will's GI doctor, Dr. Brady. This is the first time that we have seen Dr. Brady in six months. Dr. Brady decided that it is time that we can change Will from infant formula to a toddler formula. We have started Will on Pedisure. Dr. Brady is also going to write a letter of medical nessecity so that our insurance will pay for the pedisure. This makes us very happy! Let me tell you, I am so over bottles. I have decided to wheen Will off of the bottle and switch him over to sippy cups. I know that this process will be longer than most but I really want to be done with bottles.

We have started switching Will over to pedisure slowly to make sure that he can tolerate it. We are giving him half formula and half pedisure. He seems to be doing really well with it and he likes the taste. He has drank two full bottles today, we didn't have to tube him any of this afternoon feeds. That is awesome!

When we think that Will is tolerating the pedisure we are going to completely stop the infant formula. Once we do that we are going to start puting stage 1 baby food in his tube. We are hoping that this will help with some of his constipation issues too. The doctor thinks that the thicker Will's feeds are the better for his reflux. Thicker liquids tend to stay down better so putting the baby food in with the pedisure the better.

Dr. Brady also changed Will's mic-key button because the plastic piece that plugs the hole on the old one was torn. She also treated his granulated tissue around the button with silver nitrate.

It was a very productive visit today. I felt like we got a lot accomplished.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

A Boy and His Cow

This is Mr. Cow.

He is Will's favorite thing in the whole wide world. Cow was given to him during his hospital stay when he had his tethered spinal cord release surgery in November of 2006. Since then Mr. Cow has been with William every night.

Will loves on Cow, he will roll around on the floor with Cow, bits Cow's nose, rubs Cow's ears, pulls Cow's tail and probably many more things.

When it is time for Will to take a nap or to go to bed Josh or I will say, "Are you ready to go get Mr.?" and Will will start giggling and laughing and that is when we know he is ready for bed.

When we ask Will, "Where is Mr.?" He will crawl around the living room looking for Mr. Cow and when he finds him will roll around on the floor and eat Cow's nose.

Cow has been thrown up on more times then I can remember. Cow has to have a bath regularly and usually is a nice grey color before bath and then a clean white after. Cow goes with us every where, to church, to the grocery store, to ALL doctor appointments and anywhere else we venture to go.

I think that it is so cute to see the bond that Will has created with this sometimes stinky stuffed animal. William LOVES Mr. Cow.

Will loving on Mr. Cow.

Will kissing Mr. Cow.

And this is usually how Will carries Mr. Cow around, in his mouth!

A Relaxing Weekend

Josh and I enjoyed a kids free weekend thanks to Josh's parents. We took the kids down to Grammy and Papa's house on Friday evening and picked them up this afternoon. We really didn't have any major plans we just needed a break. We slept in, went out to dinner and just relaxed. It was a nice weekend. Thank you so much Jane and Jim, you have no idea how much it meant to us that you signed up for a weekend with the kids. It was nice to let us recharge!

Friday, February 1, 2008

Caroline's Pride

The other day while we were at the doctor's office, Dr. Rahman asked me how Will was doing and before I could open my mouth to answer Caroline said "He can clap now!". Then she went ahead and listed all of the new things that brother is doing, signing "more", shaking his head "no", turning the knob on the toy to make it pop, and stacking blocks. She is so proud of her little brother. It warmed my heart when I saw how excited she was to tell Dr. Rahman all of Will's "new tricks".

Will's New Favorite Place

Whenever Caroline is on the floor playing Will is right there with her. He is usually crawling all over her trying to wrestle with her. He has come to realize that on her back is a fun place to sit. The boy loves his Sissy!

An Explanation

Sometimes when I tell someone that Will has a rare genetic syndrome, I get a confused blank stare in return. I will admit that before I was blessed with William, I would have given the same blank stare. Dana, a mother of a child with RTS, gave this explanation and I thought that it was so easy to understand without all of the "doctor speak".

"People get confused between something being inherited and something being genetic. Carter's RTS is not inherited (eg. neither you nor his dad have RTS that you passed down), but it is genetic in that problem with a genes that happened for the first time in him caused his RTS. Now that his genetics are affected, if he was to go on to have children of his own, his children could inherit RTS from him (50%) chance). Your chance of having a second child with RTS is quite low and represents the chance that multiple egg cells or multiple sperm cells harbor the gene change (VERY unlikely). Your other children ARE NOT at increased risk to have children with RTS. RTS is fully penetrant which means if you have the gene mutation, you show manifestations of the disorder (eg. there are no "silent carriers" of RTS). Also, to reiterate something I told you when we first met-- nothing you (or Carter's dad) did or ate or were exposed to, none of the drugs you did in college, caused this to happen. When DNA is replicated, millions of base pairs are copied and sometimes mistakes are made. The cell has an editing system that picks up the vast majority of these mistakes but sometimes things are missed. There is no blame to lay, this was an out of the blue thing that happened and there was nothing you did to cause it and nothing you could have done to prevent it."