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Our Journey

Welcome to the journey that brought us here to this day,

Let's take a sneak peak back to 2008, I promise to keep this short and sweet! We found out we were expecting our third child. Both of us were just over the moon! Sadly my time pregnant ended at fourteen weeks and two days. It was the sadist time for us, but we knew we had one another and that we had opportunity to add to our family down the road. We were positive and keeping the right attitude to ensure our older boys that everything was going to be okay and that this happens more often than not.

After a few months we decided to "try", that is the best part right! (giggle). Soon enough we had a little test reading pregnant! We were cautiously excited. This time we did not tell our boys or anyone else. We kept this secret till we were well into our second trimester. After the first miscarriage I was determined to only provide the best for our bundle of joy that was on the way. I knew right than and there I was, haha, poor Kory, he had no clue what the heck I was thinking, I knew I would both breast feed and cloth diaper our child no matter what. The rest of my family wasn't so sure of this bright idea I had. I still chuckle now as I write this. 

Let's fast forward to a January night in 2009 when my water broke and we headed to the hospital. Our previous two boys were born within five hours of labor starting. So we figured this would happen quick. Hours upon hours had gone by with zero activity, just contractions, no changes. Soon enough the changes the staff were seeing were not good. By nine o'clock in the morning our doctor came in, took a quick ultrasound and before she could say anything she started unplugging everything from the wall telling the staff we were headed to surgery. Kory was taken from my side and dumped in the hallway were he was told to change into the proper surgery gear. I remember being rolled past him and the look on his face was devastating. We both were scared out of our minds. Holding hands the entire time they were prepping for surgery and giving strict instructions of what can and can not be done. Soon enough our third son, Rowan James was born. His scream echoed through the surgical room. 

I remember laying there like I was on the cross, trembling as they pushed and pulled at my body jostling me around.  Then I realized, Rowan was screaming, not a just born screaming, but a excruciating cry of pain. The nurse brought him over and had a look on her face. Rowan was swaddled and still screaming for his life. Our hearts sunk, the look in Kory's eyes are forever etched in my mind, even now, it brings tears to my eyes. The emotion of being parents again, the roller coaster of gut wrenching motherly intuition that something was wrong, but his little face looked perfect and beautiful. 

Kory without hesitation knew I wanted him to go to Rowan to see what was wrong. The nurse explained that he needed to go to the nursery immediately. That his right leg was broken. Rowan was holding up his leg as close to his little body as he could to guard and protect. His feet and toes were all squished together like a tight knot. He continued to scream. His thumbs drawn in so tight into a fist. Both Kory and Rowan left the room, I laid there starring at the ceiling, tears falling into my hairline, trying to be quiet so no one would hear me. 

I must have cried myself to sleep, because when I woke up I was in recovery. I was alone, I felt like I was in a closet. Soon the nurse came in and told me I just had to wait a bit longer then I would be able to join my husband. I asked about Rowan, the nurse told me she would find out how he was doing. She never told me what was going on as she and other staff rolled my bed through the halls back to a room where I was reunited with Kory. 

Kory tried his best to be strong, to show no fear, but I could see and feel it. The way his eye brows held what he had gone through while we were apart, his posture looked as if he has just been beat down. He hugged me and we cried. Sobbing for what seemed like forever in one another arms holding on as tight as we could. Then he began to tell me what had been happening and what he knew. 

As Kory was joined with Rowan in the nursery, he gazed down at his son, his pride and joy, his legacy. A nurse, nonchalantly came over and said to him "ya he has a syndrome, his whites of his eyes are blue, that is what that means" she then walked away. Kory was than told that Rowan had a broken femur and broken humerus. They were unsure why or what had caused the fractures. The hospital was looking for a doctor that would know more. The nurse than let Kory know I was coming back to the room and that she would take good care of Rowan while he was with me. That after a little bit they will bring him to our room. 

Now we are into the middle of the day, we still have yet to call anyone, we were in a cloud, just trying to take our next breath. Trying to muster the strength to lift our heads for a moment. Nurses come in and out checking on us quietly. Rowan comes wheeling in style to us, all swaddled up and contently sleeping. I remember knowing I needed to feed him, and needed to do it now. So I tried holding him, his little face so sweet, he was just perfect, his eyes peered up at both Kory and I. We sat cuddled together, taking a deep breath. From that point on, we knew were were taking on the world no matter what anyone said. 

It was later that month after Rowan was transferred to another hospital and his biopsy came back that we found out he was diagnosed with Osteogensis Imperfecta Type III Severe. We were advised to contact Shriners Hospital for Children here in Chicago that has a doctor and team that specialize in Rowans disease. 

If February, we had our first appointment at Shriners for Rowan, the staff was fabulous! If there is anything remember from that day is this, they all kept telling us "It is just a bone thing!" At the moment we didn't realize or fully understand, but over the years, this has stuck with us and it is the truest of truest words we have ever heard. 

So between wanting to breastfeed and cloth diaper Rowan, quitting my job to care for him, needing to find work at home to supplement my lost income, 4wardThinking Clothing & Diapers was born. I love that I have been able to care for our boys and create a woman owned and family operated business that makes a difference in our world. 

Thank you for reading and becoming apart of our journey! 

Cheryl 

PS. Follow me on social media to see how amazing Rowan is, his garden he grows, pool time and now he even is playing sled hockey!