Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Little Fighter

Noah's doctor is out of town for two weeks so he has a fill in doctor. This doctor calls me yesterday to tell me they're going to start him on steroids to help his lungs get better because his oxygen wasn't going so well. It has gotten better since then. The steroids will stop tomorrow. He also told me that the plates in his head had moved so he wanted to do another ultra sound because there might be fluid in his brain. The results of the ultra sound were the same as they were last Thursday. So, no fluid! He opened his eyes really wide last night and a little tonight. They also did an x-ray of his lungs. Once side is clear and the other is not. They're giving him a massage every 6 hours for 48 hours to break the stuff up. He is looking good still, kidneys are working fine. So, we're just pluggin' along...

Sunday, January 28, 2007


Noah decided to pull out his oxygen tube today. The nurse said they were able to put it back in right away. He he. She said he set off all of the alarms. He must have wanted some attention. He also gained 4 oz and grew a few cm. His oxygen was better today than it was yesterday. So, we're praying it continues to improve. I posted more pictures to the album.

Haning' in There

Noah is doing well. They did an echocardiogram on Friday of his heart. It's basically an ultrasound. They performed it around 11:00am, told me the results would be in that early afternoon. So, I left and went back early afternoon. The results weren't in yet. After waiting until 6:30pm, they still weren't in and I had to leave because it was a shift change. Steven and I went back up there that night and they were finally in. The nurse said that it came back normal but he does have a PDA . She said it was very small and would ask the on-call doctor to come talk to us about it. I had already known that's what they were looking for and what it was because there is another baby two beds down that has it and they had to do surgery on her heart. So, I was a little nervous. Well, she talked to the doctor and he wouldn't talk to us because our doctor did not tell him why she ordered the echo and he didn't want to step on her toes. I couldn't believe it! But, I understood. So, the nurse advised us to call in the morning. So I called. I was able to talk to the nurse practitioner. She was very helpful. She said the PDA is so small that they won't treat it now in hopes that it will close on its own. She also said his blood and lung cultures came back. Blood cultures are negative and his lungs did have bacteria in them, but were expected. His blood pressure is still good with the medication and kidneys are working. I asked her about his oxygen levels because were very concerned and it seemed as though no one was giving us the answers we wanted. She said he is developing a chronic lung disease that is expected and it will take a while for his lungs to grow stronger. That is why he is requiring so much oxygen and help from the ventilator. Eventually they will be able to reduce the amount they give him. He more than likely will have to go home with oxygen.
He has two primary nurses now. Both of them are very nice and we appreciate the way they take care of him. They each work 3 days out of the week, 12 hour shifts. So, we have to find more primary nurses. They suggested we do that so he will have less variation.
They had to put an IV in his head because the one in his hand went bad. It doesn't look as bad as I thought it would, but still not very comfortable.
We'll be taking more pictures today so be looking for them!

Thursday, January 25, 2007


Well, we talked to the doctor. The medications helped! His kidneys are doing better, his blood pressure is better, and his breathing is better. We won't know where the infection is until a few days from now. They took cultures from his lungs and blood. Also, she said they did the ultra sound of his brain today and his clot is SMALLER and there is no swelling!!! The doctor said she was very pleased. We were so excited to hear that! Now we're praying that the tests come back fine. He looked so much better this afternoon. He was feisty again.
It was alarming to hear the doctor say she was really scared this morning. But I am thankful that she can be so real with us. I asked her if there was a chance his bleed will get smaller and she said, "oh yes, it will get better." She is a good doctor. We were also told that at this age there is nothing they can do if the kidneys fail. I am glad the medications are working and I pray they continue to work.
Thank you all so much for praying!

Rough morning

As soon as I went in to the room today the nurse was trying to get Noah to breath more and all of the alarms were going off. The doctor was there and said she was just about to call me. "We've had a rough morning," she said. Noah's kidneys are not working properly. She thought something was wrong yesterday when his potassium level was high. She said this morning he wasn't moving as much as he normally does. His blood pressure is low and she thinks he has an infection. So, they're giving him an antibiotic for the infection and demorol for the blood pressure. Now, after telling me all of this she said she can't stay and talk because she has other patients to see. She told me to come back later because she'll be there all night and to ask the nurse if I had any questions. I tried my best not to burst into tears, but I couldn't help it. I wanted to stay strong for Noah, but I just got so scared. Through my tears and sobs, I managed to tell him that Mommy loves him and everything was going to be ok. It's even harder to hear news like that because EVERYONE around can hear what the doctor is saying and then can see me crying. I didn't care though, I just let them fall. The nurse said the medicine will help. His blood pressure will be stabilized and will allow more blood to flow to his kidneys. He's so tired now that he's letting the ventilator do all of his breathing. His rate was up to 65% and the machine was giving him 20 breaths a minute. Last week the rate was 21% (which is great, it's what we breath) and he was only given 10/min.
Steven and I are going back up there to talk to the doctor. Hopefully she will be able to explain a little more and answer our questions.
If you read this, please continue to pray for his strength and healing. Love you all!

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Don't worry. It's all perfectly normal...

Jenny and I went to see Noah again today. He seems to be pretty stable. They're feeding him every three hours now and he seems to be doing pretty well with it. He opened his eyes a bit more than he has previously and looked at us for a while trying to focus his eyes. He seemed to be having trouble breathing good, but I think that was partly due to a build up of mucus and gunk in his mouth which they removed. They had his oxygen level quite a bit higher than they have had in the past and that is kind of worrying us a bit. I've read a lot about exposure to oxygen in preemies and lead to eye damage, but no where have I been able to find out what is considered moderate/high levels of oxygen. Of course no matter what's going on with our baby the doctors and nurses all assure us that it's all perfectly normal for preemies Noah's age, but I'm beginning to think if he grew a second head the nurses would tell us that it was normal.


Today's events:
Still off of the light, yay!
Feedings were increased to every three hours, woo hoo!
Doctor decided to wait until Friday to do ultra sound of his brain... now we have wait even longer :(
I chose the first primary nurse for him. Primary just means she will be assigned to him every time. I asked this nurse because he seems to always be calm when she is with him and she keeps his bed clean.
He opened his eye a little more when I was there.
The doctor wants to take him off of the ventilator tomorrow and put a nose tube in. She's been saying that for a few days so we're not really sure it's going to happen. It just depends on how he is doing.
He looked really good today. The nurse kept saying how feisty he is. I'm glad he is, he is a fighter!

Monday, January 22, 2007


Noah's blood counts were low so they gave him his second blood transfusion today. They're going to leave the IV in as long as it lasts in case they have to give him more. Poor guy... He has a tube in his left arm, an IV in his right hand, a tube in his throat for breathing, a tube in his belly for food, and a light strapped to his foot to monitor oxygen. I'm sure there are other tubes or monitors that I am forgetting. His blood sugar level is finally stabilized. They're going to give him food every six hours, so that means he is handling it well! They took the light off again, hopefully it will stay off. I think he is doing well.

Yesterday was a hard day for me. For some reason it was just hard to see him hooked up to everything. His breathing tube looked crooked so it made is mouth stretched to the side. I guess there will be good days and bad days for us too. It helps to have a wonderful husband by my side to tell me everything is going to be ok. I couldn't have made it through this without him. He was there every day and night at the hospital, always there to comfort me and cheer me up. I couldn't ask for a better husband.

I'm also thankful to wonderful friends and family who were either there or called someone every day. Mom and dad came to see us every day. Stephenie and Michelle came every day and brought lots of stuff. My friends at work came to visit and kept in contact everyday. They also supplied me with plenty of things to do while I was laying flat in bed. Our whole family kept in contact with me, Steven, or my mom every day. I know a LOT of people were praying and still are. I am thankful, very thankful.

The thing that keeps this little family going most is God. When we first went to the hospital they told us that any baby born before 24 weeks has no chance of survival. I believe God let him stay in for one more week so he would be more than 24 weeks. I believe that Noah's life is going to be a testimony to God's awesome power. We've seen doctors and nurses already amazed at how strong he is. I know this road is going to be long and have ups and downs, but it's going to lead to something great. I'm excited to apart of it!

Sunday, January 21, 2007

New Bed.

Today Noah got moved into a isolette. There were a few other notable event's for Noah today. The nurses fed him his first breast milk. Assuming all goes well they . Also our little guy has grown half an inch since birth, but unfortunately he's lost about 3 ounces in weight. The nurses assure us that this is perfectly normal, but we can't wait to see him starting to get some fat on him. I also included a picture of Mom next to his new bed. If you would like to see some photo's click here.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Good Days and Bad Days

Every time we mention that we hope Noah's condition continues to go well, the nurses respond with, "he'll have good days and bad days." We believe he will have more good than bad. So far, he has.

Now he is connected to a ventilator to help him breath. His heart rate, oxygen level, blood sugar, and everything else imaginable are monitored. He only needs a little help to breath. The doctor even thinks the tube may be removed tomorrow and replaced with a tube in his nose to help him breath. His heart rate is usually good, with a few drops every now and then. They call it a "brady," which is short for bradycardia. Noah's blood sugar is a little high sometimes, but as of now it is going back down. He was under a blue light for his jaundice, but they were able to take that off today.

Last Wednesday the doctor informed us that he has a grade 4 bleed or IVH(Intraventricular hemorrhage) on the right side of his brain. She was thankful that it was only on the right side. There's nothing they can do about it now, except to monitor it. If the condition gets worse, they could treat it. It could eventually cause hearing, vision, or another type of learning problem. The doctor said that it could be reabsorbed and just go away. So, they're going to do a scan next week.

We are thankful for all that God has done so far and pray that Noah will continue to grow and be strong with little complications.

Friday, January 19, 2007

An unexpected surprise (continued)

We soon found out that the reason for all our troubles was because of a condition that my wife had all along, but no one knew it. She has what the doctors refer to as an “incompetent cervix”. Her cervix just isn’t strong enough to withstand the forces of gravity pushing against it during pregnancy.

Although Jenny remained dilated and was forced to stay in bed the next few days went by extremely slowly and were somewhat uneventful. Every morning a nurse would come by surprised to see us still there.

On the 10th of January one of the nurses discovered that my wife’s water was slowly leaking and ultra-sound showed that two thirds of the fluid around the baby was no longer there. To make matters worse it was clear that the baby was in a breach position which could only lead to more complications during birth. In full-term babies if they were breach a doctor would recommend a c-section, but with the doctors advice we decided to have a natural birth if the baby was going to be born before 26 weeks. This was an extremely difficult decision to make because if the baby's head gets stuck during delivery it could harm the baby.

On January 13th around 3am my wife woke me up because she was having strong contractions. Unfortunately this time they would not subside. After more than 12 hours of of labor the doctor decided that it was time to for my wife to start pushing. Since Noah was only 24 Weeks the neonatal doctor was called in to attend the birth. At which time she asked us if we wished to resuscitate him. This was certainly the worst decision either of us have had to make in our lives. I wasn't even sure how to reply at first. We eventually came to the agreement with the doctors that they would try to resuscitate and continue to do so as long as he continued to be responsive.

Just a few minutes later my wife gave birth to our son Noah at 4:13pm. He came out butt first with his hand and arm hanging down. Fortunately his head did not get stuck for any period of time and Jenny only had to push a few times since he was so small. He weighed 1 pound and 11 ounces and although he required resuscitation, he was very responsive.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

An unexpected surprise.

I'm sure no parent's are truly prepared when their first child is born, but my wife and I were completely blind-sided when our little bundle of joy decided join us 17 weeks early. We were planning on at least another three months of our everyday routine before being thrust into parent hood.

When we kicked off the new year in 2007 my biggest worry was completing our kitchen renovation before the baby was born. Which didn't seem like much of a problem since he wasn't supposed to be here until May 1st, but just a few days after the new year our world was turned upside-down. Around 1am on January 3rd Jenny started having cramps after she went to bed. She had cramps occasionally during her pregnancy and neither of us really thought much about it, so I did what any caring, concerned husband would do, I went to sleep. Around 6:30 that morning I woke suddenly to the sound of my wife screaming franticly so I rushed to see what was wrong and she whaled something that I couldn't possibly have understood, but I realized what was going on when I saw all of the blood everywhere. She was unmistakably in labor. I was still sleepy-eyed and half asleep, but after asking my wife very nicely to shut up for a second and calm down, I remember just concentrating on and getting all of the things done that I would do every morning before going to work.

Pants? Check.
Keys? Check.
Wallet? Check.
Put Dog outside? Check.

So I loaded up my wife in to the truck and speed off to the hospital. On the way I tried to console her and tell her I was sure everything was going to be alright, but I honestly had no clue what was going on. I was just as startled and confused as she was, but one of us had to drive us to the hospital.

After we arrived at the hospital a couple different nurses came by and poked on my wife and ran ultra sounds on her while talking amongst themselves. I'm certainly no doctor, but I could tell by their tone that it was something serious. They couldn't tell us anything; We had to wait until the doctor got there to find out what was going on. We were convinced that the doctor would just say that the cramps caused some bleeding, but everything would be Ok. In reality what the doctor would say was much worse than either of us where prepared to accept.

Dr: "Are you the Baby's Father?"
Me: "Yes."
Dr: "Well, I am very sorry, but I don't think we are going to be able to save your baby."