Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween 2013

Happy Halloween from my biggest.... my littlest....

Monday, October 28, 2013


My FIVE POUND baby is sleeping!!!
This Mama is doing a crazy silent cheer! (Yes, he hates the prongs in his nose and does pull them out every chance he gets. As long as he keeps his O2 saturation up, I don't put them back in... But don't tell his doctors...the nurses told me that they are OK with this!)

Sunday, October 27, 2013

35.1 Weeks

He makes getting up very early on super cold mornings worth it!
 I can't wait to get this little 35 weeker (4.15 pounds) robot home!

Friday, October 25, 2013

This is What Happens...

When Daddy buys the kids clothes! 
  Oh yes, even little CJ has a WWE shirt too..but for now...
             He wears his snuggly. 

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Party at CJ's CRIB!

CJ has done so well at being able to regulate his body temperature...not to mention that he is a whooping 4.11 pounds!...that he graduated from an isolate incubator bed...

to an open air crib! 

  It takes all of my will power to not climb in the crib with him, especially since the sides slide down. 
 Clayton and Lacey drew him a couple of pictures that his nurses taped to his bed so he has something to look at for stimulation.  Not only has CJ graduated to a crib, but he and I have been working on getting him to breast feed. 
Thank you all so much for your continued prayers and support! 

Sunday, October 20, 2013

In Our Family...

...the weekends are for sleeping in! 

(Sorry no pictures of Mom or Dad...we were, of course, sleeping in!) 

Friday, October 18, 2013

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Clayton's Kindergarten Picture

How did he get this big? 

  When did this happen and who allowed it? It was definitely not me! Clayton has grown up too fast. He LOVES Kindergarten, which I couldn't be happier about! But this growing fast business has got to stop!  

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

1 Month Ago...

I got to hold CJ for the first time...

My how much has changed in a month! 

Miracles do happen. 

Monday, October 14, 2013

CJ is 1 Month Old!

Our sweet little baby is now 1 month old. 

  CJ continues to grow and grow! He currently gets 35ml of fortified (24 calorie) breast milk every 3 hours. Ever since I cut dairy out of my diet, we have been lucky that his stomach issues seem to have disappeared. 
  He continues to have his crannula and is on Vapotherm O2. He likes to hang out  around 25-27% O2  and on a flow of 4.0. His red blood cell count is low. At his last check, his count was at 30 and a count of 29 or lower constitutes a blood transfusion. Tomorrow, his RBC gets checked again and we are anticipating that he will be getting a transfusion. We are hoping that this will help to give him the little push he needs to wean off his O2. 
   CJ recently got his PICC line out since he is up to his full feedings! 
  His head looks amazing without his PICC line antennae! Since his PICC line came out, he gets to wear clothes! His nurse surprised me with this onesie as his first outfit...
Of course I cried from love and happiness, not to mention the thoughtfulness of his nurse! 
 We continue to have our special skin to skin time daily. It is by far our most favorite time of day! 
 CJ also got to meet a very special friend who will be by his side through thick and thin...
Mr. Monkey....neither one was very impressed with each other. 
  Our baby has grown so much! He is now 4.1 pounds!! 
  We have taken the next step in his feeding and have been trying some non-nutritive sucking at the breast. He has been doing so well! I couldn't be more proud of him! I also got to give him his first bath! 
  He was so relaxed during it and loved getting his hair washed and brushed...and of course, being all clean and snuggled afterwards! 

Dear Sweet Miracle CJ, 
    You've made it. These words are more precious than you can ever know. Medically, you weren't supposed to make it. We never gave up on you. You were the baby we prayed to have added to our family. You complete us and make our family whole. We have fought so hard for your survival and never once did you give up. 
   I hope that you know how incredibly loved you are and how many people have prayed for you and continue to pray for you. We can't wait to get you home, but we know that you are in the best possible care with the incredible staff of nurses and doctors. Oh how the nurses love you! You have your main nurses that request you whenever they work and any time a new nurse gets to take care of you they fall in love with you too!  CJ, you melt my heart every moment I get to spend with you. As soon as I get to your side, you sense I'm there. You start squirming and as soon as I start taking to you, you open your eyes and look for me right away. 
   You are starting to look more and more like your big bro every day. You are so laid back for such a fighter, your strength is amazing. 
   I love you so very much, my miracle baby. 
  Love , Mommy

Friday, October 4, 2013

Chunky Monkey

Hard to believe that this little guy...
...weighs 3.10 pounds! He seems to be on the road to recovery still from his stomach issues. I'm still hoping that cutting dairy out of my diet and giving him non-dairy breast milk was all that he needed. He still has a little bit of fluid around his lungs, but he is breathing more comfortably.  
  It's a good thing that he has been doing well wih his feedings...
I don't know how much more my freezer can hold! Better to have it in his tummy! 

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

CJ's Birth Story: Part 2-Delivery

    When I ended the first part, I was put in magnesium sulfate to try and stop the contractions that were occurring every 2-4 minutes. On a rate of 1-10 in the pain scale...with a 10 being in te worst possible pain, I was at a 3-4. I was on the mag for about 2.5 hours. During this time, the doctor was contacting the high risk doctor who had done my ultrasound a week and a half ago to discuss the risks of delivering this early, at 28.2 weeks. During this wait time, my nurse was being proactive at getting things ready for a possible C-section. The last thing anybody wanted was to be in an emergency situation. My wonderful nurse was getting everything ready so that we could all stay as calm as possible. When she wasn't in the room prepping, it was nice to have Curt with me to help calm my nerves and have his support. He does a great job of outting his feelings aside to be supportive for me.  
  At 10:30, the doctor came in the room. He explained that the contractions weren't stopping or slowing down in the 2.5 hours I was on the mag and that they were not likely to do so. After talking with the high risk doctor, they both decided that it would be in the baby's best interest to deliver. The baby was not in distress. The major concern was trying to get the labor to stop and possibly putting him in danger and then getting us in an emergency situation. Curt and I agreed. 
   As it just so happened, there were no c-sections scheduled. So, after the decision was made and I had the doctor show me how steady his hands were, I was being wheeled to the OR for my C-section 5 minutes later. This was good...I had no time to think. Curt was told to get suited up and wait. They would call him when they were ready for him to come into the OR. 
He may have had the hardest part...waiting...not knowing what was going on with me. 
   This was new uncharted territory for either of us. My previous 2 deliveries were wonderful... Or as wonderful as deliveries can go. Boy was I in for a different scenario! 
    I have never had any broken bones...not even stitches! So here I was, getting wheeled into a major surgery... While it is very routine, I was still nervous...and scared for my baby. 
  If you have never had a C-section, let me tell you...the OR is cold and the surgery table is LITTLE! Those were the first 2 thoughts in my head. I was afraid I was too big to fit on the surgery table. Is that not the oddest thought?!? Well, turns out, I fit...yay me! The first task was getting my spinal tap, which numbed me from my chest to my toes. Getting the spinal tap was very similar to getting an epidural...sit, curl your back forward, deep breathe in...let it out and you'll feel a bee sting and slight burning. I had only gotten an epidural with my second delivery, but I remembered the drill. As soon as that was in I was laid down right away as it takes effect very quickly...I was already feeling the tingle in my feet and butt was numb soon after. 
  Then the major prepping began...just like on any baby delivery  reality shows...blankets, iodine on my stomach, big blue sheet to hide it all from my eye sight. As soon as this was under way, Curt walked in. He came in at just the right time...because I was starting to get real nervous! 
  There were no mirrors to be able to watch, but I could see the reflection in the big lights overhead. I remember my arms being straight out at secured down. Curt sat on my left side by my head and the NICU team was over to the left in my eyesight ready and waiting to help stabilize my baby. I remember praying for 2 things. 1- my baby would be at least 2 pounds and 2- u would hear him cry. Even if it was only one little cry...I needed to hear it. Shortly after Curt entered, it was go time. I remember watching them through the reflection begin the incision and thinking it was a big incision for such a small baby. 
  Then I had to stop watching and ended up having to have Curt to distract me. I was scared that when cutting into me, the might accidentally cut the baby since there was no amniotic fluid as cushion. I glanced at the reflection again and saw two hands grab my stomach muscles and pull them apart. I remember thinking, "Man, that's gotta hurt....crap, that's me! That is going to hurt!" I had such a disconnect from watching what they were doing and knowing it was me because I thankfully couldn't feel anything. 
  The next thing I remember is seeing the doctor pull out my baby's bottom and then his legs dangling out.  Then, his head came out and I heard it...I heard the sweet blessing sound of my 28 weeker cry. Not once, but twice. As soon as the umblical cord was cut, baby was handed over to the NICU team. Curt followed him and stood watch...being the wonderful protective father...and taking pictures ...being the wonderful husband since I wasn't sure when I would get to see my baby. 
  As soon as he was stable enough to be moved from the OR to the NICU, the nurse bundled him up in a blanket and carried him to my head so I could see his sweet precious face. He seemed so much bigger than I thought he would be...but of course I thought that was my wishful thinking. 
  My son. My miracle baby. My baby that I had fought so hard to keep alive was born. For the first time in this unimaginable journey, my miracle baby and I were separated...and I didn't know how long it would be until we were reunited. 

Stay tuned for the final part of CJ's birth story!