Friday, June 27, 2008

G-tube or NG tube?

Still meeting with your OT--I think we are making progress. You aren't really taking more milk, but you are protesting less. And you are up to 60 CCs per feeding—that’s a full feed! You will stay at that for a while. I spoke with Dr. Ahmed and it sounds like you might get to come home next week. This weekend Daddy and I need to make a decision on whether we should take you home with an NG tube or a G-Tube. The G-Tube is a button valve in your stomach and the NG tube is the tube up your nose and down into your stomach. They both have pros and cons of course. I am praying you will do a great job eating tomorrow and make our decision easy for us. We also found out today that your cataract surgeon will be Kimberly Yen. When we first found out you had cataracts, your Granddaddy did a lot of research and found she is the best, so we are so excited about that!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Changing of the Guard

This is a pretty slow week for us. We are still waiting on the results to come back--we are kind of in a holding pattern until we get some answers. The genetic reports aren't back today like we were hoping they would be. We have a pretty good system down for keeping someone by your bed at all times. The NICU closes the unit 4 times a day for shift change. I get there when it opens at 7:45a and stay until the afternoon. Grammy or Honey come at 11:00a and then the other grandma comes at 1:00p and stays until the NICU is closed at 2:45 for shift change. At 3:45p Mema comes and stays until the 6:30 shift change. Dad and I come back to see you at 7:45p and stay until the 10:45 shift change. You are getting to be a spoiled baby already, since someone is always there who wants to hold you. The nurses try to tell us we shouldn't hold you so much. But we are in the hospital! There are a whole new set of rules here! When we get home things will be different, but for now I am so glad you feel secure and comforted all day. What a blessed girl you are!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Food We Know Nothing About

I was expecting you to be allowed to eat today, but since your first barium enema results were inconclusive, the doctor wants to wait a few days for all of the contrast to leave your system and then we will try again on Thursday. And since we don't know what is going on with your digestive system, the doctors feel it is best that you don't eat anything until we figure it out. You already haven't eaten since Thursday and I hate to think how hungry you might become. I had been praying that God would make your tummy feel full when your Grammy called to remind me of a verse in John. After Jesus spoke with the woman at the well, His disciples were encouraging Him to eat. Jesus replied, "I have food to eat you know nothing about" referring to doing the will of God. You are such a special girl. There are probably thousands of people all over the world praying for you. We get emails from people we have never met saying that you have impacted them in amazing ways. You won't know the difference you have made in strangers lives until we get to Heaven--your Daddy and I are so proud you are ours. God is doing great things through you while you unknowingly rest in your little crib, and in the meantime we are praying that He will give you food we know nothing about.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Father's Day!

Today is yours and Daddy's first Fathers Day together! You were extubated this morning at 10:00 instead of last night at 8:00. The nurse practitioner had a really hard time intubating you, and they wanted the same people to be there when they removed the tube in case you had complications that required it to be replaced. I was so sad that you had to have it an extra 14 hours--especially during the night when I couldn't be there to comfort you. But it was best to play it safe. When the tube was removed your little voice was so hoarse, but you didn't look or act too uncomfortable and were in good spirits. You got Daddy a couple Father's Day cards, and asked Mema to pick him up a treat from you--that was sweet! The two of you spent lots of time rocking and talking together. Aunt Paula snuck into the NICU again this morning and spent some time sitting next to you, and then later we got actual permission for her to stay! So she spent the last couple hours holding you--what a special gift that was for everyone.

Your face in this first picture makes me laugh so hard everytime I see it.

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Central Line and Aunt Paula

Today was a big day for you! First thing this morning you had your first surgery to insert a central line. You have some abnormal tracheal anatomy so they had a tough time intubating you, but they eventually got it. I wasn’t there this morning during your surgery…Daddy and I were at home. But your Grammy sat there while you were in the OR and she told me the power went out for 8 minutes while you were in there. So the nurses had to hand bag you during that time. I am so glad I wasn’t there for that, because I probably would have panicked. But thank you Jesus for protecting you during that time! You did so well--it didn't take you much time at all before you started to wake up and squirm. No one could hold you because you were still intubated, and it was so hard for us to sit next to you and not be able to hold you while you were fighting the tube. But you did ok with us just holding your hands and talking to you and kissing on you. You also felt better when you were cuddling with your Lambie that the church brought you! You love that Lambie.

Today was also special because your Aunt Paula came to meet you! Since she used to work at Texas Women's, she knew the back ways into the NICU and had some connections, so Paula put on some scrubs and a good friend helped to sneak her in to see you! Aunt Paula--ahem, I mean Anesthesiologist Paula (wink, wink)-- and Daddy kept singing the Mission Impossible theme song--they thought they were so sneaky! We were so grateful Paula came down and spent some time with all of us--Saturday was such a good day.

Friday, June 13, 2008

First Surgery Scheduled

In these first 5 days, you have had dozens and dozens of IV's started in your arms, legs and scalp. The nurses are running out of places to stick you--and they shaved several patches of that beautiful hair we were so proud of! So the docs tried to place a PIC line, which is more long term than a normal peripheral IV. After several attempts, they couldn't do it and decided the best option was to place a central line. You will need surgery tomorrow to have it placed, hopefully in your leg, but maybe chest or (eek) neck. This should last at least a month, and although it worries me for you to undergo anesthesia already, I know it is for the best and will make you so much more comfortable.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Hear this!

You can hear! Mama insisted the doctors give you a hearing test...they wanted to wait until you were discharged. I was so worried you might be deaf and blind. Grammy beat me to the hospital this morning and texted me the news. I collapsed onto my bed, sobbing with relief. It seems like most of the news we receive is negative, and it's a bit overwhelming. I am thankful for this piece of good news.

I was anxious to come back to the hospital this morning and talk to you knowing you could hear me and recognize my voice. Our days are pretty easy and quiet. You are still recovering from the birthing process and do nothing but sleep all day long. You have taken a couple very small bottles, but it doesn’t seem like you are digesting much. Today they did a barium enema to watch how your food travels through your body. The results are inconclusive so they may have to do a biopsy in a few days to get more of an idea what is going on.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Worst Night Ever

I was discharged from the hospital today…we took advantage of our room as long as possible and didn’t check out until almost midnight. Leaving you there was the hardest thing I have ever had to do. When we came to the hospital to have a baby, I expected to come home with one. I couldn’t stand the thought of getting in our SUV where your car seat was all set up and driving home with it empty. At home I hated to walk past your room and not have you in it. You are so blessed to have a wonderful dad who is so good to your mom. This has been a tough few days for me just because I am so sad that you aren’t feeling well and have a long road ahead of you. But Daddy has been so strong for me and he always knows the right thing to say to make me feel better. We can’t wait for you to come home with us! Your room is so cute and all ready for you, and your cats want to meet you too!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Cataracts and ASD and PDA, oh my!

Today we got some more test results back, some encouraging, others not as much. We found today that you have thick cataracts on both eyes. You will need surgery by two months of age to have them removed, and for now you don't open your eyes at all. The echocardiogram showed you heart has an ASD (a hole between your upper two chambers) and a PDA (a vein that didn't close after birth like it should). The doctor says not to worry about either of those for now. Your kidneys look a little small, and your liver is an abnormal shape but all seem to be working properly. Your spinal X-Ray looks your Grammy said, "You are a girl with a strong backbone!" Your CT Scan came back normal, which means your brain's anatomy is fine.

Five years ago today Daddy and I started dating. Is that cool or what that you came one day shy of our anniversary? Looking back to five years ago we never would have guessed we would be here now. We were thinking you wouldn’t come for another five years or so. You were a surprise honeymoon baby, and we are so grateful for you. Already I can’t imagine my life without you Audrey. God knew what He was doing when He gave you to us now instead of in our own timing.

Monday, June 9, 2008

Birth Day

Happy birthday Audrey Lee! You were born this evening at 5:33 pm and weighed in at 7 lbs, 3.5 oz and were 18.5" long! We had a tough time during the silly girl were what they call an OP brow baby. That means you came face up instead of face down and head back instead of chin tucked. We pushed for a long time and both of us were trying so hard...we are fortunate we didn't have to do a C-Section. As soon as you were born they took you away to suction your lungs, which I was prepared for, but they didn't bring you back for about 30 minutes. When I was pregnant with you, I couldn’t sleep in the very early mornings and watched baby deliveries on the Discovery Health Channel and The Learning Channel every morning. So when they didn’t bring you back for over 20 minutes I knew something was wrong. Jesus helped to keep me calm until the OB and your neonatalogist came back in to let me know what was happening. You have a cleft palate, which is a hole in the soft tissue of the palate in your mouth, a recessed chin, and a small tongue. All of these are going to make sucking and eating difficult for you, but nothing we can’t overcome. You also have a tiny little extra finger on your right hand--it shouldn't even count as a finger it is so tiny! One day soon the doctors will tie a string around it and it will pop off easily and no one would ever know. And one of your feet is turned out a little. None of these things alone would cause much concern, but together it makes the doctors think there might be a bigger issue. A full work up is going to be done to test all the other parts of your body. I was allowed to hold you for one quick minute, then they took you and Daddy away to get you weighed, measured, and cleaned up real good.

The nurses wouldn't let me get out of bed to see you until 6 hours postpartum. As soon as I could at 11:45pm, Daddy took me upstairs to see you (that is when this picture was taken). You were laid out on the warmer in just your little diaper. Already you looked so much better than the quick minute I was allowed to see you in the delivery room. Your swelling has gone down some, but you still have a long way to go and your head is so bruised and scraped up. Poor baby. You have birthmarks on your forehead, the back of your head and the back of your neck. You have the most precious little voice and when you cry it just melts our hearts.