Wednesday, January 20, 2010

So Perfect

A friend sent this to me today. I pray my Natalie does this,

Once upon a special day,
In heaven up above
The tiniest souls sat at God's feet
Surrounded by his love.
The time was coming very soon
God said "Do not be scared"
Your family awaits your arrival
Now let us get prepared
and so.....God looked upon these souls
In mute consideration
He knew the life each one would live
He weighed each situation
The souls chatted amongst themselves
And wondered who they'd be.
They knew the day grew closer..and so on
They'd meet their family.
"How would you like to change the world?"
God asked each soul in fun
"The chance to make a difference
is held by only one."

I'm going to make the world laugh
One soul said with a smile.
For laughter heals a broken heart.
And helps us through each trial.
Then take with you the biggest smile
and share your laughter well
The soul thanked God immensely
And down to earth he fell.

And I'll remind the world to sing
A sweet little soul told the world
I have the gift of a beautiful voice .
I can hit every note, every chord
You'll have the gift of music then
A voice lovely and strong
Share your gift with others
Let them hear your song.

I will show compassion
The next little soul raised his hand
Some people only need a friend
Someone to understand
Compassion is a good thing
God said with much delight
To you...I will give mercy
You'll perceive wrong from right.

and so each soul....shared every thought
their plans their hopes their dreams
As God explained that life.....
is much harder than it seems
And as each soul began to leave
in a scurry of laughter and fun
heaven became quiet
left was only one....
Come sit with me my little child
God said with just a sigh
Do you know how many you will touch
in a world left wondering why
From the moment that your life begins
You will know strife
But you'll touch those that know you
To cherish the small things in life
and some may only know you
through a simple photograph
they'll never hold you in their arms
Or memorize your laugh
some may only know you
through the words they read each day
But you'll do something wonderful
You'll make them stop to pray
The tiniest soul raised her head up
To touch God's strong firm hand
Father I am ready for
The life that you have planned
And I will do the best I can
without a word or deed
for you Lord are the planter
And I will be your seed
She could already hear many praying
and although they had not seen her face
they were praying for her safe arrival
they were asking for mercy and grace
What talent do I leave with Lord
what gift to you impart?
All that you will need God said
I've placed within your heart
and so God kissed this tiny child
knowing all that she would be
and whispered as he watched her go
You'll teach them to see me.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Update on Natalie

What a long week this has been. Natalie had her surgery on Monday. Surgery went well. The day after surgery Natalie did GREAT. They extubated her and we got to hold her all day. She even nursed quite a bit on Tuesday. By Tuesday evening they moved her from PICU to NICU. This was a great step. And they had said she was doing so well that she would probably be home by the weekend.
However, Wednesday's chest x-ray showed fluid around her right lung. The dr tried to drain it just with a needle, but only got 10 ccs. They knew there was more so opted to do a chest tube. As of today that tube has drained over 200 ccs of fluid. A lot of fluid for a little baby.
The day after the tube was placed the nurse let us hold her and nurse. Since then, no nurse has let us hold her. :-(
Yesterday, they told us that she now had fluid around her left lung and had to do another chest tube on that side.
Today, we found out she has chylothorax...basically the fluid she is having is lymph. So, they put her on a special formula that has a very low fat content, to try and seal that up.
At this point, we've been told she will be in the NICU indefinitely. Most likely at least 2 more weeks.
My mom and Dave are still here, and Matt's parents have been here the last week. They leave tomorrow. I have no idea what we would do without is really hard trying to figure out how to divide our time between the hospital and the kids. Thankfully, Matt has taken the month of January off. It's just been really hard.
Prayers would be appreciated. She's a little fighter and I know we'll get through this, it's just a matter of time.
I cannot wait to get her home with us, and to be able to snuggle with her whenever I want.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Natalie Grace's Birth Story

I tried everything I could think of to go into labor on my own, but it wasn't meant to be. I had been scheduled to be induced on Jan 5, and I made it to that day.
We arrived at the hospital at 5 am and got things started. I was terrified of the IV, but it was a really good placement and I did well with it. I was so proud of me! LOL
When they checked me I was still the 2 cm I had been at my last appt a week before.
I had said all along that I didn't want an epidural but that I wasn't someone who was going to let myself feel like I was dying.
Around 7 they started my pit and the doctor came in to check me. She said I was a 2 and asked if she could break my water. I told her last time they broke my water they didn't let me sit up after that, so asked that if that was the case, she not break it. But she said Natalie was low enough so she broke my water. Boy was there a lot, it just kept coming.
Matt and I started to play cards and the contractions were coming every few minutes but were very tolerable.
We made it through our game and turned on the TV. We watched a bit of the Price is Right and while we were watching that, the contractions started to get pretty painful.
The doctor had told me not to wait too long for the epi because I labor fast and she didn't want me to wait too long. The nurse said as soon as I was ready, she had filled out the paper work for the epi and she'd call the anesthesiologist. I just really felt like I could do it without.
Around 11, I asked to be checked because things were starting to pick up and I was wanting to see how far along I was to make the epi decision. I was a measley 4 cm. I thought I probably had a ways to go. I asked for something in my IV instead, just to get back on top of things.
Whatever they gave me, knocked me out. It must have been so weird to Matt, because I was out cold but every couple minutes I would wake up moaning and saying, "ow ow ow" and then I'd be out cold again. Matt went and got lunch at that time. I don't even remember him being gone.
Suddenly, at 12:30 I was in a ton of pain. My back was killing me and I wasn't sure I was going to make it through this. I was checked and was a 6. They offered me the epi, but I knew that transition was just around the corner and I'd go really fast after that. So I refused. I did ask for more IV meds because I really wanted to sleep and not deal with the pain! However, it was too soon after the first dose to give me anything.
At that point though, with nearly every contraction, I was bearing down. I couldn't help it, it was the only way to feel any sort of relief. The pain in my back was almost paralyzing. I was sitting on the end of the bed and couldn't move from that position. The contractions would just start to die down when another would come. I was crying at this point saying I couldn't do it. But I knew I had no choice. They kept checking me and it hurt sooo bad, I'd tell them they needed to get their hand out NOW. But each time I was a cm more dialated than before. Finally, they said I could push, but I got really scared. I had been pushing all along, but now was going to do it in earnest. I had so much pressure that I kept telling the dr I was going to poop on her! She said it was ok, but I was so freaked out about pooping on her! I don't think I ever did, but it was the thing I was concerned about at that time.
After pusing for about 3 contractions and 10 minutes Natalie came out, sunny side up. And it HURT. Badly. She wasn't crying so they wisked her away and Matt went to be with her. I don't remember him cutting the cord, but he says he did. I remember still being in a load of pain, with tons of burning. Finally, when the placenta came out, the pain was gone.
She was born at 1:32. It took two hours from being 4 cm to having her, not bad! She was 8 lb 13 oz and 19 inches long.
This is only the second time I've gone with no epi, strangely enough, it's been with both my TAPVR kiddos, and they both happened to be sunny side up.
I'm not sure I would recommend going without and epi in an induced labor. It is very intense and you literally go from totally tolerable contractions to 'oh my gosh I'm gonna die' contractions in a matter of minutes.
But, it's done. I didn't tear. My precious girl is here and I feel great.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Short update

I just wanted to let everyone know that Natalie Grace was born on January 5. She weighed 8lbs 13oz and was 19 inches long.
She is about the cutest thing I've ever seen!
I was induced at about 7 AM and she was born at 1:32 PM. Once things started going, it was a pretty intense labor. She was born sunny side up like Zachary which made things incredibly painful. But, we survived.
After having her with us for a couple hours the nurse took her to be "transitioned". This is a time they give them a bath and just generally look the baby over.
During this time, the nurse noticed she was "slightly dusky" and she did a pulse ox test. Pulse ox tests are not routine, for reasons I cannot fathom. Her O2 sats were in the low 90s so the nurse called in the ped.
When Matt went to check on Natalie he was told we were waiting on the pediatrician. At that point, Matt mentioned Zachary and his heart defect, TAPVR.
The nurse spread the word and shortly the neonatologist was called in. He explained to us all the tests that needed to be run before calling the cardiologist. They then transferred her to the NICU, and we were told we would have some news in about an hour.
About an hour later, we went down to the NICU, where we were told that all the tests indicated it was probably her heart, and they were waiting on the cardiolgist to get there to do an echo.
When that was done we were taken to a conference room (never a good sign) where we were told that Natalie has the same defect as Zachary. She has unobstructed, supracardiac TAPVR. What a blow! This defect is so very rare to begin with, and it is even more rare for it to repeat in siblings.
She was then transferred to a different hospital. I had to stay the night at the other hospital, which was very hard for me. Matt went over with Natalie.
The good news is, she is in much better shape than Zachary was. She isn't even on any oxygen. She will have her repair on Monday. It is so very hard to look at her and know that this HAS to happen for her to survive, she just seems so healthy.
So for now, we sit at the hospital holding her, and loving on her. Come Monday, all that will change and we won't be able to hold her for awhile. Breaks my heart!
Please remember Natalie in your prayers this upcoming week, she could really use them!
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