Thursday, August 13, 2009
Our baby (whom we'll call Thomas on this blog) was born Saturday afternoon 3:51 pm. He was 6 pounds, 4 ounces -- pretty hefty for 4 weeks and a day early. He came out absolutely howling, and I got to hold him for about ten minutes before they whisked him away to the NICU for checking over. Once in the NICU his breathing deteriorated quickly, not doing anything unusual for a preemie, but giving me a scare anyway. (Every hour or so, the dr. from the NICU came to tell me he was doing worse, and have me sign another set of papers for treatment, and tell me that I wasn't permitted to see or touch him yet... yikes). He was on life support overnight on Saturday, and got off of it Sunday morning. They ended up treating him for immature lungs and pneumonia.
I went to see him late Saturday night, after they had him on life support and such, and he looked so much better. I was able to sleep pretty easily. Sunday he stabilized and stayed stable enough on Monday that they decided to let him try eating. Of course, he's a Davis so he's already an old pro at eating -- and I got to feed him a bottle! On Wednesday I got to breastfeed him -- he knew right away that this was what he was meant to do -- no training period here. He just latched on and ate the biggest meal of his life. Then he leaned back and belched -- a good burper! (This is not a Davis trait, by the way -- he's the first kid I've had who could figure out how to burp).
Wednesday morning they took him off of breathing support all together, and Thursday morning off of all of his IV nutrition -- he's now totally "breast" fed (though some of the breastmilk comes from a bottle after I pump it. He's off of his central lines, done with phototherapy for jaundice, and just doing terrific. He has to remain on the antibiotics for the pneumonia through Saturday morning, and then will in all likelyhood be released to come home! yipee!
In all this, I really have "seen the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living". I'm usually an old-fashioned type, and tend to idealize the concept of life 100 years ago -- where people still grew their own food, and could live like that, where neighborhoods were safe for kids to run around, etc. This has made me oh so grateful for modern advances. Even twenty years ago, this sort of prematurity killed kids right and left. I doubt Tommy would have lived more than a few hours. But with the modern technology and the care of this lovely NICU staff, he's doing fabulous, and doesn't have even what they consider severe or scary complications. He's just a bit young. I'm amazed all the time to see how much he's improving, and so grateful for these modern advances.
And just as grateful for the prayers of my friends. I really feel like they moved the hand of God when Saturday night he went from entirely blue-gray (the NICU staff's description, I wasn't allowed to see him) to nice and pink almost right away. And from there on out, it was all good news. Thank you Jesus!