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Saturday, October 27, 2012

Prayers needed...

I'm home (in Spokane) for a couple of days so, I wanted to give a quick update to let you know where we are right now and we'll fill in the past few days at a later time.

The birth went as good as it could have. We were admitted at 7am on the 23rd and started pitocin around 9am. Every 30 minutes the nurse increased the dose which increased the contractions. When we reached to full dose, Heidi's contractions were every 2 minutes. When the nurse checked Heidi a little after 6pm, she was ready to have Noa. Dr. Hilton was great, he got there right on time and coached us through the birth. Noa was born at 6:27 pm, weighed 6.12 lbs, and was 20.5 inches. Heidi was incredible, natural birth with 3 hard pushes.....

.....Noa and I were Life Flighted to Portland to a hospital more equipped to handle a CDH case as severe as Noa's. The main reason is their experience and use of ECMO. Heidi was on her way driving with Ruby, Emmaus, and Heather before our flight took off. We are staying at a Ronald McDonald house next to the hospital.

Noa was placed on ECMO early Thursday morning followed by dialysis on Friday. Those of you who are on our texting update list are aware of this but I've gotten lots of questions back asking, "what's next if this doesn't work?" So....

This Hospital as very good at keeping babies off of ECMO using other methods of controlling vitals. They use ECMO on the very worst (sickest) cases, for babies who will not survive without it. The reason that ECMO is used as a "last resort" is because it has as many risks and possible side effects as it does benefits. It could save her life or take it. ECMO is total heart and lung bypass with dialysis being kidney bypass, so she's on life support.

Noa will be on ECMO for about two weeks (letting her heart and lungs rest and recover) with tests and constant monitoring to asses her condition. Her heart is very weak and surgery to repair the hernia is not an option untill her heart recovers and is able to oxygenate her blood.

If there's no improvement on ECMO during the two weeks, there's not much chance that there's going to be beyond that, and the question will be,"are we saving her life or prolonging her death?" With so many unknowns we are taking things day to day hoping and praying for the best (even a miracle).

I not sure when the next update will be but we'll try to post news as soon as we can. Thanks for the support and prayers.


Monday, October 22, 2012

12 hours...

Tomorrow morning (Oct 23rd) at 7am we go in for our induction. We're not sure about when Noa will be born but we thank you in advance for your prayers and support.
We'll keep you posted.

Thank you,

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Oct 18th! 

So, I am still set for an induction in 4 days (Tues). I will be 39 weeks pregnant, and everything looks great for the birth.

We are all finished with our 'stress tests' and 'growth marker scans' for Noa, so we have closed one chapter of the book and are turning the page!!

We went in for a procedure with Dr Hilton a couple days ago that could help me go into labor...but there hasn't been any 'action' yet. Dr Hilton said I could try it again on Friday (tomorrow) with a midwife or nurse if nothing happens, so I made an appointment to see a midwife in the morning. We should know within the first 48 hours if it works for me...and if it does, then please pray that the 'right' staff will be on hand with NICU over the weekend to care for Noa...and also that I would be assigned an OB that is skilled as well (Dr Hiltons days off are Sun/Mon).

My sister arrived very late last night and it was the beginning of Justin's weekend, so today was so nice to just relax and catch up and take a VERY long walk! I haven't seen my sister since Feb, so our reunion has been sweet. And its been helpful to catch her up on the routine of the other 2 babes. Its gives us peace of mind to know she is here just to help us. (And thank you to those who have offered to babysit for her so she can be at the hospital with me! We will call on you!)

Thank you for praying and thinking of us and supporting us. We will keep you posted!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

October 14th- 
2 Doctors Visits and a Comedy Show

Fall is here!
Last night Justin and I were able to go see a comedian we both really like. We bought the tickets many many months ago, so we felt very excited to fit it in! We laughed alot and really enjoyed the date~ we are definitely not good at scheduling dates so this felt super special to us.

On Wednesday we had our last visit with Maternal Fetal Medicine. Noa is still growing right on track and they estimated that she weighed 7lbs (give or take a pound!!) Everything looks the same (with the CDH, anticipation of NICU intervention and surgery 3-11 days after birth) and it felt like a light-hearted last visit. I know we are both ready to move on to the next phase of this journey and it felt good to be done with these Dr's visits (even though we have been grateful for the care they've given us and Noa). 

Shopping for PJS for hospital
Two days later on Fri- we had another ultrasound (where they estimated her weight to be 6.3) and a consultation with Dr Hilton, our OB. As we get closer to the induction date, I am preparing for what that scenario might look like, so I had alot of questions for Dr Hilton regarding induction and what the 'plan' was. He felt that it might be helpful to perform a medical procedure on me that would put me in a situation to be more favorable towards labor. Sooooo, this Tues, the 16th, I will go in for that, and hopefully it could start my labor within 48 hrs. I am hopeful that it will work, but we will have to wait and see.

I feel like I am preparing for Noa's arrival by beginning to withdraw a little bit (though I am working hard at home to prepare). I don't know what to expect, and its an emotional roller coaster waiting. Many things have been checked off of our 'to-do' list, and now its just day to day. A couple girl friends have dropped in to get that last visit before I have Noa, and I've been appreciating the people God has placed in my life to support me/us thru this. 

"Smile Emmaus!!!"
I wanted to thank the mom's group I joined just a short time ago for having a baby shower for me this last week as well. The moms in that group have really dove into supporting, praying for and loving me (us!) in such a short time. And I felt so special and honored by the party. There was even a couple gifts from women I had never met before but are praying for and supporting us. Thank you!

I think that is all for now. I will write more after our appt on Tues...until then....I will try to keep my eyes on the Captain of the Storm.

Beautiful Family at Park

Monday, October 8, 2012

...Quick check in

Only 2 weeks to go. When I look at our calender, I am very excited in a natural sort of way (like any mom would be), but soooo apprehensive about the next stage. Honestly, I am looking forward to the birth and being able to move around easier and exercise, sleep better... wrestle with the other kids and not be as tired or impatient with their tiny toddler ways!!!!! Ruby is fully into getting up 3 or 4 times at night for chocolate, potty, change of bed or just to check out what we're doing...its super cute, but I don't always see it that way.

When Justin and I went to our appointment this last Friday, we both felt 'off', but didn't really discuss or process it till we were leaving. In the end, we were relieved that our doctor had been called off to surgery and had to cancel his consultation with us- we still had the ultrasound but no meeting afterwards. I think we are just feeling more vulnerable as it gets closer. And for myself, I don't always feel like joking around or being casual about how hard this is.

And right on the heels of these concerns and fears, we have been feeling so loved and taken care of these last few weeks. Although I never mention our finances- some of the bills have taken us by surprise and have definitely caused a 'wake-up call' for what the future might look like. In light of that, at just the right time, people have given us money, gift cards, special baby gifts (like a beautiful new glider!!), and simple follow-thru on free childcare! We feel carried along for sure, and can't thank our friends and family enough for the support. I know and believe that prayers are heard by God and he moves people to thank you for that as well.

This week we have an appt with Maternal Fetal Med on Wednesday and then another growth scan on Friday with the OB. I am looking forward to it because I feel like it will be the last ones before Noa comes, but who know's, they might just squeeze one more appt in.

Justin and I are very excited because we end the week with a comedy show that we bought tickets for months ago!! So excited to see this comedian and laugh. Then my sister arrives for a week on the 17th. I am so grateful she will be here for that time.

So unless we go into labor....we will update after our appts. I feel pretty confident Noa is healthy and growing- evidenced by my HUGE belly. 


Friday, October 5, 2012

Sept 26th- So, our weekly appointments begin...

Sept 26th,

Last Friday was the start of our weekly visits to Dr. Hilton (our OB) or maybe it was the week before. These appointments start with an ultrasound to monitor that Noa is practicing breathing, practicing swallowing, and general movement along with checking her heart beat and the fluid levels around her. With our ultrasounds through Dr. Hilton, and MFM, we get a different stenographer each visit. It's been kind of fun to compare all the different techniques they use, 4D pictures they print for us, and even their personalities (some are all business and some are more compassionate and personal) with us.
This week a familiar face came and got us from the waiting room, it was Rita. We hadn't seen Rita since our 20 week ultrasound. She was the first to see Noa's CDH.

This picture of Noa during our 20 week ultrasound was always cool to me because I hadn't seen a view like this during Ruby or Emmaus's ultrasounds.  I wondered if it was a view of the organs out of place to show the doctor.

-We told Rita what a good job she did at not letting on that there was a problem during that appointment.

I'm not sure if Noa was asleep at the time, but Rita left the room to get a "buzzer". She said that it was like what an alarm clock is for us, "It'll wake her up."

The buzzer worked...She opened her eyes and we got to see it through the 4D view in real time.

A few seconds later she let out a huge yawn and it was back to sleep..

Our meeting with Dr. Hilton went good. He looked over the ultrasound results (even checked out our pictures). We asked questions about the birth, when to go in, who to notify, ect..

The 23rd will be upon us sooner than we know. Heidi's starting to "nest", clearing drawers: filling them with freshly washed tiny baby clothes, putting phone lists together of those who offered to help in all sorts of abilities, Preparing for family to stay with us...