Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Mama, I'm Coming Home

I'm currently rocking Josiah to sleep to this Ozzy Osbourne song (Mama, I'm Coming Home) - at our house! The doctor discharged him on Monday, and it's been a whirlwind couple of days trying to get moved back into our house after our 11 night hospital stay. We are finally starting to get settled, but still have lots to do. Starting tomorrow we will have guests at our house until the end of the year which will be fun (and nice for us when we force them to take the 2:30 a.m. bottle feeding shift!).

Josiah and I are adjusting nicely to staying home together - it is SO good to have him home. He has his 1st follow-up doctor appointment tomorrow, so hopefully he has picked up some weight (he was back up to his birth weight on Monday) - we'll keep you posted.

Sorry for the short entry - it is not easy to type with one hand! :) Here are a couple of pics of our cute little boy!
This is his 'daddy's little helper' outfit. We decided not to let him help his daddy yet though...Jason had to use the chainsaw to take care of a big fallen branch in our backyard. Josiah won't be helping with that type of thing until at least next week.
Here he is in his carseat - he says 'thanks Grandma & Grandpa R'!

In case we don't have time to post before then - Merry Christmas!!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Let it snow!

Yesterday was very busy! We attempted to feed Josiah every time by either nursing or using a bottle - trying to get away from using the feeding tube. We only used the feeding tube once yesterday afternoon, which is a huge amount of progress from previous days. Then overnight last night he decided to pull his feeding tube out, and the nurse said "fine, now you have to eat without it!". They may have to put it back in depending on how well he does with eating, but we're hoping that we've seen the last of the feeding tube!

Here's the little guy without the feeding tube - I think he is mad about the girlie hat he has to wear all the time...

Also last night they had us bring in our carseat & the base so they could test him in it. I guess with pre-term babies there is a chance their airway could get cut off depending on the angle of the carseat (because they're so small) and/or if they aren't strong enough to hold their heads up a little bit. So they put him in the carseat for an hour and monitored his breathing, heart rate, etc. He was able to pass this test, so that brings us one step closer to being able to take him home!

Today we have gotten to keep him in our room since 7:30 a.m. with just a few interuptions. It has been great!
Here are a couple of pics from yesterday:

Thursday, December 13, 2007

1 week birthday

The little guy is one week old as of 4:31 a.m. today. I got to hang out with him in the room for a couple of hours today while Jason was at work, and to honor the special event, he decided to pee all over himself again when I took his diaper off to change him. He loves that. He did great this morning staying awake & alert - he's getting stronger every day. However, after 2 back-to-back feedings he was zonked out for the rest of the day. Not much else to report except that he is the cutest baby ever. Looks like we'll be here through the weekend and into next week. We aren't getting any indication from the doctors or nurses on when he can come home - it all just depends on him getting stronger and picking up some weight.

Jason took his final today and is now done with school for a month! That is very exciting. He has been doing a great job of handling school/finals, going back to work, and having a new baby (including washing the pump several times in the middle of each night) & an overly emotional wife. He is a great husband and dad!

It was kind of a crazy day so we didn't take many pictures, but here is one of Josiah and his "aunt" Julie.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Venturing out of the NICU!

We had a really fun day today!! Our favorite NICU nurse let us bring Josiah to our room (unsupervised - *gulp*) TWICE today for a total of about three amazing hours. It was SO fun to get to hold him and spoil him a little bit. I tried to change my first diaper without the nurses there, and I think I used three diapers because he kept trying to pee on me! We had to change his clothes, blankets, and even his ankle bracelet after that incident.
Jason wanted me to feed Josiah cookies & donuts to try to fatten him up so we could take him home sooner...
Josiah & his daddy...notice that the cookies are closeby.
As for medical stuff, the little guy gained 2 oz. yesterday (according to his weight this morning), so he's back up to 5 lbs. Hopefully he will have gained a little more when they weigh him tomorrow morning. His bilirubin count was down slightly which is good, so they're going to skip a day and re-test him the next day (with the assumption that it will continue to go down). This is pretty cool considering that about 60% of all babies have jaundice, and preterm babies are at a higher risk for it. Also the little guy seems to have a little bit of a diaper rash. Here's what the nurses are using to treat it (no joke!):
We are continuing to try to be patient while we wait for Josiah to have the stamina to eat without the help of the feeding tube. This is not as easy as it sounds!
Thanks again for your thoughts & prayers. Oh, and if you could sneak in a prayer for Jason's final tomorrow, that would be great! :)

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Another Day in NICU

Today was Josiah's 5th day in the world. That is really is about it for an update today. A lot of the status quo and more patience required. His weight and billirubin count did not change much from yesterday so hopefully we can start gaining weight and decreasing the billirubin count. He only tried to nurse once today but he was just pretending to be awake and quickly decided to go to sleep and therefore no nursing practice. This little bit of information blew me away this morning, one ounce of formula has 20 calories in it, he is eating 1.3 ounces at a time eight times a day only 208 calories is what he is eating for day. I ate that in two cookies that I had today.

Danita and I decide to sneak out for a little date night at Lone Star. We hope that the NICO is the most expensive baby sitter that we will ever have!

Here he is after trying to nurse.

Here is good shot of his face, he decide to wake up a little this afternoon.
Working on the nursing instinct with the pacifier while he eats via the feeding tube.
The day five family photo at home in the NICU.

Monday, December 10, 2007

Day 4

Josiah is continuing to progress nicely. He is doing great with everything and is starting to become more fiesty (as the nurses say). Last night he pulled out his feeding tube (that's the 2nd time he's done that), so now they put him in a sleeper that restricts the use of those curious little fingers! He must have been feeling honery last night, because they also told us that one time when they were changing him, he decided to pee all over the place. At least that will make Jason & I feel better about when he does that to us!

The weather here is supposed to get crazy tonight - 1/2 to 1 inch of ice is what they're predicting. My mom left today so she could make it home before the roads got bad. She did a TON to help us while she was here - from cleaning our dirty house to cooking us real food (we got tired of hospital food and fast food pretty quickly) to washing the baby's clothes and lots more. Thanks Donna!

Also today Jason's sister April and her three boys came to town - they have not had electricity at their house for 2 days now, and we're hoping that our house does not lose power while they're here! With the storm we'll see!

Still waiting for the little guy to learn how to seems like a slow process but he is learning quickly. We have had two good attempts the last two times we've tried. We are hoping that one day soon he will be able to stay in our room!

Here is Danita getting Josiah dressed:

This was supposed to be a picture but we didn't notice that the movie feature was on. Oops!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Upgrade Accommodations

Josiah is continuing to do awesome. He was upgraded this morning to an open air crib. That means he is maintaining his body temperature very well..ROCK'ON. He is still having some good bowel movements, I never thought I would be so excited about poop!! Since he is having good bowels he is keeping his billirubin(sp?) count down so no jaundice and thus no treatment.

I don't have much else to say. Our days are going so fast, by the time we hold him while feeding it is time to pump, then clean, then try and eat or talk to people then repeat every three hours. We just stay focused on the next three hours and that is the most important part.

Eating from the breast is the next big step. I guess white premature boys are the slowest to figure out the sucking instinct, so slow that the NICU nurses call them "wimpy white boys". I think he is still the strongest little boy and not the least bit wimpy but I could be biased. He is just a little stubborn and is enjoying being lazy!

Below are the pics from today.

Saturday, December 8, 2007

His Cute Eyes

A Couple of Video's

This is me trying to change my first newborn diaper yesterday!!!

Picture Update

Josiah is doing well. His name means "the Lord Supports" and that as been so true (you can read the rest of his story in 2 Kings 22 or following this link: He has been progressing very well and is digesting all of his food. He moved off of oxygen so quickly, now he is eating strongly, he is having digestive activity all of this after only two days. Short of naming him little miracle, we think the name has been indicative of his life and hopefully will continue to be. Thanks again for all the prayers and support it does make a difference. Danita is still doing well and is approved to be discharged today. We will be staying in the hospital until Josiah is released but it is nice to know that Danita can step out if she would like. Of course with all the ice and cold, she probably won't be.

I have to say that the NICU here as been wonderful, everything has been good but these NICU nurses are special people. Candy has been our primary day nurse and all we can say is wow! She has been amazing, she is so knowledgeable and encouraging and dedicated to her job, I do not know enough good adjective to represent how awesome she is. I have to tell this story because it is so representative of her. We are having some bad weather, snow, ice, freezing rain, just a normal KC winter storm. So that she could be here and not miss work due to roads and to help cover shifts if needed she has stayed in the hospital the last two nights and might do it again tonight. She has been sacrificing for her job and is taking great care of Josiah. Please say a prayer for her and her family and ask many blessings for them.

Here are the promised pics mostly from today:

Sleep is overrated

Lots has happened since the little guy arrived but we've been just a little busy (ha). For starters, he has a name - Josiah Jason R. We're not sure if he likes it yet but he doesn't get a vote! Here's a family photo:
Great news from the NICU - all of his cultures have come back negative (meaning no infection), so they have taken him off antibiotics and have removed his IV. One less cord to worry about! He is eating well (through a tube in his nose to his stomach) and digesting almost all of what he eats. He had his 1st bowell movement (sorry if this is too much detail for some of you, but this is a big deal according to the nurses!) early this morning.

He is getting cuter by the minute. Yesterday we got to hold him a lot more than the day before which was so great. He was awake & alert quite a bit which was also fun. His eyes are currently blue but based on the color of our eyes, we're guessing that will change!

We will try to update with more pics soon! We really appreciate everyone's prayers and are very thankful for the all love & support we have felt over the past couple of days!

Thursday, December 6, 2007

Surprise Week 34

Well week 34 has started like the last couple of weeks. We debated over the weekend if we should pack an overnight bag, just in case you know. But as usual we were busy and didn't get it done. Oops! That was a bad idea. Danita decided to wake me up at after only 15 minutes of sleeping with the announcement of "oh i think my water broke", this is 12:30 am! What how can that be we were only 34 weeks not 40! Turns out the baby doesn't count in weeks and he was tried of fitting his 5 lbs 4 oz 19 inch body inside Danita.

We headed to the hospital in the cold under the assumption that we would be coming home a few hours later. Only when we arrived at the hospital the nurses said, you are going to have a baby tonight as you are already at dilated to 4 cm's this is 1:30 and no contractions. From here on out the time get's a little fuzzy because it happened so quickly. Basically at 2:00 Danita decides on the great pain reliever the epidural. By 2:15 ish the Dr arrives and starts to drug Danita by 2:45 he is done. We check again at 3:15, 10 cm's time to have the baby. Danita was allowed to relax for about 30 minutes before the pushing began. She pushed hard for about 45 minutes and at 4:31:

Here are some more pics

What a Champion my wife is, that is a lot of pushing and still beautiful!

Here he is getting poked and prodded about 11:00.

Here he is with Mom:

Here I am with our amazing little baby:

As of the time of this post, no name! sorry, we've been busy and now we are tired and going to take a nap. Also Little Mr. No Name was using supplemental oxygen for the first few hours but seems be to doing fine with out it now. Right now mr. early baby is doing well. Thank you all for praying for this and for praying for a healthy baby! Danita is doing good too!