Thursday, February 21, 2008

Boys in Madera (blog will be slower)

Friends and family,

The reason you have not seen a recent update on the Blog is because both boys are now down in Madera at Children’s Hospital of Central California. I am without Internet at the Ronald McDonald house and only when I find time to run down to the library do I get a chance to send out an email to everyone (Shane will update the blog with this email).

Within 24 hours of Jonah being transferred last Friday the hospital here was able to open a bed for Noah and so Saturday night I followed Noah down to Madera. Our family was reunited later that night.

This week has been nothing short of miraculous. This past Saturday night when Noah arrived I was extremely stressed at the idea of him still being on the ventilator as this hospital is not as practiced or comfortable at letting parents hold their children if they are intubated. I knew that Noah was going to struggle as he was used to getting attention and being held in Los Angeles. I asked my family to fast and pray specifically for Noah this past Sunday that his lungs might be strong and that he would quickly make it off the ventilator and not require a trach.

Monday morning the doctor here decided to give Noah a try off the ventilator and to our great surprise he is breathing wonderfully. His blood gas tests have been incredibly balanced and healthy; the most recent was close to that of a normal term baby. We are so blessed to have this great miracle in our lives. I was terrified of the thought that he would come home to us with a trach and home ventilator and I was also terrified I would spend several more weeks not being able to hold him because he was intubated. I have never prayed with such fervency over this past week that Noah would make it off the ventilator. As of today he continues to breath with the help of the high humidity nasal cannulas but he is not needing the ventilator. He has now fed twice from a bottle and both times took half an ounce with almost perfection coordination, which is amazing. The occupational therapist feels that he will be a good feeder and these past few days he has amazed us in so many ways.

Yesterday, the nurse decided to position him on his belly and right away he lifted his head up and started staring at everyone around him. You should have seen the entire room! They were giggling with delight as Noah lifted his head and watched everyone. I was feeding Jonah from a bottle at the time so the nurses and a respiratory therapist took photos. It is amazing how strong Noah is. I have a strong feeling that he will catch up in no time developmentally and I look forward to the day that he comes home to us. I do not know if Noah just woke up and said, ok…I have had enough of this and I am ready to be a real baby and start breathing on my own or if it was God’s intervention. I am sure it was both and every day I have thanked the good Lord for hearing our prayers and sparing Noah of any long-term ventilation.

This has been the best week ever since the boys were born. For the first time I feel the excitement of realizing we are in the home stretch. For the first time I feel the anticipation that we are perhaps weeks away from being able to go home! What a wonderful feeling it is!

Jonah continues to do well. He is bottle-feeding four times a day and is up to taking an ounce with every try. He is a strong little man and I often think of the saying from Shakespeare’s play A Midsummer Night’s Dream (actually the original quote was in reference to a woman) “though he be but little, he is fierce!” Jonah has proven to so many people what a great fighter he really is. They said in Los Angeles that he would struggle bottle-feeding that very likely because of his neurological situation he would have coordination difficulties but he has proved them wrong! Even today the eye doctor, after looking at the boys’ eyes, said that Jonah’s seem unaffected by his neurological issues. Every day we are amazed that he is growing as well as he is.

Noah is so interactive with his toys and his big, beautiful eyes (which look so like daddy!) follow your every move. He is a beautiful, bright and curious child. Jonah also is so alert and we have had many comments from nurses and others regarding how alert he is and how much he enjoys attention and being held. Jonah prefers to be held closely and talked to and you should see how he watches you when you talk to him.

I am grateful to the Lord for his great miracles in our lives. I thank him every day for all he has done to preserve my sons. We are so blessed and sometimes I know in my weaker moments I have been angry and upset that we were ever asked to journey through this experience but each time I am gently reminded that God does love me and that he is with me. I think often of the hymn How Great thou Art and the words, “O Lord my God, When I in awesome wonder, Consider all the worlds Thy Hands have made; I see the stars, I hear the rolling thunder, Thy power throughout the universe displayed.”

I believe in miracles and I feel so blessed that I can stand and say that God does not forget us even in our hour of need, that he is mindful of us and embraces our misery with his great compassion and love. My heart is so full of joy and thanksgiving as I know with a great assurance that God does not abandon us.

Please continue to pray for the boys as they have much to overcome and what we need most now is health. Should Noah experience a round with pneumonia again he could take several steps backwards and right now we desperately need him healthy so his lungs will continue to grow and so that he will be able to tolerate being off the ventilator. Jonah’s last surgery will be next week and we are so looking forward to this as he needs to get it out of the way so he can finish recovering and come home to us. It will take at least a week for his little body to recover and then we hope that he will pick up where he left off.

My hopes are high that by the end of March both will come home. Pray for this and we will continue to pray also. Thank you all for your love and support. We appreciate all your well wishes and numerous prayers. Our sons are here because of the goodness of our Heavenly Father and because of the hundreds of prayers said in their behalf. Thank you, each of you, for all you do.

With love, Shane and Michelle

1 comment:

heidi said...

that makes me so happy! yeah! I'm so excited for you and the boys. what strong little boys you have! i just can't wait for the day i get to meet them!