"June 27th- "On Tuesday night, Carter began to choke. Blood came out of his nose and mouth, and his face began to turn blue. We called 911, and Lawrence did CPR on his little body until they got there. He was rushed to Lurie Children's Hospital where they tried to stabilize him. He was bleeding from his lungs and stomach. The blood in his lungs had caused him to choke, and the lack of oxygen compromised his organs. He is being given many medications to help his lungs breath, his heart beat, and his blood pressure. His body is being kept cool to hopefully stop further damage to his organs--mostly his brain. He is hooked to an oscillator to help him breath. The doctors spent all day trying to stabilize him, and he is now in semi-stable condition. The bleeding has stopped, but they are still trying to find the cause. They will begin warming his body on Saturday if he remains stable so that we can determine his brain functioning. The doctors said we have a long way to go, but his stability now is positive. His life is in the balance, and it's an hour by hour wait. Lawrence and I have never been through anything more scary or difficult in our lives. As we've lived through this nightmare, we're holding onto the truths. We know we have a God so much bigger than oxygen, body organs, and medicine. He has given us 6 beautiful weeks with our precious baby boy, and we are crying out to God for thousands more. I have been comforted by knowing and believing that God loves my Carter more than I ever could and is holding him right now. Please join us in getting on our knees for the doctors, our family, and Carter's brain and body. We know our little guy is a fighter."
June 27th- "Thank you all for your overwhelming prayer and love. We are amazed and humbled at how many people have joined together in REAL, ongoing prayer for our little boy. Today was an emotionally exhausting day, but we're all hanging in there. Carter is still on the oscillator, but his lungs seem to be improving slightly. They were able to ween him off of some oxygen support that they were giving him. His heart is also stable with support, and the doctor considers this a positive thing at this point. Today we asked the doctor the scary question: Is his condition still a possibly fatal one? His response was that he cannot say for certain anything right now, but he THINKS that he will survive. He said that if we would have asked him that yesterday the answer would have been less than 50% chance. The fact that he made it through the night semi-stable is in itself a miracle. The biggest concern right now is the damage this trauma has had on his brain. He body is still being cooled to minimize further damage, and they are doing an EEG on him to monitor brain activity the next few days. Saturday they will begin to warm his body. Those next few days we will have a more accurate understanding of his brain functioning. We are so thankful that, again, God helped him to defy the odds and survive another day. We are holding onto any bit of hope. Please pray that his brain is protected and healed more than any doctor could imagine. Thank you for praying, crying, and praising alongside us every step of the way."
June 28th- "Carter has taken a little turn for the worse. The doctors are desperately trying to determine the cause of Carter's bleeding in his lungs. Although it appears to have stopped, his white and red blood cell counts as well as his platelets have dropped significantly which could indicate another type of infection. They gave him a blood transfusion this morning and it is likely that they will give him another one tonight. His lungs have fluid that they are treating right now. Overall the doctors seem concerned. They said that it looks like tonight could be a very busy night for him, and that they would call us with changes. We will be sleeping at his bedside tonight, and our family staying in the hospital through the night. As doctors have scrambled in and out this evening, you can imagine the level of anxiety that is in the room and that we naturally feel. Please continue to pray for a peace that transcends ALL understanding. We KNOW that this does not scare God. He created the very people that invented medicine and the very lungs that are hurting in our little boy. He is bigger than all of this and He is holding him right now when we cannot. We are begging God for a miracle for our Carter."
June 29th-"Once again, God carried Carter when it appeared he might not make it through the night. His levels have improved from where they were, and as of now we will NOT have to do surgery like they were preparing us for in the middle of the night (the surgery has a 50% survival rate). Today is a very critical one as his body is being warmed up. He is at risk for seizures, and he has to remain stable. They will begin to ween him off of the support that they are giving him in attempt to see what he is able to do on his own. The warming starts at 9 central time and will last 4 hours. He has a very long way to go, but we are rejoicing every step of the way as he defies odds. Your prayers matter--please stay on your knees for him alongside us throughout this critical time. I will continue to update as we have new information!"
June 29th "Today was a big day for Carter as his body was being warmed after 72 hours of cooling. The warming took a little over 4 hours. There were some serious potential risks that come along with this process, but we are praising God that Carter remained very stable throughout! After our extremely scary night last night, it was very encouraging. The doctors had warned us that today would be a very busy, intense day, but it was actually a relatively calm day. Doctors and nurses all seem rather surprised! As we praise God for each victory, we also are aware of how very far he has to go. When we spoke to the doctor tonight, he told us that we will have to be very patient in this next critical week as they try to ween him off more support and get a better idea of his brain functioning. The biggest thing they want to do as quick as possible is get him off of the oscillator and onto a lower level ventilator. This is a HUGE prayer request as he has not tolerated other ventilators in the past. The doctor also said that if Carter continues to pull through, we are looking at a recovery of many weeks or possibly months. Pray for us as we adjust our "expectations" of life with our baby right now and that we are filled with strength to be in this for the long haul! His lungs look a little better today, and the fluid in his lungs appears to be significantly decreasing. They were able to slowly ween him from a tiny bit of the support they were giving him. The paralytic meds that they had him on last night were stopped. The concern of taking him off these meds is that he tries to breath on his own, and this causes him to fight the oscillator. Right now they want him to rest and let his lungs heal while they slowly ween him from the machine. The cause of all of this is still unknown so they are treating him with broad antibiotics to cover as many types of bacteria, fungus, and mold as possible. They think it could possibly be a virus so they have given him antibodies to help give him a fighting chance. Because of all of these fluids he's been given, his tiny body is so swollen and bruised. It is extremely difficult for us to see our little boy this way. As his mother, I ache to hold him. We put pictures up around his room today as a way to show doctors and nurses the REAL Carter they're fighting for, and that has been a comfort for us to see as well. That being said, we are so blessed to have our little boy in this amazing hospital with nurses and doctors who truly care for him and are doing everything possible to help him make it. We are celebrating and praising God for every single victory-both big and small! Thank you all for your unwavering prayer and support. Although we have not been able to respond to some texts, messages, and comments, we have read them each night together and have been lifted by your words and encouragement. Thank you for praying for Carter as if he was your own! We are still crying out to God for a miracle and know that He is more than able."
June 30th "Carter had a relatively stable night last night. The paralytic meds have worn off so he started moving around a little bit which they say is encouraging when it comes to brain activity. He even opened his eyes for a brief second when I bent down to talk to him. The doctors think that he lost some progress in the healing of his lungs when he had that terrible night Friday night. So they are being careful with weening him from the oscillator. However, in order to do the MRI tomorrow like they hope, he HAS to be on a regular ventilator instead of the oscillator. They need to be aggressive and careful at the same time. We are praying very hard that he is stable enough to move to a regular ventilator today!!! His lung X-rays look good, but he still has a lot of secretions coming from his lungs and stomach. They are hoping with constant suctioning today to help his lungs breath much better. He had another blood transfusion this morning bc his platelets were dropping low again which can indicate bleeding. As of now, though, they have not found any signs of internal bleeding. It's going to be a long week, and his progress is still hour by hour. We are so thankful for every second that he is ok and that he's made it this far. We are looking at each small step as a victory right now! Thank you for your prayers for all of us--including his talented nurses and doctors. I've been so hesitant to post a picture of our baby in his current state because it breaks my heart. However, I know that there are so many people praying for him that cannot be here in the hospital to see him. I am looking forward to posting pictures of his progress with less machines, tubes, and swelling as God continues to heal him!!!"
June 30th "Carter had his most stable day today that he has had since Tuesday, and we are SO THANKFUL! He is still on a heavy amount of life support, and the doctors say he has a long way to go before we can even assess any possible damage to the brain. However, we are happy with the way his levels have remained stable for a whole day allowing him to rest and begin the healing process.
There are still secretions coming out of his lungs and stomach. As they planned to suction out his lungs, doctors warned us that his levels could be affected. They brought a whole team of doctors in the room just in case. As everyone watched anxiously he was able to maintain his stability! Little stinker just wanted an audience
One exciting point to our day is that they seem to have ruled out infectious disease. This means that we no longer have to wear a gown, gloves, mask, etc when going in his room. I cannot even begin to explain what it does for our hearts to be able to touch him without gloves!
This morning we also had a nice surprise when we found out that his doctor from the other NICU (where he was born and spent 3 weeks) is now working at our hospital and is on Carter's team of doctors again! It's so nice to have a familiar face every day.
Tomorrow is another big day for him. If his levels and X-rays look the same at 4 am, they will try to switch him to a regular ventilator at 8 am, and he will have his MRI at 10 am. We are praying fervently that he has another stable night and is able to make the switch to the ventilator.
Although the doctors are rejoicing along with us each step of the way, they remind us that he is not out of the woods. They have said that he's been a little fighter every step of the way, and we know that God has been behind his strength and fight. Thank you for your continuous prayer and joining us in asking God to work a miracle in our baby.
Below is the verse we have on the wall of Carter's bedroom at home..... Looks like it's more fitting for us in these moments!- "I command you be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go." -Joshua 1:9
July 1st "We were excited to hear that the doctors were able to switch Carter to a lower-level ventilator during the night successfully! As we would wake up throughout the night we would call his (very patient) nurse to check on him--and all throughout the changes, his levels remained relatively stable! His blood pressure dropped, but they were able to give him more dopamine to stop it.
Right now they are beginning the delicate and detailed task of getting him prepped to go to another floor for his MRI. As you can imagine, there are a million tubes, vents, and tanks that need to follow along with him. We are so thankful for a patient, intelligent, and thorough staff!
The best part of this ventilator is that they said it allows him to be more mobile and we might actually be able to hold him if he remains stable throughout his MRI and after. There is nothing that I want to do more right now!!
Please pray for the anesthesiologist, the doctors, and the nurses as they care for him during this process. We know what his brain "should" look like according to statistics, and we know those aren't good. But we also know that statistically he shouldn't even be here (3 different times) right now, and we are intensely praying that God would work a miracle in his brain and body!!! Thank you so much for joining with us in this prayer!"
July 1st- "Today the doctors ordered the MRI of Carter's brain to get an idea of the extent of damage to his brain from the lack of oxygen and bloodflow. Based on his trauma as well as our awful night Friday night, we definitely got the impression that doctors weren't expecting great results. They had tried to prepare us many times for the worst. However, when the neurologist delivered the results, she was surprised, impressed, and reassured! Miraculously, Carter'sMRI only showed only a few tiny spots. Only one of these spots indicated damage. This particular spot was in the thalamus which controls his sleep vs awake states. The doctors do not seem concerned at all about his brain healing from this!
Since the day that he lost oxygen, severe brain damage has been one of the biggest, scariest possibilities for us as parents. We are standing in complete awe and thankfulness that God showed his power and protected our baby's brain despite the odds!!!!
Although Carter had a relatively stable day today (and two huge blessings with his ventilator change and his excellent MRI) the doctors are still very concerned because they cannot find the source of what's going on in his little body.
His blood levels are extremely low, and the hematologist said it's possible they will have to withdrawal some bone marrow in the next few days to do further tests. We are so grateful that there are so many tests and medicines at our fingertips, but, as parents, our hearts are also breaking as we watch our little guy being poked, intubated, and extremely medicated.
The doctors are encouraged by today, but also still refer to him as "a really, really sick little boy" often. Please pray for the broad spectrum of doctors who are desperately trying to determine what is wrong with Carter in order to help him begin to heal!
Words can't even begin to express how thankful we are to all of you who prayed without ceasing today as we awaited the results of his MRI. We know that God was very real in this hospital and that your prayers alongside ours continue to be heard!!!!
The picture below is a moment that made us smile today. For those of you that know Carter, his "go-to" pose is always having his hands up in the air. When we got back from lunch the nurses said that when they put his hands down at his sides he moved them right back up! Oh, we just love this little boy!!!!"
July 2nd "Today was another day of healing for Carter. He is still on a heavy amount of life support, but the doctors are more optimistic with the direction he is going in terms of healing from the trauma. They have made it clear that we are going to be on this journey for quite a while. It's funny how much our perspective has changed. Just one week ago the thought of having to spend many more weeks or months in the NICU would have seemed unbearable after all the time we spent there when he was born. But, today we think of those possible weeks and months with tears of joy in our eyes that we even have them with our baby. Everything in life is so relative.
His lungs look better in the X-rays, and he's gradually weening himself from this ventilator. He got a full skeletal assessment (full-body X-ray) today to further see if they can figure out what is going on. We are still anxiously awaiting the results. The highlight of our day (or should I say week!!) came this evening. As the doctor was explaining Carter's progress this morning, he nonchalantly said he knew of something else that would be good for Carter's levels: his mommy holding him! The doctors and nurses were all so happy for us. I don't think I've ever been more excited in my life.
As I held him with all of his IVs, tubes, and wires I was filled with an overwhelming sense of love all over again for our little boy, and my heart was filled to the brim with thankfulness. We even had about 5 minutes together with his eyes wide open looking at us.
As difficult as this week has been and as much as we have cried out to God with fear, questions, and pain, there is one thing we know: Carter is not ours. He's simply on loan to us from God for a period of time. We also know life is not guaranteed, but we feel so incredibly blessed that our baby's life has been given back to us for these moments.
Please continue to lift him up in prayer as we know he is not out of the woods with this yet. Pray for doctors' continuous efforts in finding the source of this whole thing. Pray also for him as he is weened from life support. And, pray for us to have peace and to take this whole journey day by day."
July 3rd-"Thank you all so very much for your prayers, financial support, and ongoing encouragement. The only thing worse than going through all of this is going through this alone. There has not been a single moment that we have not felt surrounded by love and prayer. Through all of this we have been shown the power of prayer and what it means to be in a REAL community of Christ. Your kindness and generosity has humbled us and have been such examples of the types of people WE want to be.
Today was a pretty low-key day at the NICU for Carter. We definitely have a new appreciation for "low-key" days now! The doctors' agenda for him today was just to rest and build up strength. There still are no answers about what caused this episode. We are really praying that doctors can find the source. The thought of going through all of this for the next weeks or months and then taking him home without any answers is terrifying. The doctors said that they are still working on finding answers, but each year they have a couple similar cases in which the source is never determined. We are still praying for the doctors' wisdom in all of this.
The hematologist said that they have ruled out blood disorders, and his blood cell and platelet counts are rising. His full body X-ray came back good. Pneumonia was not found. Infections have not been identified so his antibiotics were stopped. All of these are GOOD things, but they are perplexing at the same time.
This morning during the medical team's rounds the doctor said that he liked Carter for two reasons: #1 because he just likes him and thinks he's really, really cute ðŸ˜Š#2 because his body seems to be "healing itself despite medical intervention." We couldn't help but smile, and we love that doctors and nurses have also seen the work of something way bigger than any man. It's safe to say that Carter is being used in a way to point to our God in a way we couldn't have ever imagined."
July 4th- "Can't believe it's 4th of July! Although this is far from the way we imagined we'd spend the holiday, at least the hospital is on the lake by the fireworksWe were even able to step outside this afternoon for some freah air and a quick walk along the lake!
Carter had another day of rest for his little body. Since today is a holiday there were a lot of unfamiliar faces taking care of him. I was a little worried that if something happened, his regular "team" wouldn't be there. But, he had a stable day with no big desats or issues, thank goodness!
Today the nurse let us hold him for 5 whole hours! Lawrence's mom got to hold him, too-- for the first time since he was born. It was really precious. He was awake for a long time and was just looking at her with his big, cute eyes.
The doctor said he's doing we'll with his oxygen levels and is requiring much less pressure from the ventilator. If he keeps this up, she said he might even get off of this particular one in the next few days.
However, during the night last night he started breathing really fast so they said they want to take their time and make sure he's ready. They don't want him to go backward in progress, and they said they want to be "appropriately aggressive."
His lung X-rays came back ok, but they are not as clear as before. They said it can be normal so they're not worried about it now--they'll just repeat it later tonight. The good news (for Carter) is that his blood levels are all back to normal so they don't have to draw anymore blood from him for a few days
He doesn't have any more big tests until the routine, small MRI on Monday. His head hasn't gotten bigger so they're not concerned about it. He also is up to 24 ml of breast milk (thru feeding tube) every 3 hours...and if he continues to tolerate it, his IV food supplements will be able to be stopped as well!
His swelling is gradually going down, and it feels wonderful to start to see our little guy's face again! In the "big picture" we are so thankful that Carter's life has been spared. In the "small picture" we miss holding and interacting with our baby. It's like being away from him for over a week when he's only 7 weeks old! We are praying that he continues his incline and that we can have more and more holding time with him!
Thank you all so much for your prayers, texts, and encouragement--even on this holiday!"
July 5th"Carter had a relatively good night last night despite the changes the doctors made to his ventilator settings. He seemed to like these settings much better, and his breathing isn't quite as fast. The doctors are hoping he keeps this stability so that he can get off this ventilator as soon as possible. It's my understanding that they don't want him to become overly dependent on it.
Today one of his pain meds is being stopped and his morphine is being weened greatly. They are watching to make sure that he's not in pain-and will adjust if necessary. The good part about this for us is that we get to see him with his eyes open more! It feels SO nice to see him like this. It helps us replace those images in our heads from last week of his eyes losing life.
The doctors are also beginning to increase his feeds through his feeding tube. They will be decreasing or stopping his other fluids because he's starting to swell back up again. When we came in last week he weighed 5 pounds 10 ounces and now he's 7 pounds 2 ounces! He definitely has some swelling in that little body, so we are hoping with just regular feedings he will shrink back down. Although--if anyone can make a triple chin look cute, he can!
I will keep you posted--your prayers are appreciated!"
July 5th "This afternoon we got the news that the doctors wanted to go ahead and try Carter on a less invasive ventilator. This means they took the tube out of his mouth and throat and put it into his nose. We were SO excited that he no longer had to have the tubes down his throat and that we could see that precious little mouth!
On the other hand, I don't think we were prepared for the side effects that he would have after the tube was pulled. His little voice was barely above a raspy whisper, and when he would cry, nothing would come out. It was so heartbreaking to watch. He also was breathing extremely fast--causing his other levels to bounce around a little. He calmed down a little and his levels did much better as we snuggled with him...But, I think that was more therapeutic for me than him! Although he didn't seem like he was in a great amount of pain, he definitely looked uncomfortable and the transition to this ventilator was a little rough. I know all of these pains and discomforts are temporary, but it tore me to pieces to see him like this. The little guy has been through so much already in his 7 weeks of life!
I realized today (as I was holding him and freaking out that he was going to turn blue or spit up and as Lawrence was checking often to make sure his little eyes were blinking) that recovery for us as his parents will be a long road also! Pray that as Carter continues to heal physically that we can find a sense of peace and confidence again.
On a good note, Carter is becoming quite the popular fellow here. We were informed today that he has a lot of NICU girlfriendsðŸ˜‰ The nurses-both daytime and nighttime-are signing up for his room on their shifts. And, doctors and nurses take trips by his room to see him and see how well he's doing. Although we know mommy is his only REAL girlfriend, it does make us feel great to know that he is so very loved and cared for.
We are praying that he has a good night tonight as he adjusts to the big changes from today!"
July 6th"Carter had a rough day today, and it was a pretty difficult day for us too. Although we are not back to where he was last week, he has taken a couple of steps backward. All throughout today he has been in a lot of pain. The doctors made a lot of changes and are trying now to determine what is causing this great deal of discomfort.
I've never witnessed a more helpless or painful feeling in my life. It's absolutely heartbreaking to watch him cry and moan with barely any sound coming while he's writhing around looking up at us. It was a little too much for me to handle today knowing that there is no way for me to make him feel better and all we can do is hold him.
This afternoon and throughout this evening he was also showing signs of labored breathing-even while on the ventilator. Doctors gave him a rushed lung x-ray which showed no changes from a few days ago. He still has fluid in his lungs so they gave him some more meds to help him hopefully get rid of it so that he can breathe with a little more ease. So far it doesn't seem to be working tremendously well. His blood gas levels look good so that is a positive. But they did have to go back up on his oxygen.
One factor that the doctors are considering is that they weened his morphine pretty drastically this morning. They don't want him to become too dependent on it, so they are trying to ween it ASAP. However, they are now considering upping it again.
Another possibility contributing to his pain is reflux. They have gradually increased his feeds in the past few days. Since he had severe reflux prior to this and has been off of his medication for a week and a half, it could be that he's experiencing that.
Regardless of the cause, it's another stressor on his already sick little body. It breaks my heart that he has to deal with any more pain than he already is feeling. Please pray for the doctors' wisdom, for some relief for our little boy, and for our strength through the night and tomorrow!"
July 7th "Today was the first day that I have been home since that awful day when I left in the ambulance almost 2 weeks ago. We decided it was time to stop wearing the same clothes over and overðŸ˜‰ As we drove home to get more clothes and walked into our apt we couldn't help but talk about how different things would be if we lost our little boy. It was a much-needed perspective shift for us after our hard day yesterday and today. We are so so so thankful that Carter is HERE and getting healthier a day at a time. He was not in quite as much pain today as yesterday so that made us feel a lot better. He was still in some discomfort, but that is to be expected as he continues to be weened from morphine. We are hoping that is all done within a few days. His breathing is still labored, but they were able to lower the amount of oxygen that they give him which is a really good thing. After he is weened off of the morphine and the other fluids, the big focus will be on his respiratory issues and getting him off of this (now his third) ventilator. In the next few days they are also hoping to remove his central line.
The doctors have continuously increased his feeds...and although his swelling is going down, it's crazy how much bigger he's gotten in just 2 weeks! Pretty sure we won't be fitting into those preemie clothes when we get homeðŸ˜¢. As the morphine wears off it's been fun to have more alert time with him. He cracks us up with his head bobbing, facial expressions, and the way he tries to nurse on ANYTHING in front of him (including his daddy!) as he's being fed through his feeding tube. Although these might seem like small everyday baby behaviors, to us they mean the world after they were so close to being gone!
This next few days are going to be filled with another MRI, x-rays, catscans, and more weens. We are thankful that God has begun to heal Carter and that he has given us strength each morning to make it through one more day. Please continue to pray for his respiratory issues specifically, all the tests he will have this week, and our continued strength."
July 8th" Carter had another full day! His MRI came back very similar to his last one and shows that his brain has very little to no damage. Praise the Lord! It seems like everywhere we turn now we are hearing about lack of oxygen for over 6 minutes leading to sometimes irreversible brain damage. Not a day goes by that we don't realize how blessed we are that God protected his brain.
Today he was also taken off the ventilator that he's been on the past few days and put on another type that is giving him very little support. This is very exciting news--the less support he needs, the better his lungs are getting!The doctors are continuing to watch his breathing very carefully and are periodically checking his lungs through x-rays since they still showed some fluid in the last one.
The biggest part of today was when they decided to let him try to bottle feed. Despite our fears (due to the anxiety around the fact that the last time he choked, it began a spiral of awful events that led us here in the first place) our nurse encouraged us to try to give him just 10 ml. We did very hesitantly, and it all went well. Carter finished it in like 4 minutes and stared at us like "Where's the rest?"ðŸ˜ƒ
The doctors will continue to increase his feeds and try more bottles with him every other time feeding. They assured us that they will move slowly, and they have been extremely supportive and empathetic.
Tomorrow will be another day of weening his morphine, letting him rest, and praying that his lungs and respiratory health continues to improve. "
Thank you for your prayers today!
July 9 "
Today, the doctors did their rounds late (which is a GOOD thing because they do the sicker patients first). Carter was weened down on the air that is being given to him, OFF of his morphine, and off the rest of his fluids. He now is only given air, monitored with probes for his basic vitals, and has a feeding tube for part of his feedings.
It has been quite the experience to watch as his room started off completely full of machines, equipment, and medicines. We cheer inside every time another piece of equipment is pulled out of his room or another medicine light is turned off! Today they turned off his last medicine light and rolled out the whole cart--we love seeing his room empty!
Since his head circumference is staying the same and his MRIs came back ok, they now only have to measure that once a week instead of daily. (Boy does he hate it when they do that!) He also started his occupational therapy today and so far so good!
Another huge victory for him is that he actually breastfed for 10 minutes! The doctors and nurses thought he might be really hesitant, but they were excited to see that he is quickly falling back into stride when it comes to his eating!
The scariest part of our day came this evening as we bottle fed him. Again, we were hesitant to do it because of his issues starting during a feeding in the first place two weeks ago. But, they assured us he'd be monitored. He started off great and so Lawrence, the proud daddy that he is, began to video it. It was then that he spit up almost his entire bottle. This is not a normal baby spit up, but it was a huge volume. It was the exact same type of spit up that he had the day this whole started so I began to panic. The nurse had stepped out so it was SUCH a blessing that Lawrence caught it all on video. I think he thought we were exaggerating, so we showed him the video. He also was shocked. He checked his belly and there was no air or food so he wasn't sure what was going on.
The spit up in itself would normally be chalked up to a crazy, isolated event. However, since it had happened only once before to Carter and it was prior to his pulmonary hemorrhage we are obviously scared that there could be a link! The nurse immediately paged the doctor. A few minutes later Carter did the same thing with another nurse. The nurse was extremely empathetic about everything since she was there the day he arrived on the ambulance. She said everyone on the floor is perplexed by what caused Carter's pulmonary hemorrhage. The doctors said that they are glad that this is happening now so they can continue to monitor his lungs and breathing throughout his feedings. We have no answers now, but we are praying hard that they can figure out what's going on in his little body.
Thank you so much for your continued prayer as Carter continues to heal and the doctors continue to search for answers!"
July 10th "They took Carter off of all air and oxygen today! They told us not to be surprised if he has to be put back on again for a while, but so far his levels are looking great. It's so nice to see his cute little face mostly "tube-free" again! Now all he has is the feeding tube (which he is determined to yank out every second he's awakeðŸ˜Š) and the probes monitoring his heart rate, oxygen level, and respiratory rates. What he has now is all that he had when he was in the NICU the first 3 weeks he was born.
On a good note, now that his wires are mostly gone he can start wearing clothes again. I was so sad to find out that while he's been here, he has outgrown his preemie clothes...can't believe he's 2 months! But we are excited to dress him in his newborn clothes and gain a tiny bit of "normalcy" around here.
He had quite the day today. After taking him off his oxygen, they pulled his central line out of his groin artery, and gave him his 2 month shots. The poor little guy is not a happy camper right now! Now that it's been a few days since the tube was taken out of his throat he's starting to get his voice back, and he's letting everyone know that he is NOT excited about what they are doing to him! It's funny how that same cry that we used to "wish away" is such a blessing now after we thought he was gone.
The doctors said that in the next few weeks we are going to be monitoring his lungs and feeds closely. Now that he is more healed they are going to continue to search for answers. He will get a chest x-ray tomorrow morning, and the pulmonary doctors will do further testing of his lungs to see if there are any malformations or issues with his blood vessels.
Please pray for their wisdom and that if there are issues they present themselves now while he's still in the hospital. We have to remind ourselves and each other that God created Carter's lungs and gave them breath. We know that this is not a mystery to Him. We are intensely praying that the doctors will be led to the central issue and will be able to treat him as soon as possible!"
July 11 "Today when we came in our nurse (again) told us that Carter has become quite the popular fella on the floor...."Mr. Congeniality" they call him. She said all through the night nurses, doctors, and respiratory therapists were coming into his room to hold him and sneak peeks because they "heard about Carter" and are amazed at how well he's doing compared to where he was those first days. I probably had 3-4 doctors tell me again today that it's amazing he's here. Although it's always a reminder of how close we were to losing him and how fragile life is, it's also a reminder of how God is showing His power through a tiny baby. Ironic isn't it?
Today was quite the day for all of us. On a good note, his lung X-rays this morning look SIGNIFICANTLY better than his last ones. The doctors are also optimistic about his breathing since they took him off the oxygen.
After his X-rays they did another heart Echo. When we met with the cardiologist, he told us he was there when Carter was admitted. He was such a kind, personable doctor (amazing how important that becomes when you're meeting with a few doctors a day who are telling you sensitive info about your baby). He said that he couldn't believe he was looking at the same baby that came to him 2 1/2 weeks ago. He said that, in all honesty, when he did the original Echo his heart was a complete mess and he really wasn't feeling good about the outcome. However, the next few days showed significant improvement. He said he's a very lucky little boy. I told him we don't really believe in "luck" in this case, but that we believe in miracles and that he has hundreds of people (YOU ALL) praying for him!
The results of this Echo were better than the last, but they still show areas in the left ventricle that are not functioning at 100%. He said that he's reassured by the fact that he showed such improvement so quickly, but he also knows that if something happened again, his heart would have a harder time recovering. They started Carter on some twice-a-day heart medication for the next year to hopefully help his heart continue to recover. He also will have monthly cardiology appointments and Echoes his first year of life.
He also had physical therapy today and will continue to 2-3 times a week while he's in the hospital. The first time that the therapist came, she was saying she wasn't sure about the mobility of his arms and legs. As he clenched his fists, Lawrence and I kind of laughed and kept whispering to each other that it has nothing to do with the fact that he CAN'T, he just doesn't WANT to. (Love our stubborn babyðŸ˜ƒ.) Sure enough, today they found that he is moving just fine! However, they said that because of the trauma that he went through he is at risk for delays. After he goes home, he will need weekly physical therapy appointments in-office and possibly in-home visits as well.
His feedings have gone well, and he didn't need his feeding tube at all today! As soon as he proves he is eating enough, they can take it out (if he's not successful in ripping it out first!)
The doctor was consulting with the pulmonary doctors today. Hopefully we have more information about that tomorrow. We're really praying that more in-depth testing is done so that all bases are covered....and so that it gives us peace of mind! We are trusting that our doctors know what they are doing and that they want to figure this out just as much as we do!
Today was a very overwhelming day with a lot of information. Please continue to pray for us as we daily fight the fear and anxiety around this reoccurring and as we mentally and emotionally wrap our minds around everything. Thank you for loving and surrounding Carter with prayer every single day! "
July 15th "I just want to give a huge shout-out to my BRAVE, FAST-ACTING, STRONG husband for giving our 5 pound, 6-week-old baby CPR three weeks ago. I know I mentioned it before, but in this past crazy few weeks I don't think I've expressed enough about how truly thankful I am that he was aware enough to act quickly and put our training into use! So many people would freeze in that situation, but Lawrence acted without hesitation. As a daddy I know it was absolutely terrifying. I'm just so proud of him!
Today the nurses came by to talk to us about CPR and told us that without Lawrence's actions Carter wouldn't have even made it to the hospital. When I was pregnant my doctor urged us to take the CPR class. But, but in all honesty, I did not want to pay $140! Lawrence kept saying we should, but being the cheap girl that I am, I told him we could just "you tube" it! Luckily God protected us (once again!). When Carter was born 6 1/2 weeks early, we were in the NICU for 3 weeks. During that time we were mandated to take the CPR class before we were discharged. THANK YOU GOD for looking out for us! You just never think its gonna be your baby that needs it.
Today we got the big news that we are being discharged tomorrow! This is way ahead of what all doctors and nurses predicted, but Carter's levels and eating have been stable and no longer require 24 hour hospital care. The whole "situation" is far from over, and he still has many tests, meds, and doctors appointments ahead. However, we will be leaving the NICU tomorrow. We are extremely nervous, but we are also extremely thankful.
Prayers as we return home are very much appreciated!!! "
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