Monday, August 15, 2011

And our new life starts...

There is so much to write about today, but I think we're going to keep it brief.  It has been a rollercoaster of emotions and events, and we are pretty tired. 

I went into labor this morning at 2 something.  After waking up Brandon an hour and a half later, we headed to the hospital.  We were quickly admitted into labor and delivery.  My contractions were coming quickly and were very painful.  After laboring for a little while, I was administered an epidural and prepared myself for a long labor ahead.

Soon after, however, the doctor came in and told us some news.  The baby's heartbeat was decelerating with each contraction...indicating that he was in distress or that his umbilical cord was being compressed with each contraction.  She broke my water to check for poop which would indicate stress.  She did find that the fluid was thick with lots of meconium, indicating that he had been in stress for some time.  So, the decision was made to do an emergency C-section. 

I can understand now why people dislike them so.  I was heavily drugged and completely uninvolved in the birth.  But, we definitely wanted what was best for our little guy and were in no way questioning the decision. 

All of it happened behind a blue curtain shielding the surgery from our view.  After they pulled him out, Brandon was able to see him for a few seconds.  Then, they held the baby up for one second so I could see him and then they quickly whisked him away to the NICU.  Brandon and my mom were able to go visit him an hour or so later.  I didn't get to see him until about six hours after he was delivered.   

We soon learned why we would be unable to see him for a while.  There were many unforeseen complications that we are still continuing to realize.  The first one is that he has something called coarctation.  It is another heart defect that was hidden from view on the ultrasounds.  It is a narrowing of the aorta that prevents blood from being pumped to the lower part of his body.  It is fatal without heart surgery, and so he will be undergoing open-heart surgery in the next few days

There is, however, an extra complication that goes along with this.  His platelet count is very, very low.  It is preventing them from doing a PICC line that will allow medicine access to his heart and will replace a temporary line that they have going now.  Because he has such a low platelet count, his blood isn't clotting correctly.  So, they were going to do a blood transfusion tonight.  We are hoping to go down after this to see him again and to learn more.  It will be only our second/third time seeing him since he was born.

The platelet count, along with something relating to the gases in his blood, could be pointing to a virus.  They are testing him for several different viruses, and we hope to know tomorrow the results.  If he does have one of these viruses, we could be looking at long-term management plans (like for HIV...but he doesn't have HIV). 

So much for brevity.  :-)  This is what we know as of now.  I am sharing the details as we understand them.  Thanks so very much for caring and praying.   

Please pray for: 
his platelet count...that it would increase and that his blood would coagulate just fine
the virus testing...that it would come back negative
the first heart surgery...that it would go smoothly and be effective


Bethany said...

Praying for you! Praying for his health and guidance and direction for the doctors to know the best course of action. Praying for strength for him and a quick recovery for you!

missy said...

sweet mandy, my heart is heavy for you all right now. i am praying for all that you ask for your dear boy and for all of you. i pray god will whisper to you in ways only he can do.

tasha said...

Praying for you all right now. Oh, sweet friend, praying for your little boy's count, testing and surgery... Praying for your hearts, your strength and thoughts in the midst of so much and for you to have the rest and recovery you need. Praying, praying and will continue to do so.

Kel said...

We are praying friend. He is beautiful!!! Stay in the Lords will be at home there. We'll be checking the blog for updates. We love you guys!

Phoebe said...

Praying for you dear Mandy and Brandon. May God strengthen and comfort your heart. Your joy and praise to God glorifies him so much.

Julia said...

Thanks for being so specific so we know how to pray. You've had so much to process. I pray you will both have some rest today and get to see your precious Jude more. I love his name!!!!

Meredith Emerick said...

You and your beautiful baby are so loved. I wish I could be there to hug you and love on you. Be strong,, mer

juroguitar said...

Jude is so beautiful in his pictures. He was born a couple weeks before Gabe. (Gabe was born on the 28th of August)
Thank you for sharing your story and journey. My heart aches for your loss of sweet baby Jude, but what a blessing to have had the time with him that you did.
If you would like to follow Gabe's story closer, he has a facebook group page too.


Praying for you and your beautiful family. You have such a beautiful 'Jesus' heart!

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