Kyle's NICU Story in Pictures

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Day of Life... I don't have a clue!

It has been 2 days since I have written.  I have been meeting myself coming and going.  John has had it even harder.  but I am pleased to say Kyle is rocking right along!  He is still 4 lbs.  the reason is b/c he went to open crib he has been using calories to keep himself warm.  (who even things about that! - but it's true) and he has been doing it - keeping his temp well!  and so he is still 4 lbs even. today was his 3 month birthday (Jan 22nd) that is!  so 3 months and 4 lbs.  when I say it like that he seems little and not big - i guess it is all perspective.  he is doing good!  great even!  He is on nasal cannula again since monday at 8 a.m.!  He has been at 21% oxygen for most of this time (that is room air!) and sometimes goes up but has not been higher than 30%.  He is taking 36 cc s of milk.  you will not convince him that it enough though.  the other day he started rooting - where he turns his head to the side with mouth open in search of food.  he wakes up right near the 3 hour mark and starts rooting - then when you start his feeding and give him his paci he sucks away and then will open his mouth really wide like he wants the paci and shakes his head back and forth like he wants more or faster and he will hold his hands up by his face and pull at the paci!  

last night when we were bathing him he was rooting and found the palm of his hand.  he was trying so hard to suck whatever he could out of his hand.  this is pure instinct b/c he has never received food from sucking.  however when his primary nurse feeds him she will put one or two drops of milk in his mouth and he instantly starts trying to suck! I THINK all of these are great signs that he is progressing.  He is growing and developing as you think a 36 week gestation baby should.  in fact he is beginning to act like a term baby!  so that is great in my book - I am not sure medically what this means but I am encouraged.

Kyle now has a mobile to look at on his crib and a toy box under his bed.  He doesn't do much yet with them but he does look at the mobile he has been having great awake periods and he just looks at you with these great big eyes.  He will just sit and look and listen - then fall back to sleep. He is such a sweet baby!

I am pumping every two hours - after doing that for 14 days I went back to every 3 hours and got completely engorged again.  so after 48 hours of that I went back to every 2 hours and all was well!  this would be great if I pumped for 20 minutes and got 4 ounces but I pump for 20 to 30 minutes and get almost ONE OUNCE!  I think my boobs are broke!  anyway I am not sure if the lactation lady tricked me into this or not! haha or if my body really just needs to get rid of an once of milk every 2 hours to not be engorged!  hahahahaha!  and some say when I get Kyle "to the breast" (sorry keith but that is the term they use!) all will be better.  Well, I doubt that b/c I didn't like it with my others and they didn't get enough milk either and so Kyle will take a bottle!  I will keep pumping - my goal is until he gets home.  I would like to keep it up after that but depending on Kyle's need... I'll start using formula.  no doctor will tell me - ALL lactation consultants say I NEED to keep pumping.  All doctors say I "can" switch him and most moms do and I have done so good that most moms don't pump for this long.  but I can't find anyone who can tell me what I should do. I guess I will wait and my gut will tell me.  He is currently out eating me anyway - It takes 2 pumpings to get one feeding right now.  and b/c he is such a good eater this will only get worse.  some people say I need to take an herb called fenugreek - uh... for anyone that know me before when I took it with jack!!!! back combination - kelly, postpartum issues and fenugreek DO NOT MIX!  I met a girl at the NICU that had this same problem.  wierd.  comforting to know it was not just me!

I am really tired - john is probably even more tired.  He HAS to work right now, we trade off keeping the boys, I don't get to go to the hospital most days until 3 p.m. (so he can work during the business day) and so don't get there till 4 pm and I have to pump every 2 hours so I am staying till 10 or 11 pm just to get to spend 4 or 5 hours with kyle.  John has not gotten to see him in 4 days.  I hate this but we both feel like if only one can go I need to right now.  but I know what benefits I have read from john holding him.  john will get to go wed night - we have a sitter and so I will go at 3 pm and then john will go later.  we will have 2 cars down when we go and that is a pain too but what I'm realizing is I don't want to complain - well I do - I want to whine and cry and stomp my feet!  but I have my son - I have hope - I have 2 healthy kids at home.  some of my new friends do not.  I am trying to stay focused on the positive!  but literally it takes all of my energy to hope forward, focus on what needs to be attended to right in front of me, and love outward in the process.  maybe one day I will read this and it won't make sense... i don't know.

I keep reminding myself and I told john that as long as I know we will love each other when this is all over and all three of my kids will be safe and happy - then I know we can do this.  we are working like we have never worked before to not just salvage our family, ministry, relationships but try to see them grow through this.  some days ... like today.... I feel like we are making it.  Kyle is doing so good.  both our boys at home are sound asleep and happy - so is john for that matter!  It is 4:37 a.m.  Soon I will be too!


Anonymous said...

You go girl!!!!!! God is with you in these wee hours!!! I think you are awesome and an inspiration to all!!!

Anonymous said...

I am so pleased to hear that things are going well! God is so good!

Still praying, still believing and thanking God every day for the miracles he has done in Kyle's life!

Candy Humber

Anonymous said...

Kelly, YOU ROCK! Even now, I can see through your writing you and John are growing stronger by the day in your marriage. This whole season of your life will make your ministry bloom and grow. Just think what comfort and encouragement you can be to others who must go through these same valleys. Still praying for you and John, for Kyle and Jack and Jadon. Hang in there!

Anonymous said...

I'm with ya on the pumping thing! With my middle son, Jace, my goal was to pump until we got to his second heart surgery ( 8 1/2 months). I made it! I breastfed my 3rd boy exclusively for 6 months which is what they recommend. I have been pumping since I've been back at work but I'm about done with that! Too time consuming with a job, 3 boys, church, etc. So, I suggest you decide what is right for you! I do know that when we were trying to put weight on Jace before heart surgery it was nice to be able to bump up the caloric value of the breast milk by adding forumula to the breast milk. Since breast milk is so thin like water it didn't make it thick. I don't know if they will have you do that or not. But that might be a good question to ask as you set your goal. Anyway, so glad to hear he is doing so well. I assumed no news was good news!
Continue to pray for that homecoming. Bringing a baby home from the hospital will NEVER be so sweet. Lots of tears of joy will be shed!
Blessings - Julie Andrews

Kelly said...

That's great that he is rooting and sucking on the paci! I bet he will take to the bottle well!

Kara said...

I pumped for 16 months for Truman. As much as I hated it, I just kept setting new goals -- another month and then another month. Having been through the experience, I would encourage you to speak up about nursing. Kyle should be old enough to try. Truman started at 33 weeks gestation. He had a horrible time with the bottle for months and months, but we always had nursing in the arsenal. I think if we had to depend on just the bottle, we would have been in NICU well past his due date. And now, at 17.5 months, we'll still nursing, and it is such a magic cure in the middle of the night for a restless little one and gives us some of those special bonding moments back we lost in the early days.

Just some thoughts from a been there, done that micro mom.

Mom to 23-weeker Truman

Jennifer said...

Wow - pumping every 2 hours - pains me just thinking about it! :) I HATED puming the 3 months Max was in the NICU. Actually, it may have been the preparation and the cleanup that I hated more than the actual pumping. Do they give you those microwaveable cleaning bags for your pump parts? Once I had those it did save me some time.

Anyway, hang in there as best you can. Kyle is doing AWESOME!! He is definitely a ROCK STAR!

Patti said...

I'm with you on the fenugreek. It made me feel weird and I don't think it increased my supply at all. One thing that has helped this time (and it's much more fun than popping capsules) is making sure I eat enough. Ice cream seems particularly effective!! I'm not kidding. I would eat a big bowl of Ben and Jerry's and then pump 2-3 ounces more at the next pumping session! Coincidence? Maybe. But still so much better than fenugreek and Mother's Milk tea.

ccc apples on a stick said...

try eating oatmeal (not the instant kind) to increase your milk supply. also, housepoet cookies (with oatmeal, flax seed meal, and brewers yeast) are excellent for supply!

Anonymous said...

This report is absolutely wonderful!! GOD IS GREAT!! I will admit my spirituality is tested from time to time and more so when the issue of kids comes up. I have battled infertility for over 4 years. I tell myself everyday that God has a plan for me, I just don't know what it is. Some days I'm patient and others I'm not. So, I totally understand the day to day fluctuation in emotion. So for now, I live vicariously through others. Hearing your stories and progression and regressions of Kyle and your family has been an inspiration. Reading about comments from the boys has been extra special. Sometimes I wish I could be a child again!!! I continue to hope and pray for that day when you guys are able to bring Kyle home and have some sense of normalcy return to your life! Perhaps one day when I am blessed with a little one and if I'm placed in a similar situation, I will recall the stories and inspiration you guys have provided!


Anonymous said...

thanks so much for the update, I get so ancy when there is nothing for a few days. Ha ha. I think I am addicted. I just wanted to say - stop and breathe - you seem like you are so hard on yourself girl! You are only human. If the breast milk thing doesn't work - you can't help it. (sorry breast feeding crazies) the fact you have done it this long is amazing! You and John need a date night. I am offering free babysitting!

Gib and Abby Brogan said...

Keep up with the pumping, even though you start to feel a bit like a cow and not a mother, it is worth it. After 4 months of pumping I finally got to nurse Ellie. It made me forget all those sore nipples and frustrating pumping sessions. Breast milk is very good for these babies, and some doctors say it can help fend off NEC.

My production increased and decreased through out the 4 months. I did notice that when my stress level increased, my milk production decreased. Not an easy thing to control with a baby in the hospital. I say pump as long as you can, and that will be enough. Good luck.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...


I love ya'll!


Anonymous said...

oh sweet kelly. i remember the exhaustion of pumping all of the time... i just felt "wounded" all over! i cannot imagine combining that with the drive and the stress of what you guys are going through.

i am praying for you SO much!

and poor sweet carol. what an ordeal.

and john working - it seems overwhelming to just read it all - I know living it is harder.

i just sense a real tiredness and i just pray that the Lord would restore your soul and mind and heart. that He would breathe His strength into you guys. That your few hours of rest would be supernaturally multiplied.


Click below to go to my Personal March of Dimes Page

Our Story

This story begins with 5 people. John, Kelly, Jadon, Jack, and Kyle (he is only 23 weeks old... and he is still safely tucked away in his mommy's belly) In an hour's time Kyle made his way into the world. 1 pound, 3 ounces- 11 and a half inches long. This family will never be the same. This child is a warrior. He has the spirit of a Lion, and more courage than a whole pride. He is fierce, and fearless- and he is teaching us to fear the Lord- and to believe that God is in our midst and healing even now. Join us as pray, as we praise, and as we journey through this life as lovers of God and all His glory.

Kyle is in the March of Dimes Promo!