Sunday, June 8, 2008

This day a year ago

My fourth son was born in the early afternoon one year ago today. He was nearly 5 weeks early, and I knew immediately that things weren't okay. My third son spent two weeks in intensive care, so I was sadly familiar with what lay ahead. The nursery at the hospital tried to give him a chance to pull through the night on his own, but his lungs just weren't strong enough, so he was transferred to a NICU at a different hospital the next morning.



The first 48 hours are touchy and frightening. The baby was also heavily sedated so that the breathing machines could be the most effective. Can you believe that one little person needs so many machines to sustain his life? In the third picture he's with my brother, Rick, who we named our baby after.




After a few days he was taken off the respirator, and he graduated to an incubator and oxygen. Waiting for him to have his oxygen slowly turned down, or be strong enough to take a bottle or nurse, or for him to gain weight, seemed like an eternity. Holding him was tricky, too. Preemies can be distressed and can lose progress if they are moved or touched too much, so aside from the restrictions on how often we could touch him, holding him was difficult because of the IV's, monitor wires, and feeding tube.



After 12 days, we were able to take our healthy baby home. As difficult and draining as these NICU experiences are, we feel very fortunate because there were babies beside our son who had been in there for over four months! His three brothers were obviously pleased to have him home, too.

We love you little Shoog!

12 comments:

skcoe said...

That was such a bittersweet time! I remember thinking "Oh no, not again...poor Michelle..." You've always had so much strength, I know that was hard but it made you an even stronger person.

I can't believe it was a year ago already! I can remember it like it was yesterday.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY to one of the cutest little boys in the world!

Bryan and Marissa said...

You truly amaze me every time Michelle and your boys are incredible and strong just like you!

Courtney said...

I was thinking the same thing...that I can't believe it's already been a year! He is such a handsome little guy, and such a fighter! Those pictures are so sweet!

Croft Family said...

Wow, the things that little babies and their mommies have to go through to get them healthy. Happy Birthday even though I have never met your little boy.

Leah said...

What a beautiful little guy he was/is. I hope I can meet your kids someday. Next time I'm in Utah, we'll have to get together.

mae said...

He really is so cute! The pictures are priceless...

Happy Birthday, little one!

Marisa Jean said...

I can't believe it's been a year. I remember Sheryl telling me about this. I hope I never had to experiene anything so hard.

DAN AND TINA HAMBY said...

You have the most beautiful children. All of those boys look so much alike and are just so handsome. I cannot imagine 12 days in the NICU. I spent 2 days with Andrew at PCMC under the lights when he was born and that was unbearable. You are such a good mother. Happy Birthday to your sweet little one.

Jeff, Star and Taya said...

I didnt not know this happened with two of your kids! Thank goodness for modern medicine! Your Boys are so beautiful, like their momma!

audge said...

Wow...what an ordeal! I remember how hard it was with Jojy but wasn't around to witness #4. How hard. You document it beautifully. The pictures are gorgeous. I love the one with Nano and the baby. Love the close up of the foot and holding his tiny hand. So precious. You have such strong resilient boys.

Wendy Lady said...

I can't begin to imagine the trauma involved in watching your newborn under such conditions. You are blessed to have the boys now so healthy and happy!

Jocelyn said...

I had no idea that Gabriel went through so much until I saw these pictures. We've talked about it, but to see the pictures makes me see how strong you are as a mother and as a person. He is very handsome!