Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Endlessly Waiting

Hey kiddo,

It's been a crazy few days for your Mom and Dad lately. You're getting very close to coming home, yet we can't seem to get over the final hump. The doctors and nurses have told us twice now that you're coming home a certain day, only to change their minds because they feel you're not breathing well. It's very frustrating for us. We just want to have you home and be done with the hospital visits.

The good news is that your room is all ready and waiting for you. We're still waiting on curtains, but you sleep in an open room at the hospital right now and the lights are always on, so we're hoping that won't bother you too much. We have a smaller crib that we'll keep in our bedroom for the first few weeks you're home, so we can all sleep together.

Love you,

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Time Flies

Dear Emmett,

It's hard for me to believe you're only 3 weeks old now, it seems like you've been a part of our lives for much longer than that. Your mom is with you right now and I am at work. She keeps me updated on her day-time visits, so I feel like I am right there with you.

You had another visit from the cardiologist today. They checked you out a week or so ago and discovered that you have a heart murmur. The technical term for it is Patent Ductus Arteriosus or PDA. When a baby is in the womb, there is a little connection between the aorta and pulmonary artery. When a baby is born, that connection is supposed to close, but because you were premature, yours hasn't yet. It's a common birth defect in premature babies, but one that will hopefully resolve itself. If it doesn't, you may have to have surgery to fix it.

Otherwise, you've been progressing well. Your temperature is getting better, we're hopeful you will be in just a crib soon. You actually nursed from mommy for your feeding this afternoon and that is great news. You also took three feedings yesterday from a bottle. If you can continue to do that, then your feeding tube can be removed. You've also been moved to a new room in the NICU. It's a less private room, so your mom and I have to get used to that, but it doesn't bother you.

Your mom and I had a baby shower for you this past Sunday. Lots of people that care about you and us a lot came and give you lots of gifts. We're very thankful to have so many caring people in our lives and their gifts will help us take good care of you.

I love you,

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Short, but sweet

Dear Emmett,

We didn't get to visit for very long today because Mommy was discharged from the hospital and I had to work at night. We had a good visit though, your mom held you the whole time and I shot some videos of you.

You did pass one milestone today, your umbilical cord fell off. I remember being really nervous about that before you were born, not knowing how to take care of it. With your stay in the NICU, it hasn't been an issue. I can remember when your Uncle Kyle was born and your Grandma - my mom - telling me that I had to be careful around it. Now you just have a cute little belly button.

See you again tomorrow,

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Puttin' on Weight

Dear Emmett,

Your mom just texted me to say that you weigh 3 lbs 11 oz today. Holy crap! I had no idea you had put on that much weight. I knew you had been growing, but that is amazing. You've put on over a pound since you were born two and a half weeks ago. I'm so proud of you. So apparently the nurse read the conversion chart incorrectly and you only weigh 2 lbs 11 oz. But that's ok, you're still on your way to getting big and strong.

Mommy is actually in the hospital right now because she has some blood clots. She is getting treatment for them and should be able to come home in a day or two. We were worried that she may not be able to nurse you because of the medicine she has to take, but it's looking like the doctors will be able to give her something that will not harm you. That's really good news, it means you can continue to grow big and strong.

I will see you later tonight and bring mommy down to see you again.

Your Dad, Jason

Hey bud

Dear Emmett,

I know I haven't written in a while and I'm sorry for that. Once I went back to work, things got busy and the days got very full. Mommy came to visit you every day last week in the mornings and afternoon, and we both came to see you at night. You also got in a few visits with your Grandmothers, since your mom needed rides to the hospital.

Your nurses finally removed every last thing from your face except for your feeding tube. You had little squares of tape on your cheeks that held your oxygen tubes in place. They only removed one per day, I bet they hurt when they came off! But now we can see your shining little face unobstructed.

You've continued to regulate your body temperature, the nurses have turned your bed temperature down almost every day. You've also been eating really well, though you tend to get the hiccups a lot. We brought some clothes in for you, but I don't know if the nurses realize it yet. I'll have to let them know tomorrow. I knit you another hat since the two I had made are starting to get small. That's a good thing! It means you're growing.

I had a good visit with you tonight. You were wide awake when I arrived and very active while you ate. Of course you passed out as soon as you were done eating, but while you were awake we spend some good time together. I can tell that we're going to have a lot of fun together when you get a little older.

In matters happening outside your tiny world, we got about 8 inches of snow yesterday. Your Uncle Kyle came to our house to help shovel the driveway so I could come to see you. He and the rest of our families have been really helpful during your stay in the NICU.

I miss you and I love you,

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Happy Birthday!

Dear Emmett,

Now, I don't want you to get the right idea, we're not the type of parents that plan to celebrate your 15 week birthday or 17 month birthday or anything crazy like that, but I think a week old is significant. So Happy One Week Birthday my son. And what a day it was. We only made one trip to the hospital today, but we stayed for almost 5 hours. When we arrived, you had more surprises in store for us. It seems like every time we see you, there's another sign of your progress. Today you were completely off any air support, no nasal cannula, breathing only room air. Not only that, but the nurses also removed your IV! That means you're getting all your nutrition from your mother's milk. Now, the nurses told us that it's possible you might have to have the IV put back in, but with the way you've been progressing, I'm confident you can stay off it.

I have to go back to work tomorrow, so I'll only get to see you once a day during the week now, but mommy will be visiting you in the mornings. It's going to be rough not seeing you so much, but that will make the visits we do have that much sweeter.

I love you,

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Day Seven

Hey buddy!

We just got back from another good visit with you in the NICU. Your bili levels only went up a tad bit this morning, so they were able to take you off the lights. Even better, they took the velcro dots off your face! Every day we get to see more and more of you. The other surprise we found was that the nurses gave you some clothes to wear. So far you've just been chillin' in a diaper, but now you're wearing a tiny onesie. The first day I came down to the NICU, the nurse told me that once they've put you in donated clothing, we can look to put you in clothes we've made or bought for you. I'll have to go through my stash of baby clothes and see if I have anything small enough. Though I'll likely wait a few days, just in case.

Since it's Saturday, we had time to visit with you longer. I held you skin-to-skin for over an hour and your mom held you the same way for almost two! Your tiny little body felt so warm laying on my chest. I can't wait to do it all the time at home. We'll be back later with some more visitor, Grandma and Grandpa Maynard want to come to see you again.

Love you son,