Baby Tyler

It has taken a few weeks of starting and stopping and crying and stopping and laughing and crying and stopping.... and lots of courage, to write this post about our precious, miracle boy! The crazy emotional roller coaster that met his birth was definitely more than we had ever bargained for..
It started out very normal, just as expected.  Just as we planned.  We woke up in the morning.  Jason took the girls to school while I finished packing up and making lists.  We had the perfect plan.  Dawn was picking up the girls from school and was so gracious to house sit for us, while taking care of them and Austin.  Jason and I were able to concentrate on this beautiful blessing, worry free.  We're ever so grateful. 
We headed to the hospital and I was a bucket of nerves.  I was so anxious to meet this boy.  So nervous for surgery.  So ready to not be pregnant.   So many feelings.  So many emotions.  Jason was just...chill, as always. nerves in sight.  Men!
The time had come and they wheeled us into the OR.   Always feels like forever til Jay can come sit with me.   Everything was moving along as I remembered  it was supposed to, but after a good 10 minutes I started growing increasingly anxious.  I started asking Jason what was taking so long.  I just knew something had gone wrong.  He was the perfect cheerleader.  He continued to reassure me over and over that everything was fine. Everything was going to be fine. I could feel them pulling and tugging and then they'd stop. Over and over.  I started to panic because he still wasn't out.  What the heck was taking so long. I knew it had been too long.  Jason remained so calm.  I don't know how he kept it together.  The Doctors were still working and I overheard my doctor say "I don't know what else to do." and she stopped working.   Well that was all it took for me to hear and my blood pressure and heart rate went through the roof.  At that point, it kinda turned into a scene from ER.  The anesthesiologist  screamed to the Doctor that the baby had to come out immediately and I was getting shots from nurses, all over.   
We knew that Tyler was breach and very high under my ribs.  Apparently, he was extremely hard to reach and even more difficult to pull out.  It was so nerve wracking because I didn't know WHAT was wrong.  I was sure they were going to have to cut me down the middle and I just couldn't contain my panic and terror.
Finally, after about an hour, we got to hear those sweet baby cries (and they weren't mine!).  Such relief.  He was here. 10 fingers, 10 toes.  Thank you god.  

They were still working on stabilizing my vitals and I couldn't control my heart.  Jason went to check on baby but wanted to return to my side. The nurses were adamant that he stay with Tyler and made him go to the nursery.    
Unbeknownest to me, my little dude was in distress and I was stuck in the OR for an additional hour while they closed me up.  Then in recovery for 2 more hours.  I had no idea that my baby was in for such a fight.
Learning that our boy had to go to the NICU was beyond devastating.  He had a large amount of fluid in his lungs and an irregular heartbeat.  He also needed additional oxygen to assist his breathing.  The NICU is.... awful.  Its a place you don't likely expect to be; sitting in the NICU, watching your tiny baby fight.  Its a place you wouldn't choose.  And if you're like me, you had every intention and dream of holding a healthy, chunky baby shortly after delivery.  A dream of leaving the hospital, baby in tow. And now, here you sit, watching your fragile baby through a plastic box.  



I would never have imagined our boy would have any issues, at all, really.  He was full term.  He was decent weight.  We had a textbook pregnancy.  How could this happen?
Ive had friends with babies that had to go to the NICU.  You feel bad for them, you say sorry and then you go on with your life and maybe you check in with them, periodically.  You have NO IDEA until it happens to you.  Like most things, I imagine.  
My baby wasn't with me.  He wasn't in my room.  I couldn't hold him.  I couldn't feed him.  After I got out of recovery they wheeled my bed into the NICU so I could see him.  It was terrible. I was a hot mess.  He was just laying there with tubes everywhere..naked.. and without me.  He needed me and I couldn't help him.  It was the worst feeling in the whole world.  
They took me to my room where Jason and my Dad were waiting for me.  I told Jason to cancel all our visitors.  No one was allowed in the NICU anyway.  Who wants to come visit you in the hospital and not see your baby?  
I'm usually pretty in control of my emotions but I couldn't stop crying.  I needed my boy. I kept telling Jason that I see babies, all the time, that are way younger and more sick and their Mothers got to hold them.  Why couldn't I hold mine?  I pleaded with him to unite me with our son.  I wanted him to just make it happen.  I didn't care about the how's or why's. He kept convincing me that he was getting the best care and that me disturbing his breathing, position and heart rate could harm more than help.  But I didn't care.  I didn't care what anyone said.  I knew he needed me and I needed him.  I would never consider myself to be a "granola" Mom.  I breastfed my babies because it was best for them and I knew I was "supposed" to, but I hated it. I hate breastfeeding and everything that comes with it.   I experienced some sweet moments while I fed each of the kids but it wasn't ever a "one with the earth" kind of instinct, feeling or need. HOWEVER, in this situation, I was experiencing feelings I had never felt before.  Feelings I couldn't explain.  I physically needed him.  I was hurting for him.  My body was yearning for him.  It was crazy.
The first several days were ROUGH.  Nothing was improving.  He still had just as much fluid and he was so feisty that he kept pulling things out, causing more intervention.  
My situation was looking just as rough.  I got a horrible rash on my incision from the surgical tape which turned into an infection.  My blood counts were not stabilizing and kept dropping a little more everyday, getting closer and closer to transfusion levels.  They ordered a catscan and found a large bleed in my abdomen along with a huge hematoma.  Every time the Doctor came in, it was with more bad news.  They convinced me the transfusion was necessary and we began the process.   
The nites were the most strange.  Your baby isn't with you but you still have to wake up to pump so its not like you can really rest.  So you go to the NICU to visit.. rub his to him so he knows you're still there.  The isolettes are high and the chairs are low so you basically stand and just watch him.  Willing him to be better, to work harder. And you pray. You pray for healing.  You make amends with God for anything you can think of.  But then you leave and go to your empty room.  Then, in 1-3 hours, you go back and do it again.   
The Doctors tell you repeatedly, that it could be worse. They say they see this everyday and it'll work out just fine.  Of course it could be worse.  Of course, it could always be worse. But for *MY* family, this *IS* the worst.  Any illness, any struggle, any separation with my brand new baby IS the worst.  At one point, I swore if one more Doc told us how much worse it could be, I would lose my mind.  
I just couldn't believe this was all happening.  It didn't even seem real.  I cried everyday, most of the day. Jason was amazing.  He assured me and held me.  I wouldn't have survived without him.  We had an entire team, actually.  I couldn't have made it without any of you.  Dawn, Jordan, my Mom & Dad, Shay, Teresa.. I cant thank you enough for helping take care of our crew.  You guys put our minds at ease so we could focus on Tyler and be there for him.  Thank you just doesn't seem like enough, but we are extremely grateful and blessed to have you in our lives.   Jim and Jane also came to sit with me, along with my Aunt Jane.  I'm so appreciative to you all for your love and support.  Thank you for all the texts and calls, as well.  We even had tiny visitors to make us smile.
Around day 4/5 things started to look up.  The fluid was beginning to clear.  The oxygen was getting closer and closer to room air and I WAS FINALLY ABLE TO HOLD HIM!!!   It was the greatest day.  You never realize how amazing it will feel to hold your son until someone tells you that you cant.  Jason was again, so generous.  He let me do everything first.  Even the opportunities when only one of us could.  He never hesitated to let it be me.  Tyler was a champ.  He let me feed him right away.  He did so well.  I loved holding him.  I could have sat there with him all day long.  The better he did for me, the harder it was to leave him there each time and go back to my empty room.  






We stayed for 10 days.  10 long, awful days of ups and downs.  The realization of having to leave without him was starting to settle in and I was a wreck.  I didn't want to leave without him.  How could I leave him?  Having to leave the hospital without your baby feels painful and wrong on a physical level.  Its like you have a specific hormone inside you, designed to make you feel like dying if you leave your baby postpartum...maybe so you don't go shopping or hit the clubs.   
I was beside myself when I left the hospital, even though I knew it was the best place for Tyler to be.   I thought of every tactic I could to stay longer.   My own doctor had delayed all my tests so that our discharge times would maybe meet up but Tyler was just taking too long.   I had babies at home who needed me too... It was time to go.   I left my heart in that NICU.

The next 4 days were way worse.  We were so far away from him..visiting several times a day and juggling 3 at home.  Making phone calls in between.  Trying not to be that annoying Mother who keeps calling to check in and praying that theres no new news, no new episodes.  

Even though my home was full of love and little voices, it felt empty and lonely.  Every time the girls would ask me about him, I would lose it. It was tough for them to understand exactly.  They weren't allowed in the NICU so they hadn't been able to meet him yet.  Every day that we thought we could bring him home, turned into the next day..then the next.
Finally! On the 14th day, he was ready!  We had ridden the NICU roller coaster, with all of its ups and downs, and were ready for our final stop!  I don't think I ever drove that fast.  We took the kids with us and went to scoop up our precious boy! It was the very best day!  14 days felt like a lifetime.  
Having him home was just what the Doctor ordered for this Mama!  It was all I needed.  He completed our family.  The caboose to our circus train.  We couldn't be happier.  We were ready to begin our exciting new adventure as a family of 6!

The days at home that followed were pure bliss. A little chaotic.  But we were all together.  Its all I could hope for.  The girls were smitten with our little prince.


A little photo shoot w Mommy.



Wow, seems like so long ago. Horrible experience, but you captured it perfectly. Lucky Tyler will know what you went through when he's older. So glad everything is PERFECT now! No agonizing over a messy house or unruly kids, just being happy together is all that counts!!

Anonymous said...

I am so happy everything worked out and the baby is adorable, God knows you are a wounderful mother and knew you would get thru this. Dani you are a beautiful young lady, inside and out. you have a beautiful little family. You and Jason are wounderful parents and your kids always come first with you both.
God Bless.

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