Wednesday, April 28, 2010

a tiny glimpse

yesterday was a big day. everything started out great. gavin was a doing really well when i got there in the morning. i knew in the back of my head that if he had good blood gases and remained stable on c pap, i would get to hold him at 2:00 during his touch time (this would be my first time holding him). everything seemed to be going well with all of his stuff, except his blood gas, where his carbon dioxide levels were a lot higher than the doctors wanted. i knew that another blood gas was coming just before 2:00 and i had such high hopes that he would stabilize. aside from the reason of wanting to hold him, i wanted him to stabilize because he seemed so much more comfortable when he was extubated. he was able to lay on his tummy and his side and they took him off of the majority of the sedatives he was on, which also told me that he was more comfortable. well, around 1:00, he began desatting rather quickly. we knew that this was a possibility since he came off the steroids the night before. they had him at 100% oxygen and he was still desatting. i knew instantly that his little body just became too tired to keep breathing all by himself. it all happened so fast and my emotions definitely got the best of me. surprisingly, holding him was the last thing on my mind...all i could think about was him needing to be intebated once again and how bad i felt for him. i was so proud of my little guy for pushing so hard for 3 days all by himself. everyone was shocked he made it that long too! one of the neonatologists and nurse practitioners reintubated him, but had a hard time getting the size 3 tube in because he was swollen from the suctioning that they were doing trying to keep him on c pap if they could. amidst trying to intubate him, they needed to bag him in order to give his lungs enough air. that is, by far, the hardest thing to watch as a parent. the doctor ended up intubating him with a 2.5 sized tube. we could all still hear gavin making little squeaks around the tube, so he knew that once the swelling went down, he would need to reintubate him with a size 3. they gave gavin some sedation to calm him during this process and he was now stabilized. our nurse practitioner told me that i could still hold him while he was intubated. i was ecstatic!! i immediately called jeramy to have him come down to the hospital so he could be there to share the moment with me.

they do what is called kangaroo care, where they place the baby directly on the mother's chest. it is really good for the baby and it is really good for the mom too :) they got me situated in the recliner and transferred him from his incubator to my chest. they tucked him right inside my shirt. at first, i was really nervous because of all of the cords he has attached to him, as well as the tube in his mouth. i didn't want to move anything. right when i felt him, though, all of those anxieties immediately went away. jeramy got there right at that time, which was perfect! lindsay and his nurse got everything taped down where it wouldn't move and got his sats back up (when micro preemies transfer from their incubators to their moms/dads it is quite the ordeal). after about 5 minutes, jeramy and i got to enjoy some alone time with our son. the lights were off, the curtain was pulled and we were able to get a couple short videos of our time spent with him. i knew that gavin was pound 9 ounces isn't huge after all. but once i had him on my chest, he felt even smaller and more fragile than i could have ever imagined. it was the most amazing feeling ever. he did so good...he was super calm and was so still. however, his tube had quite a large leak in it though, because it was too small, and as the swelling went down, he began desatting rather quickly. after about 10 minutes of kangaroo care, the nurse and nurse practitioner came in and i knew instantly that our time was done. they called quickly for the doctor to come to his pod and the nurse practitioner began bagging him while he was on my chest. he wasn't getting enough air in his lungs from the tube, or the bag, so they moved him in a VERY quick and scary way from my chest to his bed. instantly, people were all around him. they continued bagging him until the doctor came and reintubated him with a size 3 tube. jeramy and i cried a lot in the hall of the NICU, after what was a very scary and emotional experience. watching things change as quickly as they did was terrifying. we decided that, once they got gavin situated and stable, we would head home. it was a very rough day, but i caught a tiny glimpse of what it will be like when i can hold him for longer periods of time. depending on how he is doing, we should be able to hold him for an hour, every other day or two. we can't wait...
oh...and look how tiny his little hand is. that should give you a pretty good idea just how tiny this little guy really is...

i got to the hospital today and heard that they had to reintubate him once again because his tube was too high. it truly is never ending and a little bit of my heart breaks each time i hear about things that happen to him. we trust these nurses and doctors so much with our son though and i am so thankful for each and every one of them. today, however, i hit a breaking point. maybe it was everything that happened yesterday or my lack of sleep last night from having continual, detailed nightmares about what happened yesterday that i just couldn't escape from...i don't know. but i needed to come home and sleep or at least try to sleep.

please pray for us. every day is a struggle. every day we cry. every day we feel like we reach a point where we can't do it anymore. thankfully, however, in the moments where we feel like we really can't do it anymore, God gives us just enough strength for one more day. so pray for strength....we need it.


  1. Oh Tracee ~ my heart breaks for you in all this! I'm happy you & mighty G had skin/skin contact for your 10 minutes. Praying that you'll get some more time with him soon. Love ya,

  2. Tracee & Jeramy,

    Our hearts are so very happy that you were able to hold your little Gavin! With all of the ups and downs you have been through, this certainly has got to be THE BEST MOMENT EVER!!!

    We continue to pray for you all - all of the time, every time we think of you (which is often). My ladies bible study prays for you constantly as well (and ask about you all of the time) - we have a prayer "texting" thing going, with updates when I see them on FB or your blog.

    Much, much love to you both as you go through this difficult time - but remember..... this is what you have Jesus for!!!

    Love, Dennis & Jamie

  3. Trace-
    That photo is priceless. Thank you so much for sharing that special time with us.
    Much love,

  4. THANK YOU FOR THE PIC!! You two look wonderful! And, he has gained 6 oz? That is wonderful!! Praise God!! ~Lisa

  5. That picture says everything! I am so happy for you and Jeramy. Your faith wouldn't be so strong if it wasn't tested on a regular basis. You have been thru a lot and have handled everything so well. My prayers are always with you!

  6. Your picture is incredible, it just brought me to tears, there is nothing like the moment a mommy & son touch. Thanks for sharing such an intimate picture & story of today~

    Still praying for the miracles that appear each day in precious Gavin's life!

    God catches each tear dear friend....He promises that...He knows and loves you all~

    Andy & Nicole

  7. Tracee -
    He is absolutely beautiful. So happy that you finally got to hold him! Prayers for continued good things in Gavin's life.
    Good job Gavin for breathing on your own for 3 days. :) Keep up the hard work.
    - Elli Gawne

  8. Beautiful...omg...breathtaking and just beautful! I love it..Love you and that precious baby Gavin...can't wait to see you!!! Ummm you look beautiful by the way!

  9. Tracee, what a blessing to be able to hold Gavin. Thank you for continuing to share your experiences. I can't help but to feel that God is continuing to care for Gavin. I pray every day that he grows stronger, and I know that a lot of other people are praying that same prayer. I can't believe you are going through this right now, but it goes to show how precious life really is. All three of you are so strong! May the Lord keep you strong and may He grow Gavin into a strong man of God someday! That is my prayer.
    Love, Melanie

  10. What a beautiful mommy/baby picture. Gavin is such a wonderful creation of God, entrusted to the best parents in this world for him. Always praying. So thankful for a God of miracles. We love you!!
    Grandma Star

  11. Tracee and Jeramy, As tears stream down my face I ask God, through the power of the Holy Spirit, to keep giving miracles to Gavin that will show HIS power and love for little angel. PRAYING every single day, several times a day, that God will grow him, heal him, and give you both strength and peace!!
    Patty Kohner

  12. What a sweet & loving time for your family. Praying for Gavin's body and edurance for you and Jeramy.

  13. Tracee and Jeramy, I'm so sorry you are facing these huge battles with your tiny son. I know it is a scary time.
    If you have not yet found it, you might want to visit the March of Dimes community for parents of preemies called Share Your Story: Many parents have found it very helpful and supportive to talk with others facing the same types of things.
    You are in my thoughts.

  14. I am so greatful for your time holding Gavin, but my heart breaks for you scary ordeal. I remember when my little one was in the NICU, every day I thought I would run out of tears. I cry for you now, but know that God has the 3 of you in His hands. I pray that you would be able to feel Him holding you, just like Gavin got to feel you. I'm continuing to pray.
    Nicole Ellis Thompson

  15. The picture is beautiful and going back to your post about being a mom and not feeling it - when I see that picture all I see is MOM! with sweet baby peeking out.

    I just found your blog today, but will check in from time to time to see how you all are doing and will constantly be thinking of all of you!

    Go Gavin GO!