Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Birth of Baby Josephine.

1st- this blog goes back & forth a little because Tyler wrote some, then I wrote some, then Tyler and so on. So I apologize, but there are parts that each of us are more familiar with.  We are beyond grateful that Joesphine has NO LONG TERM damage from her complications.  A lot of questions have been asked around the birth and complications so here is our attempt to provide everyone with the detailed story.  So we am going to try and explain the chain of events. 

On Friday December 10th my contractions became regular around 5 pm. We continued to make & enjoy dinner with Grandma Melanie and we finally arrived at the Birth Center at 945pm. We checked into to triage thinking it was going to be a long night, Leah was dilated @5cm,and it was probably around 1015pm when we got a room. We got all settled in our room. around 11pm Dr. Minehan came and checked on how far Josie had progressed, which was about the same as when we checked in, now this was before the epidural, and he left thinking a long night as well. It was about 1130pm when Leah told the nurse she felt pressure so the nurse decided to see where Leah had dilated to, and she looked at us almost puzzled. The nurse told us that Leah was fully dilated, and wasn't sure if her water had broken or not. About ten minutes later, the on call doctor for the hospital that night came to confirm. 1145pm Both the nurse and on call doctor were trying to get ahold of Dr. Minehan, they both were unsure about her water breaking, and just seconds into getting ahold of Leah's OBGYN, next mirconium comes out, which is baby poop, (excuse the graphics, sorry) which confirms the water breaking. Roughly 1150pm Dr. Minehan shows up, checks the dilation, and asks leah is she has any pressure, and if so, to push. Now Leah is fully dilated at this point, my emotions are running high for the safety of my two girls, and she begins to push. Two pushs. Thats all.

1153pm 12-10-10 Josephine Lavonne Sipress was born, and we took a look at her and instantly knew something was wrong, she was blue, not crying like she was supposed to. I stood there next to Leah as she was asking me what was wrong, she didn't have a clear view of the way I did. I looked over to where they brought Josie, the far corner of the room, which was about 10 to 20 feet away from us, very nice rooms. Over there in the corner were four nurses, and a nurse practitioner from the NICU.  I could see them sucking all the fluids that were in here lungs, and stomach, which turned out to be mirconium she inhaled. I'm unsure of the time that took during this time, but eventually they got Josie to where a newborn needs to be, nothing stopping her from breathing or eating.

Now I tend to find after the birth of your child, it sends you on this natural "high", which is unknown to "normal" life. Both of us were grateful that the NICU dept was able to help Josie when she was first born, and felt that our stress was pretty much over for her. Josie at first started to eat, and started napping. Leah was always concerned from about hour two of taking care of Josie in our room, that she wasn't eating right, or enough. We continued on the day, having people come see us, and Leah still having a concern for the way Josie was eating, or there lack of.

Now for those of you who do not know Leah ,the way we others do, she is very fine tuned to what her children need. After everybody left, even myself I had to go take care of big brother, Leah continued to try and nurse little precious Josephine. I went home and took Grandma Melanie to the train, then proceeded to go home and Issac and I were in for the night. That night Issac was unsure of what exactly was happening, the night before it was just him and Grandma, so I brought down the air mattress to sleep on in the living room. During the night I received about twenty text messages about what had happened while Issac and I got sleep.
That night Josie wasn't eating at all, and Leah started to really worry, the nurse tried to reassure her that the pediatrician would be in the morning. Well here comes another attribute about my wife that I love, when she knows in her heart that something is wrong, she is always right. It took Leah actually yelling at the nurse to get a NICU doctor to come check on Josie, to see if Leah wasn't just overreacting, which is never the case I've learned. Turns out the doctor from NICU was concerned and they needed to run all kinds of tests to figure out what was wrong.

Leah:  When the neonatologist arrived in my room she did a check & told me my concerns were Valid & that she wanted to take Josie to the NICU for tests, her breathing was irregular & she wasn't reaching full consciousness.  During the night I sat in a ball crying in a chair in complete fear of loosing Josephine as they did 3 spinal taps, a MRI, chest x-rays, brain ultra sound & a million blood work tests.  It was beyond scary & everyone I tried to text was asleep except my friend Shobi, who stayed awake in her bed comforting me via text. In the morning I texted cousin Robbie, knowing it was his day off & told him it about the situation, he picked up Hannah & came to watch Issac so Tyler could come to the NICU. the picture above is what Tyler arrived to. I tryed to prepare him before he went into the room & I know he was being strong for me......but even Tyler couldn't hold back the tears.  One of the 1st things I told Tyler was that leaving her alone was NOT AN OPTION for me. With the exception of Sunday night, I spent EVERY night in the NICU with my baby girl.
Tyler: The next day, I arrived to the hospital in complete shock, you have to realize that when I left Leah and baby were in their room, and this was just heartbreaking. I arrived to see my little precious girl hooked up to machines to monitor her every move. This was upsetting, but the NICU doctor greeted me as I entered and explained everything that I obviously knew from Leah, but it was reassuring to hear it from him, to know they are doing everything they can to find out how to get her better. Josie was hooked up to food, and antibiotics as soon as she was in NICU, this was the first step to getting her better.
That day for the few hours my wife and I had, without our beloved little monster, was very emotional taking everything in, not knowing for 100% that she is going to make it through this. I will be completely honest, I cried on the way home, all I wanted was to hold my little girl again. Staying strong for Leah is all I could do when I was around her though, she needed that. We talked about our little girl with emotions, but definitely realized how much it means to have each other in our life.
 Josie had a pneumothorax in her lung, it was a hole that formed when she inhaled mirconium at birth. Leah was with Josie every step of the way, from x-rays, blood drawings, to the horrendous spinal taps. The only way Leah could describe how Josie screamed during the spinal tap, was to compare it to the way a cat screams when dying. This brought a tear to my eye, because I actually heard another baby in NICU while I was there, that screamed bloody murder, just the way Leah had described. Leah didn't sleep much during that long night, or almost at all during this week long trip, but she was there for our baby girl.

Leah:  Sunday they checked me out of the hospital. How was I to go home without my baby?  Josie was on machines & we couldn't even hold her.  I went home with Issac to sleep while Tyler stayed Sunday night.  He started our NICU journal as I had asked. We wrote down EVERYTHING, every test, every doctor, every diaper weight,how long she'd nurse. At one point we heard the nurse say "ask the parents, they write everything down, and TWICE we saved our lil baby from being poked because they were going to repeat blood work.  As I sat in the starbucks drive thru Tyler called & said the nurse was going to let me nurse Josie, I stepped on the gas to get to my baby girl.  At this point it is Monday morning & from this point on I was allowed to nurse Josie, I never left her side.
Tyler:  But, the next day, while Josie was in her own room finally, I stayed with her the whole night while Leah went home to get some well needed sleep. Leah had asked me keep track of everything that goes on while she was away, and I kept a journal on everything they did to the exact time and all. This journal helped even the nurses at times, it was funny. The x-rays continued to show the pneumothorax getting smaller, and Josie seemed to be alert to my voice, lifting her eye brows as I sang Bob Marley to her the whole night, not sleeping much either.

Leah: Josie was born on the Friday before my fall finals, my professors were very generous & I was able to complete my work in January.  The whole NICU week was very stressful, and alot of what happened blurred together in our memories. Tyler & I will forever be grateful for Robbie & Shobi for babysitting at last minute.  My mom & my Aunt Nicole came down Monday, took time off work & spent the night with Issac so both Tyler & I could be at the NICU over night, seeing how Josie had some important test results coming in in the morning.
We wish we could write a day by day for people, but honestly it's very hard.  Each day was filled with emotions and tests.  We tried hard to have a schedule for Issac & ate dinner each night outside the NICU as a family.  We are blessed & thankful for how the situation turned out.  To show our appreciation Tyler baked over 20 dozen cookies on Christmas eve, which we delivered to the NICU nursing staff on 3 platters, 1 for each shift.  Leah is also walking in the march of dimes walk in Seattle on April 30th.  Please donate to team "pitter Patter if you can.  http://www.marchforbabies.org/sipress

2010 brought us the best Christmas gift ever, a healthy happy lil elf!!!!!

April Car rides.

We started April off with a trip to Spokane to see Jayson & Andalyn.  Ty & I were both nervous about how the car ride would go but both kids did great.  We left our house when we got up & moving & stopped in Moses Lake to play at a park & have lunch before finishing the drive.  When we arrived Anadlyn had made chicken enchiladas for dinner & they were PERFECT, not too spicy not too saucy, just yummy.  After some play time outside & dinner we headed over to our hotel for some swimming & then to bed. 

Saturday we adventured to a hands on children's museum in the Spokane mall.  Issac didn't stop moving the entire time we were there, he was all over the place enjoying his time with uncle Jayson.  We ended the afternoon with a nice gondola ride across Spokane Falls. It was a beautiful day & the river was powerful from recent storms.  Saturday night we enjoyed some pizza. 

Sunday morning we rushed over to say goodbye to Andalyn before she left for work, then we went back to check out of our hotel & adventured to the park to play. When Jayson went to work we headed home. Issac slept until Ellengsberg & the ride home was just as easy as the ride over.  We hadn't spent more than just a few hours with Jayson & Andalyn in over a year & it was great to see Issac & Jayson bond.  Now Issac points at Jayson's picture & says his attempt at saying "Jayson".   Thanks again Jayson & Andalyn for having us & showing us a great time. 

The second weekend of the month I had a school event in the am so I was out the house early to help with the CIVITAS campus footprint clean up event which was successful & headed home around lunch.  We then drove up to Marysville to have dinner with grandma Laura.  We had dinner, Issac stomped around the yard & then Tyler & his Mom took Issac to the park near bye for a few minutes until the Washington rain set in.  We watched Issac's favorite "yogi bear" & then headed home.  The funny part of Going to Laura's is that she has a cat.  Issac LOVES the "meow-meow" as he calls it.  When we put Issac in the car he was pissed & crying because 1-he needed a nap & 2- he wanted to take the cat home. Sorry no "meow-meow"s for this family!!!!!   Thank you for having us & thanks for the Chicken Qusidillas Laura. 

The third week of April was BUSY!!!!   Tuesday I took Josie for her 4 month check up. She's 24 inches & 11lbs 14oz. On track but my girl has a sinus infection.  I knew her cold she got was dragging on too long & our Pediatrician put her on Amoxacilin.  She has been taking the medicine really well & only drops escape her lil mouth.  She is improving each day & never really got fussy just wanted to be held alot when she was sick.  Thursday Josie was in a "hold me all day" mood & I needed to clear my mind so we jumped in the car and drove to up to the Mt Rainer Nation Forest.  It was a beautiful drive & both kids slept to the top.....or to the top of where we could go this time of year and we located snow. Okay I must be clear that we didn't just find snow on the ground but also snow falling from the sky, hardcore! We played for just a few minutes & headed back down the mountain. 

Saturday I spent in orientation for Stand Up for Kids.  This non-profit does outreach to homeless & at risk teens  in Tacoma.  I'm excited to be volunteering with this organization.  It has always been of interest to me to help teen parents & couch surfing youth.  If enough people tell you something you believe it.  I have seen this 1st hand. NOBODY is worth nothing or worth giving up on. 

Sunday we went to the Super Mall. First we got Josie's ears pierced. Then we paid a visit to the Easter Bunny. Issac was unsure at first but didn't want to leave the bunny after exchanging a million high 5's & pounds!

Here we are at Easter week. It's going to be another busy week for us. Earth Day is Friday!!!  I have a TON of school stuff to do. Today I bought our Easter ham with all the fixings & finished the kids Easter baskets which  look like "book baskets" because I went overboard on the book buying.  I hope all of our friends & family near & far have a great Easter.  XOXO