Monday, January 14, 2008

The Arrival- Faith's Story Part IV

The Arrival
In the final weeks before Faith's arrival her growth slowed so much that the Doctor thought she had a better chance to survive outside the womb than in. We began to prepare for an early C-section. I took steroid shots and we visited the Doctor weekly so he could check so many things. We learned all sorts of things about ultrasound and medical care at this point. They began to check cord blood flow, heartrate, movement, and something called the circle of willis. This is an area of the brain that conserves the blood flow if the body doesnt have enough oxygen and energy to survive. The brain will begin to conserve the blood. It was determined that we would try to make it to 34 weeks. We began to count down the days, the hours, the minutes. I could not sleep well, could not function well, I cried all the time. The date was determined a few days before the C-section and everyone in the family fell into place. Family and friends found a way to be there for us at the time of Faith's arrival. On the morning of July 3rd I awoke with the words to a song running through my head. It was Este es el dia.... the spanish version of the hymn "This is the day" I tried to rejoice in that! I took it as a sign of peace and we drove to the hospital to check in. We didnt know if she would be born alive, if she would ever be able to take a breath. We tried to prepare, tried to hold strong but we were SO SCARED. At 1:05 Faith arrived. At first she made no sounds. We had braced for this, I knew it may take a moment for her to be able to breath. But this is what I longed to hear.The NICU team went furiously to work and after a moment we heard weak little kitten cries. OUR BABY WAS ALIVE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I cried and praised God in that moment. They wheeled her by so I could see her sweet baby face and then they rushed off to the NICU. Daddy followed close behind to watch her progress. After the Dr's got me cleaned up and back to recovery our family came by one by one. There were so many family and friends waiting that they filled an entire waiting room!!! How loved Faith was already! Cliff spent his time watching them care for Faith and escorting some family to the NICU to take a peek. I had a few people come sit with me but for the most part I was alone. Eventually someone came and showed me some pictures of Faith- I think it was Cliff, and I cried some more. She was breathing on her own, with help from CPAP oxygen. She was fighting!!!!!! That night I was able to get up out of bed and be wheeled down to have a formal introduction with my little girl. She was so tiny - only 3 lbs and 2 oz. She was on oxygen and breathing hard but she was trying! We didnt know what to think or expect and tried to prepare ourselves for the coming weeks and the adjustment that our lives had to make. How long would Faith be in the NICU? Months? And could she survive?

No comments: