Thursday, January 8, 2015

Happy Birthday Creed

I have never written down what happened a year ago. I remember waking up and feeling this horrible heaviness in my chest. Grrr. Evan had given me his cold. And I was already NOT looking forward to labor!! I called the Doctor and he said to come in that afternoon and we would see what we could do to help me out. I had a meeting for RS. As I was walking to the meeting I began to feel pain in my back. It just so happened to be that one of the girls at the meeting works for an OB. I told her my back was hurting and I felt sick. We laughed about my luck and moved on with the meeting. At the Doctors appointment, they started me on medicine to help with my cough and congestion. When I got home I had a horrible headache so I called around until I could find some medicine. My OB working friend walked into my house and told me I was in labor ( miracle since I never go in on my own!) Then she looked at Evan who was sitting in the corner covered in blankets in the middle of having chills. She said she would be back with dinner in an hour. Wonder full sweet friend!! She also called another friend who came over and got my kids for the evening. I knew I needed to go to the hospital but Evan just looked so miserable I couldn't imagine him driving me there. I cleaned the house, packed a bag, and counted out my contractions. Evan's fever FINALLY broke so he called our friends  to see if they could keep the kids and loaded me into the car. As soon as we go to the hospital he put on his awesome face mask ( which he wore for the next week!) I was in labor but my progression was  SLOW, which is exactly how my body works. The nurses get all excited when they hear I'm coming in since I have so many other kids, but I am ALWAYS the last one to deliver. They finally told me I could go home for a few hours to see if I could speed things along, yeah right, or stay since I was scheduled for an induction in a few hours anyway. I stayed. Evan, who is typically a rock star during my labors, went to sleep in the couch. After a while I decided I was going to be completely out of energy when I needed to push if I didn't get something to manage the pain. I finally decided to get an epidural, even though I hate them. I woke Evan up and asked him to stand by me while they gave me the epidural. I should have realized something was wrong because he was RUBBING my arms. No one rubs while I'm in labor. Seriously! I was trying not to be rude since I knew he didn't feel well, so I just shut my eyes and tried to ignore his rubbing, when all of the sudden he says "please, don't be mad at me. I'm going to pass out." The doctor who was putting a needle in my back calmly asked Evan to let go of me as he started to fall. I didn't want him to hit his head so I was trying to keep him from falling down. My sweet, little old lady, nurse jumped right in and said "I have him, I have him." ( you know what Evan looks like so chances of her "catching" him were slim to none!) He kept saying don't be mad at me. I really thought the whole thing was funny, I just was afraid to laugh because then I would cough and they were in the middle of sticking a HUGE needle in me! Evan was pretty funny, laying on the floor talking about how cool it was down there. Ha! He was so out of it. He finally crawled back to the couch and laid down and went back to sleep. My OB came in and broke my water. Cancelled some appointments thinking I was going to be pushing soon, finally understood when I said I move REALLY SLOWLY, went back to his office, delivered at another hospital, came back again and finally started prepping me for delivery. I began pushing. Awful awful pushing! After a bit there was a shift in the room. I wasn't terribly worried since I had pushed for over two hours with probably three of my kids. But there was a tension in the air. The Doctor got really serious and started telling me I needed to be pushing harder than I was. I was just so tired, and coughing between contractions. Finally I heard them ask to bring in some extra help from the nursery, there was no NICU at that hospital, so I knew something was up. Then I hear them talking about doing a shoulder separation. ( I had heard Nathan talk about those when he was in medical school and I did NOT want that happening) Before I went in to the hospital I had a blessing that said I needed to trust my Doctor during my labor. I wasn't happy about them breaking my baby's collar bone, but I thought I'd better listen to what the Doc had to say. I don't know what made him change his mind, I'm going to say a promoting from the spirit. As they were gathering in my room getting ready to deliver him, the Doctor told everyone to wait. Sat next to me and said I had one more chance to push, then he was going to do an emergency C section. I pushed and the baby slid right back up into my body. Within 10 minutes they were cutting me open. I had been in labor for 18 hours and I was exhausted. Once they hit me with the heavy drugs I was pretty out of it. Thank goodness since they called in my neighbor to be the anesthesiologist. Lets just say there were a few jokes, and then things got really up close and personal! :) A minute later Creed was born. 7 pounds 6 ounces. No way!! Were my doctors words. Why did I just do a C section on a small baby?! He seemed upset and began  apologizing to me. I thought, whatever! he is out, that is all I care about! :) I didn't even realize the room had gone silent. Our neighbor told me not to worry, babies don't always cry when they first come out of a C section. Then he went and stood next to Evan as they watched the nurses try to get Creed to respond. Perhaps it was a blessing I was so out of it, because I didn't even comprehend to be worried. After a minute they handed him to Evan, told him to show me Creed, then whisked him into the nursery. 

Once I was in my own room, our pediatrician came in and told me they were having a hard time getting Creed stabilized.  He said not to worry, they had 3 options to try before they would talk about life flighting him out to a NICU. I kept trying to get up to get to the nursery, but was on the verge of passing out, so the nurses finally told me I needed to sleep and then they would try to get me in to see  Creed. Evan went back and forth between us for the next few hours. Then our pediatrician came back in and said they had almost lost Creed twice. They were afraid if he tanked again they would not get him back so they were moving him to a different hospital. He told the nurse to get me a wheel chair and let me see Creed. They light flight crew was on there way so I only had about 30 minute. Some of my sweet, wonderful, close friends came to the hospital to see me right as they took me into the nursery. It was a double dose of emotions since a few years before in January, one of those friends had a baby that lasted 3 days before they lost him. I cried for them as I watched them sit outside the nursery and cry, surely for me but for the pain they suffered years before. 

( the second option for stabilizing Creed that didn't work) 

They wheeled me in and I saw this. My sweet, little fighter covered in tubes. They said I could touch his hand, but please not to do more than that. He was so delicate they weren't sure he could handle more than that. We asked if there was anyone who could help give him and blessing. A doctor came in and helped Evan give Creed a blessing. What a wonderful thing to have my husband stand and give our baby a blessing of strength and comfort. Then one of the head nursery nurses, who was an old neighbor of ours, sat and explained everything that was happening with Creed. He was worried about how he would do. It was so unreal to be sitting there holding the hand of my little baby, that I hadn't even held yet, listening to them talk about his battle to live. The lift flight crew came in. Asked a bunch of questions. Decided to do a ground transfer, then took him to the NICU. ( I wish I had a picture of how they transported him. They brought him into my room to say goodbye. Then they were gone)

The doctors, knowing I wanted to go see Creed, tried to get me out of the hospital, but I was not doing as well as they wanted me to. They became concerned that I was getting pneumonia. They took X-rays, gave me more medicine, had me drink as much fluids as I could, and finally tested me for influenza. I was positive for both strains. Evan was as well, I have no idea how he managed through everything feeling as crummy as he did!! The NICU kindly asked us to stay away. They gave us updates on Creed and even took a few pictures. They said they would look after him for us. I feel certain there were family members on the other side watching over my sweet baby. I was pretty calm until the morning hours when I needed more medicine then I spent many mornings crying for my baby. Five days after going in to have Creed, they finally let me go home. My dad brought my mom down to stay with me, then he headed back to continue fulfilling their duties as missionaries. My brother took my kids for a couple of days, my friends here took turns with my kids until my mom could get here. I also had wonderful friends go sit with Creed in the NICU so I knew someone was loving on him for me. They finally said he had pneumonia. He had a pick line in his head, a feeding tube, and oxygen. 8 days after I had Creed, the head Doctor from the NICU called and asked to speak with Evan and I. He said Creeds lungs were getting stronger and they felt he had passed the most dangerous time. Now we needed to make some plans about his other problems. OTHER PROBLEMS??!! We had no idea what they were talking about. Some information had fallen through the cracks, and we had not been told that Creed had a brain injury. They ran some tests on him and saw that he had hydrocephalus. The brain injury had caused a substantial amount of fluid on his brain.  The doctor felt it would be important for us to come in and see Creed the following day. My sister came and took the other 5 kids to Idaho so my family there could take care of them while we were at the NICE.  The next week was filled with ups and downs. Holding Creed for the first time was wonderful. I couldn't stop smiling!!! Then I couldn't stop crying as the doctor laid out what our reality could be for Creed. The most difficult thing being no real answers because the brain can sometimes heal itself so there are no problems or there could be catostrophic results. We were soo blessed by endless amounts of prayers, our names in the temple, people helping with our other kids, food....soooo much food :) and endless displays of love. Creed only left our house for doctors visits, a wedding for Aunt Sue!, and more doctors visits until May. Friends sat with Creed so I could go to the gym, go on occasional dates with Evan, or go to the grocery store. We have been so incredibly blessed.
We see that even now as we celebrate Creeds First Birthday. He learned to crawl for the occasion!! Creed has beaten so many odds. He is sweet tempered but very determined, which will benefit him as he doesn't let anything hold him back. He is surrounded by family, friends, and therapists who have loved him and prayed for him and helped him in everything he has accomplished. Happy Birthday Creed!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

handsome boy

 Ok so my awesome sister-in-law made Creed these darling clothes. People make SUCH a big deal about what a cutie he looks like when he wears these that I had to snap a few pictures. Seriously she could make a fortune selling these things if she ever chose too!! And I have had some great renditions of Newsies sung to me as well ;) 

Evan and the terrible horrible no good very bad day

 The 24 of July is usually very exciting, but this year tops it off for us. We woke up and took the kids to watch the parade at Uncle Brad's shop. We enjoyed good company and yummy treats, and lots of candy from the parade. After the parade Evan was dragging a bit so we just hung out around the house while he rested. Then we packed up to head to some friends for a BBQ. We, once again, enjoyed good food and great company and had a great time watching fireworks. Evan finally said he needed to get to bed so he could be up for work at 4:30. Around 1:00 I heard Evan throwing up. He proceeded to do this for the rest of the night. At one point he asked me to take him to the hospital, which I should have done but we had all had a bout with the flu the week before so I was sure that was the problem, but I talked him into waiting until an urgent care opened. We finally went in and they looked at him and sent us to the hospital. A bunch of tests, hours and trips to the bathroom so he could throw up some more, later they decided he needed an emergency surgery to remove his gall bladder. I know its gross to show these pictures, but the surgeon was making such a big deal about how bad things looked inside that he printed me out some pictures. 
Evan has been so much better since he had his surgery!! Its like he is a new person. We thought his immune system just never got a chance to recuperate from when he had influenza. Also, during his surgery they said he would stop breathing and told us he needed to be tested for sleep apnea ( I know, very shocking to those of you who have heard him sleep before :)) It turns out his tongue is too big for his mouth so it closes off his airway. He stops breathing over 70 times an hour and averages about 2 hours of sleep a night. No wonder he is ALWAYS tired! Anyway, we are fixing that too. So like a said he is like a new person and we love it!!

Mary and Creed

Mary has become an honorary member of our family. I told her this last week when she got here to work with Creed and the kids were fighting and yelling and not obeying all while she was here!! Up until this point they have been very polite while she has been here. I guess that is what happens when someone has been coming to our home for the last 8 months! Mary is our little miracle worker. Creed  has done so well working with Mary. His face lights up when she comes to our home. (Although he is starting to figure out that she makes him work and stretch himself in ways he doesn't want to, but he always ends up looking at her adoringly before she leaves  ) Last week she was able to get him up on his hands and knees. Every now and then I pause to realize what a miracle Creed's life has been. I am so grateful for every mile stone that he reaches. I am grateful for the people who have come into our lives and helped us know what we need to do to help Creed be as successful as possible. What a joy Mary has been for us. And we couldn't love Creed more. His smile is contagious and we all look forward to our turn to love on him! 

Gracie and the red plate!!

 I just love my Gracie. She is such a great help! I am amazed ( and sad ) at how grown up she is, but I'm excited about the person she is becoming!! 
The other day she showed this to me. I LOVE that her teacher does this, I think it is darling! And it was fun to have the whole family listen to and praise her for doing something kind and making good choices at school. It gave us a great opportunity at dinner to talk about the good that comes from doing something "amazing!" 

Road Trip to Colorado

 Our kids have always been close to Eric and Janine's kids, most likely because the older ones were born a few weeks/days apart from each other. The kids like to face time with each other and if they are together Maryn and Gracie can be heard for most of the night talking to each other. So the kids were pretty excited when we decided to load up and road trip to Colorado to surprise the cousins at their Mom's wedding reception. 
 The kids got along pretty well considering how long of a drive it is to Denver, but they were excited whenever they got to get out of the car and run around for a few minutes. 
 We got to the hotel and let the kids swim for an hour then got all dressed up to go to the reception. Sander was out of the car and running up the road before we had even stopped because he was so excited to see Caleb. Gracie immediately ran into the house checking all the rooms for Maryn and you could tell from the screaming when they found each other. They didn't leave each other's side for the rest of our time in Colorado. Sander was growing impatient to find Caleb and finally ran off. We didn't see much of them after that, they were busy running around being crazy boys! The little girls quickly found Josh and Adam and spent some fun time jumping on the tramp and sneaking treats. I can't believe I didn't get a picture of Janine and Nathan, but they looked incredibly happy and Janine looked gorgeous as usual! Evan and I enjoyed getting to know many of their friends, who made it a point to make us feel welcome. It was a beautiful night. 
 Jean and Roy were so great to let us steal the kids for the night and take them back to the hotel with us so the kids could have a few more hours to play. Evan took them the swim while I let Creed have some quiet time to try to recuperate from all the excitement. Then all the kids piled into the beds to hunker down for the night. We decided six kids in one bed was the limit so Sander and Caleb were awesome and took the floor!
We took the kids back to their grandparents house and enjoyed visiting with Janine's awesome family for a few hours then hit the road back to home. We sure do love those kids and had great fun on our road trip! 

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Hannah Banana goes to preschool

 It's finally here! Hannah gets to start preschool. While Hannah has given us quite the wild ride, I can't help but feel a little sad that she is starting the process of growing up and moving on.
 She has seriously been counting down the minutes for preschool to begin. I was worried when I left her, but she was sitting (QUIETLY) coloring a picture when I walked out the door. She had one moment of hesitation when she asked me if I would really come back and get her. Since it had been a good day ;), I told her I really would come back and get her. 
Eden was sad to see her buddy go (Creed is probably more sad now that he is the only one left for Eden to play with....) but for this very brief, peaceful moment, Eden and Creed are fast asleep and the house is very, very quiet. I just might be able to get used to this.