Sunday, June 29, 2008

1 month and counting...

Hayvn celebrated his 1 month birthday not sleeping. he woke up around 7:30am to eat and decided he would remain up for most of the day. kind of a funny way for a newborn to act if you ask me, but what do i know? I'm new here too. as all new parents will tell you, the last month has been full of ups, downs and some sideway days. we sleep, we cry, we poop through diapers, we pee on momma, we get gassy, we get fussy. it's pretty much a full time job, this being a baby business. and i think hayvn would agree that keeping his parents guessing is only one of  its many perks. there's not much to this blog, other than to share some of our favorite pictures of our little bug. we've got a lot of firsts to document, so we better get to it--his first bath, first walk, first time with great-grandparents, first 100+ degree weather get the idea. pretty much every day is a first for us here in the davenport household. and as we start into month two of life on earth, we're hoping that sleep and smiles become more prevalent..for us and for hayvn. oh, and as of 1 month, hayvn is a heafty 7lbs, 7oz--yay for momma's milk making a boy nice and strong!


Monday, June 16, 2008

sweet sound of a swallow

There are many times in life when you realize that things 
are occurring in a way you never thought they would. about the 2nd day of hayvn's life i realized that everything surrounding him had occurred in ways i never thought they would. we struggled to conceive him, we thought we would lose him, and then we had him 4 weeks before we thought we would. being his parent has been an exercise in letting go, that's for sure...letting go of all expectations and assumptions. 

by day 2 of hayvn's NICU stay, we were growing more weary of the road ahead. while he was already off the oxygen, he still had an IV in his little hand and the doctors weren't ready to let him try eating yet. we were told that a small dimple right above him bum could indicate a problem with his spine and we were waiting to get the results back from an ultrasound. since we were still residents at sierra vista, visiting him was still easy and we were able to hold him most of the day. i had been shown how to pump and was already getting a little supply ready for hayvn. it was all so surreal, but yet when you're in it, you find that yourself just dealing with it--like it was normal. like you didn't just give life only to have it separated from you. 

by day 3, the weariness was starting to set in. jeremy and i were told that we would be leaving the hospital that day, and the reality that hayvn wouldn't be leaving with us was almost more than this new momma could take. i woke up early that day and called my mom in tears. the thought of not being within walking distance of my baby was heartbreaking. and poor jeremy was already having to deal with trying to balance his new role as daddy with his baker role. since hayvn arrived early, jeremy had special order cakes that were due that weekend--including one wedding cake. on the bright side, day 3 also included our first go at breastfeeding. while it was wasn't a huge success, it did afford hayvn and i the opportunity to spend some quality time just being with one another. it was precious. we also received news that his little 'butt dimple' was nothing to be concerned about--just a little dimple. 

day 4 found us in new roles, yet again. this one entailed us having to shuffle back and forth between home and the hospital. jeremy had to spend the majority of the day completing cakes, and i was fortunate enough to have jeremy's family's help. gramma and auntie jenny helped to shuffle me around and got to spend some quality time with the little one. again, breastfeeding didn't actually end in eating, but we were a determined little team, hayvn and i, and i was assured by the nurses that he'd eventually get it. luckily, i had a nice little supply building. the doctor had inserted a feeding tube in hayvn's nose in order to get him breast milk 
while he learned how to nurse or take a bottle. 

by now we'd learned that the NICU was a place where you had to be prepared for the unexpected--and you had to put on a brave face, no matter what. our little hayvn was/is quite the little wiggle worm. while the doctors had him eating mostly through a feeding tube, he was still receiving some nutrients through his IV. well, the little guy kept losing his IV. the nurses had tried it in his hand and his foot already. since he was such a mover, the nurse finally resorted to inserting the IV in his head. let me tell you, coming into the NICU to see my tiny little baby with an IV in his scalp was nothing short of the hardest thing i've ever seen. luckily, the nurses assured me that he was not in any pain and the IV would soon be coming out (as he began to eat more and more on his own). by this point God and I were in regular communication and i told Him in no uncertain terms that He'd better get that IV out soon...or heads would roll. 

by day 5  little hayvn had mastered the bottle. in fact, he was taking down almost half an ounce like a starving little man. it was amazing to feed him for the first time and to hear the sweet sweet sound of him swallowing. we knew that his stay in the NICU depended on his ability to take food by mouth, so it was no small victory to hear him suck, swallow and breathe all at once.

unfortunately, on day 5 we celebrated this victory and also experienced some defeat. on day 4, jeremy and i noticed that hayvn's coloring was getting more and more yellow. on the morning of day 5, the doctor had noticed this as well. by early afternoon they had gotten the test results back on his bilirubin and determined that his liver wasn't functioning as well as it should. in order to help him process his food better, hayvn was put under the photo therapy lights. again, i experienced some heartbreak when visiting my little boy in the hospital that night. i was able to feed  him and change his diaper, but i had to do it with him under the lights in the photo therapy incubator. and he had to wear this awful little eye mask, so he couldn't see me when i talked to him. luckily, my mother-n-law was with me for the visit, so she helped me put on that motherly brave face. 

day 6 was a better day. his bilirubin had already started to come down significantly, so we were able to try breastfeeding again (which he was doing better at) and we were able to hold him in 20 minute intervals every 3 hours. since hayvn had been doing better breastfeeding and taking a bottle, the feeding tube was out and the nurses started talking to us about discharge. we were also told that he'd have the IV (moved back to his left hand) out by the end of the day.  while we were encouraged that he'd get to come home the following day if his bilirubin was back in the normal range, we didn't want to get our hopes up. once again, a text was sent out 
to all of our praying family and friends that hayvn would be discharged soon.

day 7 was a miraculous day. we went in for his 8:30 feeding to find him moved to another part of the NICU--the part for reserved for babies going home! his bilirubin had gone down again, and he was no longer under the photo therapy lights. i tried breastfeeding him again and then gave him his bottle as the nurses went through all the discharge information. jeremy brought up our carseat in order for hayvn to undergo the final test before coming home--the carseat test. he was to sit in the carseat for an hour and if his heartrate stayed within normal range he proved that he was strong enough to come home. jeremy and i left the little guy in his carseat and headed home to get things ready. we had several more items to buy and some cleaning to, we knew that gramma would want to be there for his homecoming. 

we arrived back at the NICU for the final time at
 1:30 that afternoon. after scrubbing up, we went in to find little hayvn comfortably sleeping in his carseat, all his items packed up and all his paperwork complete. our little boy was all set to come home. he was finally ours--no more sharing him with nurses and doctors. after strapping him into the car and starting for home, jeremy put
 on tom petty's "wildflowers", one of hayvn's favorite songs when he was in the womb....and then hayvn's big strong daddy cried the entire car ride home.  

Sunday, June 1, 2008

Hayvn Walter Paul Davenport

surprise...our son was born on Wed. May 28th at 7:22am. He weighed 5#11 oz and was 18" long. It all started on tue the 27th. Sarah and I had an ultrasound scheduled to see the progress of Hayvn about one month before he was to be born. It was mostly just for us and the grandparents who came along, but the reason Sarah wanted it was to make sure everything was ok--thank God for mothers intuition! While having the ultrasound done our dr suddenly stopped pointing out limbs and toes and started measuring stuff. the room got quiet as we all watched him search around for pockets of amniotic fluid around hayvn's growing body. soon he was done and he switched off the u/s machine with a short 'every thing's fine' comment...and then he left the room. hum. the grandparents left too and we were left waiting for the dr to return. when he came back in he calmly told us that he was a bit concerned over the lack of amniotic fluid and was, therefore, sending us to sierra vista to undergo a non-stress test on the baby and another u/s. that was when the real fun began...

ok...jeremy's got the little peanut, so i (sarah) think i'll take over the writing of this blog....

we got set up in a room at sierra's labor and delivery at 12pm on tuesday. after many hours of watching hayvn's heart beat on the monitor and undergoing another u/s, the nurse came in at around 4pm to tell us that we would be admitted and the dr was on his way to explain the inducing process to us. wha..? needless to say, i was scared and not just a little bit panicked. we really weren't ready for him--the house wasn't ready, we'd only taken 3 childbirth classes, hadn't even discussed our labor plan with our doula, hadn't packed a bag, cleaned his clothes, learned how to install the car seat or, more importantly, hadn't reached that stage in pregnancy where you're so uncomfortable that all you want is to get that baby out. i liked being pregnant and to have it cut off almost 4 weeks early was a strange reality to suddenly face. but when the dr got there and explained that my placenta was aging and therefore not providing hayvn the appropriate amniotic fluid level, we knew that it was better to get him out rather than keep him in. so our readiness was neither here nor there--ready or not, parenthood was where we were bound. 

i won't bore you with the gory details of my 12.5 hour labor. let me just say that the dr assured us that the inducing process was a slow one and could take days. they gave me my first dose of cervedal (sp?) at 6pm. by 10pm my contractions were coming faster and more intense and i wanted to punch that dr in the throat--a slow process my butt! they tried twice to give me medication to slow down the contractions, but my body was in gear and not stopping for anyone. by 6am the following morning, i was almost dilated to 10 and more than ready to start pushing.

i have to give credit where credit is due...although i pushed this baby out, jeremy was an amazing coach. by the time i hit 6cm, the pain was enough to make me one miserable girl. but jeremy just sat with me and let me hang onto him for dear life (including taking hold of one of his ears at one point and almost twisting it off!). i wasn't always the greatest breather, so jeremy literally breathed through every contraction with me. keeping my focus on him and following his lead, i was able to get through it all without any medication (go me!). our doula, kathy tuck, was also a miracle worker. even though we hadn't finished our classes or even gotten a chance to sit down with her to go over our birthing plan, she knew exactly want we wanted and gave us the best possible birthing environment we could have imagined. and our dear sweet friend lealah was also a great support. i feel so blessed to have gotten to share this experience with these 3 amazing people.

when hayvn finally entered the world at 7:22am, after almost an hour of pushing, i have to admit that i wasn't flooded with the sense of euphoria like i had been promised. mostly, i was just thankful to jesus that he was out and i was done. poor hayvn's first words he heard me say were, 'oh, thank god he's out!"

from here, our world got even more turned inside out...while hayvn was placed on my stomach immediately following his delivery, he only got to spend a few sweet seconds with me before the nicu team took him. he was grunting something fierce, as his little lungs struggled to take in air for the first time. they gave him some o2 and then swaddled him up. we got another very brief moment with him before he was whisked off altogether to spend his first of seven days in nicu...but that's another blog...

to say we feel blessed is an understatement....while so much of our struggle to conceive and then to maintain this pregnancy has been about our testimony and about what God's been doing in our lives, i now see hayvn's testimony taking it's own, separate, form. and his testimony started when he was only an embryo. from each stage of his development, God has shown His fierce love for this child. and his timing has always been perfect--regardless of our own expectations. thank you, Lord, for holding all of our lives in the palm of your hand.