Monday, July 30, 2012

One Month: Piper Grace part 2

Yesterday I began to tell you about Piper's congenital heart failure, and what the past month has been like for Todd and I.  Once Piper had been in the NICU for a few days, things started to look better.  She was eating well, and resting, but then on the day she was 1 week old things got bad again.  Todd and I could tell right away that something didn't seem right with her.  She was very lethargic, refusing to eat, and basically just laying there and not sleeping.  That night we received about four different phone calls from the Dr.s giving us bad news after bad news.  Piper's gut (intestines, and colon) were not working properly.  They first realized this when she had a bloody diaper, and then further investigated with x-rays.  
The next morning we realized how severe this issue was.  She was taken off milk and was only receiving fluids through an IV in her head.  She also had to have a tube put in through her mouth to suck out anything that might be in her stomach.  They wanted her to stay this way for several days to see if her gut could recover.  If it did not, then they would have to perform surgery and remove a large portion of her intestines which is very risky.  
Piper's weight started to drop and she went down to 3.14 lbs.  Her heart issue was no longer a top priority.  She was now fighting for her life over this intestine issue.  
Todd and I were helpless.  We didn't know what to think, say, feel.  Watching our daughter gag on a tube and not be allowed to eat was probably the hardest think we've ever had to see.  But she did recover.  Apparently her gut was not mature enough to handle the amount of milk she had been given, and reacted violently.  Now she has been eased back into feeding and is taking her bottles pretty well.  
Those few days were very intense for me.  
There have been many occasions in my life were I have cried out to God, but not quite like I did during that time.  Knowing that I was a mom, and feeling like a mom were two totally different things.  I couldn't do anything to help my little girl... at least that is what I thought.  But then I was reminded that I could storm God's throne on Piper's behalf, and what better advocate than her mom.  
God reminded us that He was still in control of the situation and was just as present then as he ever was.  Thankfully things have gotten better since that day and a lot has happened, but that will be in another post on another day.  

Sunday, July 29, 2012

One Month: Piper Grace

She has arrived!  My sweet little girl, Piper Grace, was born one month ago today.  

She is the most beautiful baby girl I have ever seen, and is so sweet too.  
Todd and I are so in love with her.  

But this past month has been the hardest of my life.  

Piper was born via c-section at 39 weeks.  Although she was considered a full-term baby, she was very small at 4.2 lbs.  Immediately the Dr.s were concerned, and realized her blood sugar was very low.  Soon after she was taken to the special care nursery to be monitored and given fluids.  Unfortunately that was not the end of Piper's health issues.  A few days later, on what seemed like a random chance, the Dr realized that Piper had a heart murmur and was very concerned.  Within the hour we were told Piper had two large holes in her heart and that the staff at Durham Regional was not able to handle it.  We were then told that Piper would need to be sent to Duke via ambulance to await assessment to see how severe the defect was and if she would need immediate open heart surgery.  I was able to ride with her, but upon arrival had to leave her and wait for the Dr.s report.  
 I cannot express to you how hard those 30 minutes were.  Todd and I had no idea what was going on; if Dr.s were performing surgery, just listening to her, doing x-rays.  We were at a loss.  Finally someone came out and told us that the situation did not warrant immediate surgery, however, she was considered a critical care baby and would be intensely monitored until they could get a better grasp on her heart condition.  

We were able to go back and visit with her for a while, but eventually had to go home without our little girl.  

I do not mean to be dramatic by stopping here, but there is so much more to all of this than I can write in one post.  I know that most of you have been keeping up with Piper's updates on facebook, and have been praying for us.  Please keep praying.  We covet your prayers and are moved by your encouragement.  This whole situation has been hard and trying, but I hope that through what I have to say here in the days and weeks to come, and through other conversations that God will use Piper's life for His glory.