*WARNING: This is NOT a happy post!*
Really, they do.
Especially when you're the statistic.
When Grady was stillborn, I learned that 1-2% of pregnancies end in stillbirth. Doesn't seem like much unless you're the 1 or 2 out of 100 that it happens to.
Just yesterday, I had a long talk with the neonatalogist, Dr. L, who took such great care of Emma Grace. We were talking about the risk of brain bleeds in babies Matthew's gestation.
Again, doesn't sound too bad. Unless you're the 1 or 2.
Well friends, Matthew is the 1 or 2. We found out today that he has a unilateral, grade 2-3 brain bleed.
Dr. L did not seem very concerned about this. I trust this man. He sees this all the time and has a preemie follow-up clinic where he follows premature babies for a while after discharge.
The nurse called me today and told me Dr. L had the results of the scan, and he would talk to us when we got there. Can you say anxiety out the roof?!?!? I knew something was up and physically felt sick.
Dr. L walked into the room and said hi to Gib. He then proceeded to say, "I'm going to tell your wife some news that's going to stress her out but is not very stressing to me". Dr. L is a straight-shooter if I've ever seen one. I learned that with Emma Grace, and I so very much appreciate that. Of course, I cried when he told us. He was as encouraging as he could be. He said he is not going to go home and worry about my baby. He said it's good that it's only on one side. It's good that it's only grade 2-3. Bilateral and/or grade 4 is the worst. They will scan Matthew again on Thursday to see if the bleed has changed. We are hoping that it shrinks and doesn't get bigger.
What does this mean long-term for him? I'm not really sure. Only time will tell, but the little research I've done says it can lead to cerebral palsy, mental retardation and learning disabilities.
Of course, my mama heart and Gib's daddy heart aren't doing well with this news. Gib said tonight that he feels like "the wind has been sucked out of my sail". This sick feeling just won't leave me. All of us are worried. Jessica asked me if he was going to live. Emma Grace said he needed to get a new brain. I'm just truly hoping and praying that this is something we will look back on in years to come and see it as a huge bump in the road, and he will be fine.
I know God is in control. I've been praying almost non-stop this afternoon/evening and will continue to. He is the giver of life. The healer. The comforter. Our all in all. In Him we will trust. He smiled and gave Matthew life, and He will continue to carry him and us through whatever comes our way.
BUT...we're human and can't help but worry.
And I can't help but be really mad. While I know the news could be much worse...our baby is here...he's alive...he's doing amazingly well considering his gestational age and the fact that he's a boy. I just feel like we can't catch a break. Something always has to be wrong it seems. I've had my guard up since Matthew's birth, waiting for the bomb to drop.
And today it did.
PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE pray with us that when they scan him again on Thursday that it has gotten smaller, not bigger. Shoot, we could even pray that it's gone all together. That might be a stretch. But all things are possible in Him.
In other news, they increased his feedings today to 35cc every three hours and will go up more tomorrow. I have such a hard time imagining he can eat that much considering everyone says your stomach is as big as your fist. I promise his little fist isn't that big! But I trust the formula they use...it just rattles my nerves because I think he might throw it all up anytime. Then I worry about him aspirating if he's on his back. And so on, and so forth. NICU is just one of those nerve wracking experiences. Anyway, back to the update... He is tolerating his feedings amazingly well. He took all of his feedings by mouth yesterday, and he was tired from it today. He slept through most of his 9am feeding and had to be tubed the rest of that one and the others until tonight. I tried to nurse him at 3pm, and he was having no part of it. I talked to his nurse a little bit ago and she said he took his whole 9pm feeding, but he took it very slowly and is just really tired. This isn't unusual with preemies. They will have a super great day and then be pooped from all they do. Hopefully tomorrow he will be more awake and ready to eat! His IV nutrition was discontinued today and he's just on regular IV fluids. He did have to get a new IV, but Suzanne texted me this morning to say she got it on the first stick, no crying and it looked good. He had a major blowout this evening while I went to find a friend who came to visit. Jessica assisted the nurse in cleaning it up and apparently gagged the whole time. Don't think I'm gonna get much help from her with his dirty diapers at home, do you?
That's all for tonight. Please pray for him. Thank you.