Friday, February 29, 2008

Rejoice


"Rejoice in the Lord always, and again I say rejoice... Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, present your request to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-if anything is excellent or praiseworthy-think about such things... And the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:4,6-9

Our families and the boys watching Miss Priss through the nursery windows.

Baby girl Darley arrived yesterday morning (2/28) at 7:44. The day could not have gone more perfectly! The Lord has given us one blessing after another. Martha's C section went beautifully. So far she has had the delivery and recovery she so longed for after the emergency, chaos and rush of the boys delivery and 3 week NICU stay. She was awake and alert during the C section and Chris was able to join her and share in the arrival of their daughter.

As you may have seen from our previous post, there were a lot of uncertainties heading into our day. We had been followed weekly for high amniotic fluid levels and a probable bowl obstruction in Miss Priss. Prayers were answered and the high fluid levels did not cause preterm labor or complications for our little one. Upon delivery she was taken to the NICU for some abdominal xrays for a better glimpse into the dilated bowel they were seeing on fetal ultrasound. We were able to spend some time as a family with her as Martha was in the recovery room. This was a pleasant surprise as we thought we were not going to get this special time with her. Martha longed to nurse her as she was wide awake and rooting around. We knew we had to wait on the results before feeding her. We were just delighted to get this unexpected time with her. Our families came back to see us and her. We were able to see the boys and share this time with them. They had seen her through the nursery window but did not quite understand what was going on. They just wanted their daddy and did NOT like him behind the glass!

It was precious seeing the boys with her. Parker is just smitten and loves loving on her. "see baby, hold baby, kiss baby"...he even shared his monkey stickers with her:) Peyton so far has not been to keen on baby sister. He just wants his daddy and will occasionally ask for her but will not have anything to do with her. Parker does not like mommy lying in bed, "mommy get up"...he will climb in bed for a good snuggle though:) We showed him my boo boo and big band aid. Now he asks to see my "bandoo" and is quite concerned with all the hospital bracelets on my wrist.

The greatest blessing of all and amazing answer to prayer...once we were moved to our post partum room the pediatrician came by....the bowel and gas patterns of her intestines looked normal!!!!! We could feed her and watch to see how she tolerated her feeds. Making sure she had poops and no large spit ups or vomiting! I could feed my baby:) No pumping this time around:) Normal mommy stuff! Praise God for such good news. She thanked the Dr. with a LARGE poop before he left the room. Never have I been so excited to see poop in my life:) Things were moving through her bowel and getting out! "Unlikely" that there was going to be an intestinal obstruction that would require surgery was his response...we will take that. What a joyous moment in our day. I was waiting for someone to pinch me and awake me from this wonderful dream I was having. I could not have planned the day any better. Finally...a "normal" birth experience and newborn bonding. 2 1/2 years later, God answered my prayers and filled the longings of my heart. Through this whole process I had finally come to terms with my hopes and dreams of a normal birth and bonding process possibly not being a reality for us. I had let go and accepted that He may have other plans for us. Did it take away the pain and disappointment from the boy's delivery? No, there will always be a piece of my heart not mended from that and I have learned to be OK with that. This side of Heaven there will not be a full restoration. I also realized that this current pregnancy was not meant to take the place of or fill the void from my pregnancy and delivery with the boys. Only Jesus can heal that, not another child or pregnancy. All this to say...the day was perfect and beyond my imagination or dreams. He is faithful and full of mercy and grace. I wanted to soak in each and every moment...capture life happening in every minute.

It was wonderful having our families with us. Grand parents and great grand parents alike. Everyone relishing their time with this baby girl we have been praying for. Aside from the huge smiles on mine and Chris' faces, I think Pa Pa (Chris' grandfather) had the biggest grin of them all. This was one proud great grandfather. He has wanted a granddaughter for 29, almost 30 years now. The Lord blessed him with a great grand daughter yesterday. He has been talking about this moment since the day Chris and I got married. Now she has to meet her Uncle Greg (Chris' brother) and Aunt Betsey, cousin Josh and another set of great grand parents Pops and Betty (Martha's grand parents). We feel blessed that our children know and are able to spend quality time with 2 sets of great grand parents. We even went to Hawaii with one set before moving from California. Since the boys were born in California ...and 8 weeks early at that... only Martha's mom was able to see them at birth. What fun we had having our families with us this time around.

She had a fabulous night. Lots of poop:) and only small normal spit ups. We are out of the woods today:) We have a healthy and precious baby girl...still no name:) We are having her birthday party with the boys tomorrow...she will have a name by then. Her billi levels were high today so she is currently "sunbathing" in the nursery...sunglasses and all! This we can do...I will take sunbathing in the nursery over surgery any day of the week. We should be leaving the hospital sometime on Sunday.

We have so much to be thankful for. We are counting each blessing He has given us. You are among them. We have been richly blessed to have you in our lives. Your prayers, support and words of encouragement have blessed us in many ways. We have experienced first hand the body of Christ at work. Words can not fully express our gratitude to you. So many of you have been there for all 3 of our kids and their difficult "growing times" in utero and for their amazing birth stories. We love you and are forever indebted to you. You are forever a part of our children's lives. You have covered each of them in prayer. You have surrounded them with your love. You have made eternal investments in their hearts. For this we are grateful.

Hope you enjoy the pictures below. We have a very slow Internet connection here at the hospital and it is taking forever to get pictures uploaded...we will share more once we get home.


Chris brought the boys back to recovery to see me and the baby. Peyton (on left) is not so sure about this whole baby thing. Parker is offering his sucker:) How many times am I going to walk in the room to find him sharing not so infant friendly things? Whew, look at the chubby face on me:)



I love, love, LOVE this picture of my 3 boys and Miss Priss. Soooo sweet. Parker (on left) is absolutely smitten with her. He was sooo excited to "hold" baby sister:)



Finally, Miss Priss herself. Of course we dressed her properly for her big debut:) Big bow and all. Thanks Kim for accessorising our little girl!

Miss Priss
February 28, 2008
7:44 am
7 # 6 oz
20 inches
lots of dark hair!

Sorry it has taken so long to get this post up. I keep getting interrupted and falling asleep...got to love all those drugs! My pain management has been so much better this time around. I'm up and moving...just a bit slow. The nursing and right shoulder pain hurt more than my incision!
I'll keep sending out emails until we can post easier on the blog at home. It's hard to upload pics to email so it may be Sunday before we get pics out again.

Please join us as we rejoice in the Lord that she is free of any bowel obstructions and is a healthy full term baby. We also have a few prayer requests over the weekend.

1. Nursing is going MUCH better this time around. I am still having a good bit of pain though. Pray we are able to move past this and my emotions and frustration don't get me down. We have a wonderful lactation consultant working with us. I really, really want to be able to nurse this time around and not have to pump all the feedings. I did this for the boys for 9 months and just can't imagine finding the time to do it again this go round. I told Chris the pain is so intense it makes me burst into tears and if it were not my sweet child seeking nourishment...it is enough to make you want to throw the pain causing item across the room.

2. Her bilirubin levels are up:( They took her back to the nursery this afternoon to put her under her "sunbathing" lights. Pray this will help bring her levels down and she can soon rejoin us. We are still bringing her out to nurse. They will recheck her levels at 6 pm tonight. I hate having to send her away but this is much better than what we were facing. I'll take billi lights and a short nursery stay over surgery and a weeks recovery in the NICU any day. God is good.

3. That God will still continue to work in the lives of those around us as we are able to share her story.

Joyfully in Him,
Chris and Martha

***8 pm update: They rechecked her bili levels at 6pm and they went up instead of down after being under the bili lights:( Still a much brighter situation than we were facing. So she still looks like a pumpkin and is now sunbathing on top of and under bili lights. I'm telling you she is quite the drama queen already. She is doing everything like her brothers already:) We did make the decision for her to stay under the lights tonight and not come to the room to nurse. She was taking 45 min to an hour to nurse and the more time under the lights, the better for her. I am going to pump tonight and she will still get all the liquid gold:) We can even go to the nursery to feed her ourselves. They will recheck her levels at 6 am Saturday and hope to find them coming down. It was hard sending her down the hall...better down the hall than to another hospital like we originally thought. We can do this. At least we will get some good sleep tonight:) We need her to eat good and poop, poop, poop! We are having her birthday/celebration party tomorrow evening. I hope she can attend:) We will save a piece of cake for her:) Chocolate of course. Maybe if we could just name her she would quit acting out! We've got it down to two names. I just can't decide. Thanks again for your prayers***
"The joy of the Lord is your strength"
Nehemiah 8:10

5 comments:

Casey said...

Congrats! She's adorable! (and....she's just supporting the Tigers with her skin color as well!) Praying for you guys! Can't wait to hear her name!

Casey Childs Garmendia

Collin, Aron, Makgill, and Clara Beth said...

Oh, WOW!!! Congratulations! She is gorgeous, and we rejoice with you that she is so healthy. God is SO GOOD!

Chrys and Mike said...

Oh, I am SO excited about this wonderful update! Such great news! I have thought of you so much the past few days. Praise God for his faithfulness.

I'm praying that nursing gets better. It can be so difficult at first. I applaud you for being dedicated. Way to go, Momma!

Can't wait to hear more.

Chrys

Mary said...

oh y'all congratulations- i jumped to your blog from chris and emily's- glad to hear all is well with you!
Mary(beth Jackson) Kulp

Jill said...

Praise the Lord! And how encouraging as I watch the Lord work in your lives!
Anna Claire is beautiful!!!
Girls are a precious treasure!
Love you guys!