Thursday, June 19, 2008

Unhappy Birthday

The day Madison was born was one of the happiest in my life. Her birth was just like the movies. Well, except for the 51 hours of labor before she was actually born. Joe cut the cord and the doctors laid Madison on my chest. Immediately after she was born, right there in the delivery room, Joe and I spent time cuddling and admiring our baby girl. With a full head of hair and big blue eyes, she was the cutest baby ever.

Madison at five days old:



I cried tears of joy. Instantly Joe and I went from being a couple to a family. Life was perfect.

The day Kyle was born, on the other hand, was the worst of my life.

After my water broke at 22 weeks during our family vacation to Disney, I had been placed on bed rest in a hospital 1000 miles away from home. And I was okay with that. We were just so grateful that the doctors had been able to stop my labor.


At this point, I had been on bed rest for two weeks without any signs of labor being immanent. With people praying for us around the country, I was optimistic that I could last on bed rest for a couple months. But, the doctors had warned me that at some point labor would come, and it would come quickly. I however, was not prepared for just how quick they meant.


On February 20th, at a little after midnight, I got up to use the restroom. I did my business then laid back down in bed. It was only then that I realized something was terribly wrong. I literally could not put my legs together because the baby was falling out of me.


I frantically screamed for a nurse. She took one look at what was happening, and paged the delivery area to prep for an emergency. While this was happening, I grabbed my cell phone that was next to the bed and called Joe to alert him. The time on caller ID said 12:08am.


I was whisked down the hall and into the operating room which was full of people who were preparing for the delivery. The doctors discovered that it was actually the sac that was holding Kyle and his feet that were falling out of me. While Kyle's chances at survival were not high to begin with, with him being breech the doctors felt he certainly would not survive a vaginal delivery. So, the decision was made to try and push him back inside of me and then deliver him via c-section.


Kyle was born at 12:48 am. When he came out it was not as if you could hear a cry (the doctors later told us his lungs were the size of a lima bean) and everyone is happy and declares "it's a boy!" Instead the NICU team was there waiting and they went into overdrive trying to save this little life. Not knowing what his state was at birth, I just kept yelling "Is he alive???" until someone finally told me he was.

While I was being sewn up, a neonatoligist came to speak with me and let me know that they would do everything medically possible to give Kyle a chance at life, but there is only so much that can be done.

Until anesthesia wore off, which took a couple hours, I was not allowed to leave the recovery room to see the baby. During this time, I just laid in a bed all by myself and cried. I was so worried that Kyle would die before I ever got a chance to meet him.

In the meantime, Joe flew down to Florida. When we were finally able to go see Kyle together, we were shocked at how small he was. And it was not a tiny, cute little baby kinda small. He obviously was very sick. Despite all the problems on the inside - things like his lungs and heart not being developed - we were struck by how different he looked on the outside. One of his eyes were still fused shut. His skin was transparent and covered with hair. Even his ear lobes had not yet developed cartilage. I've never saw anything like it, but his ears just sort of hung down like Dumbo's. (Sorry Kyle, as I am sure you will read this someday!).


Kyle at five days old:




Unlike the day Madison was born, there was no cuddling and family bonding done with Kyle when he was born. In fact, it would be 69 days before I was even allowed to hold him wrapped in a blanket like a newborn.

Kyle was a fighter and after 119 days in the NICU, we were allowed to take our precious, healthy baby boy home. THAT day was one of the happiest of my life. I cried (okay I bawled) tears of joy as we made our way to the car with Kyle.

And it is THAT day that I want to celebrate.


Madison and Kyle the day he came home from the hospital:




When Kyle's birthday 1st birthday came around this past February, it just did not seem right celebrating with a big party in Ohio. So instead we headed back to Florida for a quiet reunion with our NICU family.

But, it has now been exactly one year since Kyle came home from the hospital and we are celebrating the occasion with a HUGE party for family and friends this weekend. And I couldn't be happier!!!


45 comments:

Stephanie said...

Wow..what an amazing story. How hard that must have been to go through so far away from home. I've read your story before, but it was like reading it for the first time! Congrats to you all for being so strong! I hope Kyle has a wonderful party this weekend!

Stephanie said...

Isn't it amazing that 2 children can have two very different birth stories? Your strength is amazing. I hope you guys have so much fun at the party and celebrate the joy that is your little boy.

matt said...

Happy Birthday, Kyle! And congratulations to you and your family for surviving and thriving through a difficult time.

Wendi said...

What an incredible story of survival.
Thanks for sharing.
Hope you have a fabulous party.
You have so much to celebrate!

Nan said...

Happy "Welcome Home Birthday" Kyle! You are blessed!

amanda said...

oh wow friend. i truly don't know how you did it! you are one strong mama!!

such a beautiful moment - 119 days later but just as sweet i am sure!!

happy birthday kyle :)

Mandy said...

What a story! I'm so glad it had a happy ending. And that last photo with Madison and Kyle is just precious.

Lisa said...

He is truly a fighter from birth; he is so lucky to have two very special days every year. :)
(He looks so cute in that last pic!)

Rachel said...

I just at and cried while reading this.
What an amazing story. What a blessing.
Congratulations on your miracle.
Happy Arrival Kyle.

E and T said...

I was on the edge of my seat reading your amazing birth stories, with tears streaming down my face. Tears of sadness when I thought about you lying in recovery, waiting to meet Kyle. I can only imagine the agonising, tortuous wait that would have seemed like an eternity. To see Kyle now, healthy and happy brings tears of joy.

I hope that your party this weekend is wonderful as you have so much to celebrate.

51 hours of labor with Madison, WOW, that is one very long labor.

Love
Elise

krissy said...

And there are people out there that don't believe in God! I cannot understand that considering the miracles that happen in front of our very eyes everyday.

Congrats to your big boy for being a strong fighter and for his parents loving every minute of their childrens lives.

God is good. So, so good.

Kristen said...

Thanks for the reminder about what is truly important in life! :)

I hope that you and Kyle have one HUGE birthday bash to celebrate his very special day!

And hey, what kid wouldn't want 2 birthdays a year?? As I see it, Kyle is lucky! :)

duchess said...

What a beautiful story. That is a very strong little boy & we send you our best to celebrate his first year!

Susan said...

You have an amazing story! I can some what relate with having my son at 32 weeks. The gift of life is such a miracle. Have a wonderful time this weekend!

Chelle said...

I had chills running down my arms reading your story. What a strong little fighter you have! I hope you have a wonderful and happy party!

Laura said...

WOW - what an amazing story. What a great day to celebrate. Happy Homeday to you! Happy Homeday dear Kyle! Happy Homeday to you!

Found your blog thorugh Classy Chaos. Looking froward to reading more!

Cheers!

The Roaming Southerner said...

WHAT A GREAT STORY! Congrats to all of you and to your little prize-fighter!

Carol said...

Wow! What an amazing story about a tough little boy. Thank goodness for the medical advances that are saving little lives like his everyday!!

Elizabeth said...

a truly inspiration post! thanks for sharing your heart...that is so difficult for me to do sometimes...to be completely REAL! you are helping me see how being real helps others.

Thanks.

Angie said...

Wonderful. First of all, who doesn't need another reason to celebrate???

Happy HOMECOMING KYLE!!

KEEP BELIEVING

Jackie @ Our Moments Our Memories said...

You have two absolutely beautiful and special children. What an amazing story!

The Mom said...

Amazing. Precious. Thanks for sharing!

Jenny Shutan said...

That is wonderfully amazing! Kyle is a fighter. Happy Birthday little man!

Shannon said...

That's amazing, I totally have tears in my eyes. What a wonderful little miracle, I'm so glad you got to have a terrific trip to celebrate his birthday - so glad I stopped by your blog to read this today!

twin power mommy said...

That story reminds me of mine.
The fused eyes...the transparent skin.
It's all so unreal somedays, huh.
If you ever get some time, check out the story of my girls to the right of my blog. It's a bit more descriptive of what we went through in the NICU and will probably sound too familiar to you with everything you went through.
Praise God Kyle is alive and healthy now! Our God is an awesome God!

Shannon said...

That is a very moving story. I am so happy that you have your beautiful son at home with you and that he is doing well!
Celebrating his homecoming is a terrific idea- you should do it every year.

Megan said...

Happy welcome home to your precious little man! Thanks for sharing your amazing story.

OHmommy said...

Yay... what a special day to celebrate!!!!

And what a perfect way to celebrate the day he was born. THAT is so awesome!

bejewell said...

That made me tear up a little... and I don't cry easy. What a perfect way to celebrate the first birthday - with the people who helped bring him into the world!

Congrats and happy POW!

McMommy said...

Yes, that truly IS a reason to throw a big party and celebrate!!! Go Kyle!! What a little fighter!

Fire Hunt said...

I would read, cry then read some more. That i s a good post:)

Kendra said...

What a wonderful story. Beautiful.

The Walsh's said...

Reading your birth story is almost surreal. Our stories are so similar. Lincoln was also coming out and held in by the sac. I pushed him back in as well - just hoping for long enough to prep for a C section.

I rest in knowing that God was looking after our boys on their birthdays. How on earth would we have gotten through??

Thanks for re-telling your story. I know every time is difficult.

Nan said...

Totally random...but guess what I did today? I finally updated the name change of your blog on my blog!!! It has been how long????

Kendra said...

Check out my blog .... there is something there for you! :)

Crystal said...

This is a beautiful, amazing story. I have tears in my eyes as I am reading. Congrats on your beautiful family. Kyle is a miracle...and he is beautiful too!

Two blessings from above said...

What a great story.
Thanks for sharing. We spent some time in NICU with our twins and I can't give enough praise to all the NICU doctors and nurses.
Wonderful pictures.

The White House said...

Thanks for sharing! That is one amazing story...

Jodee Leader said...

Kyle sounds like a tough little cookie! Enjoy your birthday bash!

Don Mills Diva said...

I'm a bit late to this party but I hope you had a wonderful celebration on the weekend - pictures please!

*jimaie.marie* said...

this was such an amazing post, it brought tears to my eyes. Happy Birthday Sweet Boy!

krissy said...

Where you at girl???

Stephanie said...

Hi there, new to your blog. Wow, it's amazing what you have been through. It's so wonderful to see your little man healthy and strong.

4funboys said...

What a great story!!!

You truly have been blessed from above...

JessieLeigh said...

What a beautiful way to celebrate the miracle of your son! Thanks so much for sharing it with us (and pointing me in your blog's direction!)

Parts of your birth story are eerily familiar. : )