It seems like forever since I have written. Time flies here, and it is hard to find the time to write sometimes. If I have the choice between writing a blog or holding Landon and studying him for hours I'm going to choose him every time.
Wednesday, April 11
The sun did shine much brighter on Wednesday. Landon got his breathing tube out that morning. It was hard to watch them pull it out and afterwards you could tell his throat hurt terribly. He just kept sticking out his tongue and blowing bubbles. He'd wrinkle his face and open his mouth so wide but no cry would come out. Finally after quite a while he began to let out squeaky little cries. My boy has his voice again :) I don't think I will ever get sick of hearing him cry (ask me in a couple months ;) . Ryan and I were so enthralled with him. Every noise he made was fascinating to us because we hadn't heard him since the day he was born. We just hung out in the room and waited. He seemed to be doing great. Every time the doctors came in to check on him they just confirmed that everything looked really good. We were told that we could hold him in a couple hours. Ryan got a call from his supervisor and left the room for a while. When he came back the nurse asked if he wanted to hold him? He was so excited and nervous as the nurse placed Landon in his arms. I snapped a million pictures. We both were smiling from ear to ear. We finally reached this mountaintop milestone and everything we faced the past couple days just didn't matter as we gazed into our son's face. After Ryan was done holding him he took me aside and told me that his supervisor told him he could have as much time off as he needed. She told him that she talked to his client and told them that he had a family emergency so the project he was working on would have to wait for a while. She told Ryan not to worry that they would find the hours he needed and she understands that if he came back his mind wouldn't be there. Ryan told her that he will be back as soon as Landon has his next surgery and is recovering well. I just stood there in disbelief. I still don't know how this is possible. I'm not going to ask questions, I just praise God for blessing Ryan with such an amazing company to work for. I think back to when were engaged and he was in school. We would pray every night that God would lead us to the right job for him. All the applications he sent out, all the possible jobs that fell through until finally this company in Bismarck, ND called him. I didn't even know where Bismarck was and frankly we both wanted to be further away from MN haha. Looking back I can see how God was working everything out and providing for us and preparing for Landon even then. I didn't know companies existed that cared so much about their employees and their families. We feel extremely blessed to be a part of that and someday I hope we can return the blessing. It was like Ryan was a different person the rest of the day, like a weight had suddenly been lifted off of him.
I held Landon for a good two hours when they brought me a bottle. I was so excited to get to give him his first bottle. It took a while to get him to the point where he was awake enough to take it. We were all so excited as he began to suck. He did a great job! Another milestone!
Thursday, April 12
Thursday morning I woke up early to pump, but started getting really bad cramps. I could hardly make it to the bed to lay down. I was crying out in pain. They felt more like contractions then cramps. I actually entertained the thought for a couple seconds that maybe I had another baby inside of me and I was in labor haha. It's funny thinking back, but at the time I was in pain and recalling every episode I've ever watched of "I didn't know I was pregnant". Ryan was getting ready to leave to go back to Bismarck. He needs to get some stuff from home, check our mail, turn in some documents for things, and run some other needed errands. He was really worried about me and didn't want to leave me by myself. I told him I would be fine. My parents were on their way to pick me up and bring me to the hospital. I made myself get up and get ready, said good-bye to Ryan, then laid back down until my parents got there. The cramps weren't getting better and it was painful to stand and walk, but I was determined to be with my baby. We got there and I sat with Landon for as long as I could, but I just felt like I was going to pass out. When his nurse came back into the room I told her that I really wasn't feeling well and as hard as it is I was going to go back to the house and get some rest. I asked her if my parents could stay in the room with him while I was gone. She said that would be fine and told me to get some rest and not worry about him.
So I went back to the house and slept for the next four hours. When I woke up I felt much better and just wanted to get back to Landon. My dad brought me back to the hospital and I just sat next to his bed. It still really hurt to move. I was glad when the nurse told me I was right on time for his feeding. I tried to feed him, but he was so tired he wasn't taking it. The speech therapist was in his room at the time and had me sit him up in his bed to try to wake him up. I was standing by his bed holding him up and trying to listen to what the therapist was saying when all of a sudden I got really dizzy and nauseous. I tried to keep listening but it got to the point where I was thinking I'm either going to drop Landon, throw up on him, or faint. As embarrassing as it was I told the therapist that I needed to sit down. He took Landon and finished his feeding for me. I stayed at the hospital a couple more hours then went out to eat to celebrate my moms birthday. After I said good night to Landon, I went back to the house and collapsed into bed.
I'm realizing that I need to take more time for myself. I forget that it was less then two weeks ago that I had Landon. As soon as he was born everything went so fast and all of my focus turned to him. The first week was so crazy and stressful I had no time to rest and heal. I think it's catching up to me now.
Today, April 13
Today I woke up feeling much better. I tried taking the shuttle to the hospital and learned that if it doesn't see you, it doesn't stop. So I waited in the entry way for another half hour and made sure I was outside in the rain the next time it drove by, lesson learned. Said good-bye to grandma and grandpa Ray today. Grandma and grandpa Max left on Monday. Ryan will be returning from Bismarck tomorrow so for the first time it's just Landon and me. I love just sitting by his bed and staring at him. I sing to him and talk to him. He is like a different baby now. Ever since they got that breathing tube out of him and swaddled him in a blanket he is so content. He would love to sleep all day. He does not like anytime they have to unswaddle him. He was so exposed the first week of his life and I think now he feels like he got his wish and he's back in Mommas tummy. His feedings are going pretty well. The doctors are happy with how much he is eating. The speech therapist explained to me that for heart babies eating is hard work. He's going to have some feedings where he does great and others where he's just too tired. I have found this to be so true with Landon. He has a really hard time waking up to eat. When he's eating he breaths really fast and his heart beats like crazy. You have to really watch him to make sure he's breathing between drinking because he'll forget and then he chokes. Scares mom to death when this happens, but I'm learning. Today he's taken two bottles for me and he did really great, it just takes a lot of patience. Overall though the doctors are amazed with how well he is doing. Yesterday he got all but one of the wires and tubes taken out of his belly button. He's now just on a tiny bit of oxygen. Echo's have shown that since taking out the breathing tube there is now some flow through his tricuspid (really don't know if I spelled that right) valve into his right ventricle where before there was no flow. This is huge! Plans are to keep getting him to eat and just let him breath on his own and do his thing. They will do another echo on Monday and, as of now, they plan on turning off the PGE again on Tuesday and seeing how he does. It sounds like there is a chance that his right ventricle is relaxing and the blood may start flowing so well that he may do just fine without the PGE. If he doesn't tolerate it, like last time, they will make immediate plans for surgery. So right now he's just living the life of a (somewhat) normal baby. Sleeping... eating... diaper changes... he is content and I can't even tell you how great it is for me and Ryan to see him happy again. He is still full of expressions and cute as ever. Lots of the nurses stop in from time to time just to see him because he is so adorable. He is the youngest child on the floor so he's got lots of fans :)
We are so proud of our Landon! Thank you everyone for all of the prayers. I will try to keep updates coming. I know so many of you pray for Landon on a daily basis and love hearing how he's doing. Ryan added a photos tab to the blog so we'll try to keep updating that as well with pictures of our handsome lil man.