Monday, June 24, 2013

Amelia's Baby Steps

After adjusting to the fact that Amelia was actually here, our next step was adjusting to the NICU and the fact that our baby girl would not be leaving the hospital with us.
Right now she is still so small that she can't keep herself warm so she has to stay in a isolette.

  They allow us to get her out for "kangaroo time" where we keep her close to us with skin to skin contact to keep her warm.

Her bilirubin was also high during the first few weeks so she had to go under the UV lights for a few days.  We have laughed that this is the only artificial tanning her parents will allow her to do. 

She initially did not require any oxygen, but after a week she realized maybe she wasn't as big as she thought and had to go on a little oxygen.  We are now in the process of weaning the oxygen off. 

Over the past 23 days, we have been in & out of the NICU watching her grow. Everyone has been amazed at how well she is doing. She is tolerating her feedings of breast milk through a small tube in her nose and when she is old enough they will start allowing her to attempt swallowing by mouth. For now my motto is "praying and pumping" because those are the only two things i can do for her right now. Amelia is  now up to 3 lbs 7 oz! It doesnt sound like much, but she is growing fast and getting stronger each day.  We are so proud of her already! 

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Amelia's Arrival

Everyone pictures the birth of their first child.  What will she be like? Who will she look like? Will I go into labor in the middle of the night or during the day? Will she be a week early or late? Well....Miss Amelia Kay Dabbs decided she would make her arrival earlier than any of us imagined. At the end of May, 12 weeks before her due date, my water broke. Not at home or in the middle of the night, but instead at the hospital while I was rounding on my patients that day.  I was about halfway through seeing patients when it happened, I called Ryan right away and he said, "it can't be your water, you're only 28 weeks along". I sat there praying in the stairwell that he was right and sent a text to my Mom, sister,and brother to start praying.
Fast forward to the hospital (luckily I was already there) and it was indeed my water that broke. The next 48 hours are a blur, filled with lots of doctors coming in and telling us what to expect if we delivered our baby at 28 weeks.  What the risks are, the fears.  They had started me on Magnesium to try to stall me from going into labor and given me steroids to help Amelia's lungs mature.  I remember Ryan holding my hand, praying day and night, my parents arriving in the middle of the night after driving from TN, I remember being scared.
The first prayer (and still our prayer to this day) is that God would protect Amelia inside and out, that he would keep her safe and allow her to be the girl he wants her to be.
The second prayer: That he would allow her to not deliever until she had the steroids in her system for at least 48 hours.
On June 1st 2013, Amelia Kay Dabbs entered the world.  She was 2 pounds and 12 oz , 14.4 inches long and the tiniest most precious baby her parents had ever seen.
Though we do not know what girl she will be yet, so far God has answered both of those prayers.  She delivered 52 hours after getting the steroids.  At the time of her delivery we had already prepared ourselves that she wouldn't cry, that we wouldn't get to hold her, that she may have to be intubated.  Amelia amazed us all, when she proved all of those fears wrong.  She came out crying (the sweetest sound I've ever heard), she did not require intubation or even oxygen and she was doing well enough that they allowed us to hold her for a few minutes before taking her to the NICU.  She is truly our little angel baby, we hope you enjoy following her story along with us.  We ask that anyone who hears her story, to please continue to pray for Amelia.  We know God hears the prayers and that they are being answered.