Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Ball and Chain

At first, it didn't seem like having oxygen at home for Dallin to use would be that big of a deal.  After experiencing it for 6 days, I will definitely be happy when we can get rid of it.  When you have a baby, you have to take it EVERYWHERE with you and you can't leave it unattended.  Even if you're just checking the mail or doing laundry, the baby has to be with you.  Of course, babies are just so dang cute and you love them so much because they're your own offspring that it's not a chore to bring the baby with you.  With this oxygen tank, I feel like I have twins, except one of the babies is heavy, ugly, metal, and I definitely did not give birth to it.  When we're getting ready to go somewhere, I have to get Dallin ready and in his car seat, but then I also have to get the oxygen ready by switching the tubing to the portable tank.  Where ever baby Dallin goes, baby oxygen tank goes too.  Even when we're at home, the extra long tubing that makes it possible to reach every room in the house gets tangled up and caught on things.  So again, I'm holding Dallin with one arm and the other is holding the evil twin, snaking it around corners.  Dallin and the oxygen don't really get along.  The tubing is always picking on Dallin, falling off, irrating Dallin's nose and getting in the way.  But when Dallin complains or fights back, the oxygen always wins the battle.  Poor guy. When the oxygen tank gets low, you have to feed it.  It's not as easy as just sitting down and feeding a baby.  You have to get someone else who has the right "food" to replace the depleted stores.  And you have to order it the day before, so you have to watch the meter to see how empty the tank it.  The one good thing about the tank is that meter.  Sometimes I wish Dallin had a meter that would tell me how long until he get's hungry or how much longer he'll be sleeping.  It would be a little easier to plan my day.  OK, ball and chain, you get one point.  I'm still not claiming you as my child.

Friday, April 24, 2009

The epic 3-week check up

On Tuesday, I took Dallin to the pediatrician for a regular check up.  When we were in the hospital for his birth, he saw the on call pediatrician, so this was Dallin's first visit to the one that would be seeing him regularly.  When the doctor came in, she immediately became worried about his coloring.  She thought he looked blue.  I think this was a result of the way I was holding him, combined with him being cold and naked.  Before even coming in the room all the way, she went right back out to grab a monitor to attach to Dallin so she could watch how much oxygen he was taking in.  As soon as I moved him, his color was totally fine.  The monitor was showing that he was breathing fine, so she proceeded with her check-up.  As she listened to his heart, she noticed a heart murmur.  When he was born, they told us that he had a heart murmur and that they would be monitoring it, but no one said anything else about it, and they let us leave the hospital without saying anything else, so I assumed it wasn't an issue.  This pediatrician seemed really worried about it, and immediately ordered some chest x-rays while she talked to a cardiologist.  I took him down to get x-rayed.  He was laying on a cold table with no clothes on and I had to hold him perfectly still.  Dallin HATES being cold, so of course there was a lot of crying and more comments about his color.  (I don't know about you, but I'd be blue too if I was naked and strapped to a cold metal table.)  After the x-rays, we went back to talk to the pediatrician.  she wanted to have Dallin taken up to Primary Children's Hospital in Salt Lake to have a cardiologist there look at him.  She was still really worried about his oxygen levels. For the most part they were perfectly normal, but every once in a while, it would drop down below what the doctor was comfortable with.  So she was telling me I needed to rush him up to Salt Lake right then, and that it would be best to have someone else drive so I could sit in the back with him to watch him.  She seemed to be implying he might just stop breathing any second.  As we were having this conversation, she was watching his oxygen monitor and getting too worried so she said that he needed an ambulance to take him to the hospital because me driving him there wouldn't be fast enough.  She went to call the ambulance while the nurse came in to give him an oxygen mask.   

Of course, by this point I am freaking out worrying about my poor little baby!!  Mckay was getting ready to take one of his finals, but I called him and told him what was happening and that he needed to come to the health center.  His teacher agreed to let him take the final another time so he could come be with us.  When the paramedics got there, it calmed me down a little.  As they were assessing the situation and asking me questions, they seemed to conclude that this was probably the doctor overreacting rather than a serious problem with Dallin.  But since they were called, they put his car seat on the gurney and wheeled him out to the ambulance.  We drove over in the ambulance; no lights on, no rush.  I don't even think Dallin was on any oxygen in the back.  I guess the paramedics didn't know that the pediatrician had intended for Dallin to be taken to Salt Lake because they drove us to the hospital in Provo, just a few blocks away.  Mckay drove over in our car and got there about the same time we did.  It was one big expensive ride to the hospital that wasn't even necessary.

After the Emergency Room doctors finally decided that this wasn't really an emergency situation, they admitted Dallin to pediartics so they could observe him and do tests to see what needed to be done.  They got him a room with an awesome bed...

...put him in a hospital gown...

(sorry, I'm too lazy to turn the picture)

...and then we waited.

Notice the IV in his arm.  He did not like that!

Since he was supposed to be at children's hospital where the expert cardiologists are, all the tests and things they did had to be sent to Salt Lake, analyzed there, and then sent back to us in Provo.  They only had the images and info that was sent to them and they couldn't examine Dallin in person, so we spent a lot of time waiting to hear what was happening.  After 3 echocardiograms (basically an ultrasound of the heart), an EKG, and 2 whole days in the hospital, we finally had an idea of what was happening.  A cardiologist from Salt Lake came down to our hospital on Thursday to do an echo and examine Dallin herself.  (So the first 2 echos were pretty much a waste since she still wanted to do her own to see for herself.  And we could have just gone to see the cardiologist in the first place instead of spending days in the wrong hospital.  Can you tell I'm a little frustrated by the whole ordeal?)  The cardiologist said that his pulmonary valves that lead into his lungs are more narrow than normal.  She said the course of action is to thread a catheter through a vein in his groin up to the pulmonary valve where they will relase a dye.  The dye will be able to tell them where the narrowing is occuring; if it's just a small portion or if it's the whole valve that is narrowed.  From there they will know what to do.  They might put a ballon in there to widen the vavle, or it might be as serious as surgery.  Although she is pretty optimistic that surgery won't be necessary.  She had Dallin put on oxygen just as a precaution to ensure that his blood vessels are getting enough oxygen.  She is also hoping that the oxygen will help to widen the valve on it's own and the heart catheterization won't even be necessary.  They'll do another echo (#4!!) next week to see if the valve has changed before going forward with the catheter.

They finally let us go home on Thursday and now we are back at home.  Dallin is still on oxygen here, but we are all happy to be back home.

Dallin is sleeping and eating better since we got home.  He seems a lot happier too.  He doesn't like having the oxygen tubing in his nose, or the stickers on his face to hold it in place, but I think he perfers that to all the wires and the IV connected to him.  Sometimes he'll manage to pull the tubing out of his nose and get it into his mouth to suck on it.  The hospital delivered a huge oxygen tank to our house.  We put it in the middle of our apartment, and with the extra long tubing, he can get anywhere in the apartment.

Even though this whole thing has been long and frustrating, we feel very blessed that the problem has been discovered and is very fixable.  Dallin is such a sweet cute baby and we're glad he is our son.  We've had some wonderful people helping us through this.  Some of his nurses were really great and were genuinely concerned about what was best for him and how they could help us.  Our wonderful family members were great about coming to visit so we weren't so lonely and they even brought us some much needed food. We're grateful for people that were in tune with the spirit and stopped by our home just because they felt like we might be having a rough day and offered to bring us dinner.  We know that Heavenly Father has been looking out for us this whole time and he will continue to watch out for Dallin. 

Thursday, April 16, 2009

What the.....?!?!?

Someone forgot to tell the weather that it's the middle of April.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Dallin's Big Easter

Easter was a big day for Dallin.  It was his first day going to church.  I gave him a bath and dressed him in a cute little easter outfit so he would be all ready for church.  This was the first week that we had been back to church since having him, so everyone in the ward was really excited to get a look at him.  Of course, halfway through church, I noticed that he had "leaked" through his diaper and gotten his clothes messy.  Luckily, I had a change of clothes in the diaper bag.  Unfortunately, I didn't get a picture of him all cute in the morning, but this is what he looked like after we got him home from church.

The three of us went to Alpine for dinner at my aunt Heather's house.  The Blank cousins were also there and we had an enjoyable time visiting with family.  Heather's two year old son, Dayton, was so excited to see Dallin.  Dayton had been waiting impatiently for the baby to come play with him ever since he first noticed my pregnant belly and felt Dallin kicking.  Dayton brought out all his cars for Dallin to play with and hats for him to wear.  Amazingly, Dallin slept through all of the pestering.  We told Dayton that Dalling would be more fun for him to play with in about a year.

After dinner at Heathers, we went to Salt Lake to visit Grandma and Grandpa Easton (Dallin's great grandparents).  Some of Mckay's aunts and uncles were also there, as well as cousins, so we had a fun time visiting, and everyone loved drooling over Dallin.  He even smiled at Grandpa!  He loved having everyone hold him and he slept so peacefully.  He was especially comfortable sleeping on Grandma.

Even though Mckay and I are "adults" now, we got to participate in the grandkid eater egg hunt.  We managed to come away with almost $20 from cash and coins found in eggs.  Happy Easter to us!

Dallin met a lot of new people and traveled further from home than he's ever been.  And I think he handled it pretty well.  The adventure did wear him out though.

He really likes sleeping on his side.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Happy one-week-old-day!

Yesterday, Dallin was exactly one week old.  It seems like it's been longer than a week.  He's eating more, getting bigger, developing a personality, and I'm learning so much about him.  That can't all happen in one week!  Here he is at 12:02 pm, exactly one week from his birth.

He was a little too tired to celebrate the occasion.  But don't worry, we partied later.

Like I said, he's progressing and growing so much.  We finally had one entire diaper change without him crying at all!  It hasn't happened since, but I'm hoping for repeat occurances.  He's opening his eyes a lot more...

...he's sitting up all by himself!

(with a little help from mom)

He's also showing a lot of traits that he gets from both of his parents.  I was a big thumb sucker when I was little and he has already shown a love for sucking on things.  Everyonce in a while, when he can figure out how to work his hand and get just one finger in his mouth, his likes to suck his thumb.

He is a really heavy sleeper, just like his father.  Mckay has this annoyingly loud alarm clock (it has to be that loud or it wouldn't wake him up), and it doesn't bother Dallin.  That might be because I cover his ears to block the sound.  Dallin also likes to sleep with his mouth open, just like his dad.

He is definitely our son!

In other news, I'm recovering a lot better from the delivery.  Not that there was anything wrong with me, but it's quite an ordeal for a body to go through.  I'm walking at a pretty normal speed and sitting a lot more comfortably.  I even did my hair and makeup yesterday and I looked preety darn cute for the first time in a while!  

Here goes another week.  I'll see if I can have him walking by the end of it.  

Friday, April 3, 2009

Introducing Dallin Andrew Easton!

He's finally here! After waiting a week past the due date, Dallin has arrived! It was quite an adventure. After an appointment with the doctor on Monday, we scheduled an induction for Tuesday March 31st, one week after his due date. We got to the hospital at 6:30am on Tuesday and got all settled in. Here is the last picture of me with Dallin inside.

This is what Mckay did while waiting for things to get started.

At 8:30am, they started Pitocin through the IV to induce labor, and at 8:45, the doctor came in to break my water. At this point I was about 3 cm dilated. The nurse estimated a delivery around 4pm. After my water broke, things started to pick up pretty quickly. Contractions started almost right away about 4-5 minutes apart. Then they started to become more frequent and a lot more painful. The contractions were so frequent that they turned off the Pitocin after about an hour. After a few hours of some pretty painful contractions, I got some IV pain medication to help take the edge off a little. Around 11:30am, contractions were very intense and I was almost ready to ask for an epidural when I felt pressure to push. My thought was "This can't be it already. I've only been having contractions for 3 hours." But I definitely needed to push. The nurse checked me and I was 9.5 cm! So she went to get the doctor and they started getting everything ready for delivery. before I knew it, I was pushing. After about a half hour of pushing, Dallin was born at 12:02pm. He weighed 7 lbs 2 oz, and 19.5 inches long.

It all happened very fast, and it was very intense, but it was all worth it. He is a beautiful boy. Mckay and I can't stop starring at him. Everyonce in a while, Dallin likes to stare back.

We got to take him home on Thursday. He wasn't very happy about getting dressed.

We are so happy to have him at home with us. My mom is still here, and she has been a great help with taking care of him and doing things around the apartment. It feels so weird having him here as a part of our lives, but we're getting used to it. We sure love him.