Sunday, January 31, 2010

Settled In

Lincoln's surgery is accomplished. It's quite amazing what technology can do. The first surgery he had was to place the reservoir which was a temporary fix to his problem. They were trying to give his body time to hopefully heal on its own. Sometimes it happens, most of the time it doesn't. They removed the reservoir on his left side and placed the shunt on his right.

Reservoir

Shunt


We were able to speak with the neurosurgeons first-hand and found out that as long as there is no mal-function or infection there would only have to be one surgery to replace it. He could grow to be 6 feet 6 inches and it would function with his size. We also found out that about 50% of shunts fail within the first year. BOO...I hope we're the 50% with it being successful.

The neurosurgeons signed off on him to either be discharged or transported back to Utah Valley. Since he's not ready to be discharged quite yet, we are waiting on info from insurance to find out if he's going to be able to go back to our local hospital or not. HOPEFULLY they will allow it. It could take him a good two weeks or so to bounce back from the surgery and get eating down. I think he's feeling pretty well for the most part though.



He got in some good cuddle time with Grandma Skeem this weekend


And he got all settled in his new crib



Saturday, January 30, 2010

Big boys cry!

video

Sounds mean, but we LOVED to hear him cry. Didn't love that he was in pain though. To us that means he is getting bigger and doingthings babies do. This video was taken right after his surgery. He wasn't very happy. I'm thinking his head was hurting a little bit, but they got him some pain medication right away.

Monday, January 25, 2010

...poor girl...



Scottie, Savana, and Luke all bowl in a league on Saturday mornings. This last Saturday we were just getting ready to start practice. Savana went to get her own ball, but when she returned a man turned in front of her. She tripped over his feet, dropped the ball and landed on the ball. She cracked her chin right open. The guy felt horrible. At first I didn't see anything, but knew something had to have happened because she looked like she was in pain. I lifted her chin and saw the big open wound. I knew right away she would need stitches. We ran her over to the instacare in Provo, but there were about ten people ahead of us. Instead we decided to go to the one in Springville where there was only about three ahead of us. They examined it and determined she was definitely in need of stitches.



She was quite nervous. She only shed one little tear when he stuck the needle in to numb her chin. After that, she actually took a little nap. We were so very proud of her



We only got the after pictures. Trust me, I thought about before pictures, but couldn't handle it.
The doc actually suggested we get out the camera and take some photos so I could put it on my blog. At the time, I only had my camera phone and it did the job! He did a good job repairing it. Because he did the finer thread, she ended up getting 7 stitches. We felt so bad for her, but were so proud of how brave she was.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Teddy & Me

We were given a suggestion to take the kids to the store and pick out a toy for Lincoln. We found a little teddy bear and thought he would LOVE it.

....I'm thinking he really liked it!

Poor little guy.....he finally was scheduled to be transported back up to Primary's for his surgery. It's final, he needs the shunt. I wish it weren't so, but if it means relief and a resolution to his problem, I'm fine with it. He'll travel up there on Wednesday and have the surgery Thursday. The reason they determined he needed it was because his ventricles aren't decreasing in size. He's producing the fluid like he needs to, but the fluid isn't draining normally like it is with you or me.
We're not quite sure how the whole discharge process is going to work. I'm hoping he will only have to stay up there for a few days and then can come back to our hospital and work on feedings. Once we have the feedings down......home sweet home for Lincoln.... *hopefully*

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Big Boy

New steps, every day. We've been working with the occupational therapist lately. She is very pleased with all that she observes with him. She's been showing me a few techniques on how to help him strengthen all the senses within his feet and hands. Also, she's shown me how to give him a few massages.



I'm thinking the face he pulled in the picture above is in protest of me putting him back in his crib.



Yep, that's what I said.....his crib. He got put in a new bed this week. It's kinda got a prison feel to me. And to make it more realistic, we put him in stripes. Nah, it just worked out that way. Wishing you could see his little onesie. I bought him some "newborn size" onesies. They fit him great!! They're meant for newborns anywhere from 5 to 8 pounds. He is five lbs ten ozs...yay!!



knock on wood, I don't want to curse myself, but I think he is starting to catch on to the whole breast-feeding thing! Annie, our O.T., says she likes the progress he's making and all of his effort. Hopefully it will be a matter of days until he's perfected it! I'm hoping all of our work isn't in vain. They're saying it's looking more and more like he'll need the shunt. Since he has hit the 2500 gram mark it could be a matter of days they decide to schedule him for surgery and send him back up to Primary's..... :( Whatever the final verdict is, I just want him to be happy, comfortable and safe. We'll make sure to update when we know more.

Monday, January 18, 2010

....the rest....

So, what's up with the rest of the family??? Well.....Scottie had a 2nd grade talent show. I filmed it on my cell-phone, but low and behold...it got erased! Don't ask me how, really I think it may have been Luke playing with my phone. He performed a magic trick as his talent. He had spunk, he had personality, and he did AmAzInG!!



Photobucket


Savana and I decided to take a mommy daughter date on Saturday. We went and saw the movie "The Princess and The Frog." We loved it!! Highly recommend it to anyone, it had a great message. We were supposed to get a pedicure also, but we ran out of time. We'll have to save that for another day.


Photobucket



Luke, for those of you who haven't seen him yet, decided to give himself a hair-cut. Now, I've experienced it with a girl and a boy. I have to say, it's almost as traumatic in both cases. I LOVED Luke's locks and think he looks like a COMPLETELY different child with a buzz cut. Also, for some reason when I lift him, he feels as though he's gained a ton of weight. This kid is like a brick and I find it difficult to lift him up anymore.

This haircut is supposed to be a compliment to Grandpa Brown. We thought we'd give Luke an early glimpse into what his future could look like.


Photobucket


Photobucket


All in all we're hanging in here. We somewhat have a routine, but I'm sure it will be just a matter of time before it's changed once again!

Flat Stanley

Our sweet NICU photographer took another picture of Lincoln next to Flat Stanley. She thought it would be nice to have the two to compare and really see the growth. Let me just tell you......amazing! I remember back when Scott and I would ask each other 'Do you think he will ever get bigger?' Well, here's living proof that he once was small, but things are on the up and up! He now weighs 5 lbs 7 ozs

BEFORE

Photobucket



AFTER

Photobucket



Side by side



Truly....what a little miracle he is! We're still working on breast-feeding and hoping for success with that. As for now, the lactation specialist says he basically just uses me as a pacifier. She also mentioned that most likely one day it will just click. Hopefully sooner than later!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Linc Boy

I'm brain-dead....I can't really remember if I've mentioned it before, but if I go days without posting it's because I have a hard time doing a new post without pictures. Sure, I always have my camera in my bag when I visit the hospital. Sure, I have billions of pictures on my memory card, BUT for some reason the picture has to be just p.e.r.f.e.c.t for me to include it on my blog....dumb I know! Perfect as in just right to me not as in technically, compositionally, color and edit wise perfect.

So.......what's new with Lincoln? Well, he continues to be changed from up and down on the liters for his nasal cannula. He was sitting comfortably at .50 liters when they decided to push him a little more and let him try .25 liters. That was NOT okay with him. He became tachypneic: an excessively rapid respiration ~ A respiratory neurosis marked by quick, shallow breathing. When this happens they feel like he works a little too hard and doesn't get the proper amount of oxygen he needs. As a result, they bumped him back up to .50 liters. The doctors are saying that really no matter what his liters are he has somewhat of a high respiratory rate and some babies are just like that. The doctor who rounded on him today opted to bump him up again because his respiratory rate was a bit too high. So, now he's at 1 liter again. I'm quite sure it won't be long until he is back down to .50 liters again!

Lincoln is also being really sleepy again. Why? I don't know....they don't know. It could be a number of things. It could be because he is having a growth spurt. It could be because he is having more pressure on his head. There really is no definite answer. Only time will tell.

He is growing very well. He was put over in nursery b a little over a week ago. They've finally put his feedings back down to a 30 minute period. It used to be set up to be given to him over a period of an hour. He's doing well with the change and has virtually no spitting up.

How much does he weigh you ask???? He is 5 lbs 3 ozs .... that is double his birth weight!

I find myself at the hospital dreading the thought of leaving. I'm happy to come back to my home and family....just not happy it's without my little baby. I know we're getting closer, but there are a lot of milestones we have to reach first. He made a bit of progression and was being tapped once every third day. Well, we've regressed a bit and now it's back to every other day. The point he is at now, it's looking like he will have to have a shunt unless things get better pretty quickly. They usually like to wait until they're 2500 grams to do the surgery, he's 2353 right now. Once he reaches 2500 they'll asess his situation and determine whether he'll need it for sure or not. Another milestone will be his feedings. He has to be able to eat with no dependency on the feeding tube. Occassionally they'll send babies home with feeding tubes, but it's not something they prefer. Also, it would be a big perk to have him with no oxygen needs, but that is another thing they are okay with making an acception to.

We've been working on breast-feeding for a little over a week now. He's actually doing pretty well with it EXCEPT the fact that he's sooo sleepy. He's got the concept down now it's a matter of just staying awake! I've been using a boppy and Scott seems to like to use it while holding Lincoln.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Happy Happy Birthday

This adorable little guy turned into a WONDERFUL man and.....

Photobucket

.....he is ALL mine!! He's still as much of a hunk as the day I met him. I can't believe we've celebrated ten years of birthdays together honey!!

I'm so lucky to be a part of your life.

~Happy 33rd Birthday~!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

TWO months old

I can't believe Lincoln is already .... Two months old... In different ways time has gone slowly, but for the most part it has gone by rather quickly! Probably the biggest gift for ALL of us on his birthday was his siblings being able to see him in person for the first time.



Photobucket

Photobucket

We love you Lincoln!!! Can't wait until you can come home and we can celebrate many more firsts with you. You are such a special little spirit and we are so incredibly lucky to have you in our family.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

...Siblings...

These were the faces of anticipation....

When Scott and I made one of our daily visits to Lincoln, we found out they had lifted the ban on kids under 14 being able to come up on the NICU floor. The sad thing is the ban was lifted three weeks ago and somehow we never found that out. The second it was confirmed, the little wheels in our heads got to turning and we made plans to surprise the kids with their first meeting with their baby brother.

As soon as we revealed what they were about to do, they couldn't believe it. They were SO excited!!


Photobucket

The only catch....they could only see him through the window. I think that was good enough for them though. Originally we thought they weren't going to be able to meet him until he came home from the hospital.

Photobucket

Truly, the looks on their faces were PRICELESS! Maybe my eyes welled up with tears, maybe they didn't.....I don't know (ok, maybe I do know). We were so happy to be able to do this though. It really was a very memorable experience.


Photobucket

Other good news.....Scott changed his first diaper with Lincoln! Poor Scott, if he would've chosen the diaper 2hrs before he would've had to change just a pee diaper. Instead, he waited, the nurse cornered him, and he got a GOOD diaper with a GOOD amount of #2!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Daddy & Me

FINALLY!! Daddy got a chance to hold baby! I've been trying to convince him to do a little skin on skin, but I don't think it's happening. He was very excited, maybe a little nervous, to hold his baby boy.

Photobucket

Now....if I can only convince him to change his diapers...or at least take a turn. I don't mind changing him though. You'd have to think you couldn't deal with too big of a mess with this tiny one, but believe me he knows how to fill the diaper up!

Photobucket


Lincoln is doing great all in all. He is off of the high flow on his nasal cannula and down to one liter. We should be able to start trying breast or bottle feeding soon. We just have to work on keeping his respiratory rate down. They need it below 80 breaths per min and he can go up to 100 or so per min.

He is in a big boy bed now!!

Photobucket

The criteria for this.....be a certain weight and he would have to be able to keep his body temperature stable on his own. He's doing it! The poor nurses felt a little bad for him too. When he'd have a messy diaper they said they couldn't imagine being trapped in a closed isolette with the stinky diapers he produces.

Photobucket

He is now 4 pounds 6 ounces. He is making huge strides. All of the doctors and nurses are still very impressed with his progress!


So, we have a wonderful nurse in the NICU who LOVES to take pictures. Mind you, she is not one of Lincoln's nurses, but still takes the time to photograph our little babe anyway. Here are some of the fun images she has taken recently.

Photobucket Photobucket

Photobucket Photobucket

Photobucket Photobucket

The nurse who took his pictures said he keep doing the kissy lip face. A bunch of nurses were gathering around him oooing and awwwing. She said he would bat his eyes at them and look around a bit. Yep....he's definitely got my Brown boys genes!!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Into the Water

Can I believe this boy is eight??? No, I definitely can't!

Photobucket



Sometimes I wonder what his future will be like. I wonder what kind of man he will be and what kind of choices he will make.

Photobucket



But then I'm reminded time and time again what a special little soul he is! Scottie was very outgoing from a young age and made himself well-known. The one thing I love about him and hold dear to my heart is how sincerely sensitive he is. He truly has a tender heart.

Photobucket



In no way is he a perfect child, but when all said and done I know I can trust him to make the right choices.

Photobucket


Scottie took a big leap today and was baptized. He was so excited and anxious to have this done. He has been preparing in many ways.

Photobucket


I love the example he has set for his younger siblings, they really look up to him. We are so proud of him for this great achievement in his life and we're so lucky to have him as a part of our family.....

Photobucket Photobucket Photobucket

Photobucket

Love you Scottie!!