I broke down, and I am joining the blogging community. So far, I have been updating everyone on Brynn's progress via Facebook, which I will continue. I am also keeping a journal of her progress, today was day 63, and I have 20 typed pages. But, there is not enough room to post all of my thoughts and feelings on there. I want a blog where I can do more than just put down the newest Brynn stats. I want everyone to know her, what she's going through, and my thoughts, emotions, and prayers... So here goes nothing. Today's post... my random thoughts on life in the NICU.
Psalm 126:3 "The Lord has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy"
I am an obsessive planner. I like things in order. God on the other hand, does not always do things the way I plan them. When I found I was pregnant with our first little blessing, I went in to plan mode. I read "What to Expect..." got my free issues of Parenting magazine, Took my vitamins, drank milk with DHA, didn't eat lunch meat or soft cheeses, subscribed to babycenter.com, set up the nursery, planned my maternity leave, and on and on. Needless to say, "What to Expect" didn't really give me an accurate depiction of what to expect.
Before Brynn was born, I had never seen or heard of a 24 week, 1lb 4 oz baby. I thought a preemie was a small baby whose clothes were hard to find. Boy have I learned a lot. I know all sorts of medical terminology, I know all sorts of things that are different about preemies and full term babies. But most importantly, I know God more than I ever have before.
Acts 17:25 says that "He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all things" While I recognized that He is the creator, until I saw my perfect, precious, little girl laying in that isolette, on a ventilator, on a CPAP machine, with a nasal canula, until I was praying for each breath she would take, I never truly understood the way that our God sustains every breath for His purpose. I don't take breaths for granted any more.
Psalm 139:14 "I will give thanks to You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made; Wonderful are Your works, And my soul knows it very well." My beautiful daughter is fearfully and wonderfully made. He knit her together in my womb, before she was born, she was set apart. She was born 16 weeks too soon, yet she is perfect. Her tiny hands and feet were crafted by God Himself. She surely has a great future to serve Him. Her life will forever be a testimony to His grace. Every time I see that sweet face, I cannot help but think of how He has sustained her.
I don't feel that people should not have to go through things like this. We should not have to witness our child on life support for weeks, praying hour by hour that her little heart continues to beat, and her little lungs continue to breathe. We should not have had to see her be resuscitated, certainly not multiple times a day. Only 2 months ago I would never have considered that I would need to watch my child being "bagged." Nor would I have considered that this would become a normal way of life. However, I can see the providence of the Lord, how he was preparing me. I just completed a Bible Study on 1 Peter, on making it through trials, standing firm in the true grace of God, the week that she was born.
I have learned so many other things. I know the different types of ventilators. I know what CPAP stands for. I know what a nasal canula is, and the different flow levels. I can tell you the difference between a good blood gas and a bad one. I can tell you what an acceptable O2 saturation is. I know what a PDA is and the different ways to treat it. I can tell you some of the choices for removing fluid from a baby's lungs. I can tell you what a doctor is looking for when they tell the lab to "get a crit." I know what a Broviac is. ROP. Hypothyroidism. Apnea. Bradycardia. BPD. Anemia. Lung Consolidation. I know that the 3 most evil letters for a preemie are R-S-V... The list goes on and on... I used to get angry with each new word, each new specialist, medicine, and treatment. Now, I see them almost like badges of honor. Each of those things is a place that God brought us through. Each one of those is an opportunity for us to look back and count our blessings.
Brynn is so precious to me. While I wish I could have given her a better start, one that would have left her with fewer scars, I know this was meant to be. I know that she was created for the glory of God. I know that every time I see my sweet girl, I will remember that she's not just my baby, she is a beautiful creation that was made in His image, and He gave her breath and life and all things.