Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Par Rich

One thing that Dr. Kays said during our visit has been echoing in the back of my mind for a week now--"Now that Par has survived CDH..."
Wow. Par survived CDH. Being on the other side of the hill--it is too easy to forget the journey we've been on--which is good to some extent--for Par's benefit--we need to look forward as we work with him to gain weight, roll over, and eventually crawl, talk, steal our keys and take the car to pick up his girlfriend... But I don't want to forget how incredible our journey has been--how the power of prayer touched our lives so heavily--how Dr. Kays' knowledge and experience saved our baby boy. We feel certain our outcome would be different if it weren't for him. This blog has served many purposes as I have said in the past--but I feel if I continue on posting about Par and his progress it may lose the powerful message:
1. We know all of this is only because of our Merciful Father.
2. After all of our research, Dr. Kays is the foremost authority on the treatment of CDH, along with the highest survival rate in the country (could be the world).
3. Prenatal diagnosis of CDH is SO important--so ask that your OB screen specifically for this at your 20 week ultrasound(they should anyway).

Although not equally, these three points have given us an otherwise healthy son who is now enjoying his family at home and his new best friend Tiffany. Hopefully this blog will be of help to other pregnant mother's with a CDH diagnosis. If you want to continue to read my 'babbling' and of course keep updated on Par and Tiffany (his dog)--feel free to visit our new family blog-- www.familyofriches.blogspot.com

We've enjoyed each comment and felt every prayer for our son--thank you for all the support. May God continue to bless you.
Liz, Rusty & Par

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Quick trip...back with good news...

Our trip to Gainesville was long but not too bad. Par did really well in the car (as did Tiffany) and we didn't have to stop an excessive amount--he was good about eating and sleeping--no melt downs (thank goodness). As we arrived into Gainesville--

(cue Twilight Zone music)

it brought back some really strange/weird feelings. Last time I drove into this city I had no idea what God had instore for our little family. I was pregnant, anxious about Par's birth and the unknown and lacking 2 Christmas stockings. Now, driving in, I have our little miracle baby awake and ready to chow down, I know the outcome of the delivery and we've made it through a really emotional and physically draining NICU stay--these feelings overwhelmed me as we drove in--and I wasn't expecting it at all. To top it off, we walked into our "home" at the Homewood Suites--we were greeted by familiar faces and given our room key--they had upgraded us and we walked into our "same" room. Different floor, but our same room. It was a strange feeling.

But...our precious Par was here with us and ready to get down to business with eating and lounging. I fed him and then we headed to Josh and Tina's for a playdate with Ella. They fixed us a delicious meal--and although Tina and I were getting up throughout the meal to tend to our babies--it was a nice dinner and i am so glad we were able to spend the time with them. We slept well--all of us did--and woke up having to hurry to get to our appointment at 9:30am.

We were a wee bit late--but they didn't seem to notice. Par was stripped down to be weighed and decided that it was a good time to demonstrate his kidney function for the nurse. Needless to say, it was a mess and Par didn't even act like he knew anything had happened.

Par was tired and not being his energetic self the first time Dr. Kays came in--He perked up a little bit when Dr. Kays started to exam him but then got a little upset because he was hungry. Dr. Kays had just finished saying his main concern is Par's weight gain and because he was hungry, we all agreed to take a little break and let Par eat. Dr. Kays came back in about 30 minutes later and wrapped up our meeting: Par's oxygen is discontinued during the day and he only has to sleep with it for about a month. His lasix is to be weaned over the next two weeks and he is going to stay on his other medication for right now. Dr. Kays seemed pleased with Par's progress--but we just need to fatten this kid up...so we are working on it...sort of tricky, so please pray for Par to gain weight. The appointment was very positive and we don't have to go back to Gainesville until Par is a year old (YAY!)--they spoke volumes as to the confidence Dr. Kays seems to have in Par's recovery.

After our appointment, we went back to the NICU 3 & 2 to say a quick hello to some of Par's nurses--we didn't see everyone but it was good to see a few. We quickly headed back to the hotel to grab our bags and hit the road. Once again, Par was a perfect angel in the car the entire time--we were so blessed!!!!!! We thank you for all of you prayers for our precious son--he is doing well and we give all the glory to God for all the miracles He has given us.

Much Love,
Liz, Rusty & Par

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Back to Gainesville we go...

Bright and early tomorrow morning we are headed to Gainesville for a check-up with Dr. Kays! We are really excited because it could mean discontinuing some of his medicine and possibly his oxygen. But we know that having his oxygen isn't such a big deal, so if we have to keep it for a few more months--we will be okay.

This week has been good. Par has been a very happy little boy--he has gone on many walks this week and really enjoyed all of the fresh air. We played outside a little bit today--Par seemed to enjoy the natural vitamin D. Par has rolled over a few times this week--and I laugh when I tell you that Tiffany (our precious dog) is the one that taught him how. I spent a good amount of time rolling him from his back to his tummy and then letting him try--but he would just stare at me. Tiffany had been watching and ran over to us and started rolling over and over and over. Par was smiling so big--apparently thinking she was funny and then he just rolled over--just like that! Who needs a mom when you have a dog!?!

Please pray for our trip down to Gainesville and for our check-up with Dr. Kays--we continue to be amazed by this precious gift from God.

Much Love,
Liz, Rusty & Par

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Par is 3 months old!

I want to thank everyone for your patience in waiting for the next "Par Update"--only about 40 of you emailed me or left a comment asking for me to hurry up and update the blog...believe me, each email and comment made me feel so special--I am humbled by the fact that so many of you love our precious Par (uh...we don't blame you...but we know you have children of your own!) Anyway, sometimes it was difficult not to update--sometimes it was REALLY easy--either way, I'm sort of proud of myself for letting Rusty, Par and me have some good quality time together without worrying about the update.

For our really loyal fans, you probably realized that yesterday was Par's 3 month birthday. We had a great time hanging out watching Par smiling and cooing! He loves to stand up (obviously with assistance) all the time. This week we went on a few walks and some quick errands around town. We've been busy saying prayers for Par's friend Ella who is back in the hospital--please help us pray for a quick discharge.

Although a week has gone by, nothing big has happened--we're just plugging along and that is just how we like it! Tiffany got her teeth cleaned--and pulled through just fine. Thankfully her breath is getting more tolerable each day. As I type this, Par is beside me with his thumb in his mouth--he has been sucking on his hands a lot lately. He's been sleeping great--through the night like a champion! One night this week he had a little meltdown at 4am because of some gas issues--I felt terrible that I couldn't help him. He just cried and cried--pooting pretty steadily in between cries--it was actually pretty comical--but it didn't seem that funny at 4am.

We thank you for your prayers and continued interest in the blog. We praise God for each day with Par and for all that He has taught us by giving us this precious baby.
Much Love,
Liz, Rusty & Par

PS- We took this picture right after his bath--before we put his nasal canulla back on--so don't get excited, he is still on oxygen.