Friday, September 21, 2007

Update and a few pics...

Hi all! We went to Liam's pediatrician yesterday, and he weighed in at 7 lb 13 oz. He is doing well and growing a lot. He has started to interact more with us, which is so nice! Here are a few pictures from the last week or so.
In the top picture, Liam pulled his tube out, so Mom took the opportunity to snap a quick picture of him. Of course, then he was grumpy, so the only way Mom could get a good pic was to stick his paci in his mouth. Figures.
In the other two pics, he is hanging out in his boppy and his swing.
In Christ,
Bill and Lisa

Wednesday, September 12, 2007


These photos were all taken either in the final days in the hospital or within a few days of arriving home (sorry, haven't downloaded the most recent pics from the camera yet).

From the top:

1 and 2: Liam hanging out in his pack and play at home. Note the preemie clothes, which fit much better than his coming home outfit, which was newborn size!

3: Grandma feeding Liam a bottle in the hospital.

4 and 5: Sarah meeting Liam in person for the first time on the cardiac unit. She saw him for about 30 seconds outside the OR as they whisked him off to the NICU, but she didn't get to interact with him that time.

6: Liam in his car seat, ready to come home from the hospital. As you can see, he was a peanut. Yes, the poor boy's pants are up to his armpits, and still hang off his legs. His newborn clothes did not fit, and we had to go out and buy some preemie outfits. Thankfully, he is now in 5-8 lb newborn sizes.

7: Sarah gets to hold her baby brother for the first time.

Results of swallow study

Liam is aspirating milk into his lungs when he feeds, which means we have to stop feeding him by mouth for 3 weeks and switch to only NG tube feedings for the time being. The speech therapist who tested him says this often happens with cardiac babies or preemies, and it's typically a growth issue that resolves itself fairly quickly. He will be retested in 3 weeks to see if the problem has resolved itself. If he aspirates his feedings into his lungs, he will likely develop pneumonia, which (obviously) would be very dangerous for a baby with heart problems.

We are disappointed to be going backward once again, but hopefully he'll grow out of this problem over the next few weeks and we can resume bottle feeds with better results than we've been having.

In Christ,
Bill and Lisa

Saturday, September 8, 2007

Ongoing feeding problems...

We continue to watch Liam struggle with feeding issues. He just can't seem to get a whole bottle down. Actually, I think we'd be happy if he could get even half a bottle down consistently these days! The feeding specialist (i.e., a speech therapist) decided to order a barium swallow study for this next week so we can get a better idea of what's going on. They will put him in a car seat and have him drink a bottle of barium solution (honestly, would you drink that if it was offered?). ; We trust that the specialists know what they're doing even if it sounds disgusting to us.

Other than that, Liam is doing well. He is getting more alert each day and will now wake for feedings at night, so Lisa doesn't have to set an alarm to get up to feed him. We are very happy that he'll wake us up now! That may sound crazy, but it's just nice to see him do normal baby things for a change!

Will update you when we have the results of the swallow study next week. Please pray this is a minor thing that can be corrected easily.

In Christ,
Bill and Lisa

Saturday, September 1, 2007

Sorry it's been so long since the last update!

Anyone who has spent any time at all with a newborn knows that those little people have a way of taking up an extraordinary amount of time! Add to that a jealous little 2 year old sister, NG feedings, pumping, and multiple doctor appointments, and you can understand why it's been so long since the last update.

Liam is gaining weight! Yahoo! At the cardiologist appointment yesterday, he FINALLY weighed in above his birth weight. Can't tell you how much more, because I have yet to find the time to look up the formula for converting kilograms to lbs and ounces, but I know he is over 6 lbs 13 oz, and his birth weight was 6 lbs 12 oz. The cardiologist was pleased with what he saw and we don't go back to see him until October 31. They are still watching the ASD (hole in his heart) and if it doesn't close in 4-6 months, we're looking at another surgery. They also continue to monitor his bicuspid aortic valve and there is a possibility we'll be looking at another surgery down the road to repair that, as well. However, his coarc repair continues to perform beautifully, and he passed all the tests they threw at him yesterday with flying colors.

We remain concerned about feeding issues, not because he isn't gaining, but because he isn't eating on his own yet. We continue to send the vast majority of his feedings down his NG tube. By now we had hoped to be off the NG tube entirely, so that is discouraging. His cardiologist wanted to give him until this next Tuesday and if things aren't improving, we'll be referred to a feeding specialist for an additional assessment.

Liam is a sweet baby who continues to sleep a lot, except in the middle of the night when Mama is up feeding him. Then he wants to throw a 2 hour party. As a result, Mama is exceedingly sleep deprived and has difficulty composing coherent sentences at various points in time during the day. This is also the reason for the lack of blog updates and pictures. We will post pictures as soon as Lisa can manage to achieve the mental capacity to learn how to do so (Heather, our photographer extraodinaire, has been kind enough to post all the ones that you see on the blog so far). Between pumping, doc appts, and being up with Jelly Bean a lot at night, blogging has definitely occupied the lowest priority slot in our house.

Lisa continues to recover from her C-section (actually, it was the speediest recovery known to mankind). Unfortunately, it seems that she is now paying for the fast recovery by being worn out over the smallest exertion, but she has decided she has no choice but to suck it up and keep going. ;) Bill is now back at work and trying to concentrate on work-related things when his mind is often more focused on what's going on at home. Jami, Liam's oldest sister, has been kind enough to offer a ton of help. She's been home since the day before Liam was born and has been WONDERFULLY helpful in all sorts of ways. We're sure we would have lost our minds by now without her.

Overall, we're doing well, and we extend many, many thank yous to our kind church family and neighbors for keeping us in meals for the past week!! We honestly don't know what we'd do without everyone's help, support, and prayers!

In Christ,
Bill and Lisa