Every Generation Has A Legend. Every Journey Has A First Step. Every Saga Has A Beginning.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Every Journey Has A First Step.

I want to share Perrin's whole story. I was 20 years old when I got pregnant. It was a big surprise to my husband and I, we had only been married for 2 months. We were very excited to start our family. The pregnancy was normal. No problems until December 24, 2002. It started as a normal day and I was 25 weeks pg. I headed out to work and was there for about 15 mins and this excruciating pain started in my back. It got so bad I could hardly stand up. I called my mother, who lived close by, and she came there and picked me up. She rushed me to the hospital and the ran me up to L&D. They did an ultrasound and saw that I was already 3 cm dilated and my bag of waters was bulging. They started me on magnesium sulfate (the worst stuff on the face of the planet!!! Makes your veins burn, your head spin and you have an uncontrollable urge to vomit) and gave me steroids for his lungs and demerol to make me sleep and as a painkiller. The rest of the night is a blur. What I remember is at 12:30 pm I was admitted, 2 pm the doctor came in to talk to me and he pulled my husband out into the hall, 6 pm my water broke, 9:35 pm I feel him drop down and a strong need to push. I push the nurse call button and she comes running in and while trying to call the NICU staff, she is holding his tiny head in and telling me not to push. At 9:38 pm on 12/24/2002 Perrin was born, 1 pound 13.8 ounces, 14 inches long. All I saw was his limp body being picked up and put under the warmer surrounded by nurses and doctors. I hear them repeatedly shout, "he's not breathing" "we need to intubate NOW!" I start FREAKING out! My husband finally breaks through the throng of drs and nurses to see that they have him intubated, bagged and started to pump air into his little body. Then they take off running with him to the NICU. I still have not seen him at this point. Around 11, the perinatologist comes into talk to me. He warns me that Perrin is in very bad shape. Most preemies born at this age will be severely disabled. There is a large chance he may not survive, but he was bigger than they expected and longer than they expected. At 12:30, I get to see him. My beautiful baby boy was so tiny and I couldn't even touch him. I could barely talk to him because they didn't want him stimulated. He was pretty much in a drug induced coma. The next day, Christmas Day, I was discharged from the hospital and went home after spending a large part of the day sitting beside him in the NICU. On 12/26, We tried to go up to see him and kept getting turned away. No explanation. Just "No, you can't come into the NICU. Call again later" So we finally just go up to the hospital and sit in the waiting rm. The Neonatologist comes out to talk to us and explains why we couldn't go in. Perrin was put on a ventilator when he was intubated. The vent was too strong for his little lungs and it blew his left lung and the air that leaked into his chest cavity collapsed his right lung. He was hypoxic for 45 mins. They finally got him stabilized and allowed us to go in to see him. He had a chest tube in and looked to be in pain. I couldn't stop crying. As we sat bedside, the dr asked "If he destats would you like to hold him as he dies?" and "How long do you want us to fight to keep him alive?" I was stunned. I said you fight until you can't anymore. There is not stopping. He gradually got strong enough to be transferred to Tulane University Hospital in downtown New Orleans on New Years Eve. He had to have a PDA ligation that they did not have a surgeon at the local hospital. He was at Tulane for 3 months. While there, he had 3 surgeries, 2 PDA ligations and a nissen fudoplication/ Gtube placement and a bout of seizures. Turns out, the seizures were a type of meningitis. They treated him with phenobarbital and antibiotics. On April 5, 2003, Perrin was finally "healthy" enough to go home. He came home on 3 medication and oxygen but it was great to have my baby home.

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