Monday, May 31, 2010

Monday, May 31st was a pretty good day for the boys. The pediatric surgeon and the radiologists reviewed all of Austin's x-rays over the past few days, and have decided that they don't think his intestine issue is NEC. They have diagnosed it as an ileus, which is an obstruction of the intestine due to paralysis of the intestinal muscles. We are not sure, but the way we understand it, this is something that will pass in time. He has started to poop again in the past 24 hours, so the doctors see that as a good sign that things are starting to function more normally again. His blood work is getting a little better. He will continue to stay on the antibiotics for a few more days. They will still continue to do an x-ray of his stomach in the morning at 6am. They hope in the next few days to start priming his stomach again to get him ready back to feeding. He is still on the ventilator and they hope to get him weaned down off of the vent. Calvin continues to do well, he is back on his full feedings.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Sunday, May 30th, seems to be going okay so far. They are continuing to watch Austin's belly VERY closely. He has had x-rays every 12 hours yesterday and today. They will do another x-ray at 6pm. They do think the x-ray is looking slightly better, so the further out we get from the first x-ray the better. His blood work came back about the same today, but atleast the numbers didn't go up. We just hope and pray the antibiotics are starting to work and take over whatever is in his intestines. Calvin is doing okay, all his blood work from Friday has come back negative. So they will stop his antibiotics and continue to feed him.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

A brief update of yesterday's happenings. Austin is doing a little bit better today, but they are still keeping a close eye on him. His blood numbers are still abnormal, but that is to be expected with all that he went through yesterday. The midnight x-ray that we waited for last night appeared to the nurse practitioner and radiologist to be a slight improvement over the 6 PM x-ray, and the one from this morning hadn't really improved any but also hadn't gotten worse. He will continue to get more blood work throughout the day, and another x-ray at 6 tonight. We are all hopeful that the antibiotics will start kicking in and his blood numbers will improve today so that we can feel that he is starting to get over the infection. Calvin is better today as well, and he is back to getting small feedings. That is all for now, I will post another update later tonight or tomorrow morning.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Friday, May 28th. This has not been a banner day for the Fonger boys! As a matter of fact, this definitely ranks as one of the worst days yet. Molly wanted me to do the update tonight since I pay a little more attention to detail than she does, and she is hoping that I am a little more stable than she is (that remains to be seen). The day started out as innocently as any other with Molly and I going about our days as normal, and the boys seeming to be doing alright by the early reports from the nurses. Then the day got very interesting. At about one o'clock this afternoon I received a phone call from the nurse practitioner to tell me that Austin had experienced a very serious apnea episode to the point that he completely stopped breathing and that they had to put him on the ventilator in order to get his breathing started again. The nurse told me that Austin's stomach had once again gotten very hard and they were concerned that, between the stomach problems and the severe apnea, there was a chance that Austin was suffering from necrotizing enterocolitis, or NEC. Very shortly after I received his call, Molly had received the same call and within a very short time I was home and we were on our way to Peoria. NEC is an intestinal disease of newborns which almost exclusively affects preemies, and is basically an inflammation that damages the lining of the intestine. It may affect only a small portion, or larger areas, of either the small or large intestine, and when severe can cause the bowel to tear, or "perforate". At this point, the doctors are not sure whether or not Austin has NEC but his condition, as well as the disease, is serious enough that they need to take every precaution in order to treat it if that indeed is what he has. By the time we got to the NICU they had pretty well stabilized Austin on the ventilator and they had done the first round of blood tests on him, taken his first x-rays, and started trying to assess the extent of his problems. The first x-rays taken at about 1 o'clock showed some signs that he may have NEC, but the signs weren't real clear. The doctors decided that since he was already on antibiotics and still having this response, they needed to switch the antibiotics that they were treating him with and try to get ahead of the problem. He was already being treated with two different antibiotics, so they continued one, discontinued the other and started him on two new ones that he hadn't been on before. They also took blood gas tests to make sure the ventilator was not only breathing for him, but also supplying his blood with the correct amount of Oxygen, getting rid of the carbon dioxide, and maintaining the correct pH. At 6 o'clock another x-ray was taken of his abdomen, and the doctor told us that it showed that the intestines were still working, but there was an area on the right side that concerned her and needed to be watched closely. Shortly after that, there were two pediatric surgeons that came by to look at Austin and his x-rays to get another set of eyes on the situation, and so they could be aware of his status if an emergency surgery is needed. Somewhere in the midst of this we were informed that Calvin had started to have many of the same symptoms, and he was beginning to be treated in a similar manner as Austin. Calvin's situation isn't nearly as severe as Austin's, but the fact that they are twins has caused them to be treated in a very similar fashion. Calvin has been held off of his feedings, is getting the same antibiotics as Austin, and has already received a first round of blood tests and has had his first abdominal x-ray. Unfortunately at this point it is just a waiting game, and the staff is simply monitoring the situation to see if it gets better or worse. I suppose I have rambled enough for now about our day, and as I am typing I have realized that it is almost time for Austin's 12 o'clock x-ray, so I need to get my computer shut down and get back to his bedside so we can see if there are any changes before we head home for the night.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Thursday, May 27th. The boys had a good day. Calvin weighs over 2 lbs...yeah! Calvin is doing well, continuing on his breathing at a flow of 1 liter on the canula. He is continuing to tolerate his feedings as well. Austin kept his string of good days going as well. It certainly seems that the antibiotics that they started on Sunday did the trick to get him moving forward again. The nurses once again did a great job of being proactive with recognizing a problem and working through finding a resolution to the problem. He only had one bradycardia, (and after only two weeks we finally figured out how to spell that word correctly) and was tolerating his breathing with only 20 breaths on the c-pap. His spinal tap is still negative, so that is good! I was able to kangaroo with Austin today for 2 to 3 hours. That was great. It had been awhile since he was stable enough to allow me to kangaroo, but he did well the whole time. Now we need them both to just continue gaining weight!!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Wednesday, May 26th, the boys continued their run of good days. The doctor turned down Austin's c-pap machine from 30 breaths per minute to 20 breaths per minute, and as of tonight when we left he was tolerating the change okay. They changed his feedings to have them fed to him over an hour rather than in a few minutes hoping to relieve some of the air that is in his belly after his feedings. The spinal tap cultures are still negative, they will watch it another day or so. They lowered Calvin's flow from 2 to 1 on his canula. He seemed to be tolerating the change as well. I was able to Kangaraoo with Calvin this evening for an hour or two. We only stayed a few hours tonight, so that is hard. I was told to take a break today since I was over there for 12 hours yesterday! Greg has his final this week and a paper due Saturday, so he has alot on his plate right now. I am looking forward to his week off of school next week so he can be on my schedule. (ha ha)

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Tuesday, May 26th, they boys had a pretty good day. The doctor decided to lower Austin's pressure on the c-pap as they thought it might be adding too much air and pressure to his belly. That could be what is causing his stomach to become looped after feedings. They started back up his feedings and he has tolerated them so far. He had two bradychardia's today, which wasn't too bad. The blood culture came back negative, and the urine culture was negative as well, they were able to get the spinal tap done today so we will wait for the results. They are continuing to keep him on his antibiotc for seven days. Calvin is still doing well, they did increase the calories on his formula so we can get some more weight on him. This post is quite a bit shorter than some of the others, but I spent about 12 hours over at the hospital today and I am so tired I am about to fall asleep typing.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Monday, May 24th has been another rollercoaster day. When we called first thing this morning to check on the boys we found out that Austin had a better night as far as the apnea episodes are concerned, and his culture for the blood yesterday came back negative, but his CRP level came back elevated more from yesterday. This morning in rounds they decided to do a spinal tap to check for infection in the spinal fluid, and to check his crp level again later in the day. At the 2:30pm feeding his stomach was bloated so they did an x-ray and it looked fine but they decided to hold off on the afternoon feeding and check it again before his scheduled feeding at 5:30. They did recheck his crp late afternoon and it had come down to a little over 3 from it's high of well over 4. At the 5:30pm feeding his stomach was looking okay, so they gave him half of the normal feeding and he digested it. His apnea improved today so the doctors were thinking the antibiotic they started yesterday was working. Then this evening Austin's stomach was bloated and looped again at the 8pm feeding so they did another x-ray. It came back okay, other then air in the belly so they are going to stop his feedings till tomorrow then re-evaulate. It has been one long day for poor Austin, but he seemed to us to look like he was more comfortable today than he was yesterday. Hopefully they can figure out the source of his stomach and breathing problems soon so that he can get back on the path to improvement. Calvin is doing well still, he is tolerating his feedings and has had no bradychardia's today.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Sunday, May 23rd. Today has been another bump in the road day. Austin has had 4 or 5 apnea episodes over the past 24 hours that have been a little more severe than his previous encounters. The apnea that he has been experiencing lately has been to the extent that he has turned a little purple, and his oxygen saturation levels have dropped into the 40's whereas they have normally only dropped into the 60's. After he had a couple in one hour they made the call that they needed to do some testing. Between the fact that the severity had escalated, and the fact that they were happening on a more regular basis, they wanted to be proactive with this and try to find the cause of the problem. They started by doing an x-ray of the lungs and abdomen to see if there were any problems, which came back clear. They then did a CBC blood count and a CRP blood test. The white count in the CBC came back fine, but the CRP blood work came back elevated. The CRP test doesn't necessarily give any specific indication of anything, it is more of an indicator of inflammation in the body and signifies the possibility of infection. One CRP test though doesn't tell a whole lot, they look at these tests over a number of days and look at the trend of the number. Since the CRP came back over 2, they decided that they should start antibiotics. If the test comes back tomorrow with a number lower, they will start to rule out infection and look for another cause for the apnea, but if the number stays the same or goes higher they will have more evidence of infection. They also did a blood culture and urine test. We won't know till tomorrow or Tuesday what they find out for sure with his breathing, or the CRP test, we just hope and pray they figure out what is going on. There is a chance they will put him back on the ventilator to let his body rest. Not what we wanted to hear, but if he needs a break to get over this we will accept it. Calvin is doing well, they lowered his canula setting down to a 2 from a 3 and raised his feedings from 13ml to 15ml and he was tolerating the increase. Another rollercoaster ride!!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Saturday, May 22nd, the boys had another pretty good day. Calvin was able to get his IV taken out since he is now on full feedings, and that is enough to not only give him all of his nutrients, but also enough fluids that he won't dehydrate. He is getting 13 milliliters every 3 hours, and just as a point of clarification, one ounce is 30 milliliters. We were surprised when we arrived this afternoon, they had Calvin dressed and swaddled in a blanket. Austin, is just about to his full feedings, so hopefully he will be getting rid of his IV soon. Papa Fonger and Nana came to visit this evening. Nana had a sore throat so she didn't go visit the boys. Calvin was wide awake, so it was nice for Papa Fonger to see him with his eyes open. The boys both gained a little bit of weight today, which was good, but these small increases in weight can be a bit frustrating. They have to get to 1500 grams before they can get in an open crib instead of the incubator. If only they could gain weight as easily as their parents!

Friday, May 21, 2010

Friday, May 21st started off rocky, but ended up being a good day for the boys. The phone rang at 6am this morning from St. Francis, of course I grabbed the phone in two seconds. It was the nurse practioner wanting to let us know that Austin's belly was a little hard and looped so they had decided to stop his feeding at 2am, 5:30am and 8am. They would do another x-ray and check it at 10. It is nice they call with any info it just startles you when the phone rings. I went over to hospital around noon with Grammy and was able to go to rounds for both boys. While in rounds, the doctor told me she had done an exam on Austin. His stomach was much softer and he had good bowel sounds so they were going to resume his feeding. She also said that Calvin's head ultra sound came back, and the bleed hasn't gotten any larger. She said it was still a 1 or 2 which is on the way to correcting itself so they will check it in two weeks to make sure. I was VERY happy to hear that. She explained it like when you get a bruise on your arm, then it starts to change color then fade away. So lets hope it continues to do so. I went back to hospital tonight with Greg and both boys were doing well, still on their breathing with the lowering of the machines yesterday. So lets hope they keep it up!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Thursday, May 20th. The boys had a pretty good day. They were behaving well enough that the dr lowered the settings on their breathing machines. Calvin is down to only 3 liters of flow on his canula from 4. Austin was bumped down to 20 breaths per minute instead of 30 on the C-pap. So we will contiue to hope they do well. Papa McMahon came to visit this evening, and Calvin was showing off. Of course as soon as he got there Calvin was wide awake bright eyed staring at him the whole time. The nurses noted that Calvin already knows who he needs to butter up. Of course, Papa McMahon was glad to see that. I was actually able to get a good picutre of Calvin while he was so awake. I was going to put it on the blog, but then thought I can't put it on without a good picture of Austin. He is still on the c-pap so it is so hard for me to get a picture of him with the mask around his head and face. Calvin had his follow up head ultra sound today, so we will hope and pray for a good outcome.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Tuesday, May 19th the boys are continuing to have a good day. We had a short stay this evening. We got new washer and dryer today so had to come home and get it installed. Austin is still on C-pap and Calvin Canula. Austin did have two bradychardias today around feeding time. They are thinking he might have reflux, so they started putting his feedings on a pump and giving it to him over an hour instead of all at once. We did see the dr while we were there, she said they were still doing well. At two days of age they had a screening done that checks for 60 or more different problems that some babies have, all babies in Illlinois are required to have this screening. The test then showed some abnormalities in Austin's thyroid levels, so he was set to be re-checked this week. He has had two follow-up checks done the past two days that have come back negative, so he is going to be cleared. Calvin's initial test came back clear, but since he and Austin are twins, they decided to re-check him as well, and those tests will be done tomorrow. The doctor asked us tonight if the boys were identical, and we replied that we don't know. There are some disparities in the explanations from different OB/GYN doctors as to whether or not they could be identical, so the doctor said the easy way to check would be to check their blood types and if they are different blood types they couldn't be identical. They both have the same blood type though, so we still don't know. We were able to change diapers and take their temperature while we were there. I dont like short nights over there. I will be glad to be going over more during the day now.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Tuesday, May 18th. The boys continued their run of better days today. Calvin is still on the canula and Austin on the C-pap. Neither one of the boys had any brady's today, which made us quite happy, but they still have a knack for showing off when we get there by showing us how they can make the monitors go off! The nurse informed us that they had been quiet all day and that it had been kind of boring, needless to say they decided that since we were there they would show us how good they are at desaturating their oxygen levels so that the monitors start beeping. I had my follow-up appointment today with the doctor that delivered the boys, so since we had to be in Peoria late in the afternoon we just decided to make our daily trip to to see the boys early. During my doctor visit I was told that I am healing quite well, and most importantly, I can drive again! I will be glad to not have to depend on someone for a ride anytime I want to leave the house. We were able to stay from 3-7 which we found is a much quieter time in the NICU than 6-10 at night. Greg told me today we had to leave by 7, since he has a final coming up in one course and a paper due in the other. The boys are off their TPN now, but I can't seem to remember what that stands for except that the "N" stands for nutrients. Basically, the TPN is the IV that gives them all of the nutrients they need, but now that they have been able to stay on their feeding schedule they are receiving enough nutrients from the milk and formula that they don't need any additional nutrients from the IV. Even though they are receiving enough nutrients from the milk, they still need some additional fluid through the IV so that they can stay hydrated. Now if mom's milk will just come in all the way we would be able to cut out the formula and give them straight milk. I am going to bed early tonight. Need some much needed rest!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Monday, May 17th. The boys had another pretty good day. We spent the whole evening over at the NICU. Austin is still on the c-pap, and Calvin on the canula. They have each had two bradychardia's today which the nurses say is pretty normal and is acceptable at their age and size. We would disagree with that statement since it is so distressing to hear the alarms going off and look down to see your son laying there not breathing because they simply forgot that they were supposed to. They are both taking their feedings every three hours. We saw dr. for short time tonight, and she said boys are doing well. She told us that anytime babies this size and age are handling their feedings that is a good sign. I had a request from Aunt Melissa to put their weight on the blog. They both lost quite a bit the first week or so, which the dr. said is normal for any preemie or full term baby. The last few days they finally started to put the weight back on. Austin weighs 1 1b 9 oz and Calvin weighs 1 lb 12 oz. This evening, as most every evening, we were at their bedside at 5:30 when they take the boys' temperature and change their diapers. For the last 10 days or so we have gotten into a routine where Greg takes their temperature and I change their diapers. Tonight Greg finally decided that it was time to switch roles and change a diaper for the first time in his life. I am not sure who was more uncomfortable with the whole situation, but they both survived the trauma. I think it proved to be a bit more challenging than it appears to change that little diaper with all of the wires and cords in the way. Maybe now he realizes that it isn't as easy as the nurses make it look, and the "constructive criticism" will slow down when I am doing it. I go back to doctor tomorrow for my check up will be glad to get my driving priverlages back! (yeah)!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

How it all started

On Sunday, April 25, 2010, our life became a whirlwind. After attending a birthday party in McLean, I came home to rest. Around 7:00 p.m., while lying down in bed, my water broke. Greg, (yes, this life altering change has inspired me to call him by his real name) rushed me to Advocate-BroMenn hospital in Normal. As they were unprepared to handle a 24 weeks and 4 days rupture, I was transported by ambulance to OSF St. Francis Hospital in Peoria. Upon arrival there, the babies and I were monitored continually for 48 hours. We were able to find out that Baby B, whose sack had not ruptured, was a boy, Calvin. We were unable to find out the sex of Baby A, Austin, due to him being oblique, ruptured sac, and situated directly on my bladder. After holding me off in the ante partum wing for 4 days, Austin decided it was time to come into the world, so on Friday morning I woke up to bleeding and contracting, and was wheeled into labor and delivery. After 30 minutes of receiving an epidural, and it not taking, they could not wait any longer as Austin’s umbilical cord was compressed against my cervix. As a result, Greg was unable to experience the birth, but was immediately informed by the nurses when Baby A, Austin Mikel was born at 7:32 a.m., and a minute later when Baby B, Calvin Lawrence was born at 7:33 a.m. Austin weighed in at 1lb. 4 oz., 11 inches and Calvin weighed in at 1 lb. 10 oz., 12 ½ inches. (I ended up being out for an extra hour, due to the finding of a tennis ball size uterine fibroid, so was unaware of my two sons until 3 hours after they were born)!

After the boys were born they were immediately rushed to the neonatal intensive care unit, NICU, and were both put on ventilators. I was admitted to the post-partum wing, and was glad to see family surrounding me! That evening, the NICU called to inform us the boys were being taken off the ventilators and put on C-Pap machines. We were pretty proud of the boys for only being on vent for 12 hours each. Then Greg and I settled in for a 4 night stay, and I was able to start pumping around 4pm. Saturday morning Greg went down for the first session of rounds with the doctors. He came back to report that the doctors were impressed the boys were off the vents already and were doing better than they expected for being only 25 weeks. The doctors advised they would start priming the boys’ stomachs to prepare their digestive systems for food. They did advise it would be a roller coaster, a lot of stopping and starting of eating. I made my first trip to the NICU on Saturday May 1st. That morning was very hard to see my babies sooooooo little. That day we continued to pray and would go visit them in the NICU every few hours. Papa and Grammy Mcmahon, and Nana and Papa Fonger spent most of that day as well as the next two days on and off with us and we just continued to pray for them.

Sunday May, 2nd both boys continued to do well on the priming and were just being monitored with the feedings, blood, work and both on the c-pap.

Monday May, 3rd they had two big tests performed, one being a head ultrasound to check for a brain bleed, and the other a PDA test to check for the closing of the valve that connects the heart and lungs while in the womb. Both tests were run in the morning, and by afternoon we had GREAT results from the doctor. Both head ultrasounds came back normal and the PDA was closed on Austin, and maybe a little open on Calvin, but nothing they were going to treat, just monitor. So that made Mommy and Daddy very happy. They will do a follow up head ultra sound between days 10-14 of life, to check for the brain bleed again. We continued to visit the NICU every couple of hours that day. I finally got some milk to stimulate that day. Not much just a very tiny amount. So that was nice, to send down to the NICU for their priming. Even, though I was only getting a milliliter or two that is all they needed so it gave me some relief.

Tuesday May 4th, was a VERY hard day for Greg and I. We had to leave the boys, and go home. After lots and lots of tears we left the NICU around 6pm. I was relieved to know there is an 800 # I can call 24 hours a day to check with their nurses to see how each are doing. Of course, I told them they would be hearing from me 100 times a night. I made it through my first night at home on Tuesday, Auggie was glad to have mom and dad back at home. It was just very hard to be home without the boys and digest everything that had happened the past week or so.

Wednesday, May 5th was mostly the same as usual with priming, monitoring and lots of loving care from the wonderful NICU nurses. Of course I already have a few nurses that I love and have bonded with. Having such great nurses gave me a little relief to be at home and try to heal myself back from the surgery knowing that they were in good hands. Greg went back to work on Wednesday, Grammy spent the day with me until he got home from work and we headed to hospital. When we arrived at the hospital we received the news that we love to hear, that they had been doing quite well throughout the day.

Thursday, May 6th, here came our first hurdle or step back, Calvin’s stomach had some bubbles, so they stopped priming him and while doing an x-ray they found a tear in his lung. The dr called me at home and Greg on his cell phone to let us know the bump in the road. They continued to monitor the tear and it corrected it self by Saturday which was a huge relief. He didn’t start back on his feedings until Sunday. May 9th.

Friday, May 7th,they continued to watch the tear in Calvin's lung, and Austin was starting to get bubbles, in his stomach, so they stopped his feeding, so not a great day knowing both boys and been cut off their priming, and Calvin had the tear in his lung.

Saturday, May 8th that morning, we went to hospital and the doctors informed us the tear in Calvin ‘s lung had corrected itself, they were still going to hold the boys off on feeding that day, but we were relived the tear had gone away. We were also excited to find out that Austin was out of the humidity and I was able to Kangaroo (hold him on your chest for an hour). Calvin was still in a little humidity so we were unable to Kangaroo him. While I was sitting with Austin the doctor informed me that the chance were pretty high that Calvin would be out of the humidity by tomorrow and I would be able to Kangaroo him then.

Sunday, May 9th. Mommy's first Mother's Day! Not exactly how I had pictured it to be, but we made it through. Greg and I spent the day and were able to get good news for both boys. Both Austin and Calvin had gotten well enough from their stomach issues that they were able to start the priming again, and Calvin did indeed get out of the humidity and was stable enough to Kangaroo. The best thing so far about having twins in this situation has been that each of us got to Kangaroo with one of the boys. I got to hold Calvin for about an hour, and Greg got to hold Austin. We left the NICU around 5pm and had a visit from Grammy, Papa, Brian, Melissa, and Hannah for my first mother's day.

Monday, May 10th, was a good day for the boys. We found out Calvin was off the C-pap, and placed on a canula which is a machine that simply supplies oxygen but does not assist in breathing. I stayed home and rested with Grammy and then we headed to the hospital after Greg got home from work. Our biggest surprise when we arrived at the hospital was the sight of Calvin's face. The canula only requires a clear tube across his face with prongs in his nose, while we had gotten used to seeing him with the c-pap mask covering the majority of his face. I kangarood and held Calvin for a little over an hour tonight, which was VERY nice!

Tuesday, May 11th, was yet another good day. Grammy and I went to Walmart in the morning, to get some much needed supplies. I am still struggling quite a bit trying to get my milk to come in. I am still pumping every two to three hours, but unfortunately I am still only getting just a couple milliliters each time. Not sure what I will do once they start feeding and requiring more then a couple milliliters for their priming.

Wednesday, May 12th, was an okay day for boys. Austin, started to struggle a little with his breathing and had some heart rate drops and Bradychardia (where they forget to breath) Dr. informed us they will have those on and off for quite awhile so those are common. It means they are getting tired, and may have to take a step back on the the support. Even though that scares Greg and I, we are trying to remain positive and realize that they are small and they will not constantly move forward. Grammy and Papa went to the Cubs game in Chicago today. Papa Mcmahon brought back two cubby bears for the boys. I am sure they will be Cub fans some day. Nana Fonger came and stayed with me and took me to hopsital mid afternoon and then Greg met us. The doctor advised they will do a follow up head ultrasound on Thursday.

Thursday, May 13th was another so-so day. Austin had a bad night with the breathing, he had many bradychardia's and they had to up his breath's per minute on the c-pap to 20. The boys had their head ultrasounds done, but we won't have any results for 24 hours.

Friday May 14th, wasn't a good day for the Fonger boys! We are finally starting to believe what the doctor's and nurses told us at the beginning when they told us that this would be a rollercoaster ride. The results came in on the head ultrasound, and they found a small brain hemhorrage on Calvin. Of course this is not at all what we wanted to hear, but after talking to the doctor we do feel a little better about the finding. The doctor told us that brain bleeds are rated 1-4, 4 being the worst, and Calvin was experiencing a 1 bordering on a 2. She said those are considered mild, common with someone their age, and they usually work themselves out and if not there is usually not any long term effects from them. They will recheck it again in 1 week to make sure that if it has not fixed itself, it is at least not getting bigger. Austin's head ultrasound came back clear, which was a relief, so they won't check his again till around 34 weeks, close to when we go home. Austin was continuing to struggle with his breathing when we left this evening, still having heart rate drops and oxygen saturation drops. It is so hard, but if they have to put him back on vent we will deal with it. There is only one more setting they can bump him up on the c-pap before they would put him back on the vent. I am sure he is getting tired, and if he needs to spend some time on the vent to rest, that is what we want to happen. I was able to kangaroo Austin for an hour and a half this afternoon. YEAH!! Greg worked at the tap tonight, so Shelly and Lindsey came over to visit, and then Brian and Melissa were in town for a wedding so they spent the night.

Saturday, May 15th wasn't quite as bad as Friday, but still not what we would consider a good day. They bumped Austin up to the highest setting on the c-pap. We hope he doesn't have to go back on vent again today, but are willing to accept it if he is getting tired. Calvin, improved on his breathing only having a couple Bradychardia (heart rate drops). We were at hospital most of the day, then came home for an hour or two before we headed back with Nana and Papa Fonger. Shortly after we returned, the respitory therapist was there to change out Austin's c-pap mask. She was able to hold him up and we could see him with all his gear off. He opened his eyes wide as could be to Nana and she started balling her eyes out. I told the nurses I am sure that won't be the last time they see her cry her eyes out. Nana and Papa both brought the boys their first little Case IH tractors. After we left hospital, Nana and Papa took us to Texas Roadhouse for dinner. It was my first time in public in three weeks, other then hospital and home.

Sunday, May 16th today was a pretty good day for boys. Mommy and daddy are home now and tired. We put in an 11 hour day over there. They gave Austin some blood today as his blood count was getting low. Hopefully, that will help his breathing. He only had 2 bradychardia all day today. Calvin didn't have any so far. I was able to hold Calvin for an hour today. I am still pumping every 2-3 hours and still not getting a whole lot, but I'm not throwing in the towel yet!!!

Finally after much coaxing from Greg and my mom I am up-to-date on the boys' journey, and plan on posting an update every day. I know this first one was long, but you should be pretty well up to speed on their development.