Benjamin Chance is here!

As many of you know, Sherri and I recently had a new addition to our family. Benjamin Chance was born September 17, 2009 at 6:16 am. He was only 24 weeks old and weighed in at 1 pound, 5 ounces and was 12.25 inches long. Needless to say, he was extremely premature and very small. After 5 long months in the NICU, Benjamin was able to come home on February 10, 2010. Benjamin is doing great now and is moving on from his stay at the NICU. Thank you to everyone for your thoughts and prayers; we really appreciate it.

If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer.
Matthew 21:22

As you do not know the path of the wind, or how the body is formed in a mother's womb, so you cannot understand the work of God, the Maker of all things.
Ecclesiastes 11:5

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Day 13 - Better, but still not there.

Benjamin is on the road to recovery from the E. Coli infection, but we learned yesterday, that he has pneumonia in his lungs. The doctors believe they caught it early, so it should be a few more days until he is over this.

Another setback today, in addition to the pneumonia, Benjamin had another spontaneous air leak. An air sac busted open again; this is called pneumothorax. This happened the other day and the doctors were able to needle the air out and the leak healed on its own, but this time, too much air escaped and air was filling up in his chest. Benjamin had a minor procedure done this afternoon to insert a tube into his chest to constantly suck out the air while the leak heals. If all goes well, the tube should only be in there for a few days. Luckily, the nurses and doctors were watching him closely and responded quickly. Benjamin is responding well to the treatment and his vitals are looking much better already.

Hopefully in a few days, Benjamin makes a full recovery and is over all of this and continues his development path. He has had a rough few days, but is continuing the fight. Thank you to everyone for your continued thoughts and prayers.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Todd holding his son for the first time!

Day 11 - Tough Day for Benjamin

Benjamin's infection seemed to get worse overnight and was in full swing by this afternoon. By this evening though, he appeared to be leveling off and doing much better. They are still watching him, but the doctor was optimistic that they caught the infection early and he should be on his way to recovery. Hopefully tomorrow will be better as the infection begins to clear up.

Benjamin's lungs are still a concern right now. He had the busted air sac, but the air did not reaccumulate, which is good. The chest x-ray looked slightly better today and they will continue to monitor it.

Benjamin's blood pressure was really low today. The doctors believed that the ductus in his heart opened back up, since low blood pressure is a sign of an open ductus, but they did a scan and it is still closed. They are now trying to figure out why the blood pressure is so low; right now it appears that it is just due to the infection. This was returning back to normal when we left this evening.

Benjamin's head ultrasound came back normal, which is great news! This shows no bleeding in his brain. This was an important ultrasound since most bleeding in the brain will happen in the first 10 days.

While making sales calls in the medical center today Kayla (Sherri's sister) met a missionary. She works in the hospitals and nursing homes throughout Houston and mentioned she wanted to go see Benjamin and pray for him. When Sherri and her mom arrived to see Benjamin tonight, she was already there. She prayed with them and lifted up Benjamin with her words and praise. It was very comforting to hear her certainty in God's work and power. Sherri believes she might be a guardian angel that came across Benjamin's path today.

Please continue to keep Benjamin and us in your prayers.

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Day 10 - Infection Update

We figured out what was causing Benjamin's infection - e. coli. Obviously, this is a pretty serious infection, but Benjamin has been on general antibiotics for a few days and now on specific e. coli antibiotics, so hopefully he can beat it. It appears the source of his infection was from the lines going into his stomach for blood transfusions, i.v.'s, etc. These lines were going to be coming out in the next few days anyway, but since they were harboring the infection, they had to come out a little sooner than planned. These lines were removed today and he now has three lines going in him - one on both arms and one in his left leg.

The doctors have also been watching Benjamin's breathing; he was having difficulty maintaing a proper oxygen supply. It turns out an air sac in his right lung was punctured and this is caused by too much pressure going into the lungs. The doctors are treating this and we should know more tomorrow. Hopefully this will heal with minimal treatment. The doctors mentioned this happens with babies this small.

Benjamin has had a rough few days, but he is fighting. Everyone keeps saying be prepared, it's a roller coaster and we now know what they mean. Please keep us in your thoughts and say a prayer for Benjamin.

Friday, September 25, 2009

Day 8 - Benjamin has an infection.

The doctors called us this morning and they believe Benjamin has an infection. They started him on antibiotics. We are not sure what type of infection yet, but hopefully we caught it in time and he will get through this. The doctors said all babies will get infections at some point, and the key is to catch them early. Premature babies don't have much of an immune system, so he can't really fight this off on his own. We are just waiting at this point, hopefully this is nothing serious and he can fight through it.
Please continue to pray for Benjamin!

Benjamin is 25 Weeks Old (7 days in the NICU)!

As we are just getting started, we are a little behind on the updates, so we will use this first post as an update as to what has happened in Benjamin's first week. So here we go...

Benjamin started off a little bruised in the face. The doctor's said that was normal and was expected, but this would go away in a few days. The pictures don't show the true colors, but his little face was black and blue, but after a few days,the bruising was all gone.

Two head ultrasounds were done to check for bleeding in the brain. Both came back normal and he has another one scheduled for Monday, Sept. 28, so hopefully that one looks good as well.
Benjamin's lungs are very underdeveloped so he needs help breathing at a level his body needs. He was put on an oscillating ventilator to help him, and so far he is slowly improving.

As expected, Benjamin, had a bout with jaundice. He was put on light therapy to help him get through it. His levels improved and was taken off of the light, but the next day the level rose again, and they put the light back on him. This was expected and he is now off the light, hopefully for good.

Benjamin's eyes opened during the time he was off the light the first time! When he was born, because he was so young, his eyes were still fused shut. While he was on the light therapy, the doctor's placed an eye shield over his eyes because the light was so bright. When they removed the shield - he opened his eyes!

It appears that Benjamin's patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) is now closed which is a good thing. While the babies are in the womb, there is a valve in the heart that remains open until birth. In full term babies, this valve will close on its own, but in premature babies, they usually need help to close it through medicine or surgery, but Benjamin did it on his own. Hopefully it will remain closed as it should.

Benjamin is now being fed breast milk. He seems to be handling it ok and he actually looks like he is starting to plump up now.

We got to hold Benjamin for the first time in our hands. He fit in Todd's hands and seemed to enjoy it all around. Todd also changed his first diaper! Benjamin hopes he gets better at it! :)

Benjamin got a new hat. Someone came around to give hats out to all the babies and our nurse picked an owl hat for him. It is so cute and appropriate since Todd just graduated from Rice University and their mascot is an owl. The nurse did not realize this, but felt so proud for picking it once we told her. He looks so cute in it.

Sorry for the long post, but we had to get everyone caught up. The next posts should be shorter easier to read.

Those are the highlights from the first week; Benjamin appears off to a good start. Let's all continue to pray for his development. We are so thankful for our little miracle!
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