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

Monday, January 25, 2010

Day 130- Great Expectations

Benjamin is continuing to make great strides. He now weighs 8 pounds 13.4 ounces. Wow!!! The doctors decided to wean his flow on his oxygen today, so he went from 1/2 Liter flow to 1/4 Liter. Next step would be 1/8 liter and then breathing room air like the rest of us. It typically requires a slight increase on his oxygen setting when the flow is reduced but so far he is still on track. He is currently around 30 % oxygen.

Today Benjamin's doctors advanced him from taking 3 bottles by mouth to 4. The plan is that he should be able to go home sometime very soon after he masters 8 bottles by mouth a day. The doctor's continue to seem amazed at Benjamin's progress. I realize it is a sign of God's true intervention throughout this experience. Benjamin has also begun non nutritive breastfeeding and will continue to learn until hopefully he is able to switch to full feeds this way.

Please keep Benjamin's eyes in your prayers. He has another big exam tomorrow. We're praying that they'll find his eyes have finished developing and won't require surgery. God is working miracles in this little guy's life daily and we are so thankful for each day we have with him.

"If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer."

Matthew 21:22

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Day 124- Graduation Day to Level II

Please keep Benjamin's eyes in your prayers. Today's eye exam showed an area of concern on his eyes and the doctor said he is somewhat concerned and will watch them. He also said there is a possibility they will finish developing and be fine. He is hesitant to operate since Benjamin's eyes are so far along and already so mature. We will wait and pray!!!
Benjamin had a very slow start on taking his bottle by mouth. The Occupational Therapist (OT) had tried for five days and Benjamin really wasn't taking it. He was averaging about 10 cc's (ml) each time out of 60 cc's. The OT finally decided maybe he didn't like the taste of it based on his reactions. She suggested we bring in fresh milk rather than giving him frozen milk that is thawed. Well...we tried fresh milk and he drank the whole thing! All 60 cc's of it. It brought tears to my eyes watching him finish his first bottle. How amazing! It is so crazy how many things in our life we take for granted. Since then the doctors have increased him to taking two bottles a day. We will try that today. Come on Ben!!! They would like him to be taking 8 bottles a day before he goes home.
Benjamin's doctors also told us on Sunday night that they were graduating him to Level II status. This is wonderful. That means he is much more stable and one step closer to going home. He will be in Level II until he goes home.

We are so thankful for all of your support. Please keep Benjamin in your prayers and especially regarding his eyes.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Day 117 - Doing great

Benjamin has had a great past week. He is still on nasal cannula and yesterday they lowered the amount of flow he recieves from 1 liter per minute to 1/2 liter per minute. So far Benjamin is doing great with the change.

Benjamin now gets to play in a bouncing chair. They put him in it yesterday and soon after it started to vibrate, the batteries died, so he didin't get to play that long. The nurse said that he seemed to enjoy the few minutes it was on though. They will try it again today.

They should be trying him on a bottle in the next few days.

Today is another eye exam. Hopefully they continue to develop correctly.

Benjamin now weighs 7 lbs, 11 ounces.

Please continue to pray for Benjamin's development.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Benjamin getting ready for the big game!

Day 112 - Benjamin's Original Due Date

Today was Benjamin's original due date so he is now exactly 40 weeks old. Today he weighs 7 lbs, 4 ounces and was 19 1/4 inches long this past Sunday.

Overall, Benjamin is doing pretty good. He is still on nasal cannula, and has been on it full time for about a week, but is still adjusting to receiving just oxygen and no pressure. He has some days where he does really well and just cruises, but there have been a few days were his acid reflux seems to really effect him. He is still having some brady's where his heart rate drops. Usually he recovers on his own, but Monday he had a brady where they had to provide him breathing assistance by the resuscitation bag. The doctors just started him on acid reflux medicine so hopefully this helps him out.

He still has mild ROP in his eyes, but they are still developing. He will have another eye exam in a week.

Once he is more comfortable on nasal cannula, the next step is to try feeding him with a bottle.

Please continue to keep him in your prayers. We know God is still working in Benjamin's life.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Happy New Year- Day 109

Happy New Year! Todd and I enjoyed ringing in the New Year at The Woman's Hospital NICU holding Benjamin through the countdown to 2010..

Benjamin is doing well on nasal cannula. He has been on it full time now for the past four days. He is still experiencing some Bradycardia's- where his heart rate drops, but we are told this is normal and his aren't occuring too frequently so the doctors aren't concerned. Lately, they've been happening about once a day. Last week a doctor came to look at Benjamin's Kidney's via a Renal Ultrasound. It turns out there has been some calcification and some stones have formed. They said this is a side effect from taking the Lasix, which he took to help get rid of fluid in the lungs. The doctors say these can heal on there own so we will keep praying that they do.

Benjamin's Neonatologists' recently had an ENT (Ear, nose, and Throat Doc or otolaryngologist) come check out his vocal cords they said his vocal cords actually looked very good, a little inflamed where the feeding tube has been, but that it should clear up once removed. It didn't appear he had any long term damage from being on the ventilator and having the endotracheal tube for so long. : ) So nice to get a good report. This is especially good news because it should make bottle feeding much easier and safer for him once they are ready for him to take a bottle.

The endocrinologist examined Benjamin and reviewed his Thyroid Panel. All but one category on the test looked good so they will take another panel to follow up on January 18th. The doctor was hopeful that all was working well.

Benjamin has had so much going on lately and more to come. Please keep him in your prayers. Another pertinent eye exam again this week on Tuesday.

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