Posted in Mission Stories, NW_Medical, NW_Special Needs

Gigi is Sick..

It’s 5am and Gigi has had about 13 baths today. She is running a high fever and her body is limp. She is 8 years old and learned to walk last fall. Ever since she learned to walk – you can’t hold her down. She goes everywhere. That’s one thing that’s been so different here at my parent’s house. Their house is a tri-level. Gigi was often stuck wherever we put her because she couldn’t go up or down steps.

You should see her now. She opens doors and walks up and down the steps – even to the fridge when she wants something to drink. She often will find one of us – pull us to the fridge – and she’ll actually point to what she wants which it’s normally tampico or milk. 

Jose and I spent all day at the hospital while my parents took care of Gigi. We didn’t know she was sick when we left this morning. My mom bathed her several times while my dad held her most of the day. She has always had a close bond with my dad – ever since she was a baby. People never give her enough credit – she’s a very smart little girl and she knows WHAT and WHO she wants. 

Today however – she was too weak to even cry and yet her facial expressions would break your heart. I know it’s a bad day when she’s too weak to even look at her hands.

She’s so skinny despite our best efforts (8 years old and about 35lbs). She wouldn’t eat or drink anything today. I’ve never been ashamed of Gigi or her disability. Granted – she can cause quite the commotion – but she’s always been a happy little girl. When I first moved to Haiti I was responsible for our Special Needs Orphanage which is how I found Gigi. As long as their disabilities didn’t stop them from being Happy – I never really struggled. I know God made us each unique.

What I do struggle with is when my little girl is sick and she can’t tell me what’s wrong. Malaya has no problem telling me her nose is running or her belly hurts. I know Gigi has a fever, she’s limp, and she won’t eat – but that’s it. She can’t tell me if her head hurts or her belly hurts. It makes it so hard to know how to treat her. 

Dr. Lillpop is a pediatrician that travels to Haiti every year. He is actually responsible for Rosie living. He treated her for tetanus when she was just 8 days old and also got their hospital to waive all their fees when Rosie had cerebral malaria and almost died from seizures and fever. We called him today and he prescribed Gigi an antibiotic to start with. We call him often when one of our kids are sick. God has blessed us with a network of people. But I just wish he could “look” at her just to make sure an antibiotic is all she needed. He lives in Illinois – about 8 hours from us!

There were a few times today when Gigi just had a blank stare in her eye. It was the kind of stare I’ve seen too many times – where the results are always heart-wrenching. Too many times little kids die of something so treatable- diarrhea or a fever. Sometimes it only takes a day for a little sickness like that to claim a little child who is already malnourished.  

I found myself in tears remembering so many precious children who used to be in our special needs orphanage but now run and play with Jesus.  Life is just so precious.

I know that Gigi will be fine but seeing how quickly she went down – I couldn’t help but think about Haiti. There are so many sick little babies with fevers and no water to cool themselves down. I think about the mothers who have no money to see the doctor or pay for medication. While I’m so very blessed even though I don’t know what’s wrong with Gigi… heart can’t help but ache for the mothers who can’t take care of their children and are left praying, guessing, and often in despair.

Posted in Personal Stories

The Babies Aren’t Quite Ready to Meet the World..

The doctor ran some tests today and basically the babies are still in no way ready to meet the world. While Baby B has a fair chance – Baby A would really struggle. So it’s really important we stay pregnant. They told me that all the contractions I’m having are effecting the cervix and I guess once you get to 2.5cm or less then labor is almost impossible to stop. Last week I was 4cm and this week 3.4.

They switched my medications and have me on a stronger dosage of meds to stop the contractions. HOWEVER – they’re giving it only a short amount of time to work or they’ll admit me full time on Mag. Sulfate which I was on that before with Gabriel and it’s MISERABLE. It has horrible side effects. 

I got a shot today to help jump start the new contraction medication. They also did a lot of blood work. I was in the hospital all day long. When I got home they called and said my labs were abnormal and I need to go back tomorrow to re-test. I’m not diabetic – never have had any problems with that during pregnancy but apparently my sugar is REALLY up. So more lab work tomorrow.

Janeil and Heather are back in Kentucky! Yeah! The girls were SO HAPPY to see NeNe! I love watching them all play together. I got to spend a few hours with Janeil tonight. Nothing like a good talk with your brother to lift your spirits and put things in perspective. I feel like my soul has been renewed – – now if only I can get the rest of my body to cooperate.

Posted in Personal Stories

I made it to 28 weeks!

I am so thankful for all your prayers. I spent the weekend with Jani – she was SO good taking care of me! I don’t think she let me get up for anything (except the bathroom). I am back at my parent’s house now. Jose and the kids should be here soon. I have had two very rough nights. Friday night I had contractions every 6 minutes for hours. I called the OB doctor and they had me double my contraction medication. If it didn’t work after 30 minutes then I needed to come in. The high dosage did slow them down. 

Then Saturday I had it again – only MUCH worse pain. My stomach is actually sore today from all the contractions from last night. I see the high risk doctor tomorrow (not sure which one) but I see one of them! I guess we’ll see what they decide to do with me.

Posted in Personal Stories

Family is in Peoria, IL at Mission Conference

Jose took the family to a mission’s conference we had signed-up for a long time ago. Granted this isn’t the best timing for Jose to leave – but I really felt like he needed to go. Not to worry – I’m in good hands! Jani Lewis  has taken me in and has been watching me and making sure I don’t black out or go into labor! I have everything I need – and hopefully I won’t have to go to the hospital this weekend. I’m already dilated some, I still have contractions a lot, and I’m nauseated nearly all day long – but I’m making it each day. Each day the babies have another 3% chance of survival. So every day counts – even the bad ones!

At this point there’s not a lot I can do – it’s all in God’s hands. I will be 28 weeks on Monday and the doctors are hoping that I’ll make it closer to 30 weeks now. Two weeks can make a huge difference in whether the babies have long-term health problems. My blood pressure is kind of all over the place as is my heart rate – but if we can try to keep them under control then they won’t have to induce me just yet. 

Sorry I haven’t blogged in a while but I’ve been really sick almost every single day. Today wasn’t too bad – and I’m always grateful for any moment I have where I feel “okay”. So thank you for your prayers. I’ve been pretty depressed this week – but I keep thinking one way or another – SOON this miserable pregnancy phase will all be over and we’ll have two precious little boys!

Posted in Personal Stories

Up and Down…..Up and Down….

As I anticipated all of my Tropical Disease tests came back negative. I am a carrier for Malaria and TB but they are not affecting this pregnancy or my health. I know they were trying to help but that day of tests and invasive procedures – it still leaves me sick to my stomach. 

None of my doctors can agree about what to do with me. My OB doctor wants me hospitalized until the babies are born – however – he has decided I’m too complicated for his expertise and has turned me over to the High Risk Doctors. There are 3 High Risk Doctors that I see – they all work together. I don’t understand how they work together because each one told me something different.

One of the more conservative High Risk Doctors said they wanted me to stay in the hospital for two weeks because these next two weeks are critical. I’ve been having high blood pressure, black-outs, nausea/vomiting, and contractions. He wants to monitor me. I saw him the first five days. However he is off call now and I’m seeing his partner who is more liberal.

His partner thinks I would do better at home with home health care checking on me and me coming to their office every two days for check-ups. He thinks when women are admitted into the hospital this early on – they become depressed and the mental toll can affect the pregnancy in a negative way as well. He’d rather send me home on shots of Terbutaline (which stops the contractions), blood pressure pills and nausea meds. He thinks the longer I can make it out of the hospital – the better chance the babies have. (??? None of the nurses can figure him out except to say that none of the high risk doctors are ever on the same page).

As he is the doctor on call – I have followed his instruction and am home now. I have to give myself shots every 4 hours for the contractions. I honestly don’t feel any better now then I did on Easter when I came into the Hospital. They are still talking of inducing me around 28 weeks because they feel like my body is creating a hostile environment for the babies. However – I also know if we can keep them in longer then we will just for a better chance of survival. 

It has certainly been a roller-coaster of events. I have no idea how long I’ll even be home. I still can’t keep anything down. It just doesn’t make sense. I’m trying to just give it all to God and pray that these doctors are doing what is truly best for me – but it would make me feel a lot better if they would all agree – even just a little.

Posted in Personal Stories

Well…I’m A Mess!

God gave me a beautiful Easter day with my kids but around 4pm I had to go to the ER for going into labor. I was given meds to stop the labor. I’m 26 weeks – the babies only have a 40% chance of survival if I were to deliver. I saw many doctors today and I don’t agree with most of them. Several of them think I have a CHRONIC TROPICAL DISEASE – like I’m still carrying a malaria bug even though I”m not acutely sick. They think I just have it in my system and it’s making me sick. Someone else thinks I have worms in my brain. It’s been a nightmare with all of the tests I’ve had to have – especially now that the infectious disease doctors are involved. I was poked with needles 18 times today trying to draw tubes and tubes of blood. They cathed me and have done other invasive tests – all which have left me feeling numb inside.

They told me that they want to keep me now for two weeks as the next two weeks are critical – every day the babies are in the womb – they increase their chance of survival by 3%. They are talking about inducing me in two weeks which means the babies will be 28 weeks old and will spend a long time in the NICU and will more than likely have lung issues.

I’m a complete mess – just a complete mess. I’m afraid for the babies and I’m just so tired… tired of all of this medical drama. I think I’ve cried non-stop today. Please pray for my little boys – for my saniety – and for Jose who is having to be so strong during all of this….

Posted in Personal Stories

Spent Easter Day with Family…and Night at Hospital

Just a quick note  – I’m in the hospital again. I have been really sick this last go around – more so than ususal. The high risk doctor just came into the room and wants me to get another detailed ultrasound. I started having contractions off and on since Saturday and they have given me meds to stop them. I’m still really nauseated – still have all of the other stuff going on – blackouts and such – but the nausea this time is just much worse.

The girls had a wonderful Easter and I will post pictures of my “matching” family – all in purple!! Love you all and thanks for your prayers.