You will have significant experiences.
I hope that you will write them down and keep a record of
them, that you will read them from time to time and refresh
your memory of these meaningful and significant things.
Some may be funny. Some may be significant only to you.
Some of them may be sacred and quietly beautiful. Some
may build upon another until they represent a lifetime of
special experiences.
- Gordon B Hinckley

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Two Pounds(almost)...

Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Dear Family and Friends,

Everett is very close to weighing two pounds...1lb. 15.8oz to be exact.  His face is rounding out with little chipmunk cheeks and his legs are growing into his knobby knees.  Every day he looks like an entirely different baby, which makes going to see him all the more fun!  He is starting to lose some of his dark hair, his eyes are open wide, and he is growing into my family nose (thank goodness).  He wore a pumpkin beanie for Halloween, his first clothing item!  It made for some pretty cute photos :-)

Despite the weight gain, Everett has had a rough week.  The infection I mentioned last week is proving to be an "illusive bug."  The doctors are having a difficult time isolating the responsible bacteria.  They have done many, many tests over the last few days trying to find the source, but so far they've been unsuccessful.  He is being treated with three different antibiotics and an antifungal agent in hopes that one of these medications will be the right one.  The doctors and nurses have reassured us that all this is "normal" for preemies.  The likelihood that he would get through his entire hospitalization without acquiring some type of infection was pretty slim.  We are hoping and praying that in the coming days the antibiotics will begin to work and he will start to improve.

Because of his infection, he hasn't been tolerating feedings well.  The intestines are the last organ to develop before babies are born (usually not until 36 weeks) so preemies are prone to intestinal problems and difficulty feeding.  When they are under stress, as with an infection, they tend to shut down their intestines as a way of saving energy.  This is exactly what Everett has done.  As a result, he hasn't been getting breast milk for a few days.  He still receives all the vitamins, minerals, fat and nutrients he needs in liquid form through his PICC line, but the breast milk is essential to help develop immunity and to prime the intestines for processing food later.  He will start back on breast milk today and we are hoping things get moving this time.

He is working hard to breathe on his own.  He is still ventilated but requires less and less assistance every day.  The goal is to be off the ventilator by the end of the week.  Once this happens, we will get to hear him cry!  WE CAN'T WAIT!!!

This past week has been hard on all of us.  We're hoping that this week is better :-)
  As one nurse said to me yesterday, "Sara, preemies do what preemies want to do.  We're just along for the ride."

We continue to be thankful for everyone's support.  This whole experience has humbled us and made us ever more grateful for family and friends.  The meals have been wonderful (we've never had so much good food) and the emails keep me smiling :-)
  Please keep thinking good thoughts and saying prayers for him!  He is 24 days old...just nine weeks until we get to bring him home (but who's counting...)

We love you all!

The Bollinger Family

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