Thursday, July 31, 2008

Our Triplets!!!

We received a set of premature triplets on Tuesday. They are 8 weeks early and weigh in at 2 pounds a few ounces each. A future posting will tell about their arrival and more information about each baby.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Update on Carlos and Steven

Carlos on arrival
Carlos 9 days after he arrived
Carlos is doing much better. He is eating well and drinking milk from a bottle. The pneumonia he arrived with is almost gone, and he has begun to show us his spirited side. He can sit unaided for short periods and is much more interactive. Carlos still complains when we pick him up, but then settles in quickly. He seems to have good and plentiful blood flow and now we are just continuing to care for him as be builds up his strength. Carlos' family is still undecided as to what they are going to do regarding his future. Thank you for praying for Carlos: God indeed has worked a miracle in this little boy.

Steven on arrival

Steven 10 days after arrival

These pictures are to give you an idea of what these little boys looked like when they came in and what they look like now. Steven still has little blisters on his body which were are treating and cleaning with an antibiotic wash and cream. He seems much more alert today and responsive. Steven has been off of oxygen all day today and seems to be doing well. He drank 2oz of milk on and off today. The moaning that was so consistent is less and less and he seems much more content. He sucks his fingers for comfort and we assume that this was a comfort to him, and maybe the only one, before he arrived at our door.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Emergency Room

My bedroom has become an intensive care unit for the last 5 days! We already had 2 babies in my room, and 3 more showed up within 24hours on Sunday/Monday.

Micah was born at Sunday afternoon at 1:00 and his mother and grandmother brought him to us at 4:00. The grandmother works at our facility and they came because Micah's mother was ill and could not breastfeed him. They thought she had the mumps, but later found out that she has an infection and is highly anemic and is not doing well. Micah is doing really well here at HCH, and will be here until a decision is made regarding his future.

Carlos arrived at 8:00 on Monday morning with his aunt and grandfather. He was very unresponsive, moaning constantly, and stopped breathing on several occasions. His toenails and fingernails were filthy, yet we could not miss the white color due to the lack of oxygen and blood. Due to his severly dehydrated state, we could not get him going on an IV site for 10 hours, and resorted to clysis, putting fluid under his skin on his back, to hydrate him. His hemoglobin was 2 (normal is 13-16) and so he was given a blood transfusion that evening after we secured an IV site. He tolerated the blood well and it amazing to see the color change in his toenails and fingernails. He is not tolerating his tube feedings well, so this evening we fed him cereal by mouth. It was a fight to get him to eat it, but he kept it down. Carlos cries and moans constantly and does not like to be touched, although he responds to being picked up and cuddled. With a hemoblogin like he had, it is only by God's grace that he is still here with us. His family told us he was 8 months old, but he acts more like a 20 month old in size and weight and development. He plays with his hands and hums and reaches to hold your hand. His dehydration has left him quite swollen and his body cannot absorb the feedings we have given him. He seems very uncomforable and we are still unsure as to exatly what is going on with him. Please keep Carlos in your prayers. Carlos just minutes after arriving. He really was this color due to anemia, and as he came to life he had a wild look about him.

Here is a comparison between Carlos' skin and the foot of a normal healthy baby. Notice the significant color difference and swollen creasing of the top foot

Carlos sitting with Jojo and receiving a blood transfusion. His overall coloring changed significantly with this life giving blood

Steven: This baby was the third to arrive, and I guess I would say was in the worst condition. When Lori and I went down to look at him, and saw what condition he was in, we both cried as we carried him up the steps. It is so sad to see a baby in this condition no matter how many times you have seen it. He had sores all over his head and his body looked like it had been charred, and we found out later that he had indeed been burned. His skin on his body was dark and dry and was coming off in clumps. He is 16 months old and weighs around 9lbs and is swollen throughout his stomach and his legs. He will not drink anything by mouth, and is on IV's and being tube fed nasally. The father told one of the fellows that stays here that the child had been at the witch doctors for several weeks. We have no idea what they gave him there or what they subjected him to. The father said that many demonic things were done to the child in search of healing, and one practice that we are aware of is "baptism by fire". This practice involves building a bonfire and tossing the child over the fire from one adult to another. This is done to ward off evil spirits. From what we can tell, there is singed hair on his body and limbs and this is what has led us to believe that he was subjected to this horror. It appears to us that Steven is not responding to any affection or interaction. He is not consoled with human contact, and is only starting to be comfortable with being held. We bathe him daily and put Eucerin on his dry, singed body. Our hearts cry out for him for the pain that he suffers constantly at such a young age. He is not out of the woods yet, so your prayers would be appreciated. He is in respiratory distress and as we listen to him we are thinking more and more that it is due to smoke inhalation.

Steven's body is very dry and has very poor skin integrity due to what we believe he was exposed to with a witch doctor.

Lori holding Steven just after he arrived. You can see how sunken his fontanel was

After a bath

Me sitting with Steven as he received IV fluids and some human contact

We are very thankful for the volunteers that have come to help us! They have all been wonderful at pitching in here and there with our emergency and the regular happenings in the house. This would have a very difficult time without their helping hands. We give God all the glory that these children are coming through these difficult circumstances.