If you would have asked me 7 years ago if miracles can happen, I would have said, "I sure hope so!!!" Today, I can say with assurance that YES they do!!! Tyler's 7th birthday is on Saturday. I wanted to share a little of his birth story with you guys.
On the day we went in to have him, it wasn't looking so good. We knew Tyler was going to be born with a birth defect called Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia (CDH). It happens 1 of 2,500 live births. The chance of survival, if the child is born alive is 50%, with months of intensive care, therapy, oxygen, feeding tubes, possible skeletal problems and a lifetime of doctor appointments. That's why we had to have him is Salt Lake, to have the state's most qualified people working to save his life. We weren't very hopeful going in to have the c-section. We had all received priesthood blessings and were clinging onto faith with everything we had.
Here I am getting ready for surgery. You know I can't pass up the opportunity to be a smarty!!!
As soon as Tyler was born, there was a photographer there to take his picture to document CDH cases for a medical book (that's right, Tyler's birth is helping doctors and nurses know how to better take care of CDH cases!!!). I didn't get to see him, as quick as they could, the nurses got him out of me and pushed him though an open window with a team of NICU specialists waiting. This is the first picture taken of our new SON!!! We didn't know we were having a boy, officially, we might have seen, in one of the many ultra-sounds, what we thought might have been a you-know-what, but we didn't want to know, so we looked away!!! In this picture, he isn't sedated yet, and he hasn't cried yet, which was perfect, we didn't want him to cry because it would have made him sicker.
Here is the first picture I saw of my new baby. Not the picture a mom wants to see. I was at University Hospital and they transported him to Primary Children's and after a c-section, I wasn't able to see him till the next day. This picture was the only thing that made me feel as though this wasn't all just a bad dream.This is the first view of what I saw when I walked into the NICU to see my baby. Scared would be the best word to describe how I felt. Look at everything around my little baby. He was 7 lbs. 10 oz. We don't know how long he was, apparently, length isn't a critical measurement!!! Who knew?
Here Randy and I are the first time I got to visit him.... that's a 3am, by the way!!!! It hurt so bad to stand there, but if I sat in a chair, even an elevated one, I wasn't able to see him... I would stand no matter how bad it hurt me, I was not going to miss seeing my baby.
There are 2 places I could hold him. His upper arm and upper thigh. Everywhere else had leads or IVs. I couldn't talk because he would recognize my voice and freak out, machines beeping, nurses would come running from all over and then I would get yelled at for talking after they stabilized him again.
On day 3, we thought we were going to lose Tyler, but there were so many people fasting and praying that I think that's what kept him alive. The doctors didn't think he would make it past that day.... That's when Dr. Null named him, "Miracle Tyler"!!! They had to pump him so full of fluids so that they could give him more of the meds that were keeping him alive that he ended up looking like a little line backer!!! He almost doubled his birth weight in 3 days.
On day 5, it was time for surgery to put all of his insides back in the right order and put a patch to act as his diaphragm. I will never forget the words I whispered to my newborn when I had to leave him for surgery, "Just do what your Heavenly Father tells you to do". They are the same words I tell him today.
I can't tell you how hard it was for all of us to see him like this. Especially knowing that we weren't out of the woods yet. He could die anytime, still. He was on complete life support. Lots of sounds, beeping, and smells that would become so familiar to us. After his surgery, he kept getting better without looking back. Our 4-6 month stay in the NICU would turn into a short 28 days!!! Everyday he just got better and better. He's been a determined little boy since birth.
On day 11 was the first time we got to hold our son. That's a LONG time to wait. My arms were aching so bad. When we finally got to hold him, we didn't want to ever put him down!!! This is what stress did to me... I lost 40 pounds in 2 weeks. I only gained 10 pounds during the whole pregnancy. I wouldn't recommend this weight loss plan to anyone!!!
Here is the baby we got to take home, still named "Miracle Tyler", the miracles that happened at the hospital on this stay would not be his last. He continues to make doctors shake their heads in disbelief that he's doing SO good. His "lasting" health problems, extremely flat feet (which could have come from the Campbell side of the family) and an extra rib on both sides (which will be handy if he ever needs to make some Eves from them)!!! NOTHING ELSE!!!
I'm so happy that Heavenly Father trusted me enough to let my son live. I just hope I do a good enough job to make Him proud. Tyler, Happy Birthday!!! I love you more than you know!!!
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