Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Cade Phillip Gronseth - He's here!

Hey I just wanted to send out a quick update. Cade Phillip Gronseth came quite a bit early and surprised us a whole lot, but we are so happy to have him and can't wait to show him off! He was born yesterday, June 23rd, at 7:44 PM. At birth he was 5 lbs, 11 oz, and he was 19" long. Susie was 34 weeks along, so he was about six weeks early. They initially attempted to slow the contractions down, but she kept dilating, so they took him.

Because he was early his lungs are not fully developed. He's been in a special care nursery, and the nurses in there have been taking great care of him. The only major thing they are doing right now is keeping him in an oxygen enriched atmosphere under a hood (pictures below). The air around us is 20.9% oxygen. The atmosphere his little head is in is at 30% oxygen, so it's not a huge difference, but it's enough to make a difference for him.

They tried taking him out of the hood early this morning, but his respiratory rate went up too high and they had to put him back in. At this point there isn't a firm date of when we'll be able to take him home. They're evaluating him hour-by-hour; he could come home in a couple days, or it could be a couple weeks. But we are praising God that he wasn't bad enough off to need to be flown to a more serious care unit in Evansville. I will write more about him and Susie and the delivery when I can, I just wanted to get this post out there to let everyone know how he's doing and see what he looks like! Thank you so much for your prayers. They are important, and little Cade still needs them. His lungs are still developing, but the doctors and nurses are pleased with his progress right now.

Here's a picture of him right after he was born (not for audiences of all ages). :)

This picture brings tears to my eyes when I look at it. This is right after he was born before they took him to the special care unit. When I look at Susie's face, I can see every single emotion she poured out and every single emotion I was feeling at that point too: relief, exhaustion, love, apprehension over Cade's health, unexplainable joy, and many more. I can't describe what it felt like to be with Susie during Cade's birth. She was a super-woman. Completely natural, with no epidural. She set her mind and was determined to do it that way and was incredible.

This is Cade in the special care unit. The white, red, and black monitors on his chest are monitoring his heart and respiratory rate. The gold heart is monitoring his skin temperature. He's under a heat light and the gold heart gives feedback to the lamp to heat up or cool off, kind of like the thermostat in your house. The plastic hood is to keep his head in an oxygen enriched atmosphere. The oxygen/air mix comes in through the blue tube at the top. I'm not sure, but it could be Air Liquide oxygen. :) The cord going into his left sock is to monitor his blood's oxygen content, which, along with his respiratory rate is a very important indicator of his lungs' function. There's also a blood pressure cuff near his right ankle that they hooked up as well. Another thing they hadn't inserted at this point is a small tube going in through his nose down to his stomach. When he's too tired to eat Susie's milk they feed it to him through that tube. If he were to eat every three hours it would wipe him out at this point and he wouldn't have the strength he needs to continue improving. They also left his umbilical cord longer than normal (it's sticking out of the diaper) because if had needed to send him to Evansville the cord is a handy place to insert an IV. I know it looks like a lot, and I can completely identify with the words of the song "Wires," by Athlete, but everything serves a purpose and he's really not as bad off as it looks.

Proud daddy with his son!

Late last night we brought some of Susie's milk to the nursery and they let us feed it to him. Afterwards they let me burp him! He kept nodding off in my hands. He was so cute. You can see the feeding tube in his nose that I mentioned earlier.

Proud mommy with her baby at about 3:00 am this morning when we fed him. It was so great to hold him!

Susie's parents, Lynn and Velma, made the drive when they found out she was in labor and arrived around 1:00 AM, so we had to take picture with everyone!

Here's my little slugger in my arms at last! They let us hold him outside the hood briefly but we had to keep the hose pointed at his face. You can see it in Susie's hand to the lower left. We tried to keep it out of the pictures as much as we could. There is no doubt the hardest part about this is not being able to scoop him up and hold him, so this moment was amazing. If you're a parent out there you'll know what I mean, and if you aren't just take my word for it: There is NO way to put into words all the feelings and emotions running through me right now. It is so intense, and it hurts so much to see him hooked up to stuff, but I know he's improving. Being a dad is incredible. I wouldn't trade him for anything.

Thank you to all for your prayers. Please keep them coming, especially for his little developing lungs. God has a plan for this little guy's life, and we can't wait to see it!


Anonymous said...

Oh my God Matt congrats man!! That is so amazing. We are praying for you and Cade! What a great name! If you couldn't go with Conner, I'd have chosen Cade :) Please keep us updated!

Anonymous said...

He's beautiful! We are so thankful for all of God's miracles.
Hugs and kisses to all. Love, Aunt Mar

Jason Tanner said...

Congratulations, we love you guys! He is fortunate to be born to such great parents. We will continue to pray for his lungs and pray that you guys will come home soon.
Jason, Natalie & Ella Grace Tanner