Easton has arrived!
He arrived Wednesday morning at 3:06 am, weighing in at 8lbs and 7.3 oz, and is 21'' long and couldn't be more perfect! We're both absolutely in love!
Labor and delivery wasn't the most comfortable experience ever but we made it and it was all worth it to have Easton in our arms. Unfortunately, he gave us a little scare the first night that caused him to end up in the NICU for a few days.
Easton sailed through labor like a champ and never showed any signs of distress, even during 2.5 hours of pushing. When he came out, he got a great APGAR score and did well really well, even through his bath! Because he was large for his gestational age (39 weeks, 4 days) they tested his blood sugar. His result was a 35 which was less than the minimum level of 40 they were looking for so the nurse told me to start breastfeeding on each side for 15 minutes immediately. He started out doing pretty well but kept getting sleepy. We switched to the second side and he fed for about five minutes but then fell asleep. Branch and I started to get worried because we couldn't wake him back up, even though we were tickling his feet and gently shaking him. I felt his chest and he still had a strong heartbeat but we quickly realized he wasn't breathing. Branch sprung into action and got our delivery nurse back in the room. She stayed calm and paged the baby nurse when she too was unable to get him to start breathing. When after 15 seconds the second nurse wasn't in the room, Branch ran out of the room to get help and the nurse hit the "Code Pink" button. Within seconds, 8 people surrounded our tiny new baby - needless to say we were pretty scared parents.
Shortly after the group arrived, they got him breathing. Another blood sugar test resulted in a level 16 - well short of the 40 they were looking for. They immediately took him to the NICU which was located 2 doors down from our labor and delivery room. Branch and I took turns keeping our composure as they informed us that everything would be fine and we could see him again as soon as the NICU opened for visitors at 8am. We then had to make the emotional trek to the postpartum area - sadly without our new baby in tow.
They started his care by immediately getting him on a glucose IV drip which brought his blood sugar levels up. From what we can piece together, he was pretty discombobulated from delivery but it's not uncommon for newborns to have trouble figuring out the feeding process. When his blood sugar levels started dropping, he became drowsy and lethargic. When I fed him, he began to choke and just didn't have the energy to expel the milk, causing him to stop breathing. Fortunately, it appears to be a one time thing, he hasn't had any episodes since.
Needless to say, Easton has made the most of his 36 hours spent in the NICU so far and is doing great! Technically, he is under "Intermediate Care" but is located in the NICU. According to the nurses, it's like getting Ritz Carlton treatment at Super 8 Motel prices. Every time we go to visit him, we see huge improvements in his appearance (his head is already rounded out and his color has improved), his blood sugar levels (currently up in the 70s), and his ability to eat. We're also getting lots of training by the experts on how to change his diapers, feed and burp him. Not only are the NICU nurses and doctors taking great care of our baby, but great care of his parents as well :)
They started feeding him small amounts of formula towards the end of day 1. The plan is to drop the amount of IV fluid he receives each hour but it needs to be balanced out by the amount of formula he takes in. So far, so good! While we're still waiting on blood work to confirm it, we're hoping to be able to bring him home by Saturday. I'll be discharged tomorrow and while I'm pretty torn up about having to leave my baby behind, I know he's being well taken care of and will use the night at home wisely to get rest before the baby arrives!
Thank you all for your prayers and well wishes! We know it has gone far to speed up his recovery!