Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Day 6

Today started off bitter sweet: We got a great report from the doctors this morning. They planned to lower Walker's settings on his jet ventilator throughout the day and see how he handled it. By doing it slowly, they are basically weening him to be able to breathe on his own.  Their goal was to get him on a miniature CPAP machine for preemies hopefully this afternoon. While we were ecstatic about this news and his progress, the bitter sweet portion was for Daddy. Because the process of removing the jet ventilator, requires removing his breathing tube, it can be stressful on Walker. So the nurses told Daddy it could likely be tomorrow before he was able to hold Walker. 

Walker also got a visit today from Brent Collins, a high school friend of Mommy and Daddys, who got to see how well he was doing.  He also had a visit from one of the Associate Ministers from Ardmore Baptist Church, a local church here in Winston, that has been praying for baby Walker!  We know it is because of the  prayers from so many people and churches that Walker is doing so well!

After having his ventilator tube taken out and being put on the CPAP machine around 5pm his vital signs and oxygen levels remained strong all evening!  Mommy and Daddy were so proud of how well he was doing breathing on his own, what a strong little boy!  Even better than that, nurse Kayla gave Daddy some wonderful news!  His strong little boy was stable and doing well enough for Dad to have his very first "kangaroo time"!  The smile on Daddy's face was priceless, and the time with Walker in his arms was indescribable!  He was able to feel his little boy breathing against his chest, what a wonderful feeling! 

Walker also had his first experience with a pacifier and it was absolutely adorable! Also, because the breathing tube was in his airway Walker had been unable to make sounds.  But tonight with the tube out, and his new breathing machine, Mommy and Daddy were able to hear his sweet little voice for the first time!  The sweetest sound they had ever heard! 

Today was another WONDERFUL day of firsts for baby Walker, and Mommy and Daddy and they can see exactly what a work God is doing through little Walker as he touches hearts and lives day after day!

Also a special thanks to Auntie Sandy for setting up the GoFundMe Donation Page for Walker today!

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Day 5

Today Walker had another good day.   This morning I heard my Mommy's voice first thing and opened my eyes to see her and Daddy standing there to see me, what a great way to start my day!  The nurses are working to maintain all Walker's levels and keep me stable and he is doing well on his ventilator!  Walker's blood sugar dropped a little low today, down to 34, but the nurses fixed him up and he was back up to 86!  Walker was a very active boy today he was wiggling around and even used his little legs to push his bottom off his bed surprising Mommy and Daddy.

Walker also had a lot of visitors today, what a loved little boy!  Sandy and her mom Martha came bringing goodies for Mommy and Daddy and also some gifts for Walker, he now has a blankie hanging on his IV stand!  He also had a visit from Tim and Amanda Hunt his grandparent's preacher, and his great grandparents Mamaw and Papaw Pruett!  Also Mommy's friends Emily and Alissa came to visit and brought gifts as well.  We are definitely one blessed family surrounded by so many people who love us so much!

Walker also got to listen to his very first story "The Littlest Turtle" which he loved.  All about a little turtle who is brave and perfect just the way he is!  It is definitely my new favorite story and I can't wait for Mommy to read it again tomorrow!  Walker has done well with his feedings, and tomorrow they will up his food intake to 2cc!

As a great way to end his 5th day, Walker got to have the best first yet: around 9:30 while Mommy and Daddy were visiting, the nurse asked if Mommy wanted to try "kangarooing". This is where preemies get placed directly on their parents chest and covered with heated blankets. The day Mom and Dad finally arrived and they jumped at the chance to hold their little boy. After some rearranging of some tubes and wires, Baby Walker was laid on his mommy's chest, skin to skin. Sitting here trying to describe the feeling of holding Walker for the very first time after 5 days of limited touch is impossible. Other than to say, the greatest moment of my life! He stayed on Mommy chest comfortably for what was definitely the best hour ever. Hopefully tomorrow will be Daddy's turn to experience this indescribable joy.

Monday, April 28, 2014

Day 4

Most preemies experience a “honeymoon” period that last from 24-48 hours and then the time after can be very critical for these new babies.  So far baby Walker has remained stable and had excellent nurses monitoring him around the clock!  He has continued doing well with his small feedings and digesting his food!   He is also doing well with his “Jet Ventilator” which helps him breath by blowing 420 tiny puffs of air every minute into his tiny lungs.  He has been on this type of ventilator since his second day and it seems to be working well for him.  

Today he got another good report from his doctors and everything seems to be stable and moving in the right direction.  Along with countless visits from Mommy and Daddy and his grandparents throughout the day, Walker also got a visit from his Uncle Steve who was amazed by the strong little boy!  Each day as God helps our lil boy get stronger as only He can we fall more and more in love!  Thank you is not enough for us to say to everyone that has been there for our boy during this time, especially through prayers!

Sunday, April 27, 2014

Day 3

On Sunday, Baby Walker was again stable and after Mom and Dad spoke with his doctor’s during morning rounds, it was decided they would start to try to feed him some of Mom’s milk. They started with 1cc (about an 1/8th of a teaspoon) fed through a syringe into a feeding tube in his stomach. They would check every 3 hours to see how he was digesting the milk and then decide how to proceed. The doctor’s warned Mom and Dad that feeding could sometimes be a very slow process as preemies often have a hard time processing food and could take many attempts before he would be able to do so. 

This was not the case with our strong little boy! He was able to completely digest his first feed and several other feedings that day! Only 48 hours old and already making Mommy and Daddy so proud!  He also had visits from family friends Doug and Jodie Hall who were in awe of his tiny self!  Later that afternoon he also got a visit from his Uncle and Aunt Jordan and Tori and his very excited cousin Kaden who had lots of questions and gifts for baby Walker!

Not to be forgotten, it was finally Mommy’s turn to change a diaper (something that not every first time mom would be so excited about!).  It is a scary thing changing a diaper that is no bigger than the palm of your hand, but both Mommy and Daddy are becoming pros!  Baby Walker also received his first “Report Card” detailing his progress:  He had regained about 20 grams putting him almost back to his birth weight of 1lb 3ozs and had zero episodes requiring intervention from his nurses!  All A’s as far as Mommy and Daddy are concerned!  His wonderful nurses have been so great and really work hard taking such great care of baby Walker and making sure that Mommy and Daddy feel included!

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Day 2

On Saturday Morning, after a long hard night, and still nameless, Baby Pruett was holding his own. This was a major accomplishment because the first 24 hours are very tough for Preemies. Dad was able to visit and even got to change a diaper, what a first!

Also that morning, Mom and Dad settled on a name: Walker Colt Pruett!

Such a loved baby already, Baby Walker had visits from  family again, and also, the preacher and his wife from Mommy and Daddy’s church, the Bailey’s also from church,  Llamar his great grandparents preacher, the Kogers from his grandparents church, and close family friends – the Gary’s (Tim, Sandy, Mason, and Taylor Jo) and the Mize’s (Ramie, Joy, and Andrew). 
He was a busy boy already, but still was dying to see his mommy (or maybe it was the other way around) who was finally able to see and touch him for the first time around 3 PM. She was able to hold his little hand and get a report from the nurses about how well Walker was doing.

Later that afternoon, we got a visit from a wonderful lady from Capturing Hopes Photography asking if she could include beautiful baby Walker in her 100 Days preemie photo shoot. We were excited for this great opportunity to capture Walker’s progress and see him grow day to day. Such a blessing!

Friday, April 25, 2014

Walker's Story

First of all, we want to say thank you to too many people to name for the countless calls, messages, visits, thoughtful gestures and most of all, prayers. Here is Walker's Story:
On Monday, April 21st, at our regularly scheduled sonogram, we received bleak news about Baby Pruett's progress (we still didn't know if we were having a boy or girl). On Tuesday, after an answered prayer, we were able to see a specialist in Greensboro. Dr. Decker told us that Baby Pruett had Restricted Growth due to Insufficient Placenta. Meaning, the placenta wasn't providing the nutrients the baby needed to grow and was already 2 weeks behind. Erica was only 25 weeks and 5 days pregnant. Dr. Decker immediately sent us to Forsyth Medical Center in Winston Salem, NC. We were greeted by wonderful and caring staff that took care of us over the next several days. Baby Pruett was monitored daily with sonograms and constantly hooked up to fetal heart rate monitor to make sure he was stable.

After several days of monitoring, and prayers that he would stay stable, on Friday morning, Baby Pruett decided he had other plans. At 11:50am, his heart rate plummeted from an average 150 beats a minute to 70 beats a minute. Our team of doctors decided it was time for him to meet the world via emergency C-section and he arrived at 12:15 on Friday, April 25, 2014.

An ecstatic daddy was able to trim his cord and hold his tiny hand for the very first time. The nurses put the baby in a plastic bag to protect his under-developed skin and quickly transported him to the NICU. A nervous daddy waited anxiously in the recovery room for mommy to come out of surgery. When she finally woke up, he was able to share the wonderful news that they had a baby boy!

It was around 5PM on Friday afternoon before mommy was able to be wheeled by the sweet baby boy’s crib to see him for the first time. According to the nurses, he was stable and doing well for such a small boy – a micro-preemie.

Once he was stable, Dad was able to return for a visit and show off his new son to his grandparents, Ricky and Kerry, Jennifer and Bart, Stacey, his great grandparents, Mamaw and Papaw Pruett, his Great-Aunt Jeanette, and his Uncle David.