Monday, December 31, 2007

Moving Forward

This is a quick one.

The doctor is not quite as risk averse as we had thought. He decided this morning that since Halle is already 33 weeks, and the steroids have been administered, that we could move ahead.

They are taking her off the Magnesium right now, and we will be waiting to see what happens. Might be a 2007 baby. ;)


Yesterday they decided to try to remove the excess fluid. They did an amniocentesis with the goal of removing at least 3,000 ml of fluid. About 5 minutes into it, Halle had a really bad reaction to the procedure. She had a really hard contraction that ended up seizing the needle. She nearly passed out from the pain. The tried to ride it out for a few minutes, but Halle kept getting worse, so the immediately stopped the procedure and pulled the needle out, and administered a dose of Fentynol. That took about 5 minutes to take effect and Halle was exhausted and still in pain even after it kicked in.

That pretty much decided for them that they were no longer going to attempt to remove fluid, which means they were out of options. The Terbutalene is having no effect, the Magnesium is not really stopping the contractions and removing excess fluid is now out of the question.

So here's the current story.

Halle is still having a contraction about every 7 minutes. She is still on the Magnesium and is still having to endure all kinds of discomforts and needles every few hours. We just found out that Dr. Yin won't be back in town until January 2nd. In the meantime another doctor is in charge and he is very averse to risking anything without Yin's involvement. We aren't 100% for sure until we talk with him tomorrow morning. But it seems likely right now that he will want to just maintain status quo. So that would mean keeping Halle on the continued Magnesium IV, and hope that nothing changes to force our hand and require Jackson to be delivered. Then we'll hold out until Dr. Yin is able to be consulted on Wednesday. We have no idea what she'll want to do at that point.

Either Halle will be stuck on bedrest in the hospital until Jan. 8th which was the original plan. It is also possible that Yin will decide to let things just move forward. If that is the case, they will remove Halle from all medication and we'll most likely have Jackson soon.

So that's it for now. We'll be hanging out in the hospital when I'm not at work. I'm making the famous "Whittington New Year's Eve Shrimp Gumbo" and taking it to the hospital tomorrow night. Halle and I will be sharing it with all the nurses that we've gotten to know. ;)

Let me know if you have any questions or thoughts for Halle.

More updates to come.

Saturday, December 29, 2007


Last night Halle was having around 12 contractions an hour and they were getting stronger. So after 3 hours of that we went to Sierra Vista at about 10pm. Once we got there they immediately gave her a shot of Terbutalene. That didn't really do anything, so they gave her another at about 12am, and when that didn't work they gave her another shot and a pill at about 2am. At 4 am, there were no changes, and Halle was not dilating either so they decided to put her on a Magnesium drip. At about 8am, that was not having an effect either, so they brought in Dr. Shields to look check her out, and were wanting to do an Amniocenteses to remove the excess amniotic fluid. We were not a big fan of that idea except as a last resort, so we voted to increase the dosage of magnesium first to see if that would work. They also gave Halle an injection of steroids to start giving Jackson's lungs a boost in case he ends up coming early.

So here's where were are now.

Halle hasn't slept at all, what with all the injections, the side effects of the medication, and being ridiculously uncomfortable. I slept about 1 hour. I'm now at home trying to get some things together since Halle will be in the hospital until at least Monday morning at 8am. At that point the steroids will have had the desired results and it will be better for Jackson if he ends up coming early.

If the increased dosage of Magnesium doesn't work, they'll want to remove the excess fluid this afternoon. Side effects are infection and the possibility of Halle going into immediate labor.

We're not that worried about Jackson coming early because we both think that we're about a week and a half ahead of schedule. But keep us in your prayers. Pray mostly that Halle gets sleep, and that Jackson weathers this with the minimum amount of complications or stress.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007


Daniel and I wanted to update you with the latest happenings in the Whittington neck of the woods... We went in for our monthly ultrasound yesterday. It appears that Jackson is growing quite well, as he is now weighing about 4 lbs. 6 oz. The specialist told us we have a very large baby; most babies at this stage weigh almost 3 lbs. I am still measuring quite big for where we're at due to an increased amount of amniotic fluid. I should be measuring at about 31 weeks, but am measuring full-term. This poses a number of problems for both Jackson and myself.

I have been in quite a bit of back pain for a few weeks now, and as of last week was put on disability by my doctor, so I am no longer working. I was having a few contractions here and there, and have been very uncomfortable, but because this is all new to me, I haven't really known what should cause concern and what is normal.

At yesterday's ultrasound, the specialist said that I will need to begin having non-stress tests done twice per week from now on. Excess amniotic fluid can pose many risks to the baby, and can be associated with a high rate of fetal mortality. Thus, the regular non-stress tests. There is also a very high risk of preterm labor.

Well, today I received a call from my doctor's office to go in for my first non-stress test. I went in at 3:15pm today and they began monitoring Jackson. During my visit, I mentioned that I have been experiencing quite a bit of contractions. The doctor felt a few in the short time she was there and sent me over to Sierra Vista Hospital. I was there for a few hours while they monitored contractions and Jackson's heartbeat. I was having fairly significant contractions every 6 minutes, so they gave me a shot of tributelene which seemed to help slow them down right away. They administered a couple other tests while I was there, and at about 7:30pm I was released with strict orders. I am officially on complete bedrest. I can only get up to use the bathroom, and use the microwave to heat up meals if I have to. I was instructed to keep an ice chest next to the bed with any food and drink items easily accessible. (Daniel is currently shopping for those items as I write.) I can only drive to doctor's appointments, otherwise, I am to remain at home resting. I was also given a prescription for terbutalene which I am to take every four hours as contractions persist.

The good news is that other than his cleft, Jackson's heart, brain, kidneys and limbs all appear perfectly normal and healthy. And Daniel's doing great, able to drive and move around as usual, taking care of his bedridden wife. :) We're not sure how long I'll be on bedrest. It could very well be for the next 4-6 weeks. The doctors seem to think Jackson will make his appearance in early or mid January.

So, if you're in the area, and you have a bit of free time, please don't hesitate to come by and say hello. I'll be here. :) And please continue to pray for Jackson's health (and my sanity) over the next weeks, and that he would stay put long enough so that no other complications would come into play.

Lastly, it looks like we'll be going to UCLA for his surgery. We don't know much more than that at this point, but when we do, we'll fill you in. Thanks again for your prayers and support. We love you.