Tuesday, July 21, 2009

We're outta here!

It looks like we get to go home (wherever home happens to be for us) today! We may be in a hotel for a while if the Family House is full. But, wherever we end up, I'm sure it will be loads better than having nurses come in to readjust the baby monitor straps half the night. They have done a fantastic job, but you can only take so much of being poked and prodded and having sleep inturrupted to get your blood pressure taken.

By the way, this is Shelly writing, which means that things are leaps and bounds better than they were a few days ago. It has been a pretty rough go of it after surgery. I have never felt so horrible in my life. Sunday was an especially good day for me, so we were feeling awesome that night. However, due to heartburn, a baby who would not stay on monitor, and nurses who needed her to, I got about 2 hours of sleep Sunday night. So, yesterday was a bit of a bump in the road to recovery. Also, I was switched from IV meds to vicodin, which I never imagined would not completely cover any pain need I had, but it really starts creeping back in by hour 5 or 6 without the medicine. So, I think the general difference between what we had and a normal C-section is, my scar is about an inch longer on each side, and the incision inside is quite a bit longer and vertical, because of the size of the lesion on little Kaitlyn's back. Also, because Kaitlyn is put back inside and very active (which is awesome), I was repeatedly kicked and my uterus protested to the whole process. Then I got to have lots of fun medicine that made me feel just terrific. They had me on 6 g of magnesium sulfate after the surgery, and slowly inched down to about 3.5 until the next morning (2 g is the typical dosage given to delay preterm labor). But by now I think I'm pretty much at a place where I feel like a normal lady that just had a c-section. The contractions have stopped, and other than a few kicks from my girl, I just have some serious c-section pain in between drugs. Super fun!

Honestly though, I am so much better than I was those first few days, that I'm sure I'll be feeling great in a few more. I just have to take it easy and let Kendall wait on me hand and foot. Actually, I have no idea what I would have done without him. The poor guy is 6'2 and has had to sleep in a reclining chair that is significantly shorter than that. He walks me to the bathroom, gets me my food, puts anti-itch lotion on my back, pretty much gets me whatever I need since I am bound to the bed, takes care of all the phone calls and blog postings, and is just generally the best husband in the whole world. I love him like crazy, and there is no one I could have done this with other than him.

We are really excited about the results of everything, and feel that Kaitlyn is in great hands here. It is kind of scary when we think about how early she might come (the average is 8 weeks after the surgery, which would be at 32 weeks for us), but I guess we just have to focus on each week at a time. I feel so attached to her already, and have really fallen in love with her feisty spirit. Everytime we have an ultrasound, her head is facing a new direction and she puts on a little show. I know it is frustrating for them, but we are just two proud parents watching those feet move around.

The really tough part has been missing our other two little chubby-cheeked children. If I didn't know that Damon and Audrey were having the TIME OF THEIR LIVES in southern Utah at grandma's house, it would make it so much harder. They each have a cousin their same age and gender living there, and Damon can't even be pulled away from the fun for much more than a quick, "I love you mama." We can't wait til we can see them, and love when all of you send the pictures you have taken of your time with them. We are so appreciative to everyone who watched them while we've been gone, and hope that you had fun with them at your house. There is so much missing when we can't see them, but we do know that they will be back to see us, and we'll all be together soon enough. Right now, Kaitlyn has to get through the next few months, and then we'll all be back in Houston as one big family of 5.

Again, to repeat what Kendall has been saying, we couldn't have gotten through all of this without each of your prayers, service, phone calls, comments, and wonderful friendships. We feel like the luckiest people in the world to have so many people that love us. Thanks to all of you, and maybe our next post will be from somewhere much more pleasant than the hospital.


  1. Hurray for freedom! I'm so excited for you to get some better quality sleep. We had our little girl last week and after one night I was feeling pretty good and decided I would much rather take care of my newborn at home in my own bed than at the hospital with all the nighttime interruptions. I'm so glad to see you posting Shelly--you must be feeling better. And hopefully that improves every day.
    Just a sidenote--why is it that the places for husbands to sleep at the hospital are so darn uncomfortable? Is it because whoever designed them feels that husbands should have to endure some discomfort after birth too? Because really--there's got to be a way they could make something better than what they have.
    Anyway. Have fun getting out. And keep taking it easy (and taking your meds :) )

  2. I just came across your blog the other day and I have had your sweet family on my mind ever since. I am so glad you are feeling better and that the surgery went so well. What a blessing. We are parents of a daughter with SB (L5-S2), but did not have the surgery (my husband and I both did not feel good about it at the time six years ago). However, our good friends who also had a daughter with SB had the surgery and their daughter is walking and running and I really think it is because they had the fetal surgery. It just amazes me how much the doctors can do to these days!
    Please feel free to visit our blog and ask me any SB questions you might have. I must say having a child with SB can be so rewarding and will bring endless blessings into your home. We are so grateful for our Katie and for what she has taught us.
    Take Care,
    Sarah Hull

  3. Shelly,

    I'm so glad that you're feeling better. I'm excited to talk to you. I'll give you a call in the next couple of days. Please let me know if there is anything that we can do to help you out.


  4. I've been a negligent sister-in-law...I've been meaning to call you! But you are always in our prayers, and we are so excited to meet Kaitlyn (hopefully not for awhile yet, of course). I wish we could help more with Damon and Audrey.

    By the way, my friend Wendy (you may remember her--she was one of the ones who came with me to visit you in NYC back in '03) will be moving to Menlo Park in early September, and she's offered to help with whatever you guys need--meals, place to stay for people visiting, whatever. Her husband is a recent grad of UCLA Law and is taking his first job up there, and they have a little boy who was born in March. I told Mom about her offer and she said to pass it along.

    I am amazed at your strength and am so grateful to hear that you are doing so much better. Props to my big bro for being such an awesome husband! I'm so glad to know both of you! =)

  5. Counting our blessings is getting harder and harder! There are just so many! We are so glad you are well enough to graduate from the hospital, Shelly, and that you and Kendall can have a more comfortable place to sleep and be together at last. Kaitlyn does seem to have a strong, determined spirit, doesn't she? We know Damon and Audrey are in the best of hands, and that your reunion this weekend will be joyous. Hugs and kisses, and please don't overdo. You both need some rest! We love you.
    ~Mom & Dad

  6. So glad you're feeling better! And that Kaitlyn's doing so well too. We'll continue to pray for a speedy recovery and that Kaitlyn can be patient about seeing the rest of the world!

  7. It's so great to hear from you, Shelly! (Though Kendall has done a fantastic job of keeping us all informed). I'm so glad that you're getting out of the hospital and I know you will continue to feel better--it's so much easier when you're "home"!

  8. Just wanted you to know that we have been reading your blogs and are so happy things went well in the surgery! We've been thinking of you and praying for you!

  9. Oh Shelly! My heart jumped when you said that it was you writing. I'm so glad that you're feeling better and that baby Kaitlyn is moving so much. Every time I click on my google reader to see if anyone has posted anything, I mainly hope to see that you guys have written something.
    You guys have been in my prayers and thoughts. Nice to hear that you have a personal butler, can you send yours to train mine?? lol
    Lots of luv!

  10. Shell,
    good to see you posting! I'm glad you have such a good hubby too! Sorry you have to miss those cute little kids, but looks like you have the right attitude. We love you guys!

  11. Mom and Dad in Hurricane:

    Thanks for the great updates. I'm so excited that you have been able to do this last one, Shelly. We are thrilled that you can leave the hospital, but are grateful for the dedicated care you received both from the staff and from our amazing son-in-law. Thank you Kendall for watching out for her. I look forward to coming with the kids next week. We have had a great time here. I will get your computer savy siblings to post the pictures of our "pirate boys" in their ship. They each had a map, a hat, a cardboard sword and a cardboard gun. When I turned on the music to Pirates of the Carribean, they really began to play their roles. We even made treasure chests with gold for them to find. We love the kids. Audrey is a joy. Every time to doorbell rings she runs to the door and yells "I get it!" I could watch her for hours. We love you all. We love little Kaitlyn! Uncle Mike is has been great with the kids and Grandpa wrestled the boys and told them stories before bed last night.

    Love, Mom and Dad, Michael and Lindsay

  12. Shelly and Kendall,
    You are a wonderful couple with a great attitude since you see the big picture with Heavenly Father's plan. He must be pleased to see how excited you are to take care of this very special "fiesty" spirit. Thx for all the inspiration you give to the rest of us and thx so much for the updates (Aunt Debbie just told me about it today.) You're in my prayers! Love you!
    Aunt Jan
    PS I moved into my own place last month and am living by myself. I'm doing well, just having a hard time getting organized! Same email: janryan101@gmail.com

  13. Shelly, we are so glad to hear you are feeling better. I have been keeping up with this blog regularly and my heart goes out to you and your family. Not only trying to better the life for the little one growing inside you, but sacrificing being away from your other 2 children. I know that must be heartbreaking. You are both such strong people and have such incredible strength. Thank you for letting us be a part of this. You are in our thoughts and prayers. Love, Brad and Melissa Z.

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  16. Amanda and I have been thinking of your beautiful family ever since we found out about things that have happened to your family. Please know we will pray for the safe arrival of little Kaitlyn into this world. It is funny because we are thinking of naming one of our four little girls Kaitlyn. We want you to know that we love you guys, we have been so grateful for all you have done for us. May the Lord bless you all in these next few months. I know the Lord will take care of Shelly and Kaitlyn. You are amazing people, thanks for being such a great example to us all. We have a long road ahead of us, and You have given us strength.

  17. Hi Shelly-- i also was exstatic to see you are up and moving and feeling better enough to be the one posting. YAYYY! I am so relieved to hear that you are feeling better and Kaitlyn is moving and seeming to be doing good after the surgery. And that is awesome Kendall has been such a great support. I am sure it is hard missing your kids.. grandma/pa time is the best though.
    Hang in there and best of luck!

  18. It's wonderful to hear that the surgery went well and that your little girl has a feisty spirit. Advances in medicine are amazing... and miracles happen every day. Best wishes to the whole family.

  19. Your adorable family is in our daily prayers. We think of you all the time and hope you are feeling a small bit of the tremendous love that our ward has for you! I'm sorry you have to be so far away - we can't come shower you with support in person - but please know that our prayers are with you. I'm so impressed with your sacrifice and love for this precious little girl. I appreciate your great example!

  20. I loved seeing that this post was written by you, Shelly! Of course, I've enjoyed reading all of Kendall's posts :) but I was relieved for you that you were feeling well enough to write. You and your family have been in my thoughts and prayers so often the past few weeks. I'm so amazed by all that you've been going through and your positive outlook through it all. BTW, I thought I'd mention that a normal C-section is probably infinitely easier to recover from (in case you're nervous about the thought of having another one in a couple of months - I think I remember you said Kaitlin will be delivered via C-section). When I had Kaia, I followed the advice I was given to move around as soon and as frequently as possible, which I think helped. I can see how a lot of what you've had to go through with this recovery has been related to still being pregnant afterwards - it's incredible that they can even do that! I will continue to be thinking about you and praying for you. And I am really touched, also, to think about you, Kendall, and what an amazing support you've been to Shelly through this all. Kaitlin is so incredibly blessed to be born to parents like the two of you.