Friday, September 18, 2015

September 18 - Dear Nicholas Sparks (Guest Blogger Angie Finley)

Dear Mr. Sparks,

Our son Tyler Anthony Finley was born May 9,1998 with a diaphragmatic hernia. We were very upset to learn that our baby was sick. Troy and I found out that Tyler had a hernia when I was 4 months pregnant through a routine sonogram. My OB/GYN sent us to a hospital in St. Louis Missouri to get monograms and an amniocentesis. We live in Centralia Illinois approximately 77 miles from the hospital.

The ultrasound tech and doctors confirmed Tyler did have a diaphragmatic hernia. They gave me several options. Carrying him to full term, possibly terminating the pregnancy or sending me to Colorado for an in utero surgery. The only option for us was carrying him to full term. If we lost our baby we would deal with that when it happened, if it happened. I went for sonograms once a month. Then it turned into once a week. When I was 36 weeks pregnant an amniocentesis showed lung maturity. The doctors, in St. Louis, where I would deliver, scheduled me to be induced on May 12,1998. On May 9,1998 I went into labor myself. Tyler was on his way. We were nervous and excited all in one. Tyler was born at 10: 16 p.m. He weighed 6lbs and 4oz. The doctor who delivered Tyler didn't want him to cry, but he did. We didn't even get to hold Tyler when he was born. The staff took him to another room to intubate him and prepared him for the transport to Cardinal Glennon Children's Hospital in St. Louis. The nurses even wheeled my bed to the NICU so I could be with him while they were getting him ready. The transport team even brought him into my room before they left.

I went to CGCH after I was discharged from the hospital. When I walked into the NICU and saw Tyler I sat in a chair and cried. Troy had already been up to see him, but he couldn't explain how many tubes and monitors were hooked to Tyler, and he knew what to expect, I didn't. He tried to prepare me, but I didn't think Tyler would look like he did. He looked so helpless. My baby did not even look sick, but he was. Tyler underwent surgery to repair the hernia when he was 5 days old. After that they had their ups and downs with him. He'd do really well one day and bad the next. He had to have one blood transfusion and his oxygen levels went up and down. They tried to turn the oxygen level down but his blood gases would come back bad and they would have to turn it back up. When Tyler was 2 weeks old we finally got to hold him. It was so wonderful to hold our son.

A few days after that we got to try to feed him but he couldn't get the concept of sucking, swallowing, and breathing at the same time. Finally around July 98 he finally started to suck a bottle briefly. He did well but not much stayed in his stomach, he had reflux very bad. He'd drink 1 ounce and 7 would come up. Tyler had a Nissen Fundoplication and a G-tube inserted on July 17,1998.

Then everything stood still. I became frustrated with everyone, especially the doctors. I was upset about everything. I felt I wasn't being a mother and that Tyler wouldn't even know whom his mother was. I couldn't stay at the hospital with him because I had to work so every night we would make the hour and a half trip to see Tyler. We'd only get to stay a little while because we had to get home because we both had to go to work the next morning. Finally I told the doctor's exactly how I felt and 3 short weeks later Tyler came off the oxygen and on August 1,1998 he got to come home. He came home on an apnea monitor and of course he had his feeding tube

He was hospitalized in our hometown in September 1998 with pneumonia. A week after he was discharged he was admitted again. I thought to myself, here we go again. But it was a short stay and he got to come home. Tyler started taking a bottle when he was nine months old and we didn't have to use his feeding tube anymore but the docs would not take it out until he was a year old. His feeding tube was removed two days after his first birthday. Tyler is going to be twenty months old on the ninth and he eats like crazy. He has a partial right lung and a fall left lung. His weight is lower than most 20 month olds but we figure he has conquered so many obstacles in his life so far who cares if he weighs only 20 pounds and just recently started walking by himself. He breaths heavier when he plays and things but that doesn't stop him from having fun and acting like a healthy baby with two lungs. Tyler is our miracle baby and we are so happy to have him in our lives.

Tyler's mom, Angie Finley (Illinois)

No comments:

Post a Comment