Sunday, December 30, 2007

Coy is once again making us a little nervous. He is severely swollen due to the fact that he has not urinated over the last few days. His weight is up to 2 lbs 3 ounces but this is from all of the fluid on his little body. We need Coy to pee, Please pray for him to start going so he can rid his body of the excess fluid that has caused him to swell.
They have had to increase his ventilator settings today, please pray for the fluid to get off his lungs so he can breath easier. Please pray for the team of doctors and nurses that are treating Coy. Pray that they will devise the right gameplan for Coy.

Our Pastor had a very appropriate sermon today that discussed the difference between faith and fear and said that these are two tracks that we can take for our life. Whatever track you are on, it takes you further away from the other. We are doing our best to be on the faith track, trying to replace our fears with God's promises of healing and protection. We are not sure, but feel that God is testing our faith with each of these hurdles that Coy is having to overcome.

Thanks for your prayers. Please continue to pray for our little buddy.

Saturday, December 29, 2007


today has been a tough day for me
I am having lots of questions; questioning why things happen like they do...everyone tells me "God didn't make you have Coy early"--well, why didn't he prevent it then? he knew it was going to happen, right?? I prayed everyday for a healthy, term pregnancy; why does a baby have to suffer? an innocent, sweet baby...
the bible says that it is God's will for you to be healed--we are praying for healing; praying, praying, praying...Chris says God doesn't give you everything you want...well God, I'm not asking for a new car or a job promotion or for the Texans to win the Superbowl, I want my son; I want my son to be free of pain, free of disease and illness...what gives? I don't understand....
this has been a tough week--we are exhausted, stressed; trying to find the time to eat and sleep
I have been reading God's word; feeling very hopeful, strong, courageous; knowing that God's going to heal my son; Coy will battle this and win--people always tell me how strong I am...really, me? I am not feeling strong tonight; I am not strong...just a mother in love with her child who would give anything and do anything for his healing...
People say "you are going to have weak moments..."; yeah, I guess so; weak moments...

I find peace in Proverbs 3:5-6 "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight."
so it leads me back to my faithful, hopeful optomism; trusting in the Lord
we must trust in the Lord; it's all we have...

below are the lyrics to "He's My Son" by Mark Schultz...awesome song that sums up my feelings right now...

I'm down on my knees again tonight
I'm hoping this prayer will turn out right
See there is a boy that needs Your help
I've done all that I can do myself
His mother is tired
I'm sure You can understnad
Each night as he sleeps
She goes in to hold his hand
And she tries not to cry
As the tears fill her eyes

Can You hear me?
Am I getting through tonight?
Can You see him?
Can You make him feel all right?
If You can hear me
Let me take his place somehow
See, he's not just anyone
He's my son

Sometimes late at night I watch him sleep
I dream of the boy he'd like to be
I try to be strong and see him through
But God who he needs right now is You
Let him grow old
Live life without this fear
What would I be
Living without him here
He's so tired and he's scared
Let him know that You're there


Can You hear me?
Can You see him?
Please don't leave him
He's my son

Friday, December 28, 2007

quick update

here's a quick update on Coy from today....

His urine output has decreased again...the doctors are now relating this to the Vancomycin (Duh, didn't I say this last week??)
So are main concern still remains the infection...PLEASE PRAY FOR NEGATIVE BLOOD CULTURES!! As soon as we can rid this infection, Coy can stop the Vancomycin!!
We still need continued prayers for: mature lung function, to rid the infection, urine output to stabilize, brain development, Coy tolerates all feedings, oxygen requirement decreases, good blood gases....

Thanks and GOD BLESS you all!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

better days...

"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power. Put on the full armor of God so that you can take your stand against the devil's schemes." Ephesians 6:10-11

I'm happy to report that I did not want to physically assault any member of Coy's health care team today. It was a MUCH better day! His day shift primary nurse (she takes care of Coy when every time she works) is AWESOME!! He looked so cute when I got there to see him about noon...

Everyday when I get to the hospital, I never know what the day will bring. I am always so nervous to walk down the hallway and open the door to Coy's pod. I think I hold my breath when I first get there; that's usually when the nurses/ doctors inform us of the "bad news" first.

Today I was greeted by much better news...Coy's abdominal U/S was normal! Thanks be to God! This is great news since Coy's had lots of renal issues...
His echocardiogram was done news on this yet, please pray that Coy's heart looks "normal" and his PDA is closed!!
We have heard that another blood culture came back positive...Infectious Disease docs recommended Vanc and the other antibiotic Coy is currently on...we really need to beg God to rid this infection....Please pray for this tonight!!
Coy's urine output was awesome yesterday!! This morning it began to decrease again...please pray for this to regulate...

I was able to hold Coy today for 3 hours; this is our favorite time together...he kept reaching his left hand up and feeling my neck/ chest..he is just so adorable when he looks at you with those beautiful eyes...

Please pray for our little friend Kyle, who like Coy is a 23 weeker, he is now 2 months old...pray against a disease called NEC, pray against an infection...

Some specific prayer requests for Coy: THAT he will be infection FREE soon, PDA to remain closed, Lungs mature and grow, Renal function regulates, fluid excretes off his lungs, brain remains free of bleeds, against NEC in his GI tract, that Coy continues to tolerate feeds, that blood gases are AWESOME and he can be weaned off the ventilator soon...

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

God hear our prayers

"O Lord,hear my prayer,
listen to my cry for mercy;
in your faithfulness and righteousness come to my relief.
Do not bring your servant into judgement,
for no one living is righteous before you.
The enemy purses me, he crushes me to the ground;
he makes me dwell in darkness like those long dead.
So my spirit grows faint within me;
my heart within me is dismayed.
I remember the days of long ago;
I meditate on all your works and consider what your hands have done.
I spread out my hands to you;
my soul thirsts for you like a parched land
Answer me quickly, O Lord; my spirit fails.
Do not hide your face from me
or I will be like those who go down to the pit.
Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love,
for I have put my trust in you.
Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.
Rescue me from the enemies, O Lord; for I hide myself in you.
Teach me to do your will, for you are my God;
may your good Spirit lead me on level ground.
For your name's sake, O Lord, preserve my life;
in your righteousness, bring me out of trouble.
In your unfailing love, silence my enemies;
destroy all his foes, for I am your servant." Psalm 143

I read this verse tonight while sitting next to Coy's bedside and it just spoke to me...God please hear our prayers, let Coy have a good night, let us hear "good" news in the morning, please bring Coy out of pain, please rid the infection from his body...

First the bad news: 1) Coy's infection is still present, a blood culture did come back positive from 12/22 and 12/25--another antibiotic was started in addition to the Vancomycin, a renal u/s & Echo will be done, and Infectious disease doctors were consulted........PLEASE PRAY FOR COY TO FIGHT THIS INFECTION!! 2) Coy did not receive adequate nursing care today--actually I classify his care today as negligent--(he will not have this nurse back as we complained to management) 3) Due to his poor nursing care, Coy's ET tube came out (tube connected to his ventilator that allows him to breathe and receive oxygen) It was emergently placed back in by the wonderful transport nurses & nurse practitioners (who I am so thankful for!!) 4) Due to his poor nursing care today, one of his IVs that was not monitored closely infiltrated and burned his skin (these can be very severe where plastic surgery will be consulted) Coy did receive medication injected into his skin around the burn to lessen it--as of 9pm, it looked much better 5) Due to his poor nursing care, he is at increased risk for further infections as this nurse did not understand that you CHANGE your gloves when you have touched every object in the room then come back to do a procedure on a patient

let me say we have had AWESOME nursing care the past few weeks in the NICU, these nurses are amazing! What makes me mad is laziness and having no compassion--don't be a nurse, be something else where laziness wont kill someone

Okay, now that's over, here's the good news: 1) Coy began to urinate again 2) Coy has a WONDERFUL night nurse that takes care of him most nights 3) He was sleeping comfortably when we left him 4) They began giving him 1cc of breast milk every 3 hours which he tolerated 5) God is giving me grace and forgiveness of the day shift nurse and kept me from physically assaulting her today (Okay, so I'm not a confrontational person, but Yes, I was that mad!) 6) God has given us great support in the NICU from other parents---Thanks Kelly and John for listening to our frustrations; y'all are awesome!!

Thanks to all of you for continuing to pray for Coy; we are in desperate need of prayers continually; each day brings new mountains to climb; we are so lucky to have so much love and support....

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Happy Birthday Jesus!

"But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed." Isaiah 53:5

Thanks be to God for sending us our saviour Jesus Christ! Happy Birthday Jesus!

Christmas has been wonderful for Chris & I; we were able to spend time with both of our families and were blessed enough to have another day with our beautiful baby boy. We are also just in love with our nephew, Ryder, & were able to see him for the past two days. He could really be a baby model--Jenny & Tim had some pictures made of him that are just amazing!! And his very high pitched squeal makes me laugh every time! I can already see Coy and his cousin next year at Christmas; Wow, that will be a handful! And a welcomed one at that!

Today Coy had a "boring" day, which in the NICU world is a good thing. He did begin to urinate last night after his dopamine dosage was increased; still not enough urine to make the doctors happy, but it was a start. He received another blood transfusion today; usually after he gets blood, his urine output increases---please pray this tonight for Coy! That his urine output would regulate and remain stable...

His past two blood cultures have had no growth--one at 72hours, the other at 48 hrs and so far, a third culture has been negative at 24 hrs they will no longer have to draw a blood culture every morning...Coy will most likely remain on the Vancomycin (at a decreased dose though---thank goodness!) through the end of the week. Please pray for God to keep Coy infection free for the rest of his stay in the NICU; please pray the doctors and nurses and respiratory therapists use extra caution when handling our baby boy! (and all babies in the NICU)

The doctors are also telling us that "most likely" Coy's PDA had opened--he is showing symptoms they look for with a patent ductus--widening pulse pressures, fluid on the lungs, frequent desaturations--please pray that God has closed his PDA for good! Pray that these symptoms will reside and the doctors will be amazed (again!) that his ductus is closed!

I have prayed all day for God to take the fear out of Chris and I, our families and friends; the NICU reminds me of a casino--constant dinging, alarms, IV pumps beeping, etc; as an old NICU nurse, I am constantly looking at Coy's monitor to assess his vitals---I need God to take this fear/ worry out of me; I know God is in control; I have trusted in him to heal my child; I am claiming that he is healing Coy, this brings comfort into my heart and soul, and takes away the fear of the unknown..."I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears." Psalm 34:4

Please pray for a friend's mother tonight; she was rushed to the hospital today with a very weak pulse and had to be intubated, we have since heard she is stable but sedated...she has been a inspiration to us during this difficult time--she battled cancer many years ago and was cured of the disease using the Lord as her strength...pray for her healing; pray for the strength and comfort of her family at this time...

Monday, December 24, 2007

Merry Christmas!

"He sent forth his word and healed them; he rescued them from the grave." Psalm 107:20

A quick update from today....

Coy's urine output has decreased again; he was hardly urinating at all today---so they increased his dopamine dosage---please BEG God for Coy's renal function to regulate; pray that his blood pressure remains stable; pray that Coy is infection free; pray for Coy's comfort level, that he is not in pain; pray for his PDA to remain closed; pray for the fluid to be excreted from him lungs/ body; pray for the doctors and nurses who are taking care of him

Thanks be to God for all he's given to us! He is our true savior! Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 23, 2007

day 20...

"And the prayer offered in faith will make the sick person well; the Lord will raise him up." James 5:15

I must start by saying THANKS BE TO GOD! After all our begging & pleading, God has blessed our little man with the ability to urinate! Yes, Coy urinated all day, alot! He still has fluid on his lungs, however was requiring slightly less oxygen today; his blood gases remain stable...we are so thankful to our savior Jesus Christ!

Christmas this year has a new meaning to our families and Chris and I. It seems so cliche, but no material good is important to us anymore...all we want for Christmas is for God to heal our son! I know God uses events in our lives for different purposes; I truly feel he wanted to become closer to us, our families, friends, co-workers, relatives, etc. Do you think he used us because we invited so many people to our wedding?? (my attempt at humor...insert laughter) I was raised in the Catholic church, went to "Sunday school" until I was confirmed as a Junior in high school, have attended church my entire life, have prayed at night, however, I have never been as close to God as seems the more you pray and talk to him the closer you become. Over the past three weeks, I have been angry with God, questioning my faith, wondering why he chose us and Coy--I am now understanding that God wants relationships with us; I am now realizing how Great our God is; how he uses events in our lives to bring us closer to him. As I sit next to Coy's bedside, I beg and plead with God; for Coy to breathe, for Coy to urinate, for Coy to be free of infection; I know there may not be any immediate response, however I know the Lord is hearing my prayers, I know he will answer in his own way.

"And I say unto you, Ask, and it shall be given you; seek, and ye shall find; knock, and it shall be opened unto you. For every one that asketh receiveth; and he that seeketh findeth; and to him that knocketh it shall be opened." Luke 11:9-10

Some specific prayer requests for Coy tonight:
1) for his PDA to remain closed
2) for the antibiotics to work and rid the infection
3) for the antibiotics to be at therapeutic levels and not harm Coy's kidneys
4) for Coy to have adequate urine output
5) for Coy to remain free of bleeding in the brain
6) for Coy to excrete to fluid in his lungs
7) for Coy's lungs to mature and grow
8) for Coy to tolerate breast milk, that it will nourish his body
9) for Coy's oxygen requirement be lowered
10) for his blood gases to remain "good"
11) for Coy to remain comfortable and "pain" free
12) for the wisdom and endurance of his nurses and doctors

Thanks to all you prayer warriors! May each of you feel the blessings that our little boy is receiving! We are so thankful to each and every one of you!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

We need pee!

Just a quick update on Coy....

Yes, we again need prayers for pee! Since Coy has been back on the antibiotic Vancomycin, his urine output has dropped dramatically! The poor little thing is swelling everywhere; his tiny little hands and feet are puffy. The Lasix (or Lactose and Latex as my parents called it) they gave him yesterday and today, has not worked; He has fluids going in, however, not much is coming yes, please pray for Coy's urine output to increase and for it to stay sufficient...please pray he is able to excrete the extra fluids he is retaining.

His last two blood cultures have both come back positive; meaning the infection is still present...please pray that this antibiotic is effective in getting rid of this infection & that the antibiotic is not harming our little man....when neonates get infections, they're platelets & RBC levels drop, so tonight Coy will receive a transfusion of platelets and RBCs; please pray for him to tolerate these and that a secondary benefit to receiving them will be they help with his urine output!!!

We must praise God for Coy's "good" blood gases all day! It seems the change in vent settings yesterday really helped Coy with breathing! His blood gases have been better than ever; although his oxygen requirement has increased---please pray Coy continues to have wonderful blood gases and they are able to wean down the ventilator!!!

Thank you to all of you who are begging the Lord for our little man and his specific needs. We are so thankful! Coy is so thankful! We trust in the Lord that he is taking care of our baby, that he rests comfortably at night, that he will protect him for harm.

Friday, December 21, 2007

one hard day

"Then call upon me in time of distress; I will rescue you, and you shall glorify me." Psalms 50:15

I know I've already used this verse, but it seems to fit perfectly tonight. Our little man had a rough one today; actually he's had a rough couple days/nights. It seems that an infection has set in and causing him some respiratory issues. So far, he's had two blood cultures come back positive--forcing them to pull out his PICC line (central IV line) because the doctors believe this was the source of the infection; he's on a high power antibiotic, Vancomycin, which causes him to have low urine output. He will be started on Dopamine again---which means they will have to hold his feedings. So, please pray for his urine output to increase so he can get off the dopamine and restart on feeds!!

When I got to the hospital today, the nurse looked at me with that certain look that I could tell something wasn't quite right; it seems his blood gases were not good last night--his blood was acidic, meaning he was not exhaling the CO2 and unable to get enough O2 into his tissues; they figure this was due to the pulmonary edema or fluid buildup in his lungs---lastn night and today he was requiring 80-100% oxygen through the ventilator--in previous days he was only requiring about 35-45% oxygen, so this is a huge jump in the wrong direction! The edema was treated with a diuretic called Lasix yesterday, which worked, however when given today, his urine output did not increase. So now, although he is swollen everywhere the doctors believe he is actually "dehydrated" and the fluid is "stuck" in his tissues, not his bloodstream. They also believe the sepsis (infection) is causing the poor pulmonary the key here is to get rid of the infection!!!! We need prayers to rid Coy of this infection!! Please beg God for this!!

I also walked in to see the nurses attempting to start an IV on Coy--since the PICC line had to come out, peripheral IVs will have to be restarted daily; I know this is required, it just pains me to see him stuck so many times....

good news occurred later this afternoon...his blood gases improved! God did hear our prayers! His levels seemed to get much better---they changed his ventilator settings (I wont get into that because it can be very complicated) and he seemed to tolerate it so far...please pray for Coy to continue to have good blood gases....

Some specific prayer requests for Coy: that his antibiotics cure this infection and that he stays infection free the remainder of his stay in the NICU; that his PDA is closed; the the edema is removed from his lungs/ body; that his urine output increases; that his oxygen requirement decreases; that his blood gases remain good; that he is pain free and comfortable; please beg God for these things!!! Coy needs your prayers!!

I feel like our faith is being tested/strengthened; we know God is there and hearing our prayers, we believe it; we are just desperate for our son; God please rescue him from illness...please...

Thursday, December 20, 2007

prayers please

We are exhausted tonight so this will be a short post. Coy had a hard time breathing today and a chest x-ray this afternoon showed he had fluid on his lungs. Please pray that this fluid will go away and his breathing will improve. Please beg God for our son--for him to be healthy, grow stronger, and for him to not suffer in this process.
Please pray for our strength--physical, emotional, and spiritual. We are having a rough time coping tonight....

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Right Eye / Milk -- Chris

Ann Marie deserves the night off as she is currently suffering from the milking blues. For those of you unfamiliar with this condition, it means she is tired of pumping milk every two hours day and night! Wow, being a mom is hard work. Much respect for all you moms out there.

Coy had a solid day. The two highlights of the day were him opening his right eye (he mastered winking yesterday) and being able to re-start his feedings of breastmilk. This is great news as he has been off of mama's milk for almost a week. We give thanks for this and pray that he will be able to tolerate his feedings going forward.

Coy still has an infection that his doctors are treating. Please pray that the antibiotics he is on will wipe the infection out completely and pray for his urine output to remain sufficient.

Ann Marie and I continue to be amazed by your support. We are forever grateful to our families, friends, employers, and co-workers.

I'll close with a verse we've been saving for this special day when his eyes were both opened. We feel it is perfect.

"But my eyes are fixed on you, O Sovereign Lord; in you I take refuge -- do not give me over to death."

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

you gotta take the bad with the good...

From the get go, we've been told there will be good days, there will be bad days; just hang on for the ride...

I must start by praising God for all he's given to us, all he's done for our baby boy.."Many people followed him and he cured them all." Matthew 12:16
Don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining, just a little frustrated tonight...

This morning (like every morning) we called to see how Coy was doing; the nurse said he was started back on antibiotics last night (Vancomycin--which can cause low urine output--something Coy's been struggling with for the past week) for an infection....this confused us because last we heard his blood cultures were negative; according to our nurse, he had more cultures drawn (that we weren't told about) and they are growing bacteria...she also told us last night he was requiring more oxygen than normal, which usually means they are getting sick...although, the nurse practitioner said he didn't look "sick" because he's still very active, (usually babies with infections are very limp and weak) and his color still looks good; they will now have to draw blood cultures (take lots of blood!--this is why he needs so many transfusions!) every morning until they get negative cultures, then he will stay on the antibiotics for 10 days following...they may have to pull out Coy's central IV line (PICC line) if they continue to get positive cultures---please pray that Coy stays as "pain free" as possible; as a mother, it hurts me every time he is poked with a needle, regardless how small it is--I know however it is necessary for his care; I just don't want him to be in pain...
So a few steps forward, a few back...just pray for God to cure Coy of this infection; to keep him fighting and mighty!

The good news is he can continue on the hydrocortisone study...please continue to pray for healing and maturing of Coy's lungs...he had a wonderful blood gas (checks pH of the blood, amount of O2 & CO2 also) so they were able to wean down his ventilator some; then the next blood gas wasn't as good--actually it was a lot worse; so they will continue to monitor this tonight...

His urine output has picked up the past few days so they were able to stop the Dopamine (yes, I sleep with my fingers crossed!!) and we pray it stays in normal range....
So since the Dopamine was stopped they will restart feeds tomorrow---please pray tonight that Coy will tolerate my breast milk and it will nourish his body just perfectly!

The MAJOR news today---Head U/S did NOT show a bleed!! Praise God for this; my mother-in-law, Kathy Kolkhorst, says she knows God just has his hands around Coy's brain protecting it from bleeds! Thank you Lord!

....and Coy has opened his Left eye!! He has a beautiful blue eye! hehe! The right eye is still fused, but should open soon---they say it is normal for the eyes to open one at a time (although funny looking)---this afternoon, I saw Coy open his eye, I started waving to him like a crazy woman, and then he shut it quickly--I can only imagine what he was thinking in there "oh no, that's my mom!"

So, as you can tell we have so much to be thankful for tonight! The frustration is leaving my body as I write this and am reminded of all the good God is doing! We are so blessed! I have no reason to complain; no reason to doubt that the Lord is in control.

Please pray for a family who lost their baby tonight--very unexpected as this baby was a 40 weeker

Monday, December 17, 2007

Little man, Big attitude!

So our little man has a LARGER than life attitude! He likes things done his way or he will throw a fit! His "fits" include: waving arms and legs around, wrinkling his forehead, and holding his breath!! Yes, he holds his breath and scares his mother! Today, I was in awe of his little personality--he is just the cutest thing, the pictures really don't do him justice--mothers bias maybe?? He really didn't like his blood pressure or temperature taken today; his oxygen levels would drop some and he would try to swat at the nurse--he's such a little stinker. He's already his father's child; he must get his sweetness from his mother; hehe ;)

We must praise the Lord; we pray(ed) for increased urine output and today the Lord answered our prayers! this morning his output was still low, but by the afternoon, he was soaking his diapers! Lord, please allow our baby to continue to urinate effortlessly with appropriate output!

He had another brain ultrasound this morning but we have not be notified of the results--please pray tonight for the Lord to protect Coy's brain and keep it free of bleeding, and for it to be developing appropriately!

So we had another wonderful day of Kangaroo care--I was able to hold Coy for 3 hours! I had a mirror and was able to watch his face; he's even cuter than I thought! The most fun is to hear him chew on his tubes; he smacks his little gums together---today he even tried sucking his thumb; it really was the sweetest thing to witness.

Today Coy is 2 weeks old; he weighed in at 1 lb 8 oz tonight! He is such a blessing from God! We feel so lucky to have Coy and to have such wonderful support and prayers! We thank each of you for being "prayer warriors" for our little boy! The Lord is listening, he is answering our prayers! I wish each of you could come see Coy; to see the difference in his appearance over the past two weeks is just amazing! Continue to ask God for healing; praise him for all he's given us!

P.S. Our nephew, Ryder Sanchez, is one month old today! Praise God for giving us such a wonderful baby! He loves to eat (all the time!) After Ryder was born, I was nicknamed "the baby hog" because I just fell in love with him; when I was holding Ryder, Coy would kick me constantly. Coy was insanely jealous of his cousin and he decided to make an early arrival to steal all the attention! We know one day they will be great buddies! The picture below is of me & Ryder when he was a few days old!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

another wonderful day

"Fear not, I am with you; be not dismayed; I am your God. I will strengthen you, and help you, and uphold you with my right hand of justice." Isaiah 41:10

Today Coy is 13 days old! I can hardly believe my baby is almost 2 weeks old! Although it has been a very trying and exhausting two weeks, they have been wonderful! I still have to pinch myself sometimes and think how lucky I am! I am a mom & have a beautiful baby boy! Some of you might think I'm crazy---of course these aren't the circumstances I would have chosen for the birth of our child--but that's just it--I didn't chose them because I'm not in control--God is. At first, we were angry, mad, confused....we were on track to have a healthy, bouncing baby in March---what happened?? I can't even speak about how badly I wanted to rewind time---If I could just go back and change we felt like we were in a bad dream and couldn't wake up. But then we realized, this was God's plan---we don't quite understand it, but we have to trust in him, that he will take care of our baby; that this is the way it was meant to be. Coy is such a wonderful gift from God, regardless of the circumstances in which he came into this world.

So today the doctors stopped Coy's antibiotics because his blood and urine cultures did not grow anything! Thanks be to God! Please continue to pray he stays infection free; the doctors say it's almost guaranteed that he will get one infection during his stay in the NICU; please God prove them wrong again!

His urine output did improve today; one of the antibiotics they stopped (Vancomycin) can cause decreased urine output---so hopefully this medication was our culprit and his output will improve to exactly where it should be! Please ask God for this tonight!

Coy will have a repeat brain scan tomorrow to check for brain bleeding again---it's a routine test, we got awesome results at 10days, please pray again to keep Coy free of any bleeding in his brain!

So daddy got to do Kangaroo care today and held baby Coy for 3 hours! Chris's chest hair was tickling Coy's face; the nurses were laughing so hard at this. It was amazing to see Chris hold our son; he's been such a wonderful father and I know how proud he is of Coy. The nurses and me included all agree that Coy is a "spitting image" of Chris--one of them said it didn't look like I had anything to do with it--thanks!!!

Since Memorial Hermann is a research hospital affiliated with UT medical school, we have had numerous offers to enroll Coy in studies different doctors are doing---yes, kinda scary when you hear "study" but we believe research is a good thing. If no one accepted research or participated in studies, babies like Coy would not be living today---so we agreed to participate in a blind study where he will receive 14 doses of Hydrocortisone, a steroid that is to help lung and brain function. Since it is a blind study, there is a 50/50 chance Coy will receive the drug; he may receive the placebo. The doctors are very optimistic about this medication; the benefits greatly outweigh the risks; there is a chance if he does receive the hydrocortisone, they will be able to wean him off the ventilator very soon---this would be amazing! Please pray that God will protect our baby, that they will find this drug very beneficial and help babies like Coy in the future.

I know I say this after every post, however, I can't state enough how thankful we are to all of you! Chris and I feel so incredibly blessed to have such wonderful friends, family, and support from some of you who we've never met! Please praise God for all he's done and keep praying for Coy!

Saturday, December 15, 2007

prayers please!

Chris & I feel so blessed to have spent another wonderful day with our baby boy. I got to hold him again, this time for 3.5 hours!! Chris will get his chance at holding him tomorrow, I guess I can give him up for a little while! We are bonding with him so much now; it gets harder and harder to leave him!

The doctors are kinda perplexed at Coy right now; his urine output still isn't where they want it to be; however he's losing weight---not much, but if he's not urinating enough, he should be retaining his weight or even gaining....
So, he's still on the Dopamine & they will just watch & wait. Unfortunately, he can't eat again (breast milk through his OG tube) until he's off the dopamine...

So, please pray for his urine output to increase and stabilize!! Also continue to pray against infection, brain bleeds, PDA, GI intolerance!

Tonight we truly saw the Lord working---the baby next to Coy pulled out his ET tube (tube connected to a ventilator that goes into trachea) and at that very minute 2Transport nurses (nurses who go out on Life Flight or EMS) happened to be standing there...(they are the only nurses allowed to intubate) So, this really is an emergent situation, however God placed these nurses next to this baby's bedside!! They could have been standing next to any of the other 100 babies on the unit, but they weren't; they were standing next to the baby that needed them at that very second! I couldn't believe it! Of course they got the tube back in & the baby stabilized...pretty scary to witness, but reality in the NICU.

Please pray tonight for all the babies in the NICU. I am feeling guilty because I am always there with Coy; but SO many babies have absolutely no visitors! I am there all day, everyday and literally have not seen one person visit two of the babies close to Coy; so please pray for all of these angels, that they will feel the same love and comfort that Coy does.....

We are so appreciative of all the love and support! It's just amazing to see how God is working through our little man!

Friday, December 14, 2007


"I give you my word, if you are ready to believe that you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer, it shall be done for you." Mark 11:24

Today was nothing short of miraculous! Chris and I are still speechless...

The doctor approached us this afternoon and stated the echocardiogram DID NOT show a PDA! The duct is closed!! How amazing!! Here is the Lord; he is with us!
Also, the blood cultures have not grown anything yet....meaning no infection is present!
He's still on the Dopamine, however they will hopefully stop this tomorrow.
The doctor looked at us in amazement---she was actually pretty speechless herself...

Of course the day got better because I got to hold Coy on my chest for 2 hours (called Kangaroo care)! He was so peaceful and slept most of the time. It was an amazing two hours and I can't wait to do it everyday!! (Chris can hold him too; he asked the nurse if he should shave his chest; she laughed and said that's not necessary)

We are so grateful for the good news today; we still have a long way to go, but know God is here protecting over our baby boy. We are so thankful to you all for all the prayers; please continue to pray for our little miracle!!!!!

Please pray for the PDA to remain closed; for his urine output to remain stable; for his vitals to stay stable; for his blood gases to improve so they can wean down the ventilator; for his labs to remain stable; for no brain bleeding; for Coy to be comfortable & pain free with all the sticks from IVs & blood draws being done; for our little man to tolerate his feedings when they are started tomorrow; for him to sleep & grow!!!!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Fighting hard...

"Rejoice in hope, be patient under trial, persevere in prayer." Romans 12:12

Today was very eventful for our little man; since his urine output dropped yesterday, the doctors decided it could be one of three scenarios:
1) his PDA was open causing back flow of blood through is heart causing less blood flow to his kidneys, or
2) an infection had set in, or
3) a possible brain bleed causing less blood flow to his kidneys.....needless to say, Chris & I were suddenly forced to get on the roller coaster ride that is life in the NICU.

We were so blessed to have 10 awesome days with very little complication; although we had been warned there would be rough days ahead, it hit us like a ton of bricks last night.
Along with stress, we were warn and exhausted; the constant yearning to be next to Coy and then the fatigue that comes with being new parents suddenly hit us hard.

So our poor little guy had many tests done last night and this morning; he really gets mad at the nurses when they mess with him; he even kicked the doctor when she was trying to examine his little body.
He had a urine culture, blood culture, CBC, 2 IVs started, brain scan, and echocardiogram all done between last night and noon today. He was worn out and thank goodness slept most of the afternoon.

Good news is the brain u/s DID NOT show any bleeding in his brain! This is a huge victory! They will repeat the study on Monday because bleeding can occur between 10-14 days.
His blood cultures (to screen for infection: bacterial & fungal) were sent off this morning; we will not know if anything grows for 48 to 72 hours; however his CBC did show increased WBC (indicating infection) & decreased Hematcrit (volume of blood in the body) & Hemoglobin (amount of oxygen in the bloodstream) so he received platelets and RBCs last night....please pray for Coy to battle an infection if present in his body...he was started on antibiotics & antifungal medications for precaution...

His urine output did increase today due him being on a medication called Dopamine (used to increase blood pressure); of course with increased blood pressure also comes the risk of bleeding in the brain....

We do not have the echocardiogram results(ultrasound of the heart which looks at the valves, flow of blood). The doctors feel at this point, if he does have a PDA (meaning if the duct is open) they would not seek immediate treatment; a medication called Indomethacin can be given to treat the PDA, however a side effect of this medication is decreased urine output---therefore, not an option for Coy at this point; the second option is a surgery called PDA ligation (where they will go into the heart and clamp the duct off) again, not an option for Coy at this point since he does have a possible infection--surgery is not performed when an infection is present.

Therefore, we watch & wait & pray. We know God is with us & Coy; he loves Coy more than we do. He created him & will take care of him.
Please continue to pray for our precious little man. He's such a fighter and his strength is just amazing to me! Please continue to pray against infection, brain bleeds, PDA being open, lung disease, and GI intolerance. We are so thankful to you all!

Rollercoaster Ride - Chris

Ann Marie needed a night off so I will attempt to pinch hit for her. She deserves a break because she has been wonderful. Last night and this morning we've been reminded (again!)just how quickly things can change. We're on a roller coaster ride where you experience the highs and lows and even brief moments where you maybe wish you didn't meet the height requirement.

Coy had a great day yesterday and I was excited to receive the positive text messages from Ree. Late in the afternoon his nurse realized that his urine output had been really low for the day. They didn't seem too concerned at first and gave Coy some saline to try to get him to urinate. Unfortunately this didn't help. He was given doses of dopamine overnight to increase his urine output. After talking to the nurse this morning she said that he was able to urinate two small amounts overnight.
Another major concern is that hematcrit and hemoglobin levels dropped, which could indicate a brain bleed. They are giving him platelets and have done a blood culture to screen for infection.
This morning Coy is going to have an echo cardiogram to look at his PDA (hole in heart that closes shortly after birth in term babies but not in premies). The doctors possibly think his PDA could be causing the drop in urine output. Potentially blood is backflowing through his heart preventing the kidneys from getting sufficient amounts.

We especially need your help praying for Coy today as he has a big day ahead of him.

Prayer requests are:

1. Pray that his PDA closes
2. Pray that he is free of infection
3. Pray that there is no bleeding in his brain
4. Pray that his urine output increases. That's right pray for pee.
5. Pray for the strength of Ann Marie and I. After a few days of making progress it's easy to get angered when a storm blows in. We felt this anger on the way home last night. We are trying to deflect any negative or worrisome thoughts that are trying to creep into our minds. Pray for us to keep the faith.

Thanks for all of your prayers and support. We couldn't fight this battle without you.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

End of Day 8

"Fear is useless; what is needed is trust and his life will be spared." Luke 8:50

Today was a good day for our little man. He continues to be strong & brave!
Our prayers have been answered---the doctors increased his feeds to 2cc every 3 hours! And so far, he's tolerated them all! The more nutrition we can get into his tiny body, the bigger he can grow!!
Along with tolerating his feeds, he began pooping! yeah! I know most moms don't get excited when their children "poop", but this is awesome for our tiny little man! We are so thankful for this!
I am so blessed that I am able to sit with him at the hospital all day. I could sit next to him forever.
Good news--yesterday they began weaning down his humidity--as soon as he's off humidity, I can start doing Kangaroo Care---where he will be skin to skin on my chest & we get to sit for hours!
His blood gases today were stable--not good enough to wean down on the vent though
We need God to mature his lungs fast so we can wean off the vent as soon as possible! (although it is now allowing him to breathe, ventilators can damage lung tissue if used too long) Please beg God for this!
Coy layed on his tummy today for the first time; he really enjoyed it--he's a energetic little guy and is always kicking his legs & waving his arms around; he was very peaceful & slept while on his stomach.
Although we have a long way to go, we have been truly blessed the first 8 days--
Chris & I are so thankful to all of you...we are touched at how many people have reached out to us during this time. Although we are scared and fearful of the unknown, we are trying to take it one day at a time and trust in the Lord. God has given us an amazing 8 days--please pray this continues...

Prayers please!

We just heard for Coy's nurse this morning...
She said he had a "good" night and is currently sleeping!
He is continuing to tolerate his feedings----PLEASE PRAY THAT THIS CONTINUES! Please pray against an infection called NEC that effects the GI tract in these little ones...
Coy had a blood gas drawn last night that wasn't as good as previous ones....this caused them to increase his vent setting to 55 bpm from 45. Please pray that God continues to mature his lungs & allows him to exhale all the CO2 out of his little body! Please pray the Lord heals his mighty lungs--that he will be able to take in all the O2 he needs!
Also, between 10-14 days, Coy will have a Head U/S that will scan for bleeding in his brain---we need to ask God to keep Coy's brain free of bleeding! God can move the mountains & we have to believe!
We're also praying that God closed Coy's PDA (hole in his heart that closes at birth with term babies); we don't know the status of this yet, however many micro premie's require surgery to correct this hole that is suppose to close on it's own. Please ask God to close this hole; he is our mighty healer!
We believe and we know you do to! Thanks for all the prayers & support! Praise God for all he's given to us!

Monday, December 10, 2007

what a week

Today Coy is one week old! We are so grateful for this.
Just one week ago, we were told our little man was dead; that he wouldn't be born alive..
that even if he was born alive, he would not survive the first 24 hours...
that even if he did survive the first 24 hours, he would not survive the next...
that these babies have a "honeymoon" period so any "good" in the beginning will quickly be followed by a downhill slide...
that babies born at 23 weeks "just don't survive."
well, so far, this has not happened to Coy; and all we can say is PRAISE THE LORD!

He is still holding strong; kicking his legs, waving his arms, pulling on his tubes Our litte man is mighty! He is fighting everyday to prove these doctors wrong! Today he continued to take his feedings---all but 1, which is good...please pray that this continues!
Believe it or not, a one pounder can have high triglycerides---he is receiving "lipids" through hisIV line; this is used until he can take in enough
nourishment on his own through the breastmilk---we hadto hold the lipids for a few hours today until his triglyceride level came down

Daddy got to practice his diaper changing skills again--we are now down to 2 diapers per change--he'll be a pro before too long

Please say a prayer for a family who lost their angel today, he like Coy was born at 23 weeks; our hearts go out to this family, we didn't have words for them today; just pray that God will take their angel into heaven and comfort them during this difficult time

We are so grateful to you all for your continued support and prayers! It means so much to us & Coy!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Prayers answered!!!

"You will hold a son in your arms..." 2 Kings 4:16

THANKS BE TO GOD! Yesterday we started giving breastmilk to Coy via a OG tube (goes from his mouth into his stomach), he tolerated all but 1 feeding! That is amazing! He really must like mama's milk ;)!

Today was the best day ever! Every single minute that we get to spend with our son is such a blessing. God is really working on Chris & I; be thankful for what you have, not sad at what is not yours! At first we grieved that our baby wasn't healthy, now we are cherishing every second we get to sit by his side. God has given us a whole week with our baby!

His blood gases have improved since last night, but are not good enough to wean his vent back down to 35 BPM; he's currently set at 50 BPM; he's still only receiving about 21-27% O2 which is awesome! The doctor stopped by to talk to us today and used the word "pleased" to describe how she felt about Coy's progress; that in itself is AMAZING, since these doctors don't use "positive" words EVER.....we'll take what we can get....

Today we got to change his diaper; it took daddy 3 diapers to get our little man clean! As soon as Chris lifted his tiny little legs, Coy peed all over the place; yes, he's tiny, so it's not "a lot" of urine, but enough to make a mess; I got to hold his body up while the nurse changed his blanket! the best day ever!

Coy's under a Bili light due to him being jaundiced, so he was naked for the first hour we were with him; his hands were positioned (by his own will; they were not placed) in a place that boys seem to cherish; daddy thought it was hilarious, mama thought "oh goodness, what have I got myself into???"

Chris never ceases to amaze me in how strong he is; he has been my rock throughout this past week; his personality is just so unique; his mama (& daddy) really raised him right!! Those of you who know Chris well, know that he asks LOTS of questions; I realized this when Jenny was in labor a few weeks ago--"whats a contraction? uterus? placenta? etc "--the nurses literally laugh at loud at him; he asked one of the today what she does on her days off....(he was impressed that she only had to work on the weekends).....he also called the lactation consultant "a lactologist", she was amused....

Please continue to pray for Coy, he is definitely feeling the Lord bless him! We feel so lucky to have him & all of you for all your support and continued prayer!!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

Prayer requests

We know you all are praying and praying, beating down the Lords' are some specific things we ask you to pray for ......

  • his digestive tract continues to grow & mature, he tolerates his feeds, battling against a disease called NEC, which will infect his GI tract
  • pray against brain bleeds; a bleed in his brain can cause great damage; pray his blood pressure stays stable, so he can regulate the pressure in his brain
  • pray his lungs continue to mature; that he exhales enough CO2 & takes in enough oxygen to keep his Ph within acceptable limits; that are able to wean his ventilator & that they see lungs in a 24 weeker they've never seen before
  • that he maintains his temperature & they are able to wean off the humidity when able
  • that God protects him from infection
  • to keep him from harm; allow him to be content & pain free
  • that the doctors are AMAZED at his progress!!!! this is after all Gritman's son!!!

please continue to pray for Coy! he is feeling the effects of it as Jesus is by his side! we love you & thank you!

The first 5 days

"All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord's, and he will give all of you into our hands." 1 Samuel 17:47

Coy was born on Monday, December 3rd via c-section; we were all so happy & overjoyed to hear he was alive, heartbeating strong! We had been prepared for the worst, the unimaginable.
Day 1--he was intubated (tube placed into his lungs) immediately after delivery by the wonderful neonatologist & transport nurses from the NICU. With this ET tube he was allowed to receive air, he was trying to take his own, however, being he's a "micro premie" his lungs are not mature enough for him to breathe on his own; so for those of you thinking he's "breathing on his own", no, he's breathing via a ventilator, however he is attempting to take his own breaths as well. He was taken to the NICU (1 floor up from where he was delivered) and there the battle began. IVs were placed into his umbilical cord, which allowed him to receive fluids for nourishment; he was placed in an amazing "Giraffe Bed" (which cost about $30, 000 each we were told) and humidity was started in this awesome bed to keep his skin moist & to maintain his temperature; his breaths per minute, heartrate, O2 levels, labs, etc were all taken & the end of the day, little man was "stable"; thank the good Lord above

Day 2--We are told to take each day at a time, not to get too excited, too disappointed over the various changes made in his condition; yeah yeah yeah, that's easier said than done....
he's on low oxygen levels & low BPM (breaths per minute) via the ventilator...a good thing
he's exhaling enough CO2 & taking in enough oxygen.....again, give thanks to our GOD!

Day 3--"The honeymoon period"---what the doctors think happen the first few days of life....okay, so I think he's doing good & pray real changes in his condition; no news, is good news; we drag our feet out of the hospital as we have to leave our baby boy behind; Jesus please sleep next to him.....

Day 4--His blood gas (it is drawn out of his IV in his umbilical cord every 8 hours to check the levels of oxygen & carbon dioxide among other things) was a little worse than they want; his respirator setting changed to 40 breaths per minute from 35....had chest xray that showed some fluid on his lungs, nothing they are too concerned over; angels are at my baby's bedside!

Day 5--HE DIGESTED SOME BREAST MILK!!!! What a blessing! Keep praying that his immature gut continues to take this nourishment & allow our baby boy to grow! Thanks be to GOD!

Coy is here!

"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10

Chris & I would like to thank each and every one of you who have been so supportive during this hard time. We are just overwhelmed at the love and kindness, encouragement & strength of everyone around us. Our families are amazing....a gift from God. Each day we look at all the blessings we've been given throughout our lives... our parents & families, we are so thankful. We want everyone to know, we read & see each email & text message, listen to each voicemail, etc. It means everything to us....we haven't been able to respond to all, but please know we see/ hear them & it brings tears to our eyes.

On that note, Monday, December 3rd, our little man was welcomed into this world, Coy Christopher Kolkhorst. He wasn't due until late March, but had other plans for himself. Already, so much like his daddy...stubborn & strong! He weighted 1lb4oz and was 12.5inches long. My membranes ruptured or "water broke" on Thursday, November 29th; while this wasn't the plan we had for our little man, God had a different one. We struggle each day to cope with how our lives have changed over the past week; our faith tested each minute. God is good and we know that, we are trying to stay focused on the good right now. The sheer miracle of his heartbeat (150bpm!) is just such a blessing! I have struggled with these first few days; my baby isn't healthy like most, I don't get to rock my baby to sleep or hold him tight; I don't get to breastfeed him, I don't get to touch him; we didn't get to bring him home from the hospital; but please don't feel any sympathy for us; we have a baby boy & we are parents; I feel so LUCKY to be Coy's mom; so lucky; each day I get to sit next to his isolette is just the greatest gift; my baby boy is precious & we love him dearly.

Please pray for our son, Coy, as he is up for the fight of his life; pray that God will hold him tight & comfort him each minute of everyday; pray for the doctors & nurses who are taking care of our precious little boy, give them strength, kindness & wisdom. Please pray, we beg you.

We will be trying to update on our baby boy each day; as the doctors tell us, this is a long, long battle. We're ready for the fight....we think.......
We love you all.