Wednesday, July 29, 2009


....we're home!!!

More details later, but here are a few pics of our little angel busting out of the NICU today!

We can not express how thankful we are to all of you for your continued love, support, and prayer for our family during these past two years. We are so blessed. We are home, doing great, and just enjoying our family of four. God is so good!

Monday, July 27, 2009


Here's our angel tube & tape free! Whoohoo! If she keeps it up, we'll be out of here soon! Please pray for Cydney to continue to eat well and gain weight!

Sunday, July 26, 2009


Isn't she pretty? I can't wait to get that tube out of her nose and tape off her face! I keep telling her that if she eats, the tube comes out and we go home! =)
So, we're still here in the NICU. I would be lying if I said I'm not sick of this hospital already. I've spent almost 16 weeks here now. I think it's time to go when half of the hospital staff knows your family and story. =)

Cydney is trucking right along. She has been nursing well the past two days and today finished two bottles off. I am experimenting with which feeding method will get us out of here fastest. Right now, I'm thinking the bottles are the better option for discharge. She can breastfeed and does well with it, but tires out faster and therefore, doesn't take as much. Good news is she's gaining weight and back at her birth weight *almost*. As soon as she can prove to take all 8 feedings by mouth and continue to gain weight, we'll be outta here!

She has labs ordered for the morning---I am praying her glucose and bilirubin levels are still stable. She looks jaundice to me, but I think it's because I'm comparing her to my ghostly white, hasn't seen sun in 4.5 months skin. Next to everyone else, she looks normal. =)

Not much else to report...just hoping to be outta here by the weekend. Please pray for continued progress and discharge soon! Can you tell that I'm ready to go home already?

Friday, July 24, 2009

fatigued but thankful

First, here are some pictures of our princess...

(This was the first time I really saw her open her eyes...)

I think she looks like Coy...

Sleeping sweetly....
These are the best I can do for now (from my iphone)...since my computer here is cheap and I don't have the photo program I need to get the pictures off my camera.

Second, Cydney is doing great and we're making progress to get home everyday. The only thing keeping us here as of now is feeding. She needs to either be breastfeeding or bottle feeding 8 times per day. Right now, we can try either/or 3 times daily. Yesterday, she nursed like a champ (at one feeding) and didn't need any more milk put down her tube (the ugly thing that is sticking out of her mouth/nose).

Today, however, she was not at all interested in the boob. They say that's typical preemie behavior---to be inconsistent. She took 1/2 of the bottle twice today--which isn't great, but it's better than nothing. I was wanting to exclusively nurse her, but if bottle feeding gets us out the door faster, I will work on the nursing at home! She has one more try tonight and I think I'll offer the bottle first to see how she does. Hopefully, she'll finish it! The good news is she's getting breast milk either way.

She was taken off her pulse oximeter today---awesome! I tend to have 'monitor psychosis' where I find myself staring at her numbers all day (and night). She was perfect with her oxygen sats and I loved seeing that (she stopped having those desat spells she was having the first few days). But, it's even better to know her doctor thinks she doesn't even need to be monitored anymore! Whoohoo--that's one less thing for me to analyze and obsess over.

Also, her glucose levels were stable two nights ago, so we were able to discontinue the IV and fluids. I was so happy about that. Her bilirubin levels have been stable as well.

Needless to say with a newborn, I am growing weary and tired. I don't think I've had over 2 hours consistent sleep in the past week. I love that I can stay here with her, but it's not the most comfortable place to sleep. It also doesn't help my energy level that I was laying down for 4 months straight. But, I am adjusting and waiting patiently on the Lord's timing for Cydney to come home. I am missing Coy so much and can't wait to be back at home with him too. I was able to see him today and we laughed and laughed. He is so much fun and I can't wait to see how great of a big brother he is going to be.

Please pray for Cydney to eat like a champ, for no bradycardic episodes, for her glucose levels to remain stable, for our strength and endurance during this last leg of our 'hospital life', for Cydney to grow and get strong, and for Coy to be well adjusted when everything turns back to normal for us.

We are so blessed to have your continued love and support.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Update on Cydney

On Tuesday, Cydney was moved to Level 2 NICU. This was such an answered prayer because I was being discharged from my room and was going to have to leave her here in the hospital. The great thing about where we're at now is that they have private rooms (although tiny) and there is a small bed I can sleep in next to her. I remember that heart ache I felt when I had to leave Coy in the hospital and I just could not imagine having to do that again.

So, we're settled into our new room and working towards getting her home. She is still breathing all on her own and doing great. Her IV fluids were just stopped and if her glucose levels are stable, she will remain IV free. She was under the bili lights yesterday due to jaundice, but today that was stopped too. She does look a bit jaundiced to me tonight, so we'll see what her level is at this morning when they check it.

We also were able to try nursing today for the first time. She did great for her first attempt according to the Lactation specialist. Right now, her order is for once a day breast/bottle feeding, but that should be increased as Cydney gets the hang of it. The doctor said tonight that she was looking fantastic and to get her out of here, we just need her eating. She said she estimates a week or so before we are on our way home. She has a great suck and absolutely loves her pacifier, wakes up screaming and rooting---so hopefully she picks up nursing quickly!

For the first time in 15 weeks, I went home today for a few hours. It was surreal to ride in a car again, be in the free world, walk into my house, lay in my bed, and use my shower, etc. I've missed all the little things so much. Grandma K was at the hospital cuddling with Cydney, so I felt comfortable being away from her for a few hours. I also was able to spend time with Coy and I've missed my precious boy to pieces. He had the biggest smile on his face on the ride home and held my hand. I can not wait to get Cydney home so I can be with them both under one roof.

Thanks for all your continued prayers! Pray for Cydney's glucose levels to stabilize, for her to remain free of IVs, free of infections, for her to nurse like a pro, and for us to get out of here ASAP! I'll keep you updated!

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Keep praying!

As of this morning, Cydney has been taken off CPAP and is breathing on her own!!! If she continues to do well, she'll be moved to Level 2 tonight. This would be great because they are private rooms and I could stay with her. I've been in the hospital for 15 weeks, but don't want to leave without my baby. She is the most adorable thing ever!

She is now a bit jaundiced so she is under the bili lights. She just wanted a suntan before going out into the world. :)
She is also having a little trouble keeping her glucose level stable and is therefore still on some IV fluid. Please pray that this stablizes so she can come off the IV. It is so painful for me to see her get stuck with the needles (she's already had 5 IVs and is only 4 days old).

We will attempt to breastfeed tomorrow as long as she continues to breathe well. Pray that she can suck, swallow, and breathe so we can get home ASAP!

I'm feeling good and walked the halls today. It felt great to be free of all pumps, IVs, and monitors and be human again.

Thanks for all your continued love & support. We can't wait to bring our BIG girl home and start living as our family of four.

Monday, July 20, 2009

Cydney update

Good morning! I wanted to write a quick update on our little princess. She had a great day yesterday and was on 21% oxygen (room air) majority of the day. She is still on the CPAP, but Miss Thing is hopefully coming off that today. She hates it and has already figured out how to wiggle out of it. She still has an occasional desat spell, but she recovers very quickly. Her feedings have been increased to 27cc (almost 1 oz) and if she tolerates all her milk today, they will take her IV out later. Her blood cultures came back negative, Thank God, and her antibiotics have been stopped.

She is just the most adorable little angel and we can't get enough of her. I think she was held by someone all day yesterday. We finally put her back and came back to our room about midnight.

Thanks for all your continued love and support. We are so blessed. Keep praying for our angel. Hopefully, she'll keep progressing and we'll be outta here in no time. I am able to stay an extra few days, so I probably wont be going home until Wednesday. I have been feeling much better, although still having some pain, it is improving quickly.

Thanks again---we will keep you updated!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

a few pictures from delivery day!

Big Brother was there bright & early to help momma get ready!
He's not sure what to think about momma's belly...
Cydney just a few minutes old..
She was 4lbs 12 oz and 18 inches long...
Coy meeting his sister for the first time....
...and he thought he'd welcome her to the world with a little crayon message.
On her way up to the NICU...
Waiting on mommy to come back to her room...having some fun with Cousin Ryder.
awww...I don't think Ryder was as happy about the hug.
...and especially not the face grab. They're so silly!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Picture and Prayer Requests

Cydney is still in the NICU on CPAP. Although her CPAP is on the lowest settings, she is having a few desat spells (her blood oxygen level drops). She has been doing that when she gets really upset and cries (she is loud!)and wears herself out. Her oxygen is still in the low to mid 20s, so she doesn't need much help, but I still wish she could come off CPAP soon. The doctor is saying she is having some respiratory distress and this is due to her premature lungs. Until she comes off the CPAP, she has to eat by a tube in her mouth. They started feeding her some milk this afternoon and so far, she's digested it just fine. She still has her IV and will get TPN (electrolytes and stuff) until they work her up to full feedings.

It was much harder for Chris and I to go back into the NICU than we were expecting. Just the smell of the lobby really brought back emotions and memories. And, to see Cydney hooked up to the CPAP and hearing the dinging of all the alarms (of the NICU in general), it was tough. We are thankful that instead of telling us our baby is going to die or be disabled, they are telling us she is doing wonderful. But, it's just that helpless feeling that breaks your heart. Although I was hoping she wouldn't need so much intervention, part of me thought I was prepared for it. I guess I really wasn't.

Please pray she can come off the CPAP soon, that she keeps her oxygen level up, that we can start trying to nurse her, that she tolerates her milk, that her IV can come out soon, that she doesn't get an infection, and for our strength and patience

I am definitely feeling the pain more today. I was up walking and moving around probably more than I should have been, and I can feel it today! I have been taking Vicodin as needed, but it makes me really sleepy. I have been upstairs to hold Cydney twice so far, and plan on going tonight again. I know I should take it easy, but I can't go very long without holding my sweet girl. Chris held and cuddled with her all afternoon. He's so in love.

I will post pictures from yesterday soon, but wanted to share this photo of our sweet girl...isn't she precious?

Friday, July 17, 2009

Quick update

Thank you for all your love, support, prayers, and birthday wishes!

We are absolutely in love with our baby girl. She is still in the NICU and on CPAP. Her 02 requirement has been 21% (room air) and hopefully she'll come off that very soon. They are giving her some precautionary antibiotics due to her prematurity, but she is looking good and showing no signs of infection. She cried and cried at delivery and it was the sweetest sound! She also has a "strong suck" and loves her pacifier. She can't eat right now because of the CPAP, but I'm praying I can nurse her in the next few days. She is currently on the warmer, but will be moved to an open crib. My big girl doesn't even need an isolete, yeah!!

I am doing well. My pain has been minimal and everything seems to be just as it should. I know Cydney's birth was God's perfect timing. My doctor said my uterus was 'very close' to rupturing and the scar tissue did not look good. He also said after delivery he was going to smoke a cigar and celebrate that this was all over! I think I gave him a few more gray hairs than he'd like! =)

I will be able to get out of bed and go upstairs to see her at 830pm tonight. I gave her lots of kisses before they took her upstairs and can't wait to see her in a few hours. Chris has been a very protective daddy and been with her all day. I started pumping and have produced LOTS of colostrum. I am a cow when it comes to producing milk!

Coy was just the most adorable Big Brother today. They were able to bring Cydney over in the transport isolete to show the whole family before taking her upstairs. Coy drew on the top of the isolete with his crayons!

We are elated and so ecstatic! God is great! I will post pictures as soon as I get them emailed to me!

Please continue to pray for Cydney; I am hoping she gets off the CPAP very soon and is able to eat. Thanks again for all your love and prayers! We couldn't be more thankful to you all!

Cydney Marie Kolkhorst

Good morning everyone!

We have a baby!! Cydney Marie was born at 8:22 AM this morning and weighed 4 pounds 12
ounces - 10 ounces bigger than expected! God is so good!! We praise him for
the safe arrival of our new granddaughter.
Ann Marie is still in recovery but doing fine. Cydney was breathing on her
own but was transported upstairs to the NICU to be evaluated.

Today is Ann Marie's birthday; her birth weight was 4 pounds 12 ounces also.

Thanks so much for your prayers-God is awesome.

Kathy (Grandma)

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Big News!

Cydney and I are going to share a birthday---Friday, July 17th!

My doctor checked my cervix this morning and discovered that I am 1 cm dilated! He turned to Chris and I and asked, "Do you want to have a baby tomorrow or Friday?" I was in total shock because I have NOT had any bleeding or pain and had no idea I was starting to dilate. We want to give her every last minute to develop that we can, so we chose Friday (I will be checked again in the morning to make sure we can wait until Friday).

I have a mix of emotions going through me right now. I am excited to meet her, but nervous. I wanted to make it to 35 weeks, but I guess that isn't going to happen. I am SO thankful that we are at 34 weeks, but she will still be a preemie. I wish we could just take the cerclage out and let nature take it's course, but that's not an option. I can't go into 'labor' due to the risk of my uterus rupturing from my previous classical c-section.

I had a growth scan today and she was on the smaller side at 4lbs 2oz. I was hoping for closer to 5 lbs, but that's not in my control! I was a 4 lb baby---what can I say, like mother, like daughter!

As of now, my c-section is scheduled for Friday morning at 730am. Please pray all goes well and she comes out breathing and pink! Also, pray that she has developed the suck, swallow, breathe reflex and she doesn't need a feeding tube! I am trying to expect her to go to NICU for a bit, but how awesome would it be if we could skip that!

Thanks for all your prayers! We will keep you updated!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

14 weeks

I can't believe in one day I will have spent 14 weeks or *98* straight days in the hospital. Don't get me wrong, I am unbelievably thankful that it is me in here rather than Cydney in the NICU. But, it's still hard and I'm starting to get really restless. I know that everyday counts and with each passing hour Cydney is getting stronger. I want to bring her home with us and skip the NICU altogether. That is my sole focus right now. I'm trying to keep my eye on the prize and push forward with all I have.

I know God has provided me the strength, will, and determination to get through this pregnancy. I am simply too weak to have done it on my own. I know that it is God alone that has kept me and is still keeping me pregnant. It brings me perfect peace that regardless of the day or gestational week I feel is best for Cydney's birth, He knows best, better than me. And, that's a relief.

On Wednesday, I'll be 34 weeks and we'll get another growth scan to see how much Little Miss is weighing. She is moving around all the time and sometimes I feel like she is gonna kick right through me! Over the weekend, I got a final round of steroids to help with lung development. Those shots made me have more contractions than normal and I got a little anxious there for a bit.

Things have seemed to calm down, although, I've established myself as a 'night contractor' for some reason. The nurses say it's very common on the Antepartum unit and everyone has their own patterns. The funny thing is that I sleep through them and don't feel a thing. My doctor was a little concerned with all the activity on the monitor I had going on one night last week and really stressed to me that after we hit 34 weeks, he's going to have a very low threshold for my contractions. Meaning, his concern is my classical incision and cerclage, therefore, he doesn't want me going into labor, not even close. So after this Wednesday, things will be very touch and go, day by day. We don't have a scheduled c-section date simply because my doctor thinks that things are going to happen fast and there's no need to have it scheduled.

Of course now that I'm so close to 34 weeks, my goal is 35weeks. I am never satisfied and always want one more. It's exciting for me to think that 35 weeks is only 10 days away. Wow!

My amazing sister in laws, Mandy & Jenny, and mother in law, Kathy, threw me the best shower here at the hospital on Saturday morning. It was beautiful and we had a great time. I actually wore a dress and put on make up and looked 'normal' again! We were given so many adorable and special things for our baby girl. She is going to be the best dressed baby girl in town! We are so thankful for all of our great family and friends and for all they do for us. We couldn't be more blessed. Of course, we have lots of great pictures, but I can't download them to this computer, so I'll have to post those after we're back at home.

Coy is doing fabulous and is loving that he can walk. He goes, goes, and goes! He is the cutest thing I have ever seen!

I will of course keep you updated if something happens/plans change before Wednesday. Thanks for all your continued love and support; it means the world to us!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

33 week Belly Shot!

Okay, I'm getting brave posting these (can you say bedhead?) is 33 weeks! Whohoo! =)

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

33 weeks

Today I am 33 weeks pregnant; I am so excited!

This will be a quick update because really nothing has changed over the past few days. My doctor decided to not check my cervix this morning because I haven't had any pain or bleeding and he thought it'd be best to wait until next week. Sounds good to me! =)

I had another BPP on Tuesday; Cydney did great and was looking so cute! They haven't done a weight estimate since 31 weeks, but I'm hoping she's at least 4 lbs and some change. I can definitely feel her growing in there---she seems to be stretching out everywhere! She is still head up and bottom down, which doesn't matter anyway since I'll have a c-section regardless.

Thanks for all your continued love and support! I promise to update if something changes suddenly!

Monday, July 6, 2009

feeding the ducks

Thought I'd share some cute pictures of my boy feeding the ducks today...

playing with his Grandma C

Sunday, July 5, 2009

still here, still pregnant

Today I am 32w4d pregnant. That is amazing for me to think about. I now am aiming for 33weeks. I say that every week; "I just need to make it one more week, then I'll relax." I feel like I'm learning to swim and my dad keeps backing up in the water, making me panic a little and swim further to him. You feel like you could not possibly swim any further, but then you do because your choices are either to sink or keep swimming. That's kinda what a high risk pregnancy feels like for me.

I know this 'leg' of our journey will be ending soon, and I'm grateful and sad about that all in the same. I can't wait to meet our daughter and see what she looks like, kiss and snuggle with her, and become our family of four. But I'm trying to enjoy every kick and movement I feel because it will be the last time I will experience pregnancy. I can't envision us undertaking this journey again, and we're happy being the parents of 'two' kids. I get asked a lot if we plan on having any more kids and my response is: NOT FROM THIS UTERUS!

For whatever reason, my body was not cut out to carry babies. Although God has brought us through the desert twice (with Coy and this pregnancy), I could not physically or mentally do this or a difficult NICU stay again. Not willingly, at least. And, I'm okay with that. We are blessed beyond measure to be able to get pregnant and have children, regardless of the struggles it brings. But for us, two is a good stopping point and we feel peace with that.

In other news, I will have a BPP (Biophysical profile) on Tuesday, then my doctor will check my cervix again on Wednesday. Other than that, I'll just be hanging out enjoying the end of my 'rest' vacation. =)

Can you believe 34 weeks is only 1o days away? Crazy!

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

32 weeks, 100% Effaced

Today marks 32 weeks gestation; it feels good to hit this milestone! The past 4 weeks have gone by quickly; I remember feeling the same sense of relief at 28 weeks and that seems like yesterday.

I had a dream last night that I was able to go home for a few weeks. It was one of those 'real' dreams and I was so excited in it. When I woke up, I thought to myself, 'well, maybe it could happen.' Wishful thinking, I guess?

My dream was quickly squashed after my doctor examined me mid-morning. He said, "I know you had that dream, but you're not going anywhere. You're 100% effaced; you have absolutely no cervix left." I am not dilated, but only because the cerclage is holding it closed. We're leaving the stitch in place for now. He told me today that he did think I will have some blood if it starts to pull---so we're watching closely for that. Hopefully, we'll make it another week or two. Basically, when the stitch has to come out, so does the baby.

God knows the exact day Cydney will come and that's the perfect day for her birth. He has given me a peace that things will be okay. When I called to tell Chris the update, he reminded me that there is no need to worry--and that I should enjoy these last few hours/days/weeks of pregnancy. And, that is what I'm going to do---enjoy being pregnant and get LOTS of sleep while I can. I'll consider these last few days/weeks my 'rest vacation' before I have a toddler and newborn at home!

But, at least Coy has started helping around the house--- anyone need a precious 19 month old to deep clean their carpets? =)
Thanks for all your continued love and support. We are so blessed by you. We will continue to take things day to day. I promise to keep you updated if anything changes suddenly. =)