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Thursday, November 27, 2008

Day 1

Henry was born at 7:01 AM on November 26.  Meade's labor was long (36 hours, give or take a few) and hard, but uncomplicated and drug free.  Henry was 8 pounds, 9 ounces at birth, and was a beautiful baby from his first minute out of the womb.  Although he immediately turned nice and pink, he did not gasp and cry the way that the doctors wanted him to, so he was taken away to an infant care unit for what we expected to be a very brief period of observation.  Before he was taken away, I was allowed to cut the umbilical cord, and Meade held him for a few moments.  

What is his name?

We had chosen two names (No, we are not revealing the other name.) with the plan to look at him and decide which name better suited him.  Since he had been so quickly whisked away, we weren't sure which to use.  I ran up to his room to take some pictures so that Meade and I could select his name while the doctors finished their observations:  (His toes are dark because the staff made ink footprints for us.)


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We decided upon "Henry Louis" with the option to use the nickname "Hank," a name we also really like.  

After we moved to a post-delivery room, we learned that Hank's problems were a lot more serious than anyone had initially suspected.  He stopped breathing completely on a few occasions, and he began to have seizures.  A CT scan showed that he had blood in the subdural and intraventricular areas of his brain.  The former condition is fairly common in newborns, but the latter is rare and indicates injury to the brain.  

Hank was connected to a device to help him breathe and administered drugs to try to get his seizures under control.  We are able to see him whenever and as much as we want, and we are permitted to escort a single visitor in to see him at any time.  

He looks so healthy and beautiful!  Looking at him lying in bed, you cannot imagine that he is sick.  He has a cleft chin, long fingers and toes, radiant pink skin – he is truly a magnificent sight. His jerky movements and labored breathing demonstrate that something is amiss, however, and we will spend as much time as is required to understand the details of his condition and what we can do to make him better.  The initial focus of his care is to get him stabilized so that he can undergo an MRI.  This test will hopefully help us to understand the extent of the injury to his brain.  

We appreciate the enormous show of support from family and friends.  Your thoughts and prayers are keeping us going in this trying time.  

7 comments:

cynthiawhitaker said...

Dear Meade and Sean,
Henry is beautiful. I'm praying for him and you. Some of the pictures look so much like Sean did as a baby. I can see some of Meade there too. I hope that you're recovering Meade. I love all three of you and I'm looking forward to seeing you all when it's time.
With love and prayers,
Mom/Cindy/Nanna

Ross said...

We love you guys. Sarah and I could not be happier with our 9th niece/nephew. Our best thoughts are with Hank each and every moment.

Love,

Ross & Sarah

Jenny and Toby said...

Dear Meade and Sean,
Welcome to our Baby Henry!
We are holding dear the pictures of this handsome guy and so appreciate
the updates as you all move moment to moment. Henry already knows the
strength of his parents' love. And we send our positive energy,thoughts and love to envelop all three of you! Take care, Love, Jenny and Toby

Edard M. Burke said...

Dear Meade and Sean, we are praying for you and Hank. It brings back memories of the 49 days Sarah spent in NNICU @ NWMH Prentice over three decades ago. She recovered completely as will Hank. We will be joining in prayer w all your family and friends. If we can help in any way, let us know! ...ED ANNE @ TRAVIS

Dori said...

Dear Meade, Sean, and Henry,
We are thinking of all three of you and praying for you continually. Henry, you take such lovely pictures! We can't wait to meet you in person.

Love,
Dori & Nate

Jackie & Eddie Burke said...

Dear Meade and Sean,
Baby Henry is soooo beautiful! He was born on a very special day. Our oldest daughter Kelley who just turned eight shares Henry's birthday of November 26th. She too had a bit of a rough start, and eight years later we can't keep up with her. We send hugs and prayers your way, and are confident that Henry will be home real soon wondering what all the fuss was about! You guys are a terrific team! Thank you for all informative updates.

With love, The Burke Family
Jackie, Eddie, Kelley and Audrey

Jackie & Eddie Burke said...

Dear Meade and Sean,
Baby Henry is soooo beautiful! He was born on a very special day. Our oldest daughter Kelley who just turned eight shares Henry's birthday of November 26th. She too had a bit of a rough start, and eight years later we can't keep up with her. We send hugs and prayers your way, and are confident that Henry will be home real soon wondering what all the fuss was about! You guys are a terrific team! Thank you for all informative updates.

With love, The Burke Family
Jackie, Eddie, Kelley and Audrey

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