Tuesday, August 7, 2012

It's the little things

It's hard to believe that we only met Ainsley 4 days ago. Today was filled with scheduled observations and monitoring of Ainsley, and her progress towards improving in so many different ways. She continues to hold a consistent body temperature, and has not reacted adversely to coming off the cooling blanket. Ainsley's efforts to breathe on her own charge on, but continue to require the support of minimal oxygen and nitric oxide. She is slowly beginning to balance/increase the appropriate levels of various properties in her blood such as calcium, sodium and potassium, but the doctors are continuing to assist her with this feat. We were very happy to see one tube and one IV removed today, although the IV will just have to switch places. Ginnie and I spent a lot of time with Ainsley today with it being just the two of us, and we would talk to her or Ginnie would sing her a song; I think she even taught Ainsley a little Social Distortion : )  The majority of the day went by with the security that Ainsley remains in stable condition, is making small improvements, and remains the cutest darn girl I have ever seen! We did have a great visit with friends and co-workers of mine, Erin and Evangeline, and I was so excited and proud to introduce them to Ainsley. Towards the end of the day though, I have to say was one of the highlights of life in recent memory. Ginnie and I were coming back to see Ainsley after the nurses shift change, and we were greeted by a new nurse that we had not yet met. After we introduced ourselves, the nurse was looking at Ainsley and her bedding. She observed that since the cooling blanket had been taken away, that blankets had collected to either support Ainsley's position changes or cords/breathing tube, and it was just a mess. She began tidying up, and I asked if I could help. Now, I expected her to ask me to just lean Ainsley one way or the other while she placed/pulled blankets, but she directed me to place one hand under her butt and one under her head. Before I knew it she had lifted Ainsley into my arms!  I didn't even recognize that I was really holding her at first because all I could do was just stare down at her beautiful presence and feel her wonderful warmth now that she had left that cold blanket. Ginnie quickly recognized that somehow I had inadvertently gotten "permission" to hold her and blurted out "You're holding her"!  I then snapped back into reality and quickly asked that I be able to pass Ainsley to Ginnie, once her new bed of blankets had been prepared. This wonderful nurse gave direction of what cords/tubes we had to support, but was glad to oblige. I have to say that the feeling of holding my daughter for the first time was one of the best feelings EVER, but seeing the look on Ginnie's face as she took Ainsley into her arms, and the tear that rolled down her face surpassed it. I became aware for long enough to beckon the nurse to let me try and get a quick picture with my phone. I was able to get two quick shots, and then my phone died. The second photo I took was erased because my phone ran out of battery, but I was able to get one.

I have talked to a friend about the little interaction we are yet to have with Ainsley, and it does seem to many kind of wrong/crazy that we haven't held her yet, had skin to skin time (especially with Ginnie), and been able to do many of the things that especially mothers get to do with their children. Unfortunately, when babies are in such fragile condition, it takes very little to upset them and raise/lower heart rate or stress them out. All that said, holding her was that much more of an awesome experience. Also, throughout Ginnie and I holding her, her heart rate remained steady and she handled it very well. I know there will be many ups and downs to come, but I think little things like this will help us get through the valleys and trudge up to the peaks. Thanks again for all the prayers, positives, and angels being sent our way and much love to everyone! Here's to hopefully another good day tomorrow!  : ) 


  1. What a great shot to capture! And what an amazing moment...So happy you got to have your baby girl in your/Ginnie's arms where she belongs....

  2. Great blog! Keep up the hard work, Mike, as a Dad and a blogger. I can't wait to meet Ainsley in person. Hey, tell us sth. about her beautiful name. How did you decide on it?

  3. We were searching through name books and lists, and began picking names that both Ginnie and I liked. Eventually we agreed that we would pick 10 favorite names that both of us could agree that were either our favorites or that we could feel good about. After that we would separately write down our top five, and whichever ones we picked in common were the final choices. We ended up having 4 in common, and after a couple of days realized that we kept talking about how much we liked Ainsley and that name just felt right. Of course there are a couple different meanings, but we like that some meanings include hermitage wood/relaxing retreat of/in the woods. Also, can just mean outdoorsy and peaceful meadow.