Thursday, August 30, 2007

Still Growing - Aug 30th

Chris arrived early this morning and Cam didn't want to wake up. He is definitely not a morning person....just like his parents. But Chris got him up for his morning breakfast all the same. Before they could feed the little tike though they had to move his gavage feeding tube. The nurses decided to move this from his mouth to his nose. Moving this should make it much easier for him to practice sucking on his pacifier....getting ready for the bottle maybe next week. After moving this tube Cameron's dad feed him a nice big breakfast before dad had to run off to work.

Mom showed up a little while later to fill some more bottles and give Cameron a mid-morning brunch. She stayed with him all afternoon and had fun changing diapers. She also read to him the photobook from cousin Meg (again for the 25th time). Jane thinks this is his favorite.

After Chris and Jane had dinner this evening they went back to the hospital to give Cameron his dinner. We were thinking this would be the first day that Cameron didn't have any visitors besides his parents. However, while we were gone, Aunt Mary and Uncle Ray came to surprise us and meet Cameron. Unfortunately, they were unable to see their new baby nephew even though Cam said he kept telling the nurses it was okay for them to come back. 'Rules are rules' the nurse told Cameron.

Chris and Jane tip-toed out after Cam's dinner while he was sound asleep. But it is so hard to leave their big boy alone for the night.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Settling into NIM - Aug 29th

Today was Cameron's second day in NIM (neonatal intermediate care). He really likes it over here much better than where he was in the NICU before. His day started with his daily visit from his dad this morning. Then Cam's mom and Aunt Betsy arrived to check on the cutest boy in NIM. After lunch, the nurse asked Jane if she wanted to give Cameron a sponge bath. So the big boy had his first bath and his mom even got to wash his hair. After this 'traumatic' experience Cam was a little sacked out.

'Big Sis' Lauren and her mom 'Sweet Andrea' visited later this afternoon. They commented on Cameron's huge progress. They took a few pictures of the beautiful boy and his gorgeous mother. Cam was wearing his favorite outfit that 'Big Sis' had given him.

Chris and Jane went back up later this evening. Nurse Jan weighed Cam before dinner. He weighed in at 3lbs 11.5oz (high five for gaining a whole ounce!!!) Jane held Cameron while he digested his dinner. It was so hard to leave Cameron tonight as he was trying so hard to stay awake for his parents.

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

What an Awesome Day!!! - Aug 28th

Cameron was moved very early this morning to the NIM (neonatal intermediate care) and out of the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit). This feels like Cameron was admitted to the country club to Jane and Chris. They are so ecstatic about all the progress Cameron has been making. Last night Cameron weighed in at a whopping 3lbs 10.5oz (can't leave off the .5...every bit counts).

The biggest change from NICU to the NIM is the size of the nurseries and the relaxed atmosphere. We went from being in a room where Cameron had nine other cribmates to a room where he has only two cribmates. Cameron's crib has a window view overlooking the new construction site of the new Children's Hospital (Harper, you would love all the diggers!)

The doctor who examined Cam today told his parents that he is now in the 'feeder and grower''s pretty exclusive....he is thinking of running for office. His only job now is to digest all of his food and grow, grow, grow!

As if 'Lil C' thought he could get by without a day of visitors...Aunt Joyce and Uncle Joe made a special trip in to Grand Rapids to see the little man. They were so proud of all the changes he has made since the last time they visited just a few days ago. They brought a very special photo album for Cameron that explains the entire Jellema family and everything that Cam has to look forward to and all the new cousins he will meet and have many adventures with (we love you so much Meg and we read this to Cameron this afternoon....he was totally smiling.)

Jennifer Cronk dropped in to see Cameron's new (temporary) home in the NIM. She went to lunch with Chris and Jane, then came back again with her husband Adam later that night. Adam was a little jealous that Jen has had so much time with Cameron. (Have we told you how much we appreciate all the support and everything you have done for us Jen?)

Chris and Jane made a quick appearance at their neighborhood block party where everyone was so anxious to see pictures and hear all about Cameron. Our wonderful neighbors are still planning to bring us dinners to help ease the lack of time due to hospital visits. We are sooo grateful for their support and concern. We are hoping they still feel so generous when Cameron wakes up everyone on the block at 2:30 in the morning.

Cam's parents told him what a big strong boy he is for making such progress so quickly. And then they tucked him in for the night.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Cameron Growing Big - Aug 27th

Cameron continues to impress his parents. He is now growing bigger and stronger without the help of his IV fluids. His IV was completely removed since he is now on full size feedings of milk (30 cc's every three hours).

Once again today Cameron enjoyed a steady stream of visitors. Jane's mom picked her up and stayed with her at the hospital all day. Chris and Jane's next door neighbor and good friend, Mickie Kleinheksel was shocked to see Cameron's progress when she stopped by this afternoon. She and her husband Ken will be traveling for several weeks and know Cameron will go through many changes before they see him again. Mickie told us that she has watched two boys from two different families grow up in the house where Chris and Jane live. Ken and Mickie have lived in their home for over 40 years.

After Grandma Mary Ellen left, 'Auntie' Joanne stopped by to see Cameron's improvements. She too was surprised. Then later this evening, our other good friends Keith and Bobbie stopped by with a surprise guest Rhem. Rhem just had a beautiful baby girl named Estella (congratulations Greg and Rhem!!) at the hospital early Sunday morning.

Soon after everyone left, Cameron's parents tucked their sweet boy in for the night and headed home for some much needed sleep themselves.

Cameron's 2nd Weekend - Aug 26th

Cameron is getting bigger now. His feedings are being increased everyday. Pretty soon he should be up to his full feedings of 30 cc's every three hours!!! Jane has been keeping up with Cameron's supply and demand of this precious commodity by delivering roughly 60 ml (60 cc's) every three to four hours. Consequently, there are approximately 50 milk bottles in our freezer. Imagine our fear when we lost power Thursday night for seven hours. Thank goodness all of the breast milk was spared.

Chris and Jane thought that time would go by so slowly in the hospital, but instead they wonder where the day has gone. Cameron's parents are holding him a lot more now. His new hobby is dealing with hiccups which are pretty loud but don't seem to bother him. When his parents asked the nurses if they could give him anything they laughed and said 'is there a cure for adult hiccups?'

On Sunday, Cameron's parents were convinced they witnessed his first big smile. Jane took some time to attend a beautiful baby shower hosted by Andrea Ringler (Jane's second mom). Cameron received so many gifts....he says thank you very much to everyone!

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Settling into NICU - Aug 25th

Chris and Jane were very overwhelmed at first by the NICU and Cameron's surroundings but were now starting to settle into the temporary environment. They have met a few of the other parents and shared their experiences. They quickly learned that Cameron was much stronger and bigger than most of the other babies in the NICU. Cam's parents were now trying to help the nurses out whenever they could by changing his diapers and taking his temperature.

Cameron continued to receive many visitors on Monday. Jane's mother stopped by again to help us through the day (you are going to spoil us Grandma!). Then Lauren stopped by again with another one of our good friends Christine. They hung out with us for a while until Uncle Jon and Aunt Betsy stopped by for a visit. In the evening, Chris and Jane are able to care for Cameron together. On this particular evening, Jane was changing Cam's diaper when she inadvertently diapered his hands into his pampers (oops!!!).

On Tuesday, Chris went back to work and brought 'It's a Boy!!' candy cigars in for everyone. Chris stops by to see Cameron in the morning before he goes into work at 10:00 then he comes back to the hospital after work to see his son again. Jane gets a ride up to the hospital everyday from one of our many supportive friends and family then comes home with Chris in the evening.

Jane's cousin, Dirk and his wife Lisa brought Jane to the hospital on Tuesday and stayed with her most of the day. Cameron was under the bili-lights today and looked like he was tanning with his cool goggles. This was used to correct his Bilirubin count which was causing a slight case of Jaundice in his skin. Our neighbors Steve and Patty stopped by in the late afternoon to see the little man. Then Joanne came by again after work to checkup on Cameron and Jane.

By Wednesday we were really starting to get into the routine. Today, Cameron's bilirubin was way down so they were able to remove the 'tanning lights'. Jennifer Cronk hung out with Jane and 'lil C' all day. Mary Mason stopped by in the afternoon to see the little man. And once again 'big sis' Lauren (wow, you are awesome) visited her favorite beb-bay. Heather Knapp drove in all the way from Ionia with her kids to drop off a special gift for Jane. Unfortunately the only young kids allowed in NICU are direct family. That evening, Cameron met his 'Auntie' Amanda Darnell who came in from Tawas, MI to see us.

Thursday was a great day! No more CPAP!!! Cameron is digesting all of his breast milk and they doubled his intake. Jane and 'Auntie' Amanda were very excited as they watched Cameron's progress all day. Jane was able to hold Cam for several hours throughout the day. Mike and Kevin stopped by in the afternoon to visit and were pleased to see Cameron's progress for themselves.

Friday was another good day. The greeter at the front desk thinks Cameron gets more visitors than anyone else. To prove this point, Grandma Mary Ellen, 'Auntie' Amanda and Cousin Annie all stayed with Cam for the entire day. His feedings were increased again and his mom was able to hold him for a very long time again today.

Friday, August 24, 2007

Cameron's First Weekend - Aug 24th

Cameron is doing well. He continues to have a lot of visitors throughout the weekend. The NICU is going to have to change the rules to add a limit of total visitors one child can have in one day.

By Saturday morning Jane was definitely ready to go see her son. It was borderline harassment every time a doctor or nurse walked in to check on her. She too was doing well so by 2:30 P.M. they finally gave in and discharged her from Metro hospital on the strict orders to 'take it easy'. So Chris and Jane along with Bill and Mary Ellen quickly drove over to the other hospital to see their new baby. Jane was elated (just a little emotional) to see her new child. When they first arrived little Cameron was crying. His nurse, Tracy, asked if Jane wanted to hold her son. Cameron quieted down as soon as Jane held him in her arms. This was the first day that both Mom and Dad held their precious Cameron.

On Sunday Chris finally called Keith and Bobbi to let them know the exciting news. They rushed over to Spectrum as soon as they found out to see him right away. After visiting with Cameron for a while they decided to take Jane & Chris out to Bombay Cuisine for a great lunch. After lunch, Steve and Andrea snuck up to see the little man before 'big sis' Lauren could get there. But Lauren arrived soon after with our good friend Paige. Later that Sunday evening Chris and Joanne stopped by so Chris could discuss some U of M football strategy with Cameron and plant the seed of hate for the Buckeyes (that's right Mr. Raish).

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Cameron's First Day - Aug 18th

Wow, as if Cameron's night wasn't busy enough!!!! He got to meet Joanne and the Ringlers last night before he was transported to his temporary home at Spectrum.

Today, Cameron was visited by all his new friends. Patty Raish was the first to stop by with a video camera so Chris could film his new son and show this to Jane who was still stuck at the Metro hospital. Patty captured some great footage of Cameron on the first day (hmmm...I wonder where this footage is now (Chris may have taped over this.....allegedly)). Jennifer Cronk met us at Spectrum too but she wanted to wait to see Cameron with his Grandma Mary Ellen. So Chris and Jen drove over to Metro to see Jane and get Mary Ellen.

After lunch Grandma, Jen and Chris all drove back to Spectrum to visit with Cameron. They were all so delighted to see the cute bundle of joy. More of Cameron's new family came to visit him at Spectrum....his Aunt Joyce, Uncle Joe, Cousins Annie and Megan.

Meanwhile, back at Metro, Jane was busy with visitors too. Andrea Ringler and Lauren 'big sis' Ringler stopped by with flowers and goodies. Then Chris and Grandma returned with all of the Schulze's and visited with Cameron's mom as well. Jane was so happy to hear all about how well Cam was doing.

Later this evening Patty Raish and Mickie Kleinheksel stopped by Jane's room at Metro. They showed Jane the quick video of her precious new son. After seeing this Jane was all the more determined to get out of the hospital as soon as possible so she could see Cameron. Cousin Tom and his wife Sam with their two children Paige and Harry came to check on Jane as well. They brought a beautiful ivy plant with candles.

Throughout the day Jane, Chris and Cameron were showered with flowers from Joanne and Chris Alford, Ronda VanKley, the Ringler family and Mary Mason.

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Cameron is born - Aug 17th

Thursday night on August 16th Cameron decided he was done swimming around and wanted to see what the world was all about. So early Friday morning at 12:28 A.M. on August 17th....much to the surprise of his parents....Cameron Jackson Weatherford was born. He wasn't scheduled to arrive until the end of October, however, he had other plans. Cameron was a little guy only weighing in at 3 lbs 8 oz and stretching out to a whole 17 inches long. Right after Cameron was born, his parents were so excited to hear him cry for the first time and then to learn that he was strong enough to breathe all on his own!!!! Mom and Dad were very delighted to see their new baby boy but he was quickly whisked off to Spectrum Health hospital soon after. Jane was very distraught since she was only able to see Cameron for two minutes before his little bus ride downtown. Mommy had to stay at the MetroHealth hospital to recover from her surgery.

Cameron's lungs were developed enough that the doctors only recommended that he use CPAP. It stands for Continuous Positive Airway Pressure. While it may look a little scary, it is used to blow air into his nose to help him keep his lungs inflated so he doesn't have to work so hard to breathe.

After making sure that Jane was tucked into bed for the night Chris ran down to see where Cameron would be staying until he grew strong enough to come home with his parents. When Chris got to Spectrum he was very nervous and didn't really know what to expect but once he saw little Cameron laying there sleeping he quickly overcame his apprehensions. Chris was amazed at how small and beautiful his new baby was. He was so delighted to be able to hang out with his new son on that first day.

Meanwhile, Jane was still at Metro recuperating from her C-section surgery. She was determined to get discharged as quickly as possible so that she could see her baby boy. Jane was thinking that she and Cameron were experiencing similar interruptions due to all the nurses checking on them throughout the night.

A special thank you to Chris and Joanne who stood by our side during this wild evening. We would also like to thank Steve, Andrea and Lauren who rushed over to the hospital as soon as the "father to be" called to let them know.