Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Florida Hospital

"They will celebrate your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of your righteousness." Psalm 145:7

We had such a wonderful time at our reunion at the hospital!!! What do you say to the people responsible for saving your baby’s life? What do you say to the neonatologists who sat by Kyle’s bedside waiting for the inevitable, hoping that statistics would overlook this one little boy. The doctors and nurses at Florida Hospital take God’s tiniest miracles and give them a chance at life.

Kyle spent the first 119 days of his life in the Newborn Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Florida Hospital. During that time we certainly had some very long and sad days. But our time in the NICU was also filled with small moments of happiness, and even times of great joy, many of which were made possible and enhanced by the staff who worked with Kyle. I clearly remember the nurse who asked if I wanted to hold Kyle for the first time, and how much work they would do just to get us ready for kangaroo care...during his sickest times, it took two nurses and a respitory therapist just to get Kyle out of his isolette. I remember the care with which they taught us how to touch our baby, how to change his tiny diapers, how to take his temperature. I remember that when Kyle’s head was so tiny (the size of a tennis ball) and even the smallest hats in a store were much too big for him, a nurse had her grandma knit Kyle a hat. I remember a special nurse who would take pictures of Kyle doing cute things during the middle of the night, when I wasn’t able to be there, and taping them to his isolette to surprise me when I came in the next morning. I remember the respitory therapists and nurses that would hold Kyle’s hand and sing to him to keep his sats up while they got a blood gas. I remember doctors and nurses giving hugs and high fives when Kyle’s platelets finally went back up following a nasty infection. I remember nurses going above and beyond the call of duty to always make sure Madison felt included and praising her for being such a good big sis. I remember doctors and specialists listening to our endless questions, and sitting down with us to draw diagrams to help us understand complicated medical issues, never annoyed by our incessant attention to detail. I remember the nurse who helped me give Kyle his first bath. I remember nurses who were so excited when Kyle was able to finally wear clothes (at three months of age) that they went out and bought him an outfit! I remember them crying over the loss of another NICU baby, and how I realized then that these babies are so much more than a job to this NICU staff. They really and truly care about each baby and family, and they make each tough medical decision just as they would if it were their own baby. I remember that I felt loved…and I don’t think you can feel like that in the NICU of every hospital.

As hard as it was to be in Orlando for so long, I firmly believe that God had a reason for everything happening the way it did. I can’t say with certainty that we would have had such a positive outcome if Kyle had been born anywhere else. I can never express to them my gratitude for all that they did during Kyle’s 4 months in the NICU. They are a big part of who Kyle is today and I hope that they realize what a difference they make in so many families’ lives. Anyways, as you can tell from the pictures, we had an amazing time being reunited with the staff at Florida Hospital and it was definitely one of the highlights of our trip!

God Bless,

Jennifer, Joe, Madison and Kyle


Breanne said...

Wow that post is about to make me cry. As we both experienced so much of the same things, just reading yours makes me think about everything again. I am so thankful that we got to meet a year ago. I love you guys!!

Anonymous said...

Sandra says....
All those pictures were so great and know that brought alot of memories back to you all and Breanne also.The kids look so cute in all the pictures.

I bet Madison had a great time, she sure looks happy in all those pictures. I am glad it was better for her this year and she got to enjoy Disney.

You all take care and remember I love you all.


Kristie, Michael, Kaitlyn & John Michael said...

WOW- What an amazing post~ It's been a while since i've checked in- God is Great~ It was so nice to see all of the new pictures and to hear about your visit back to Florida Hospital- Your story about the past year was so touching- the tears are still flowing- There are no words to describe the joy I feel now, seeing how well Kyle is doing- You're an amazing family and I continue to tell your story to those I meet- We are participating in this years March for Babies- we look for to meeting Rylee and Breanne- and we will certainly keep you on our mind!-We will check in again soon~ God Bless you all~

Beth said...

I saw your article in the Hudson Hub.

I was a friend of your Mom - Pattie when you lived in Kent. I would love to hear from her. My email is

Glad to hear Kyle is well.

Beth Santee

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