Around midnight on Friday morning, Marie started to go into labour. Around 4 AM she realized that this was probably more than just a bad 'bowel movement' and at 7 AM we called our doctor (Cindy Shaw) who told us to get into the hospital right away. We arrived around 8 AM expecting that Marie would just be assessed and sent home, but at 9 AM Marie was 1-2 cm dialated and we knew there was no turning back - baby was coming!
The baby was 35 weeks which of course concerned us a little, but we knew that minor complications with 'pre-mies' were normal and that this boy or girl would be a good weight.
Marie's labour went fast! :) While she was just 3 cm around 2 PM, she quickly moved up to 4 and then 7 ... and we had to wait for Cindy to come back (she was picking up her girls Alex & Kelly - two of our youth - who wanted to observe the delivery!)
Marie did a fantastic job through the labour and delivery (and really grew fond of the gas!). It took her around 6 contractions to bring our little boy into the world.
Josiah Andrew Haak was born @ MSA Hospital in Abbotsford @ 16:16 February 16th. He weighed just under 6 pounds (5 pounds and 11.9 ounces).
We knew that he would have to be taken to the nursery immediately for examination, but in time we disovered there were some unknowns and concerns that needed to answered.
Josiah has narrow airways through his nasal passage. It could be because he has a slightly flattened nose (genetic or result of delivery) and so breathing for him was labourous and he was given oxygen. Also, because of his larger head, his chin often tilted forward blocking even more of his airway. A few hours after delivery he was given a resporatory tube to help him breath (so he wouldn't tire out and would be able to relax) as well as help him get the carbon dioxide out of his body (he didn't have the strength to push the used air out). While his airways are narrow, he has a very strong set of lungs, so much so that the doctors are going to try and take the tube out this afternoon to see how he responds.
Josiah also has some other markers which the doctors will be examining over the next few days or weeks. It appears that his kidneys are attached (it's called a horseshoe kidney) which happens sometimes and people can live through it. The doctors were also concerned that his ears may sit a little lower on his head and that his nose was a little broad. And lastly, Josiah has 6 toes on each foot!
This physical markers may be signals that something isn't quite right on the genetic level. On Monday Josiah will have his chromosomes checked out, as well as his eyes, head, and heart thruogh ultra sounds just to see if there is anything obviously wrong.
Josiah last night was transferred to BC Children's Hospital in Vancouver so that he could receive the best attention possible. The nurses and doctors have been fantastic. Marie is doing very VERY well - mobile, alert, eating, and getting enough sleep - though the reality of our son's challenges is starting to sink in and cause her great grief. She's very excited though because she might be able to hold him for a while this afternoon (she only got him for a few minutes last night). Marie is staying in the BC Women's Hospital which is attached to BC Children's. She (and presummably I as well) will be here for at least a couple more days until the doctors are able to interpret the results from the tests and scans.
The joy Josiah has brought Marie and I and the love that we have for our son is overwhelming. It truly was love at first sight. There are has been lots of tears and lots of prayers and we would really appreciate it if you could also pray for our son. We know that the next 48-72 hours are critical for our son, but we trust that God knows best as Josiah's life sits on the bubble.
We are confidence of God's presence with us as a family at this time, and we are assured of his deep love for Josiah. We know that God is good and merciful, both Creator and Sustainer of life. We have been encouraged by Josiah's strength: his heart and lungs are both strong, and his vitals have remained strong this whole time. Almost too good: the nursery's would appreciate that he would breath less!
We also believe that God has his reasons for bringing Josiah into our arms and world 5 weeks early. It seems that Marie's stomach was at a 40-week size because of all the fluid that was in her uterus, a large percentage of that being the baby's urine. The baby seems to be have urinating more than normal, probably because of his kidney condition. It is quite probable that God said "Now is the time!" because the amount of urine could have reached a toxic level if this baby waited until 40 weeks, boding ill for both our children and Marie.
So, thanks for everyone who prays and passes this along. Later in the day I hope to post pictures and maybe even video!
We love and are loved by a good God.