Sweet Zoë’s Blog

As promised, here’s the place to see photos (see the link in the upper right corner) and get the most recent information on Miss Zoë. We’ll do our best to update daily, although between two visits each day to the NICU, working from home full time, pumping milk every two hours, and, well, just trying to have a bit of a life in between, we might slip a bit on the updates. Just keep this rule in mind…no news is usually good news.

The basics:

Zoë Harper and her fraternal twin brother, Lennox Maximilian were born at 2:35am on January 3, 2008 by emergency C-section at the gestational age of 24 weeks. Lennox’s membranes had ruptured two weeks earlier and we’d been on hospital bedrest since. Unfortunately, the strain was too much on Lennox. He fought for every breath he took for three days, but his system just couldn’t handle the strain. Lennox died the evening of Saturday, January 5, 2008. We truly believe that he fought to stay in utero long enough to give Zoë a better chance to face her own challenges.

Zoë was 12 inches long at birth and weighed one pound, ten ounces.

During her first three days of life, she did breathe on her own, at oxygen levels only slightly higher than room air, with the assistance of a CPAP respirator. However, she simply wasn’t old enough or strong enough to maintain that, and had to be put on a ventilator. In the next few days, she’ll probably be switched to a respirator that vibrates, rather than one that uses pressure, which is easier on her immature lungs.

She opened her left eye on Jan. 8 and her right eye on Jan. 10.

She recognizes our voices and wiggles when she hears us.

At 11 days old, she is receiving 3cc/hour of breastmilk and gaining weight at a nice, steady pace.

She receives regular blood transfusions because her bone marrow does not produce red blood cells yet. Within the next few days we will post information regarding blood donations. The process for donating directly to preemies is involved and costly, so we have been gathering information for donation in Zoë’s name to offset the blood that she uses. We’ve already had one blood drive in her behalf! (A HUGE thank you to all of the employees of JetPay. You’ll never know the depth of our gratitude for your show of kindness.)

She poops regularly! I know that’s not something you typically celebrate, but every dirty diaper means her intestines are working properly. Poop reports are an important part of the information we ask for at each visit.

We can touch her, we cannot hold her. Yet.

Her breathing issues and infection are the top areas of concern for her. Her entire system is immature and at risk for problems, but these are the biggies.

Her daddy has made himself the expert on the detailed medical stuff. Mommy is more tuned into the eating/pooping/color/weight things. We’ll do our best to cover both sides (although Mommy is more likely to do the posting).

Photos will be plentiful! She’s a cutie and we take lots of pictures. You’ve been warned.

In the past week, our little family has been honored to be on the receiving end of so much love and support. Not only did family and friends stand around us, helping to hold us up, but the internet stepped up as well. People we’ve never met, some total strangers, some we know by name or alias, some we know as well as we can in this medium, writers of blogs, readers of blogs, came forward and not only prayed and wished and hoped for us but they bore witness to our son’s brief life and recognized just how special Lennox was. Your comments have had a huge impact on us this week and I cannot express how touched we are. Someday, Zoë will know just how many people cheered her on for every day, every milestone and how many people mourned her brother. We will not forget.

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6 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    michelle said,

    January 13, 2008 @ 9:16 pm

    i’m so glad to hear zoe is doing well. been reading your blog recently… you guys are very blessed. will continue to think of your family and send lots of love and good thoughts your way. <3 ps: yay poop!!!

  2. 2

    Trish said,

    January 14, 2008 @ 7:00 am

    wonderful news that Zoe is a little fighter and pooping machine too. My prayers and all strength to you all.

  3. 3

    Heather said,

    January 14, 2008 @ 8:48 am

    My thoughts and prayers are with you all! Grow, Zoe, grow!

  4. 4

    Erin said,

    January 14, 2008 @ 11:43 am

    I found your blog when you started your bedrest and followed along so anxiously. I know your heart must ache for Lennox – I cannot even imagine how you’re feeling. But thank goodness for Zoe. It sounds like she’s doing well and I hope you’re able to hold her very very soon.

  5. 5

    alice said,

    January 14, 2008 @ 12:08 pm

    Way to go on the growth, little Zoe! Hooray for poop!

  6. 6

    jano said,

    January 16, 2008 @ 4:44 am

    Keep fighting, Zoe! I only found your blog after the babies were born, and my heart broke for you and for Lennox. My niece Isabella died after two days, and I was inspired to write about her through your loss. i’m thinking about your and Zoe’s courage here in Australia – you really do have supporters throughout the world!

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