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Monday, August 29, 2011

HOME Sweet HOME (from Doubly Blessed)

We made it back to the U.S by August 25th, just in time for Blaze's 2nd birthday the very next day.  All of us are exhausted, jett-legged,  happy to be home and most of all finally HEALTHY.  We will post more once we more alert.

Thanks again for all your wonderful words of support, love and care over the last 6 weeks...that's right our little babes are 6 WEEKS old TODAY!


Saturday, August 20, 2011

Getting Out of Dodge... (from Doubly Blessed)

Well, we finally are ALL healthy. Better not say that too loud.

The twins turned 1 month on the 18th of August. Big brother Blaze will turn 2 years old on the 26th of this month. Also happens to be the day after (God willing) we return home from India. We LOVE India but this stay has been a little more then we could handle with sickness and unexpected DNA testing. It just seemed like at every turn of the corner we faced another obstacle. We have had little time to enjoy our friends and family or the many sights of Mumbai which is disappointing, but unfortunately that has not been our main priority this trip. We have tried to make the most of it and see the kids God Parents as much as possible, even if it means a quick visit to the SI clinic or a late supper here in the vicinity of the hotel in Powai.

We have also had the amazing pleasure to have seen both the twins and Blaze's surrogates a few times. FB we first met while still at the hospital after the twins birth. A few days later she came to the SI clinic and happened to literally run into us in the hallway holding the twins. It is SI's policy that the surrogate Mom's do not see the children after birth. It certainly wasn't our intention, but we had little choice at this point and so with the Docs okay, we went with it. She held both the twins and smiled and told me, she knows what a wonderful feeling it is to be a mother and so she was so happy to be able to help make me a mother. Yes, I cried like a baby. We gave her some small gifts for her, her husband and two kids and planned a further date to go shopping. During one of our Skype sessions she told us, what she would like most was to take me shopping. I turned the tables on her and today with the help of the lovely Heena at SI, FB, her son and daughter all made there very first trip to a local mall.  I gave her a set amount of rupees and we shopped till we dropped while Gerry stayed back at the SI offices with all 3 kiddos. Each of FB's kids got a full outfit and a wrist watch and FB got a beautiful saree. It was such an amazing day seeing them using an escalator for the first time and enjoying an ice cream together. It was such a heartwarming moment, one I will cherish forever.

We met KT (Blaze's surrogate)at SI's office and her entire family came. We had small gifts for them all and had such a lovely time catching up. Both her boys had grown so big in the last two years and they remembered us fondly as the ones who took them swimming in a pool for the first time. Blaze went to her immediately and she held him on her lap while he smiled and gave her hugs. Both her and her husband invited us to come and visit their new home and said, 'if it wasn't for you both, we wouldn't have it, so please let us share it with you.'. Needless to say there we a whole lot more tears that day as well. Today we were able to visit KT again as she has decided to be a surrogate again and while we have been in India she had her transfer and was lucky enough to get a positive pregnancy and so is at the SI surrogate house until her upcoming scan this week. We went with Blaze and visited her and all the 10 other girls at the house. They were all smiles and excited to see the chocolates we brought for them to share. Blaze was of course the center of attention and went right to KT and said her name. It totally shocked us all as we had told him earlier that morning we were going to visit KT, and just the fact that he recognised her and called her by name was so wonderful. He played with her bangles as he sat on her lap and all the ladies loved his charm. He blew them all kisses and smiled and laughed. I asked if she was happy, (referring to the fact that she was again pregnant as a surrogate) and she said,'Yes, she was very happy we took the time to come to see her again.'. Gosh we love this lady. KT walked us out to the outdoor gate all the while giving us hugs and kisses and endless smiles. We told her she will forever be a part of our family as when we look at Blaze we thank God for her. It has been such a wonderful and touching experience getting to know both the kids surrogates. It is sad as we know it will be quite sometime before we visit these special women again.

Jett is doing well, has a little bit to go before he catches up to his sister, but that's to be expected after 10 days in the hospital. He is SO wide-eyed and makes the cutesy faces with his wrinkled little forehead. He is definitely the quieter of the two and likes his pacifier every now and then.

Big sister Dylan continues to thrive.  She continues to 'run the show' and it a total DIVA!  She definitely has a very distinct personality and it will be interesting to learn about raising little girls with her.  She has the brightest eyes and doesn't miss a beat.  She is already holding her head up looking all around.  When she wants something, she wants it NOW and she let's us know it.

TWINS....this is a whole new, fabulous and exciting experience.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Our 'App'azine.

Our story (Our Family: Made in India) by Ringier:

"The Global Baby," the Second Issue (May 2011) of the Collection Appazine Series for iPad Tablets

We were extremely pleased with the story and are hoping it helps to spread the word about surrogacy in India as an option to infertile couples.

Here are a just a few of the marvelous still photos taken here in Arizona and Mumbai.  All thanks to the ever so talented Katja and of course our journalist extraordinaire Tilman:

All photos and video courtesy of (Katja Heinemann / The Collection Magazine)  also the link to download the app:

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Update... FINALLY!

Quick up date on our little ones,

After 3 long days at the hospital I am back at the hotel and in touch with the world again.  Jett was discharged from NICU on Friday morning to a regular room in the hospital.  We are getting to be old hats at this juggling kids from hotel to hospital and back.  Tonight Daddy is on Jett duty and Mommy is on hotel duty with the two eldest. 

Jett is doing well.  He remains on IV antibiotics and the good news is that all the culture reports came back inconclusive so although he definitely had neonatal sepsis, the source was undetermined and so the length of his IV antibiotics is now 10 days instead of 14.  Which is exciting news for us.  He is starting to eat again and still remains a 'lazy' eater, but he is taking in a good 30mls every 3 hours and sucking.  Now we are just trying to get him to put some weight on.  His big sister has passed him in weight when in the beginning she was the light weight of the two.

So...basically our time in India this trip, has been one bad turn after another.  Both babies were released to our care from NICU on Tuesday, July 19th (remarkably less then 24 hour in NICU for 34 weekers)  We had a mandatory 3 day hospital stay on the floor and then discharged to our hotel.  Gerry and I did our best juggling all 3 kids and the twins were (and still are for the most part) very typical newborns.. Eat, sleep and poop.  We had a 3 hour schedule and both babies wouldn't budge till the 3 hours hit.  Dylan (whom we have already nicknamed, 'Our Little Diva.') would be the first to wake and if not attended to in 30 seconds she was/is going to let you know.  Jett is our laid back 'chilled out' little guy and waits to be attended to.  Both are just tiny and we worked (and still are working) on increasing their weights.  Although small both were healthy and thriving.

After a week or so we noticed Jett was not taking the bottle as he should.  We reached out to friends and family as this was all new to us.  Blaze was such a textbook, perfect little baby, we were spoiled beyond belief with him.  We sufficed that Jett was just going to be a lazy eater and it was going to take us some work to get him to feed.  Other then that, he was a typical newborn.  Finally after trying every trick in the book Jett still wasn't eating and got to the point in less then a day to not sucking at all.  That's when I became concerned.  It was like the bottle was an instant sedative, and when it hit his lips he would fall fast asleep.  He was still alert, but starting to have more sleepy periods then awake.

We quickly called Dr. Yash and she suggested we take him into the ER for an evaluation as it sounded possibly like low blood sugar.  Gerry took Jett over to Hiranandani and the resident doctor recognized Gerry from when Blaze was born did some lab work and said, ;go ahead back to your hotel and we will call you with the results in a few hours.'  Jett was stable and although lethargic his blood sugar was good.  Thank God for our amazing hotel accommodations that are a quick 15 min. rick shaw ride to and from the hospital.  This has certainly been a blessing in disguise as we always stay at the VITS, we decided to take a leap of faith and try something new.  Little did we know what a great decision this would be since we have had to make our fair share of visits to the hospital this trip.

Gerry no more made it back to the hotel with Jett when the Doctor called and said he needed to return with Jett right away his lab work was abnormal and he rattled off a bunch of numbers.  After hanging up Gerry realized he should have gave the phone to me to decipher the medical jargon.  (I am good for some things. :)  We called Dr. Yash and she got on the phone to Dr. Bijal (the Pediatrician) and returned our call immediately.  Jetts white count and platelets were abnormal and they were going to admit him to the NICU with neonatal sepsis.  'It was a good thing we got him in when we did as it could have been much worse.' Our hearts sunk and the tears flowed.  Gerry headed back to Hiranandani while I stayed with the other kids.  Dr. Soni and Dr. Bijal literally met them at the door of the hospital.  Jetts bed was waiting for him in NICU. 

They started him on IV fluids and 3 different types of heavy duty IV antibiotics.  They placed an O2 hood over his head as the nurses noted he was have a few very short periods of not breathing.  They placed an NG (feeding) tube and started all the testing.  Labs, cultures, CT scans and lumbar punctures....

In the mean time Blaze was having diarrhea for quite a few days and we expected it was his large intake of fresh fruit.  So we cut back only to have the diarrhea continue.  We started him on some polyantibiotic liquid and he was still drinking and eating well, so we let it run its course.  Expect for the fact that the same day that Jett was going to the ER, Blaze now started vomiting.  Again we called Dr. Yash (we had her on speed dial this day) and she got some meds. ordered for the vomiting.  Dylan (fingers crossed) was the healthy one.  Or so we thought.  Docs warned us to keep her and Blaze apart. 

Jett was in good hands in the NICU.  It was difficult to see him all alone with tubes and lines all over the place.  I see this on a daily basis at work with my patients, but its a completely different thing when its your helpless child.  We were allowed 2 visits daily and Gerry and I rotated so that we didn't have to bring the other kids to the hospital and risk getting them sick.  His labs were improving slowly and all the culture results were coming up negative.  The lumbar puncture was negative for meningitis (dodged that bullet!).

In the meantime we needed to bring Dylan in for a check up.  We met Dr. Bijal and she had news on Jett.  She did a CT of the head and to her surprise it came back positive for a grade 1 mild ventral bleed.  Again our hearts sank.  She stated that Jett was improving in his alertness and motor skills so she was not concerned.  This is not uncommon in preterm babies.  You can't imagine the terror of being told your 13 day old son has a brain bleed.  Can you see why we have been somewhat tied up now???

Each day passed and Jett improved slowly.  Labs were improving the IV fluids were slowly being decreased and they started him back on oral feeds.  The feeding tube came out, the oxygen came off, the Jett we knew was coming around!

Unfortunately, our luck with Dylan ran out... during her 'routine' check up we found out that her weight decreased again,  she now had an umbilical granuloma and oral candida not too mention the green goop we noted from her right eye that morning. Thankfully none of this serious, just more stress and worries on our part with more antibiotics and treatments. 

So fast forward to today...  Blaze is still with diarrhea and what a trooper, he hasn't skipped a beat with the exception of three times the normal diaper changes a day, every time he says, 'uh ohh, poopie' we groan and giggle.  Poor little man.  We are quickly running out of diapers and wipes.  He is on an oral antibiotic and a second course of polyantibiotics.

Dylan's eye is great!  Her belly button is drying up and her mouth is free of cooties.  She is eating like a champ (twice the amount of her brother) and taking some vitamins and minerals to help increase her weight.

Jett remains in the hospital still receiving his IV antibiotics, and if all his blood work and repeat CT of the brain come back normal on Wednesday, we can bring him back to our home-away-from-home here at the hotel to be reunited with his big sister and brother. 

Mommy and Daddy are worn out from around the clock feeds at two separate locations, sick children and the news that we now  have to do DNA testing since 'it had been over 3 years since Gerry had frozen his sperm and that sample was used for the twins.' Not what we anticipated since it was the same sample as Blaze and no DNA testing was required then.  When it rains it pours!!!! 

Thank you all again for your love and support.  They mean the world to us and we are truly touched by those who kept us apart of their prayers.

We haven't lost our sense of humor...

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Prayers Must be Working (from Doubly Blessed)

Jett remains in the NICU and by all accounts is beating this sepsis.  We are on day 3 of heavy duty x3 IV antibiotics and he has started oral feeds again.

Blaze appears to be back on the mend as well (no further vomiting or diarrhea...fingers crossed it stays that way).

Dylan is the strongest of the three (GIRL POWER!!!) no infections and still as cute as a button.

When I catch up on sleep, I promise to give all the details.  Until then, here are a few pics of our angel in his latest accommodations and his big brother and big sister (by 15mins...I am sure she will remind him of that for the rest of his life):

 NICU bed 2

 Before they were separated (Dylan left/Jett right)

 All 3 of our beautiful blessed are we!?

Oh the humidity...I can't do a thing with my hair!!!

Monday, August 1, 2011

Prayers Needed... (from Doubly Blessed)

Jett returned to NICU last evening with neonatal sepsis.  We are beyond sad, but extremely hopeful and know he is receiving the very BEST care at Hiranandani hospital.  Will post more soon.  Until then please keep our little man in your prayers.


A very few hard couple of days

Prayers needed...

Jett returned to NICU last evening with neonatal sepsis.  We are beyond sad, but extremely hopeful and know he is receiving the very BEST care at Hiranandani hospital.  And if that wasn't enough on our plates, Blaze has been suffering from some bug with chronic diarrhea and recent vomiting. 

Will post more soon.  Until then please keep our little men in your prayers.