The Girls Homecoming – A chapter ends and one begins!

This is the post I have waited so long to make.  After five weeks and six days, all three Coy girls finally came home from the hospital on Friday, March 25.  They left the hospital weighing (Avery – 5.3, Camdyn – 4.13 and Emily 4.8).

We had learned earlier in the week that Avery and Camdyn were up first to come home.  Emily would only be a few days behind them.  The hospital has NICU parents “room in” so you can get use to the girls during the night as well as have nurses on standby in case the girls were to have any complications or we had questions.  We went in on Thursday, March 24 in the evening.  It was also the first time to hold the girls with no tubes, no monitors..period.

Bryan and I coined, “The Last Supper” at Saturn Grill before we roomed in!  We told each other how surreal it was that we were going to bring our girls home and enjoyed dinner together and went on to the hospital.  We could not wait to see them!  Rooming in was interesting. We were literally up all night feeding the girls and it was clearly a look into our future this past weekend.  The next morning, Bonnie, who is one of the AWESOME nurse practioners who oversaw the girls overall care asked us why Emily was not rooming in with us.  We looked confused.  She said, “There is no reason why she cannot go home with you toady.”  Bryan and I looked at each other and were shocked.  I was not believing that just as I imagined that all the girls would leave the same time.  It was perfect.

We worked with the nurse that morning to get all of our discharged assignments complete.  They said at 9:30AM that they could have us out in an hour so we quickly called the troops and all of our family raced up to the hospital to help us and see us off as a family for the first time.  It was such an emotional and joyous experience.  Personally, I felt complete.  I walked out the door that we had walked into for the past 43 days and almost instantly forgot about the worry, exhaustion, days visiting them, prayers for them to come home..It all just escaped us for that special moment.  I got to dress the girls in the smallest clothes I had on hand, load them in their carriers and walk out that door for hopefully the last time with my husband and our sweet precious daughters.  We had lots of lookers as we carried three car seats out the hospitals doors.  And yes, we did have someone say, “Are they triplets?”  My father in law reminded us that we will probably hear that for the rest of our lives!

Once we got home it was almost instant relief. A calm before the chaotic storm that would be parenthood, but with complete and utter joy in our hearts that their homecoming was perfect.

So, want to know how we managed the past 48-72 hours once they came home?  Well, here is a window into carrying for not

ONE, (Avery)

not TWO, (Emily)

but THREE babies! (Camdyn)

Since around noon on March 25, we have completed the following:

– 8 Feedings per day – total of 24 feedings per girl – grand total of 72 feedings!

– 72 bottles

– Changing over 50 diapers

– Setting up three pack n plays. Our living room looks like a play pen!

– Less than five hours sleep in 72 hours. The concept of “nap when the baby naps” is irrelevant this early.

– LOTS of “FIRSTS”

– Family has taken shifts to provide help and relief.  Of course, grandparents need every excuse to see those sweet girls 🙂

– Many answered prayers thanking God for our little family coming home!

Thank you for all the special thoughts, messages, and prayers for the girls during this time.  It has been remarkable what the power of family and friendship accompanied with God grace and power can do.  A friend told me the other day, “they are proof of His plan.” I think so too.

When I get on schedule, I will post more pictures as they grow.  We have our first pediatrician appointment tomorrow and I am blessed Bryan is home this week to brave it with three babies. Fortunately, the doc is about three miles from our house 🙂

The light is shining at the end of the tunnel

Sunday we got some amazing news.  Our girls are ready to come home!  After almost six long weeks, they are beginning the process of being discharged.  It seems so surreal.  I cannot believe this day has actually arrived.  We are anxious, a little scared, but mostly just overjoyed that we are actually bringing them home.

Avery and Camdyn will come home on Friday and sister Emily will be discharged just a few days later.  To date, it has been 40 days since our adventure began.  Once they all leave it will be close to their two month birthdays.  Girls, we have alot of catching up to do with each other 🙂

Avery has led the pack and officially taken all her bottles, had her feeding tube removed and successfully passed her car seat challenge this week!  The car seat challenge is to prepare them to be in upright positions like in swings, car seats, bouncers etc for an extended period of time.  All girls have been weaned off of their caffeine stimulant and doing really well with their apnea episodes so far.  Camdyn will have her car seat challenge probably in the next 48 hours.

Bryan and I have to “room in” at the hospital Thursday night.  We stay with the girls overnight and go through the feeding routine etc just as if we were at home.  If we need anything or the girls need assistance a nurse will be available.  But, I am hoping it goes smoothly and we leave the next day!

We are looking forward to the days ending where we go up to the hospital EVERYDAY.  The days we long to just have them home.  The nights we call the NICU for an update.  The meetings with the staff about their progress.  They have had excellent care and every milestone they need to meet they met right when the doctors said they would. These little gals are simply amazing.  We know we will have a new set of worries, but we will choose to live in the moment for the time being.  I told Bryan that I want to sit in a wheelchair and be wheeled out of the hospital with my babies in their carriers ready to be picked up curbside just like the other regular moms!  Haha.  I am blessed to be healed for the most part over the past weeks so I care for them to the best of my ability.  God knows what His plan was for this experience and I think he has done us right and rewarded us in good time.

We have learned so much through this experience.  Faith, power of prayer and the amazing gift of patience have been our biggest weapons against all that could have gone wrong.  Secondly, we have amazing family and great friends that have prayed with us and supported us.  We are so grateful.

Once they are all home and finally together I promise to post recent pictures.  You will be so amazed at how much they have changed.  Every feature on their face is absolutely perfect and changing everyday.  What was once a tiny little thing is now a darling, resilient and growing baby girl.  I am forever changed!

New Job: Stay-at-Home Mom

As of next week I will officially play my newest role of stay-at-home mom! The irony is that I will start my first official week with no babies in the house to care for, but I know that will change soon. Last week, I gave my notice to my boss and my wonderful co-workers at the OERB. I don’t think they were too surprised, but it still was not the easiest decision to leave a job I really enjoyed. I know the rewards will be amazing with the girls in our lives now and I feel very blessed to be at home with them.

Over the past ten years, I have taken pride in being successful at my jobs. I have spent these years in public relations, event planning and education focused on how I could excel within the company or organization I worked for and learn as much as I could to advance myself within the industry. It was always important professionally to be respected, be great at what I did and especially be liked by the people I worked with everyday. I have been privelaged to be a part of some great teams over the years. I thrived on having a vision for projects, being helpful to a co-worker and carrying the torch representing the organization in the best light. Networking is the wave of the industry 🙂

In those years, you fight to stay relevant and stay on top of your game for the next best job ahead. I know that hands down this will be the most unique and challenging job I will EVER have…so I am not sure what the next best thing would be than this.

I don’t think I ever saw myself as a 100 percent at-home Mom. But, let’s be honest about how much child care would be for three infants and how challenging it would be to have them ready to be cared for everyday while I went to work for 8-10 hours! I know women who LOVE being at home and women who it does take a while to adjust from career life to home life. I think I will live somewhere in between both of those paths. I think the hardest thing for me will be the interaction and socialization everyday in an office environment. I will get plenty of interaction from my little gals AND I do have great hopes of creating our own kind of freedom from time to time, but it will be different. Blissful, yet different. Target trips, shopping and other errands will require Mimi or Nana to either come along or help be at home while I get out. All of the organizational skills and planning skills I aquired over the years will be put to excellent use for my life with the girls.

I am so thankful that I am able to be home with our girls. My husband is taking on a huge responsibility to primarily care for us four girls. On top of being a new dad, I know that he has a different set of goals as our provider AND, I will have a different set of goals as the at-home mom. I just hope that we have enough energy from caring for these babies to remember to take care of each other 🙂

So, here’s to new adventures, new roles and my newest job as a stay-at-home mom of triplet girls! All that is missing is….the girls! Bring it on!

Reflection: Month One

Today, Avery, Camdyn and Emily are one month old.  It’s hard to believe that four weeks ago I delivered these three beautiful girls.  It’s also hard to believe that they are not home yet.  But, we continue to celebrate the everyday victories and the improvements they are making.  They are strong little girls.  On the days where we don’t feel so strong they change all of that the moment we see them. 

Bryan and I were just reflecting today about what an amazing ride we have been on together in just three short years.  We also discussed the wonderful, but worrisome responsibility we have embarked on just one month ago today on February 12.

Over the past month, we have driven probably close to 700 or 800 miles just going back and forth to the hospital everyday.  The first two weeks we were still coasting on adrenaline from the delivery and I was still working to recovery physically from such an intense surgery.  The past two weeks, we see this becoming a routine.  Bryan goes to work, I stay home and try and rest for as long as I can without pumping or calling the NICU to check on the girls, go to the hospital and see our beautiful girls, dinner, a little TV to pass the time, call the NICU before we go to bed….And it all starts over the next day. 

For me, I think I have experienced some disconnect that I hope disappears once the girls are home.  To carry these babies, deliver them, and then to not go home with them is such a weird feeling.  As my tummy begins to disappear I have to remind myself I was indeed pregnant and just because I don’t have them home doesn’t mean I have not started being their mommy.  And, when we go to the hospital and I see (almost daily) the women that are wheeled out to the curbside with their new babies to go home and start their lives, I pray that day will come for us…Very soon.

But, I want this post to focus on the great amazing things God has done in our lives the past month with these girls.

 The girls have successfully done the following:

1.  Gone off assisted oxygen.  At birth, all of them were on CPAP and then nasal canulas for about a week.

2. Discontinued photo therapy.  They are happy to say goodbye to those foam glasses and headgear.

3. Two of the girls are out of isolettes and into cribs – Yea Avery and Camdyn.  Sister Emily is right behind them.

4. Each girl has grown over an inch in length!

5. Gained weight! – Avery was 3.7 at birth and now weighs 4.8; Camdy was 3.2 and is now 4.2; and Emily was 2.11 and is now 3.14.  We are so proud of this milestone for all the girls.

6. They are all successfully beginning to bottle feed and/or nurse.

7. Successfully passed head ultrasounds, eye exams and hearing tests!

8. All have been moved from the critical wing of the NICU to “A” Quad. – A+ girls!!!

I look back at their first photos and remember our first glipse of them at birth.  I think we were in denial about how tiny they were and the issues they could have faced from the beginning.  But, they are proving to us everyday how strong and independent they are through this experience.  They are teaching Bryan and I how to grow our faith and how to depend on each other for strength.  We also have wonderful family that are with the girls everyday, so I know even when we are not there they are not alone and being loved.

As we look forward to the next month, my prayer is that they are home.  Secondly, that they are healthy.  Last, that God knows how grateful we are to have been chosen for this great plan.  Oh, and last…That our girls know how much they are loved and how much joy they have brought into the world in just four short weeks. I can’t imagine what the rest of our lives will look like, but I cannot wait!

The picture above is of a cookie cake we took to the NICU nurses today to celebrate their one month birthdays!  The nurses have been so amazing in caring for our girls.  Sweets was the least we can do.  But, we hope to not be bringing these back in four more weeks 🙂

Miss Avery Lynn Coy

This will conclude my “prelimenary” assessments of the girls’ personailities with Miss Avery Lynn Coy!

Avery was born at 8:08 a.m. and although she was the biggest she is technically the youngest.  She is my special singleton baby or the fraternal.  She grew in a space of her own and exudes qualities of a gal who is quite the independent.

Today was a big day for Avery.  She is the first to be moved to a big girl crib and out of the dreaded isolette.  We are so proud of her. She now weighs 4.4lbs (3.7 at birth) and has been a rockstar leading the “wolfpack” as Daddy calls them. (No pun intended to my high school mascot 🙂 )  Seems asif she is scoping out the situation in advance for her sisters.

She has just a slightly different look than the other girls, but no doubt she is a Coy girl and looks ALOT like her sisters.  Like most babies, she is a little more vocal than the others and very wiggly.  Which all the girls have a sneaky way of scooting way down their isolettes so much they have to pretty much strap them down so they don’t escape!

Avery means “Elf Counsel or Elf Leader.”  This made Bryan and I laugh so much but in reality it is very true.  She was chosen as the single individual living next to Emily and Camdyn.  It is only fitting that she be coined the leader over the other girls way in advance.  I will be most interested to see her bond with the twins over time and the role she will play as the sort of big, but youngest sister.

She already seems very strong to me both physically and internally.  They say research proves that multiples tend to progress and regress in a pattern that is in line with their sibling’s progress etc.  For example, Avery was always the biggest in weight, but was on oxygen and photo therapy like the rest of the girls.  But, once Avery took off… she took off with her progress.  Ironically, over the past week, we have seen not a regression but a sense of stillness that almost indicates that Avery slowed to allow her sisters to catch up.  Camdyn is just five ounces behind Avery and now Emily is just five ounces behind Camdyn.  It is like intuitive sibling love kicked in and Avery helped set that pace.

I look at her precious features and just adore her pouty little mouth and how her nose is just slightly different from the girls’.

Our money is on this girl to arrive home first.  We are not holding our breath, but we hope it will be within the next two weeks.  The girls are just now 34 weeks gestionally as of today.  They are developing some important mechanisms such as sucking and breathing for bottling feeding and nursing, maintaining their body temperature and gaining consistent weight.  They are all on a mix of breast milk and some type of fortifier to increase their caloric intake.  It is working and we are so thankful.

Prayer Request: Camdyn and Emily are still on photo therapy.  Their levels are still elevated but we pray they come down so they can progress and grow and be in a position like Avery to be in a crib very soon.  Plus, their poor little faces and eyes are getting sick of those foam glasses!!

A selfish prayer request is for Bryan and I.  This is week four in this journey since their birth. They will be a month old on Saturday, March 12.  They are getting excellent care, but it is weighing on our emotions not having them in our arms and at home. Please pray that we maintain grace and strength until that final day comes that they are all home.

Lastly, congrats to my dear childhood friend Jamie Jones, her husband Carl and big brother John. Today, they welcomed Matthew Allen (their second son) into this world.  Mom is doing well and Matthew is being monitored for fluid on his lungs, but I know he will recover beautifully!  Love you all Ronald 🙂

Miss Camdyn Lea Coy

Better known as Baby B and one-half of the identical twins (Emily Ray’s counterpart), Miss Camdyn Lea Coy came into the world right in the middle at 8:07 a.m. on February 12 and weighed 3.2.

After sharing a “room” with her sister Emily for seven and half months, Camdyn is exuding qualities that are very similiar to how I recall her during pregnancy.

I have already coined her as my little peacemaker. She is already very alert and observant. Almost as if she is sizing up the situation before she makes a decision about something. If that is anything like me, she is analyzing the heck of the situation before she can form an opinion. She is the calmest out of the sisters. She seems very content and happy. Doesn’t make any big fuses and was not much of a kicker or wild woman in my belly. She knew how to make her way up in my rib cage at times, but now I think that was just so she could be out of the way and possibly observe her surroundings alot better 🙂

She is the one that most people say, “I love the name Camdyn.” Not that Avery and Emily are not darling names, but Camdyn is pretty unique but does not carry any true real meaning to her name. I think that is because her meaning will be left up to how she grows as a young lady.

I see our little peacemaker breaking up the fights between her sisters, being the voice of reason, and our little girl who says more with her actions than words. I see her sisters, especially Avery, being more vocal.

Of course these are all predictions and I know over time they will all develop into their own little personalities and be wonderful little baby girls.

Side note: Both Camdyn and Avery have been moved to the “A” Quad of the NICU. This is great news! A Quad is the non-critical side of the NICU. Sister Emily will be moved in the next day or so as well. Just based on their room availability. We are so proud of their progress. They are just a day over 33 weeks. Although technically they are almost three weeks old, gestationally the girls are still as a baby in utero at 33 weeks. They need to learn a lot before they get to come home with us, but the nurses and doctors tell us between 33 and 34 weeks that the light sometimes just turns on for premies and many of those “suck, swallow, breathing” things they need to learn will soon kick on!  We pray it will be soon, but not too soon…When they are ready, we will be ready.

This week has been tougher than the last two for me at least. Maybe its hormones, maybe its the true feelings of the realization of the situation, whatever the reason it is harder to leave them more and more each day. We are so in love with each of them.

Prayer requests: Continue to pray for them to learn, develop and grow. Also, pray for the wonderful doctors and nurses caring for our girls. In addition, we continue to keep the babies who are not doing as well as our girls in our hearts daily.

Up next, Miss Avery…Stay tuned

Ol’ Dad’s Turn Now

For those of you that don’t know this about me, I have zero experience with social networking site’s or blogging…so this is a first.

I thought I would take a turn and write down some of my thoughts and experiences thus far. I can honestly say that when numerous friends and family members told us that we would not know what it is like to be a parent…until we became one…they were right!!! It is a feeling that many of you can describe, but I have a hard time explaining it. I can simply say this…I am on cloud 9!!!!!! I am scared to death and totally outnumbered, but these girls and their mother are my everything.

I have no idea how we are going to do this, and I guess that is ok. Both Stephanie and I are so thankful for this blessing and truly feel the Good Lord picked us for a reason.

I also know just how blessed we are to have such a wonderful family and group of friends. I have truly been humbled by the righteous things that our friends and family have done for us. I cannot recall just how many phonecalls and text messages I have received, letting me know that friends were thinking of and praying for our girls!! I try my best to let our friends know just how appreciated they are! It means the world to us!

It has obviously been very difficult leaving “my posse” every night, but know they are in such wonderful hands. I can tell you that it takes a special person to do what those doctors and nurses do!!! They are unbelievable!!

I can also say just how blessed I am to have Stephanie in my life. I knew that she was an incredibly strong person when I dated her in college and then married her, but she has totally blown me away with how she has handled all of this. I admire her dearly and look up to her in so many ways! These girls are going to have a wonderful mother!

As cliche’ as it sounds, I truly feel as if I am the luckiest man alive! I cannot wait to spoil these girls and try to teach and guide them down the right path. Being in the NICU for this long, has definitely reminded me just how POWERFUL Prayer is! We have spent so many days and nights not only Praying for our litte ones, but every kiddo in there. A family friend told me last week (she is a twin) that the NICU is a sanctuary, and I couldn’t agree more!

In closing, I wanted to again thank our family and friends for all that they’ve done. You will never ever know how much you mean to us, and just how appreciative we are for all of you.

Much Love,

BC