Saturday, December 17, 2005

Hello! Pictures! and new abilities!

Christmas 2005Hello, first off we want to share pictures! Mom and Dad did our new annual tradition of Christmas pictures with all of us. It came out pretty good, of course I think the fella in the red made the picture. I of course may be partial, since that is me! I have been having alot of fun lately. Mom put up this really pretty tree with shiny things on it. Of course I like shiny things so I would love to grab them. There are also stuff under the tree but, they aren't shiny so they don't really interest me. My brothers seem to be interested though.

All dressed upMom gets so excited here lately. I discovered my hands and I like to wave. I also like to clap now too. Things are fun, I hope these sparkly and shiny things don't go away. I also enjoy it when my sisters have friends over. Their friends give me so much attention and would rather look at me and talk to me than do what ever with them. Mom says I am an attention hog.

I disagree.

We did go and have fun at the playcenter in teh mall while mom had to take a few things back. I had fun there. Especailly when I was running from my brother Micah. I suppose I shouldn't say running, more like crawling at the speed of light. I am surprised mom got a picture of it.Can't Catch me!Hi There!

We did have alot of fun.

Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Results from Assessment on 11-10-05

Benji had an assessment completed on the 10th of November. The assessment was the Battelle Developmental Inventory and it was done at home by his early intervention teacher. At the time of the assessment Benji was 8 months and 8 days. As you can tell, this is a month old. He has progressed further in some areas already. Our little guy is getting strong and very smart!

Personal Social
Personal social domain test skill related to adult interaction, expression of feeling/affect, self-concept, peer interaction and social role. Benji scored at 7 months, 1 month below his chronological age. He plays peek-a-boo, expresses his emotions, and responds to his name.

Adaptive Domain tests skill related to attention, dressing, eating, personal responsibility and toileting. His total score was 10 months, 2 months above his chronological age. Benji holds his bottle to feed himself, attends to one activity for 3 or more minutes.

Motor domain includes both fine and gross motor skills. Gross motor skills involve large muscle movements, which include muscle control, body coordination and locomotion. Fine motor skills include the small muscle movements, primarily related to hand use and perceptual motor coordination.

In the area of gross motor, he scored 9 months which is 1 month above his chronological age. Benji stands for 10 seconds while holding on to a solid object, moves from a lying position to a sitting position by himself and pulls up to a standing position without falling.

In the fine motor area, Benji scored at 5 months, 3 months below his chronological age. He can transfer objects from one hand to the other, picks up things in his fist as opposed to index finger and thumb, and he will reach for an object placed before him and touch it.

Communication domain covers both receptive and expressive language. Receptive language is the ability to respond and to understand spoken language. Expressive language is the ability to respond to a word by using words or gestures.

In the area of receptive language, Benji scored 7 months, 1 month below chronological age. Benji turns his head toward the source of sound outside his field of vision, responds to voice outside of his field of vision and responds to non-speech sound outside his field of vision. His emerging skills are responding to different tones of a person's voice and associating spoken words with familiar objects or actions.

In the expressive communication, he scored 8 months which is his chronological age. He produces one or more vowel sounds, vocalizes sounds to express feelings and produces one or more single syllable consonant-vowel sounds.

Cognitive domain tests skills related to perceptual discrimination, memory, reasoning, academic skills and conceptual development. Benji scored at the 8 month level right at his chronological age. He shows awareness of new situations, feels and explores objects and reaches around a barrier to get a toy.

Tuesday, December 06, 2005

9 month checkup

So Benji went to the doctor today for his 9 month check up. Hard to believe he is nine months old already. Dr. Baust was sick so we saw Dr. Seethaler. He was very impressed very impressed with Benji and his abilities. So let's start with the stats

Benji is now 29.5 inches tall and 20.13 pounds. He got four shots today. We had to play catch up since the new doctors do their shots a little differently. So he's all caught up there. They did the hemocrit and it came back good too.

    So, Benji's milestones:
  • Sits very well without assistance. (this started at 7 months)

  • Crawls on hands and knees. (started at 7 1/2 months)

  • Will scoot around furniture (walk while holding on). (started at 8 1/2 months)

  • Pulls up to standing position. (started at 8 months)

  • Responds to his name. (He always has it seems)

  • Finger Feed self (he's messy but is trying)

  • Picks up small objects between thumb and index finger (sometimes, he usually just gets things in his fist.)

  • He babbles more, he says ba, baa, da, da da, bu bu, maa

We are still nursing so Dr. Seethaler said we need to put him on Vitamin D drops.

He eats #2 foods very well. He has to stay away from peaches, mangos and the highly acidic fruits like that, they don't agree with his tummy. Benji also enjoys the fruit and veggie puffs, scrambled eggs sometimes, and instant potatoes. He seems to not like many textures.

Benji is sleeping now since he is a bit cranky after those shots. He is doing well though. Next appointment is in March for one year checkup!

Friday, March 04, 2005


We are now at Vanderbilt children's. It was weird about how the transport team was going on about how they have all the equipment in the ambulance that is in the NICU and if something were to happen, they would be able to help him.

I don't completely understand, it's just a narrow spot, not like the blood isn't getting there, it's just making his heart work a little harder.

I am extremely thankful for the nurse I had, she called Dr. Barnett and got him to release me so that I could go with Benji to VCH. She was very understanding and got us loaded up and on our way very quickly. We got over to the hospital about the same time Benji did but then we had to wait for them to transfer him into NICU and make sure he was stable.

We have called many different people and couldn't get ahold of anybody. Tom and Nancy Crow from church got our message and came up to the hospital, so did Aunt Wanda. It was so odd, people we can usually just think about and there they are, and tonight when we needed somebody we went hours with nothing.

The feeling of nothingness was unbearable. We felt as if our world was falling apart and we had nobody with us to hold our hands. The heart defects were so completely unexpected we were not prepared at all. It was a blessing that the Crow's gave up their evening to sit with us that first night at Vanderbilt. We did not know how long we would be there.

Thursday, March 03, 2005


The cardiologist saw Benji. My first impression of her is I don't like her. She was so blunt and didn't think about how we would feel. Benji has something wrong with his heart. He has a coarctation of his aorta and his aortic valve is bicuspid it is also thick. They have put him on PGE(?) it will force his PDA to stay open so his body gets blood. They are tranfering him to Vanderbilt Children's Hospital now.

I am scared, I tried to tell everybody something was going on and they said I was wrong. Now this? He did nurse this afternoon. I was starting to relax until the cardiologist came in here. Now my world feels like it is shattering.

My cousin Madeline was born with heart defects and had surgery and it was repaired and she's fine. She's 18 now. She has Turner's Syndrome but she is doing fine. I think she is even going away to college.

God, please protect my little boy.

More Concerned

Well.. Benji wasn't interested in nursing at all last night. So far he's not interested this morning either. The peds nurse said he had some formula last night.

Dr. Brad Greenbaum checked Benji out this morning, said he looks good just that he has a heart murmur and wants cardiology to look at it since we live a good 45 minutes away. He says it is common for babies to have a murmur when they are born and it close up in a few hours/days.

Benji is still lethargic.

I am trusting in God that Benji is taken care of, but I have a feeling of dread. Daddy wasn't here when Dr. Brad talked to your mommy and it's unsettling. I don't know if I am being paranoid or if there is really something wrong.

Wednesday, March 02, 2005

He's Here

Benji was born at 3:44pm. 8lbs 13 1/2 ozs.

It was funny now that you are born... about 3pm the nurse checked your mommy to see how we were progressing. Mommy was dilated to 4-5 at that time. She told daddy and Aunt Christina it would easily be another hour. So they went down to get some coffee..

Right before they left mommy had a hard contraction that didn't really feel too good. Since we had gotten the epidural about 2pm they told the nurse on their way out. So I have another one of these contractions and they upped the medication in the epidural. Just on a whim the nurse decides to check mommy again.

Fully dilated at 10 and 100% effaced Wow that was fast. It was 3:18pm and you wanted to see the world. The nurse told mommy not to push and called the doctor and daddy. It was about 3:30p when daddy and Aunt Christina got back to the room. It was really hard because you wanted to come.

Dr. Barnett was a few minutes later. Then you were born at 3:44pm

I am a bit concerned though... your skin is a little blueish and they said you are cold. You are sleepy too.. but that might be because they had to give mommy newbane(sp?) to relax for the epidural. Your APGAR scores were 8 and then 9.

Benji's Birthday

We just made it to the hospital and have gotten checked in. WE can't wait until this afternoon when little Benji will be born. Dr. Barnett thinks he will be at least 9 pounds if not 10. He is basing that on how big Micah and the girls were. Micah was 11lbs 3oz. I am so glad today has finally come.