Tuesday, September 30, 2008


Well, today Chase was supposed to move out of the ICU; however, there are no rooms available on the cardiology floor. So, we are waiting for a room. There should be one available tomorrow. We are very anxious to get him out of the ICU....it's just one more step towards coming home. Chase's surgeon said that a lot of Chase's time on the cardio floor will be teaching us how to care for Chase....place a feeding tube, administer medications, etc. I'm ready to learn!! : )

Tomorrow Chase's chest tube will be removed. It has not drained in about 48 hours so they are confident that it can be removed now. All of Chase's IVs have been removed now as well. We are so happy with his progress and are looking forward to even more progress.

Thank you for praying! Please say a special prayer for Eli. He seems to be struggling a little with all that is going on. Thank you!!!

Sunday, September 28, 2008


Today I celebrated my 35th birthday. What a wonderful day!!! Eli and I went for a walk this morning and then played together while Hunter was visiting Chase. Once Hunter came home, I went to see Chase. I held him, looked at him and sang to him for almost 3 hours. I also changed is diaper twice....that was my first time changing his diaper and compared to a 2 1/2 year old, he is SO SUPER tiny! : ) After my visit, we went to eat with my Mom and Dad. We had a great time and the food was YUMMY!!!! : ) After dinner, we came home and ate a wonderful strawberry (my request) cake that Eli and Dad made. I was sad that Chase could not be home to share in the celebration, but I am just so thankful for him!

I am 35 today and could not be happier! I have a wonderful, loving husband, two beautiful boys that I love dearly, a great Mom, Dad and Sister (and her family!), and some of the best friends in the entire world! : ) On top of all this, most importantly, I have my relationship with Jesus. I feel so blessed today! : )

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Friday, September 26, 2008

More Progress

Today sweet Baby Chase had his big oxygen helmet removed and now only has a small tube in his nose. He looks so great without the big helmet on!!! They are supposed to be removing the lines to his heart in the morning, so we should be able to hold him tomorrow!! I cannot wait!!

Check out this video of our sweet boy : ) Can you tell I LOVE this little guy?!?!?

Thursday, September 25, 2008

2 Weeks Old!

Can you believe it???? Chase is 2 weeks old today!!!!

Chase is doing well....continuing to make slow progress. They decided to wait another day or two to take out the lines that go directly to his heart. So, that means another day or two until we get to hold him. : The day will come.

I visited him this morning and the nurses said that he was very opinionated earlier in the morning. One referred to him as a "pistol"! That's my boy!!! I think he may have a similar personality as Eli. : )

I don't think I mentioned it yesterday, but I found out that he weighs 5 pounds. I thought that was pretty good....he's only lost 1/2 pound since birth. He still looks super skinny to me...I think it's because he's pretty long. Although I'm not sure how long.....we still have not been able to find out his length at birth. : ) Not to mention whether or not he has a spleen....somewhat of a running joke now! You would think that someone knows this info, but if they do, they are keeping it a secret! : )

Eli is doing well....he's watching a little more TV than I'd like, but that's what he likes to do when I'm pumping. He talks about Baby Chase all the time and asks how he is doing. So sweet!! I can't wait for Eli to meet Chase. I know Eli will be such a great big brother....he is so compassionate....just the kind of big brother that Chase needs!!!

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Slow & Steady

Chase continues to make progress. Not much news today. They are planning to take out two lines that go directly to his heart tomorrow. Once these lines are out, we'll be able to hold him. Hopefully I'll be able to post pictures of us holding Baby Chase soon! : )

Chase's surgeon stopped by briefly while I was visiting today. He said that he was very happy with his progress.....slow and steady is what he likes to see. He said bad things happen fast and good things happen slow....so we want slow!!

Please remember my sweet friend, Hannah, and her son Rowan in your prayers. Rowan is 11 months and has an infection in his esophagus (sp??). He is in the PICU at Medical City Children's.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Chase has made it over 24 hours without the vent! Yeah, Baby Chase!!!!! He has a tube in his nose that is pushing air in to help his lungs get stronger, but nothing down his throat. The tube in his nose held on his head with a soft little helmet. Chase doesn't act very thrilled to be wearing it! He just frowns at it! It is so funny how you can see their personality come out when they are so young.....he's got a feisty little personality! But, I've been saying that for quite a while now....I could tell when he was in my tummy that he was a feisty little guy. They are planning to remove the nose tube tomorrow and then he will be on his own. : )

Today, I heard him cry for this first time since the day he was born. It was such a sweet sound! It was a little crazy though, b/c my natural instinct was to pick him up when he cries which I obviously could not do. : ( But it won't be long, I'll be able to hold him in the next day or two!

More good news....today them mentioned that Chase will probably be moved out of the ICU in the next 2-3 days. What a wonderful day that will be!!! The ICU nurses and staff have been wonderful, but I will be so excited to leave and go to the cardiology floor!

God is answering so many prayers. We are so thankful and pray that Chase's success continues.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Chest Tube Is Back

Chase had his chest tube reinserted today. It has helped with the fluid in his lungs. The cardiologist confirmed today that there is no obstruction in his veins. Praise God!!!!

They are taking his vent out as we speak. Please pray that he is successful without it and they don't have to reinsert the vent.

I had a nice visit with him today. He is so sweet!! He is super skinny and I worry about that, but the drs and nurses are not concerned about it.

Eli and I also had a nice day.....we went for a walk and then to the park this morning. At the park, I was asked again when my baby is due. : ) I just politely and briefly explained the situation. : )

Sunday, September 21, 2008

A Bump In The Road

Chase has been doing well. They decided to wait yet another day to remove his vent. Also, they have found fluid in his lungs. They did an echo to help determine why, but haven't made a definite determination yet. They recently decreased his diuretics which is the likely cause of the fluid, but it could also be obstruction in some pulmonary veins. The echo did not show signs of obstruction; however, if it is obstruction this will be a MAJOR setback. PLEASE PRAY THAT THERE IS NO OBSTRUCTION. We will know more tomorrow.

We ventured to church this morning and it was a little bit of an adventure due to some growing pains that our church is experiencing. It is a great problem to have and we praise God for the number of people that are attending church, but it makes parking a little crazy!! ; )

Eli is doing so well. He and I had a great day today just spending time together while Hunter was visiting Chase. I did not see Chase today, but will go tomorrow. I think about Chase every second of every day!!! I miss him so much and cannot wait to have him home. This sounds selfish, but please pray for that day to come quickly. I just want him to be able to come home.

Thank you again for all your prayers and support. We love you! : )

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Making Progress

Chase continues to make progress. Today, the chest tubes were removed. They were planning to remove his ventilator, but his breathing is a little too fast, so they decided to wait until tomorrow. Please pray that he will do well without the vent and that his breathing will slow down a little.

Hunter and I have been visiting Baby Chase in shifts.....I've been going in the morning and Hunter visits in the afternoon/evening. We have been limiting our time there a little b/c Chase really responds to our voices and our touch. We are SO happy about that, but sometimes when we are visiting him, he doesn't seem to get any rest. In fact, it is just the opposite. He gets so excited that his breathing is rapid and he has a hard time calming down. We enjoy every minute that we are there and think about him every second we are away from him.

When I was visiting today, I was hidden in the back of his room pumping milk when a dr came in the room. I don't think he knew I was back there....I overheard him say that Chase looked like a million bucks and that he is doing fantastic. That made me so happy to hear one of his drs say that!!! I realize that he is still a sick little boy and that we have a LONG road ahead, but it is so good to hear drs make positive comments!! : )

Thank you again for all the prayers!!!! We have received so many calls, emails and text messages and please know that we appreciate EVERY one! I know that I haven't been able to respond to all, but I REALLY appreciate them!!!! They are so encouraging to us. I don't have the words to tell you how much all the prayers and thoughts mean to us....just know that we couldn't be where we are without them!!!

Love to all!!! : )

Thursday, September 18, 2008

1 Week Old

I can't believe it, but Baby Chase is already a week old!!! He's gone through so much in his short life, but we praise God that resources are available to help him. He is doing so well. The procedure to close his sternum went well, and he continues to improve. His heart rhythm is still not where the drs want it to be, but they are not too concerned...just monitoring it now. Please pray that his heart rhythm will be normal and consistent. They assigned him a physical therapist and an occupational therapist. They will begin working with him on range of motion. Once he's off the vent, they will work with him on head control.

They also started him on breast milk today!!!! YEAH!!!! I am so excited about this!!! He is only getting one cc/hour and it is via feeding tube that goes straight to his intestines (bypasses the stomach for now), but I am still thrilled. I think this will be great for him and help with his glucose levels (they are a little high at times).

I wasn't going to share any post-op pictures for a while, but I think he is just too beautiful not to share a picture. This picture was taken last night when he was awake and following Hunter around with his eyes. Isn't he beautiful!!!! : )

One other prayer request.....please pray for all of the families at Children's. It is an unbelievable experience to walk the halls of that hospital and see so many sick children and so many hurting families. It's so hard to even imagine what some of the families are going through. It makes me feel so blessed that my sweet baby is doing well so far and that we have our incredible faith in God to get us through this. So many families don't have that and I cannot imagine walking on this journey without God. Please pray for these hurting families.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Procedure today

Chase is having his sternum closed as I type this. The surgery will take about 3 hours. Please pray that all goes well and that Chase will respond well after the procedure.

Chase had another good night last night! We praise God for every good night!!!!!

I'll post again this evening and provide updates regarding the procedure.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Chase's Hat

Several have asked/commented on the hat that Chase is wearing in the photo below. The NICU at Parkland gives babies several handmade hats and and a blanket that they receive from donors. Such a sweet thing, especially because so many of the babies at Parkland will never have anything like this otherwise.

At this point, Chase cannot wear a hat so he cannot enjoy any of the wonderful handmade things that we have for him. Hopefully soon though. I have a couple of blankets for him that until he is ready, Eli, Dad and I are sleeping with them. I cannot wait for the day that I get to take them to Chase at the hospital. Although Chase does not have his handmade blankets or hats, he does have several "toys" in his bed that the nurses use for positioning. He also has a very colorful name badge on his bed that the nurses made. These people at Children's are the best!!! Their love for children is amazing and SO comforting!

Chase is a Fighter

I just called the hospital and Chase had another good night. He is progressing very well. The dr took out his pacemaker and he is doing well without it. He is getting IV nutrition now and is having dirty diapers. : ) He will start getting breast milk in the next day or two. WooHoo!!!! They will start small....1cc/hour....and will increase it gradually. I will be SO happy when he starts getting Mommy's milk! : ) The drs were supposed to close his sternum today, but they've decided to wait until tomorrow. I am OK with that....I don't want them to close it too early and then have to re-open it. It will be so nice once it's closed. He's beautiful, but that is a little hard to look at.

We had a crazy day yesterday.....we had to take Eli to the dr for a sinus infection. He's feeling better and Hunter has been able to make him think he's getting "bubble gum stuff" instead of medicine. If I tried that, NO WAY!!!! But, Daddy......SCORE! : )

Anyway.....thank you again for all the prayers. We couldn't live without them!!! Please continue to pray for his progress. Thank you so much.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Baby Chase!!!!

I had this picture with me at the hospital and could not take my eyes off it!!!!! All of these pictures are obviously before surgery, but before or after, he is SOOOOO beautiful in Mommy's eyes!!!! : )

New Addition

The last few days have been so amazing! God has been with us throughout each minute. We've had good minutes and we've had bad minutes, but regardless, we knew that God was with us the entire time. And He continues to be with us. I'll give a brief recap of the past few days -

Thursday.....Chase was born! He was taken to the NICU at Parkland and then transferred to Children's. Before being transferred, I got to hold him for just a minute (picture above). What a joy to hold my sweet boy! At Children's, he underwent several tests. In the afternoon he had a procedure to insert dye into his pulmonary veins b/c the drs could not find all the veins and could not tell the direction of all the veins. This was a VERY critical procedure and took about 4 1/2 hours LONGER than we were originally told. Thankfully, it went well and they found all the veins (and a few extra) and they were all in the right direction. Praise God!!!!!!!!! Because his blockage was not as bad as originally thought, the drs decided to delay surgery until Friday or Saturday.

Friday....Chase had a good night. We got a call at noon and were informed that the surgery would be in a few hours. Hunter rushed over to sign some papers and see Chase off into surgery. Rather than repairing just one of his conditions, the surgeon decided to do two and start the third. About seven hours later, Chase was out of surgery and did VERY well. The surgeon was thrilled with the outcome. His transpostion and venous return defects were repaired and the AV canal was also partially closed. That is A LOT of surgery, but God was so good!!!!

Saturday & Sunday....Chase continued to progress. Progress is VERY slow, but that is part of the plan. He hasn't had any major setbacks. We've had several doctors tell us that he is a fighter!!! Yea!!!!! Fight, Baby Chase, Fight!!!!

Please continue to pray for Chase, his caregivers, Elijah and the rest of Chase's family. Mom had a rough night b/c it was her first night away from the hospital. I didn't realize how hard it would be to leave Chase at the hospital!!! It was and continues to be HARD!!!!

God has blessed us beyond words. We really feel like Chase is our miracle baby!!! : ) ALL babies are miracles!!!! : ) The peace that we have had over the past several days has been unbelievable and we know that it is ALL FROM GOD!!! It's impossible to have peace like this without God!!!

Thank you, thank you, thank you for your prayers!!! Please keep praying. I'll post as I receive updates on his condition/status and provide specific ways to pray. Thank you so much!!!

I am so excited to be the Mommy of TWO baby boys.....Elijah and Chase!!! : )

Sunday, September 14, 2008


Chase Phillip Henley
September 11, 2008
9:05 am
5 pounds 8 ounces

Seconds after birth
Waiting to be taken to the OR
Dad in the OR
Mom in the OR (and scared to death!!!!)

Monday, September 8, 2008

Last Weekend As An Only Child : )

With Baby Chase's birth coming up this week, we decided to make this past weekend "Eli's Weekend". Throughout the weekend, we tried to do some of Eli's favorite things. I didn't get pictures of everything like I wanted to, but I did manage to capture a few things.

On Friday night, we went to a high school football game. Eli loves watching sports so we thought he would enjoy it...and he did!! He also enjoyed a hot dog, "coke", and candy. : )

On Saturday morning, we went for our walk and then Eli made pancakes with Daddy. Eli loves to cook with Daddy...especially pancakes!

Saturday morning walk with teddy bears in tow.

Making pancakes
On Saturday evening, we went over to Ryan's house to have dinner and play. Ryan's Mommy and Daddy are great friends of ours and Ryan and Eli are about a week apart in age. The boys had tons of fun playing together and even had a little fun at the sink when Ryan decided to brush his teeth! ; )

On Sunday, we went to church and then to lunch. After lunch, we went to watch Eli's friend Kate play soccer. Again, Eli loves sports so this was a perfect way to spend the afternoon. After the soccer game, we stopped by 7-Eleven and got Slurpees....another favorite of Eli's!

What a great weekend....very relaxing and full of fun things for Eli! : )

Youth Group Reunion

About a week ago, we had a church youth group reunion. I got to see all of my old friends from our church youth group. What a joy!!! I had not seen most of these friends in 10 - 15 years. It was so wonderful to see everyone and spend time catching up on families, friends, careers, kids, etc. My friends from my youth group were the best!! I am so glad that I got to see so many again and hope to stay in better contact! : )

Chris, Stephanie, Jason, Kim, Amy, me, Barry
John's Youth Group
Eddie's Youth Group
Me, Amy and Tiffany
Stephanie and Me

Wednesday, September 3, 2008


Eli recently found a bottle and insisted that I fill it up and feed him like a baby. Can you imagine all the things that Eli is going to want to try when Baby Chase comes home??!!??!

Backpack Blower

Eli loves to watch people mow the yard. One of his favorite pieces of lawn equipment is a backpack blower (probably not the real name, but that's what we call it!). Hunter made Eli a backpack blower with his Thomas backpack, a small air compressor from an air mattress and a piece from the vacuum cleaner. Needless to say, Eli LOVES it!!!!! : )