Teeny Tiny Truman

This page is all about Truman, born Aug. 8, 2006 to Kara and Ben.

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Progress Report: Tuesday, August 15th

Here are a few pictures of Truman for all of you who have been asking.

Truman really likes to stick his arms and legs out all over the place. He doesn't seem to gravitate to a completely fetal positiion most of the time like you might expect him to. Much of the time when we are with him he is fairly active, moving about as best he can.

Here you can see me (Ben) changing Truman's diaper. Anything which stimulates him (including physical contact) is still supposed to be very minimal, but some things are necessary, and Kara and I like to be there to do what we can. As you can see from the size of my hands in comparison to him, he is still very tiny.

Most of the time Truman is laying down inside his warm incubator. We can reach him through covered openings in the side. The NICU nurses do their best to keep things cheerful, and you can see the name sign they made for Truman and taped onto his bed.

Truman continues to make good progress in the Baylor NICU. A day after his heart surgery, he is recovering well. His blood pressure has come up to a number which the doctors are more comfortable with, and his blood gasses have been very good for several days now. He has a scar under his left arm that runs from his chest around to his back, but it is healing well and should barely be noticeable by the time he is a toddler. His chest x-rays are improved and show less fluid in his developing lungs, and his blood should now be circulating down through his lungs and stomach (as well as several other organs, I'm sure) much more efficiently.

We are hoping that Truman will be able to start eating mother's milk in the next 5 to 7 days now that his bloodflow has been corrected. As it is now, Truman is being sustained through a nutrient drip line which supplies him amino acids and proteins, but by themselves those are not enough to really help him grow and get better. The day that he is able to start getting real food will be a big day for all of us.

The minimum-stimulation order is still in effect right now, which means that we have to limit how much we touch and talk to Truman. The reason for this is because his brain is still trying to learn how to govern his autonomic functions, such as how to regulate his blood pressure and blood gasses, and how to tell his kidneys what they need to be filtering and what he needs to be keeping. Anything which interferes with that development could be a hindrance, so in the interest of him making progress, we are lmiting ourselves to how much we interact with him. This order has been in effect since he was born, and is re-evaluated once every 96 hours (4 days). I suspect that Truman may continue under this order for another week or so.

Speaking of his kidneys, they appear to be functioning pretty well from my point of view. I have already had the pleasure of having my hands peed all over; the first of many such pleasures, I'm sure. Kara and I also watched him fight the hiccups for about 12 minutes this evening.

Truman is still on the high-speed oscillating ventilator, and his doctor would like to keep him on it as long as possible because it is the most gentle option available, and thus the least likely to damage his gradually maturing lung tissues. In all likelihood, he will continue to be on some form of ventilation for the next three months. This is going to be a long road.

Overall, Truman is continuing to surpass everyone's expectations, and we hope that he continues that trend until it is finally time to go home, which could be up to three weeks either side of December 5th.



Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow! Hang in there Truman! (and Ben and Kara!)

Paul and Donna Schmidt

11:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

What incredible pictures!

Keeping you all in our prayers.

Eddie and Sue Hammons

11:59 PM  
Blogger Brian and Heather Tankersley said...

He is beautiful. He looks much bigger than I had imagined. I was trying to remember the last little one I took care of that was his size in the NICU. Kara looks beautiful too - I was glad to see her in the pictures! Keep your chins up! All our love!

8:37 AM  
Anonymous GiGi & Bapa said...

Wow! How awesome is he. Ben, what a beautiful picture of you caring for your son. What a wonderful first father/son picture.
Kara, just as we had pictured you in our minds--standing watch over your precious child. This is a position you will assume for your lifetime. No matter how old our children are, we always pray and stand watch over them with God's grace.

On our knees for all of you,

Great Aunt Jeri & Uncle Chris

9:56 AM  
Blogger Robert Witte said...

The top picture is especially powerful. In addition to Truman's hands, there are two hands in the picture. One, you see -- that of a parent. The other, you cannot see but you know is there constantly. . .

The hand of God.

Many prayers as God continues to bless this miracle in your life.

Robert Witte

10:04 AM  
Anonymous Jason and Kerri said...

Ben and Kara,
We are thrilled for you guys! Truman seems to be doing amazingly well under the circumstances! He is so fortunate to have you guys for parents. So many parents are scared to touch their baby, or change their diaper because of their tiny size. Truman is so fortunate that you guys love him enough to make the effort! He has beaten the odds thus far, and we pray for his continued growth and healing, of which, I'm sure your presence is definately aiding. We are thinking of you guys! God Bless Truman!
Love, Jason and Kerri

11:38 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thank you for keeping us updated on Truman's progress. Our thoughts and prayers are with you all.
Sarah and Hank Smith

11:57 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh My Goodness!!! WHAT A BEAUTIFUL SIGHT!!! You all remain in our prayers. We love you and adore this new addition to our family. Before we know it, he will be getting aquainted with all of his cousins. They will romp, play, fight and love one another just as you did, and realize, in time, how vital relationships are, and what they mean to one another. Much love to you and Kara.

Forever thankful,

Aunt Cynthia and Unkle Steve

12:13 PM  
Anonymous Natalie Blackwell said...

I saw your story on ivillage. I'll be praying for Truman every day and hope for good news and strength for your family.

3:24 PM  
Blogger JennieH said...

Kara and Ben,

Hang in there! I am thinking about you daily and so thankful for the updates on the blog.

Jennie Hoelscher

3:25 PM  
Blogger Doni Brinkman said...

Ben and Kara,

A friend of yours on an expectant mother's board referred me to your site. I am the mommy of a former micro preemie. My son Ty (now 2 years old) was born at 25 weeks - 106 days early. Unlike Truman, he did get a bilateral IVH (Grade 4 Right/Grade 2 Left) and PVL. How awesome that your little guy has escaped this!!! Ty was on oxygen until he was almost 10 months old and was on a heart monitor and a pulse ox until a year. God was so gracious to Ty though and DESPITE the hemorrages, BPD, hernias, PDA, transfusions, ROP...all the typical preemie stuff...Ty is a walking, talking, miracle. You have so much reason to hope for your little one. The next year will be a challenge but hang in there! If you ever have questions, please feel free to contact me.


6:11 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Saw a link to your story off of another board and wanted to offer my support!

Your little miracle is beautiful and he'll be in my thoughts.


7:43 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great pictures! Truman's lucky to have you guys there with him. It's great to hear the progress he's making.

Debbie and Mike

8:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

All the prayers in the world headed your way. God bless Truman, his parents, and your families.

9:09 PM  
Blogger Sienna Panice said...

Those are some powerful pictures! It is wonderful to hear he is beating the odds. I know that he is in the thoughts of everyone in the Young Couples class, and every one is praying for him and for the 2 of you. God has big plans for your family!

Melody and Danny Panice

10:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It is wonderful that Truman is doing so well. That is really neat that you guys get to change his diapers (I am sure you will be experts at this before long!). Thinking about you three always! Go Truman Go!
Jason and Cinda

10:45 PM  
Blogger Candice & Alex said...


A fellow BBC mom shared your blog with me. I wanted to come over and see your little man and give you some encouragement.

I was in your shoes last year, my little guy Alex was born at 24wks, 1lb 6oz. He is now 16 months old and a very happy little boy.

Please feel free to visit his site and see another miracle in progress! http://www.babiesonline.com/babies/a/alexdaniel

If you read my journal you will see that we went through very similar experiences. He had the PDA surgery, also ROP surgery. Hopefully something you will not have to deal with.

I will check back in often and put Truman on on prayer list. God is good and He will hold Truman in His arms until he can come home in yours.

10:54 PM  
Anonymous Mary Henderson said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you all. Truman is beautiful and I know your counting the days till he comes home.

11:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

As we spoke earlier today Ben, you and Kara have a tough little guy on your hands and we can't wait to see more photo's of Truman around the office. As a new father myself only as of 18 months, the bonds you form during those first days are moments you will never forget. Those are great photos of you all and again our thoughts and prayer will continue to come.

Kris & Tammy Tesch

11:14 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I have been praying for your good health. Others around the world are hearing the news.
Rev. George R. Holder
Light to the Nations
Dallas, Texas

4:18 PM  
Blogger Jane Posey said...

Kara do not know if you remember me or not. I am Jane Posey we used to live west of your mom and dad. We had a daughter Michelle that was good friends of Amys for a while.
Just wanted you to know that we are praying for Truman and you.

In Christian Love

Danny and Jane Posey

9:16 PM  

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