HOUSTON – Welcome to the world Noah Daniel Rascon! Delivered by cesarean section three weeks early at Memorial Hermann Katy Hospital. What a miracle life is! So beautiful! So amazing!
Ashley and I are now the proud parents of five children: Olivia, Malachi, Elijah, Elena and Noah. It never gets old! The little feet! The funny faces! The milestones! The sleepless nights! OK, the sleepless nights can get old.
Ready for surgery
The doctor scheduled the c-section months in advance and we kept the date! A first for us out of five surgeries! Our first two children came by emergency c-sections. The next two both came at least a month early and after Ashley started going into labor.
We checked into the maternity ward of the hospital before noon, a couple of hours before surgery. It has always taken at least four tries to stick Ashley with an IV. No different this time! It usually ends up in her hand, unfortunately.
Inside the operating room, the anesthesiologist gave her a one-time injection in her spine. I waited just outside the door with my scrubs over my clothes, mouth and head and my camera around my neck. Ashley can’t watch the surgery and hardly remembers what immediately follows. So I take lots of pictures!
It took a few hours for doctors to cut through five layers, remove Noah, clean the area and sew Ashley back up! There was a lot of scar tissue, among other issues, and the doctor said a sixth c-section would be too dangerous.
Instead of the typical five minutes, it took doctors more than a half hour to get to baby. But he cried immediately! That’s a good thing! Ashley lost so much blood she was almost given a blood transfusion.
Noah struggled to breathe some on his own, so the nurses called in additional nurses with a CPAP machine. Eventually, a tiny tube was placed down his throat and taped to his mouth, feeding him sugar water. A larger tube was inserted into his nostrils, pushing air into his lungs.
Our oldest and third kids didn’t spend any time in Neonatal Intensive Care Units. Our second spent 24 hours in one, and Elena was there only an hour or so. But Noah needed more help.
I followed the nurses, who pushed Noah in a CPAP machine down a few hallways to the NICU. A tiny IV was placed in his right hand and secured with tape and a small board to prevent his wrist from bending. Other monitors were taped and clipped to his chest and feet. Hard to watch.
But it was also amazing to see how technology helped keep him alive and well! Ashley was only able to touch him through an opening in the machine that night. The second day, when he was breathing on his own but still hooked up to IV and monitors, Ashley held him for the first time.
The third day, after many tests, Noah was discharged to our room a healthy boy! Our largest baby, nearly eight pounds at birth!
Our best people
In the recovery room after surgery, under the influence of all kinds of pain medications, Ashley grabbed my hand and said, “You’re my best person.” I swear! I told her the story later on when she was clear-headed.
On our first date almost 12 years ago, Ashley said she wanted to have many children, among other hopes and dreams. She has been pregnant, nursing and changing diapers almost nonstop for a decade! What a decade!
Bringing children into the world, loving them and building our faith and family has been mine and Ashley’s top priority together. Nothing has been so important! So difficult! And so rewarding! We find so much joy in the journey, especially right now.
We have endured our share of sorrow, pain, disappointment and problems, and we are confident we will experience a lot more of that! But we try hard to endure well, and as a team. We try to have faith!
We thank God for the privilege of being parents! For the privilege of life! For the Savior of the World, who we celebrate always, but especially during Christmastime! For a great job! For friends! And many other wonderful gifts.
Thank you for your love and support!