September 15, 2011
JF is One
Can you listen to this song and not think of my sweet baby JF? The line "with ten miles behind me and ten thousand more to go" still makes me cry. It helped express my exhaustion when JF was still in the NICU and we weren't sure who or what he'd be.
My family has gone through a lot in this last year. We are so grateful and joyful to have JF and to have him healthy and happy.
I thought I would repost what I wrote here a year ago today. I was trying to be strong and confident when I wrote it, but when I read it now I can see that it is full of fear. The beginning of those ten thousand miles have looked very different than I thought they might.
After an 8 hour labor I gave birth to James Fulton at 1:48am on Thursday, September 16th - my younger brother's birthday. James weighed 9lbs 12oz. The labor was the best I've ever had. My water broke while on a walk around the neighborhood with Travis - right in front of the AC church during their Wednesday night service. My apologies!!!
James is a family name on my side, my bil's middle name, and one of my patron's - I was born on St. James the Greater's feast day. Fulton, of course, is for the great Archbishop Fulton Sheen.
James, who did very well during the labor, was born without a heart beat. After a few minutes of giving him oxygen and chest compressions, 911 was called. Travis also baptized him. We are very grateful to the men and women EMTs and paramedics from Goodfield, Eureka and Congerville who came very quickly and transported James and I to the OSF. We are also grateful to our friend Jenny W. who attended the birth as a photographer but pitched in as a former pediatrics nurse when things got hairy. She also rode with Travis and James in the ambulance.
Fortunately, I did not need any stitches and my postpartum bleeding has been very light so I was able to go to the hospital and see my son very easily and quickly.
Another blessing was having Msgr Bliss, the hospital chaplain, and Fr. D, my spiritual director and former pastor, waiting for us at the hospital. They arranged for James to be confirmed, we chose for him the name Linus.
Without going into all the details of what is, or might be wrong, with James I will say that he is in stable yet critical condition at the NICU at OSF. At this point they are running tests, keeping him on a cooling pad to help with any possible brain and organ damage, and he is currently sedated. We probably won't be able to hold him for 3-5 more days, which is incredibly difficult, as I'm sure you can imagine.
The rest of us are all doing fairly well, albeit tired, worried, and sore (me).
We would like to publicly thank our many friends who prayed for us throughout the labor and are praying right now. Thank you also to Katie, our incomparable friend, who made us food, stayed with the kids while we were at the hospital, and helped me through afterbirth pains today. Our moms have also been tremendous helpers and generous givers. Thank you to my sister-in-law who also has helped with L and Ben. We are so very, very blessed.
And now we ask that you will pray for our son. Please pray through the intercession of St. James, St. Linus, and Archbishop Sheen. If James comes through with no problems we will definitely attribute it to a miracle for our local saint.