Sunday 9/30

Another great night and day for little baby bear. Last night both Daddy and Baby slept through the night with minimal crying from either of them. Baby Judah woke up only when nurses would come in to change his diaper or take blood. his heart rate and breathing stayed very good all night, which led the doctors to continue reducing his medications. Continue reading

Saturday 9/29

We are now at 18 days in the ICU, can you believe it? Judah is approaching his 3 week birthday on Monday.

Last night and today continued yesterday’s trend of excellent heart rates, smooth and easy breathing, and a happy, awake, and aware Judahbear. Last night he and Daddy got to sleep through the entire night with minimal wakeups. Continue reading

Thursday 9/27

Today brought a day of ups and downs, mainly in Judah’s heart rate. He has been having a lot of arrhythmias lately, which are basically spikes in high or low heart rates. It’s been a day of irregular heart beats, and doctors trying new things. They even hooked his little heart up to a pacer today to try to keep the rhythms in check. Continue reading

Wednesday 9/26

We prayed for strength this morning, for Judah, for ourselves, and for all of you. May this new year on the Jewish calendar bring everyone that which they’ve waited for. For us, we’ve been waiting to bring our beautiful son home. Every day brings us closer to that goal.

After temple this morning we had a nice and calm day at the hospital. Little Jude’s heart rate has come down a lot from the elevated rates he was having yesterday, today he was in the perfect and normal zone, which made mommy and daddy and all the nurses and doctors happy. Continue reading

Tuesday 9/26

Every road to recovery has a bump or two along the way. Last night Judah hit a bit of a snag in his recovery, when in the middle of the night his heart rate spiked unexpectedly and wouldn’t go down and he began having difficulty breathing, even through the CPAP mask. It continued for a while and the doctors did everything they could to try to make him a little more comfortable, but were forced to remove the mask and put the breathing tube back in, so that he could breathe properly and hopefully slow his heart rate down. Continue reading

Monday 9/24

Our recovery slowed down a little bit today. Judah is still being strong and doing well, but he’s been having a little bit of a difficulty breathing as deeply as he should, so the doctors decided to keep him on a CPAP mask for the day, instead of the high flow tube under his nose. This is a minor speedbump on his road to recovery, but the extra monitoring may have set him back a day in getting out of the ICU. Continue reading

Sunday 9/23

Big things happening in the CICU today. When mommy and daddy came to visit our little WonderBear today, he was awake for the first time. This afternoon the nurses removed his ventilator tube, and said he was doing very well. his recovery is really starting to take shape, as every day he looks far better than the day before. Continue reading

Saturday 9/22

Another day of checking in on Judah and following his recovery. Today he moved forward yet again, and was able to come off of several of his IV drips. He is still on the ventilator today, but the nurses told us that they’ve been lowering the amount of air going in as his body takes over. They want to keep him on the ventilator just one more night to keep an eye on him and make sure they don’t take him off too early. Continue reading

Friday 9/21

Updates have slowed down a little bit for now as there is not too much happening on the surface, however every day is another big step in the road to recovery.

This morning they closed up Judah’s chest. It was kept open to help the body cope with swelling which normally happens after an open heart surgery. Generally the doctors expect this to last 24-48 hours, and for him it was on the lower end. The doctors and nurses are telling us that he is recovering very well, he’s beating the average expectations for the steps he has to take. Continue reading

Thursday 9/20

It’s smooth sailing so far in the return to CICU for recovery. Judah finished up a major step in the healing process today – a lot sooner than Mommy and Daddy expected! After heart surgery the doctors generally will leave the chest open for a period of time, but today they decided he was recovering so well that they closed his chest back up early. They will continue to monitor him over the next 24-48 hours before removing the remaining IVs and ventilators and allow his heart and lungs to regain full strength. The nurses made a special note about how strong little Judah is. We should be able to hold him again by early next week, and hopefully he continues to heal up faster and faster so we can all be happy and healthy at home. Continue reading

Surgery is Complete!

We spent the morning after Judah went in to surgery just hanging out in the room, collecting our thoughts, keeping ourselves busy.

Judah was taken back into the surgical room at 11:30am to begin pre-op, getting all the IV lines placed, placing him on heart/lung machines to take over for his organs while he is being operated on, and at 12:30 the doctor came in and made the first incision. Continue reading

Tuesday 9/18

Last night Judah had a play date with all the nurses in the intensive care unit. He has quickly become the favorite of everyone here, and several nurses even fought over who got to change him. When was the last time you heard of someone fighting over a dirty diaper!? Continue reading

Monday 9/17

Judah spent his first night alone last night while mommy and daddy got a night at home to sleep. he did very well on his own and his nurse Carla said he was awake from 3-6am and got to play with all the nurses the whole time. they dressed him in outfits and paraded him around and they said he was very happy. Continue reading

Sunday 9/16

The start of the Jewish New Year brings hope for people everywhere, hope for joy, hope for peace, and hope for sweetness. May you all be inscribed in the book of life. For Judah, and for all of us, we pray for strength.

Today was a day filled with love from Aunt Rema and Uncle Josh, from Gramma Luba and Grampa Mark, and from all of you who came here to check on us and who sent us your thoughts. Continue reading

Saturday 9/15 – Night

Another quiet day in the CICU for us.

Today Judah had a visit from the pediatrician, who came by just to run some routine newborn tests since we got whisked away from Magee Hospital so quickly after he was born. After a few reflex and reaction tests, and the other routine tests she performed, she declared that Judah passed everything with flying colors. Continue reading

Saturday 9/15 – Morning

Baby J had his first Shabbat last night, he helped mommy and daddy and gramma and grampa light candles (they were LED candles of course), and they did their blessings over the wine and challah. After everybody left, it was a pretty quiet night in the CICU, and at one point around 1am, mommy got up to go to the bathroom, and when she got back to the room baby was not in his bed. The nurses had taken him back to the nurses station to have a little baby parade with him and dance with him and play with him. Little Judah was active all night, looking all around and making noises at mommy and the nurses. Everyone loves him! Continue reading

Friday 9/14

Today Judah had a very relaxing day. He and daddy had several feedings in the middle of the night, and daddy got to hold him and feed him from the bottle with the breastmilk mommy left for us. It was a slow night in the CICU, so every one of the night nurses fought to be the nurse that got to feed him. one feeding, at 6am, the nurse was supposed to wake daddy up, and after gently whispering “wake up” once, she decided to feed baby J herself and rocked him and sang to him and even tried to steal him. I think Judah already has his first girlfriend. Continue reading



The posts below are a chronicling of my life so far of growing up with a heart defect. If you’re new to my page and want the whole story, start at the end, as the most recent updates are always first. To be notified by email automatically when a new update is posted, enter your email address in the box to the right and click the “Subscribe” button, or
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