February 25, 2010

The Cacoon...

Today was another dear day with Jaden...holding and snuggling together all day.

The good news is that she did have her MRI this afternoon, one day early. Fortunately, she did NOT have to be sedated to do the test. Would you believe that she was the first newborn at the hospital to get to use a new technique to keep her still in the MRI!? This is a total answer to prayer! I call it the "cacoon." Here is a picture of our little blue bean below. She basically had a blue balloon suctioned around her little body. She was cozy and fell asleep through the whole test! We are waiting for results for the MRI tomorrow morning. We are very much looking forward to getting those and moving forward from there.

Speaking of moving...we are closing on our house tomorrow, and moving the next two days. And Rylie has the stomach flu that started tonight. Could there be any more going on right now? Hmmmm. My mom arrived today...perfect timing. She is a huge help already!

February 24, 2010

On the fifth day...

I think I have said the word "sweet" more over the past few days than the sum total of my whole life! It is just the most natural word to describe little Jaden. Jaden is also called: Little Jade, Little Sister, Baby Jade, J-Bug (from Chad), and J-bop (from Jennie).

Today was a "sweet" day...and so simple. It was another day of holding her all day. We do not even use the crib/changing table for her to sleep in when we are there, she is just in our arms all the time.

We enjoy the most simple aspects of her...like most parents of newborns. For example, whether she is sleeping or eating she is always "purring." Here is a brief clip...of her constant sound of contentment:

It is just the best feeling to have her near, as we know time with JUST her is coming to an end...as we soon bring her home. Which, just that expression alone, "bring her home" is one we, just today started to use. Each day we make the drive to Denver we pray aloud, and today we thanked the Lord for the gift of today, and asked for another gift of tomorrow with Jaden. There certainly was a time in this process that we did not know if tomorrow with Jade was going to happen...which is just so hard to even type. There is talk about bringing her home, and preparing our car seat for the ride home, and signing discharge papers over the next few days. We can hardly believe it...AND yet it still feels a bit presumptuous to even think this might happen in a few days!!! A miracle. She is a miracle.

Aside from holding and loving on her all day we are continuing to hear how well she is doing. There were multiple times today that the Dr. and Nurse caring for her, questioned why she needed to be in the NICU until Saturday, because she is doing so well. There is protocal with her specific treatment as to when she can be discharged...but to hear the medical team remark with such confidence on her stability is a wonderful sign to hear, not matter when we get to "take her home."

Also, they have bumped up her MRI to tomorrow, instead of Friday. This is a test we have been waiting for and are very glad we can do it tomorrow, and hopefully get results back tomorrow. Please pray for the procedure to go well, and for us to trust the Lord for the results and what is found. Of course we ask that you pray with us for a healthy and clean MRI, oh that would be wonderful. The Lord's will be done.

On a personal note, I was reading a devotional this morning and came across a phrase that has lingered all day long: HELP YOURSELF. The notion was that we are to live our lives inviting God to HELP HIMSELF to any part of us. I'd like to say that I place God first and that nothing competes with my allegiance and love for Him. However, I would be fooling myself to think I can honestly say such a thing. Five days ago, I realized at a whole new and real level that I really say "Help yourself to my life, but please do not touch baby Jaden (or Chad and Rylie, for that matter.)" I know He loves my love for her, and wants my love for her to only grow and grow and grow. At the same time, He asks me to love Him even more. HELP YOURSELF. This short statement will be something that I will strive to live by, and take an eternity to discover.

February 23, 2010

In Our Arms At Last!

Normally our blog is authored by Jennie, but we felt it would be helpful for me to express some of my thoughts and emotions as well. This blogging journal has become therapeutic for the both of us, and it has also become such an effective way for us to thank those that have so prayerfully supported us these past days. So tonight, you may recognize a slightly different tone and voice. (I hope you brought your coffee).

Our day with Jaden began before we left the house. Jennie seemed very upbeat, almost jittery with excitement to go to the hospital to hold Jaden. Meanwhile, I was experiencing a more subdued state of mind. It wasn't long and Jennie and I were trying to reconcile our approach. How do you temper such excitement with a reasonable amount of fear and trepidation? Thankfully Jennie and I balance each other wonderfully, finding a common ground that allowed us to approach the NICU with peace and grace.

Within seconds of walking into Jaden's room, we found an entirely new environment. The cooling table and associated support equipment had been replaced by a bassinet, and our little girl was swaddled and in the arms of a loving nurse. What a difference! The room which had previously felt like a cramped operating room, now felt like a private nursery. There were even a couple of rocking chairs that helped set the stage for a wonderful day of finally getting to know our Jaden on a personal level.

While we were still adjusting to the new environment, the nurse calmly handed Jennie our baby for the first time. I felt a flood of emotion and almost hugged the nurse.

She then proceeded to tell us that Jennie was "on" to feed the baby at first opportunity. We knew that they might start feeding her but had no idea that we would have the opportunity so early in the day let alone in such a personal way. Needless to say, this day was off to a start that superseded both of our wildest expectations.

The day carried on with lots of kisses, photos, hugs, feedings, and turns with Jaden in our laps and arms.

How do you describe holding something so precious after watching helplessly from a point blank range as your daughter heals from a trauma that started before her first breath of air in this world. We had feared that she would not want to to be swaddled, or held, or be able to take milk, or adjust comfortably without the cool and sedated environment that she was immersed in, such a short time ago. To our complete amazement, she responded to us as though time had stood still, and the delivery doctor had been able to hand her directly to her Mom just as we had hoped four days ago.

Needless to say, it was a wonderful day. We did our absolute best to make up for lost time. Jaden was in our arms almost the entire time we had in the hospital. So, the day ends with a small letting down of the guard. We know we don't have all the answers yet, but we have seen a lot of light at the end of a previously dark tunnel. God has indeed given us a gift. We posted this verse in Jaden's room as a reminder of His continued presence in her expanding life.

Zeph 3:17
The Lord your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, and will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.

February 22, 2010


Today was a good day. Plain and simple.

It started with Rylie coloring a picture for baby Jaden. What a good big sister. This pic now hangs in Jaden's hospital room.

Today, Jaden officially ended her cooling period, and at 6am started the warming process. This process gradually, over 15-30 hours, raises her temperature back to a normal 98.6 temp. When we first arrived, it was a bit hard at first because it was obvious she was more in tune and aware of her surroundings. Her morphine (a.k.a happy juice) was now illiminated, and she was clearly more uncomfortable with being in this hypothermic state. Nevertheless, she did fabulous. As she is warming up, she is acting more and more like a typical newborn. Baby J wants to eat all the time today and sucked on her passifier a bit (a great skill.) She is strong, wiggly, and had several times of extended alertness. She is yawning, sneezing, squaking, cooing. I know these sound so normal, but we have not seen much of this over the past 72 hours. Really our entire day was spent just gazing at the beauty of this little wonder child...singing, praying, reading over her. Loving every minute together.

A verse that we will hang in Jaden's hospital room for the rest of the week is: "The Lord your God is with you, He is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you withhis love, He will rejoice over you with singing." Zeph 3:17

The best news of all, is that by the morning she will be all through with her warming...if all continues to go well through the night. This means that we will be able to hold her...which I believe we will do all day long, to make up for lost time. We cannot wait for this. She also we start to try and eat, which is a key skill that will reveal a lot of how she is doing.

The main "hiccup" was only how we started the day...with the news that though her respirator was still off, she did stop breathing three different times. Yikes. Fortunately she corrected herself two of the times, and needed help one of the times. However, she has been breathing great all day, and the Dr's attributed these episodes to the morphine that she is being weened from.

There was certainly a strong middle part of the day, that was characterized by the NIC Unit around us. There are struggling babies all over, and infact, the little baby right next door to us was getting baptised, right before he was flown to another facility. His parents crying and full of sorrow. Oh the fragility of life. The blessing of getting to have babies, even though we know heaven is a better home. It was hard to see such pain. Our lives are changed on multiple levels with this whole experience.

The Dr's and nurses that are caring for Jaden are wonderful. The Dr. that came in the middle of the night to help Jaden, when she was a few hours old, came and checked in on us today. We had a great long converstaion with her. Dr. Ryan. She is a God-send, so kind and gentle and wise, and truly was used by God to save Baby Jade's life, by making the call to cool her. We praise God for her.

Another aspect of today...Jaden has not been able to be touched really at all up to this point. However, tonight they did pick her up to weigh her for the first time since birth. She was gained an ounce! But it was obvious, she did not liked being touched, which is very typical for babies who undergo this procedure. It will be something she will grow to love, because this is what allows her to be fed!

Through all of this, we have been blown away by the love and support of everyone. From Granne, Angie and our college staff watching Rylie, to daily Bible verses from Lou, to coordination of meals and other helps from Jane, to Granne packing up our home, to Courtney for shopping for a washer and dryer for us, to Nana and Papa Walker flying out to help with all the transition, to my college staff signing up to clean our apartment after we move, to texts, e-mails, calls...and to prayers, prayers, prayers. We feel so unbelievably loved. This little Jaden has showered us with blessing through you all, and we cannot thank you enough. We are totally humbled, grateful and blown away. The First Pres Family is undescribable. What a congregation of love. Simply incredible.

We praise God for all that is changing in us...and even more with all that is transpiring before our very eyes with Jaden. She is doing well. We know we are not out of the woods yet, but we feel like we can see through the trees, and it is a hopeful sight. Jaden has some big milestones to conquer this week,and some big tests to come on Friday (Physical Therapy and MRI), and we find ourselves prayerful and hopeful. PLEASE KEEP THE PRAYERS COMING.

The bottom line today is...as she has warmed her body, our hearts have been warmed as well. It was a good day. Thank you for your love and support. Can't wait to see what tomorrow will bring. Holding our babe for the first time!!!!! Did we say that she is just about the cutest thing we have ever seen? And yes, she looks like her big sister, which means she looks like her dad, and not like her mom...AGAIN. At least Chad is cute! Ha!

Off to bed...
The Flete Fam.

February 21, 2010

A Good Night with Jaden

When we arrived at the hospital tonight, two nurses greeted us outside Jaden's room, and said, "You are going to like what you see." We walked in, and there our little Jaden was with NO BREATHING TUBE. We got to see her face unobstructed really for the first time. Have we said how sweet she is? Oh, she is just adorable. We also got to hear her voice for the first time...little squeaks and little cries. It was a very special night.

Finger painting...with pudding!

This next week Chad and I will be spending most of every day in Denver with Jaden. Therefore, we have wanted to make today a Rylie day where we are together with her all day. (Though we are visiting Jaden two times today...with Rylie in the waiting room area...)

One of the things we decided to do was create a fun dessert for Rylie...pudding, that you get to fingerpaint with! She loved it and got the hang of it rather quickly. She started out pretty clean...but ended up a mess! The messier the better, right!? It was perfect...finger licking good! (Now do not ask me why we gave her a bath BEFORE all of this!?)

Rylie is good medicine for our hearts right now! She is so much fun.

Our cool kid...

At this point we are counting the miracles and blessings that are transpiring before our very eyes, as we watch the progress of little Jaden. After her delivery, it was made quickly apparent that her body went through a period of time, during delivery, without an adequate amount of oxygen. Without knowing exactly when this happend, and for how long it happened, the decision was made quickly to move her to an intensive care unit for advanced treatment.

St. Joseph's Hospital's NIC Unit has a great reputation within the State and is recognized nationally for neo neatal care. Praise GOD for her round the clock one on one care. There is a nurse assigned specifically to her. Incredible. The procedure that she is under is complex and state of the art. In it's simplest explanation, she is "cooling". For three days she is to remain on a cooling pad, that keeps her body temperature at 92-93 degrees. This allows her physical body, especially her brain, to rest and recover as needed. We are calling her our "cool kid", as we are so thankful for this very specialized treatment. :)

Here is a tour of her room:

Tomorrow, Monday is a big day. It is on this day that the cooling process ends and the warming up process begins. This process will take anywhere from 15-30 hours depending on how things progress. It is at this time that we will truly begin to see how how well she has recovered from the intial injury. She has had many tests results up to this point that have been progressively more positive in nature. From Monday through the remainder of her stay (likely through next weekend), the tests that she will undergo will be very telling as to how she is truly functioning.

Another big part to Monday, or likely Tuesday, is that we can start to touch her, hold her, and hopefully feed her!!! It is so hard to not be able to have any physical contact with her at this point. We talk to her a lot though, and she knows our voices. Our hearts just melt as she opens her eyes and gazes at us. Oh she is so, so sweet.

Please continue to pray for our little J-bop. These past few days, as you can imagine, have been full of tears, trust, miracles, prayers, encouragement, heart-break and a love for Jaden that is indescribable and so deep. We read Psalm 139 over her yesterday, which was so rich and meaningful. And we cling to the hope of our Solid Rock in Christ Jesus. Here is a verse that has been up on our mirror for the past week...even before all this transpired. May it encourage you in your life as it has ours.

Isaiah 26:3-4
You will keep in perfect peace
him whose mind is steadfast,
because he trusts in you.
Trust in the LORD forever,
for the LORD, the LORD, is the Rock eternal.

To Him be all glory, honor and praise.
Chad, Jennie, Rylie and Jaden

She's here!!!!

We are proud to announce the birth of our little girl:

Jaden Lola Fletemeyer

She was born Friday, February 19th, 2010 at 12:42 am, with a weight of six pounds ten ounces and twenty inches in length.

Shortly after her birth, she was transferred to the NIC Unit at St. Joseph’s Hospital of Denver to increase her level of care to help in her recovery from a difficult start to her life. She needs lots of prayer and all the love we can give her. We are already so proud of her. She is a great fighter, and has a fiery side to her personality. We are hopeful that we will be able to bring her home towards the end of next week.

The name Jaden carries the Hebrew meaning “God has heard”. We know that God has heard and will continue to hear our call for His peace, healing and love for this new creation. So, we celebrate His good and perfect gift with joy and thanksgiving, praising the One who restores and sustains our souls.

Thanks to each of you, for your continued love and support of our, now “family of four!”

Chad, Jennie, Rylie and Jaden!

February 16, 2010

Thanks Linds!

For the past two months, Rylie's nanny has been Lindsey. What a fun history we have together. We met when she was our student intern 7 years ago with University Mnistries. A few years later she served as our Leadership Development Coordinator. Now a few years later, she is married, and we are both expecting baby girls any day now! She has been such an active presence in these past few months of pregnancy. Not only has she watched Rylie every week, she also threw me a beautiful baby shower. What a dear, what a dear.

Here we are...she was due YESTERDAY, and I am due in a week! Our girls are already friends in the bellies! (Of course Rylie wants to be right in the middle of it all!)

Also, we wanted to let you know our latest plan with the arrival of Baby Flete #2!
We are hoping that she will come on her own by this Sunday.
If she has NOT come by this Sunday, we have scheduled a C-section for this Sunday, Feb. 21st at 11am at Exempla Hospital in Lafayette!
Her due date is Monday the 22nd, however with our move on Friday the 26th, this is the latest we could push it so that we would be out in time to move! Ha! Never a dull moment.

Of course we would covet your prayers for good health for this little wonder, who we CANNOT WAIT TO MEET. Rylie talks about her every day. And, if you want to throw in that prayer...that she would come before Sunday, safe and sound, that would be nice, too!

Thank you...here she comes!

February 14, 2010

"Baby Sister come out!"

Here I am, 39 weeks and counting!

Rylie is not the only one that can hardly wait to meet Baby Sister. She says often:
"Baby Sister is coming!"
"Baby Sister is going to the playground, too!"
"Come out baby!"

We were so prepared to have this one come 2.5 weeks early, like Rylie...but apparently she needs a little more "lov'n in the oven!"

Happy Valentines Day Frosty!

To show Rylie a little extra love on Valentines Day, we took her to the local ice-skating rink. She has been wanting to do this for a while now. This was a first! So, out we went after church. She totally enjoyed herself, and wanted "more." Only one time, did dad almost flip her out of the sled, because he was swinging her with such torque! Ha! We love this little wonder of ours...all smiles.

She loves Frosty the snowman, so of course once she saw the statue at the rink she gave it a little Valentine's love all her own. Adorable.

Here is just a slice of the energy and chatter that we are blessed with all throughout the day.

February 03, 2010

Happy Birthday...

I must be sensing my time with JUST Rylie is coming to a close, as I have been filming her a lot today. Here we are playing with playdough, playing "Birthday Party!" Happy Birthday Rylie, Happy Birthday Mommy, and her favorite: Happy BIrthday Red Robin (go figure...)

Big Sister in Training

Rylie is a big sister in training. We have been talking and reading all about being a Big Sister. She does the cutest things throughout the day regarding this soon special arrival. We gave her a baby doll to practice with, of which she puts in the double stroller when we go for walks, puts in the pack and play, changes her diaper, and even puts in the car seat next to her at times. She also drops, throws, and hides her baby doll! Ha. Nevertheless, the more she get's used to another someone around, the better! Though she loves the idea right now...we will see once the real deal arrives. I tried to capture some of her Big Sister moments on film.

Here is an interview about "little sister," whom she has named Ellie. (This is not going to be little sister's real name, but it is a cute idea!)

Rylie sings all of the time, so here are two more songs..."Away in a Manger," and "Rock a By Baby."

February 02, 2010

We celebrated Rylie's 2nd birthday...in a Tinkerbell way. It was Tink all day, so much so that she thought it was Tinkerbell's birthday, too! Ha. We gave her a Tink doll that flaps her wings when you "fly" her around. A total hit to say the least. She got to watch the Tinkerbell movie at Granne's house, which was a big treat! We ended the day with dad giving her a few flights around the house with her big wings on, and then headed to the ice-cream parlor! A simple, day...and so much fun. We cannot believe she is so grown up. Oh how we love our "littles!"