Welcome Baby Carter

Campaign Created by: Andrew Young
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The funds from this campaign will be received by Mark and Jaala Shivler.

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Goal : $40,000

Raised : $5,755

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Mark and Jaala are already the proud parents of an energetic 5-year-old.  They were eagerly expecting their second baby boy, Carter Christopher, and they had planned emotionally and financially for a home birth.

Jaala's pregnancy seemed to be progressing normally, but at 33 weeks her water broke unexpectedly at 2 in the morning.  Because of the risks of the preterm labor to mother and baby Carter, Mark and Jaala had to scrap their birth plan. At the advice of their midwife, they checked into St. Ann's Hospital in Westerville, OH later that morning. Jaala was in the High Risk maternity ward until she gave birth 2 days later.

Carter was born around 4 in the afternoon, and was 5 lb 7 oz, and 18 inches long, with functioning, but underdeveloped lungs. He has been in the NICU since birth, with a feeding tube and a CPAP to help regulate his breathing. He has earned the nickname of Firecracker from the wonderful nurses in NICU, due to his red hair, blue eyes, and the protests when they try to wake him up!

Carter is getting stronger with each feeding, and Jaala's physical recovery is going well.  Needless to say, the expenses associated with a high risk maternity stay in the hospital along with the potential for extended NICU care for Carter are astronomical as well as overwhelming for this young family. Mark and Jaala's financial situation puts them in the precarious position of not being able to afford health insurance, but at the same time they do not qualify for Medicaid. 

Any and all help you could give would be greatly appreciated as they are in this difficult transition period and prepare to welcome home sweet Carter Christopher!

UPDATES

Update #6
May 5, 2021
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Carter Health Update: The belly bulge is still there, we're not certain what will happen by his appointment on the 12th. Still heavy grunts and almost seems to be in pain passing gas or going to the bathroom. When we had our first follow-up appt for him, they had said if the bulge doesn't go away on it's own they will likely refer us to Children's Hospital in Columbus for a specialist check up. I'd rather not have to contend with another bill, but if that's what he needs, so be it.

Momma Update: Jaala is doing very well.  We got Carter a swing that helps him sit upright more with more natural movements...and Carter LOVES IT! It has really helped momma get some things done around the house that have been bugging her. We've been without a vacuum for almost a month due to not making it to the store to try and exchange the broken one we bought not long ago, but Jaala went out and did that to "get out of the house" the other day and got to vacuum the whole house while Carter slept in his swing!! The little things in life that can bring such a smile and sense of happiness...

Hunter update: Hunter loves helping Carter play with his play pad toys! He's being a big helper and always wants to help with cooking. He said last night, "When I grow up, I want to be a chef!" We will see if this stays long term! :D So happy that Hunter loves his brother so much..."except when he cries a lot" LOL!

Thank you for all of your prayers and continued financial support.  The outpouring of love from everyone has been more than we ever expected.  When you feel like you are drowning in a sea of debt it makes it easier to keep your head above water!

Update #5
April 19, 2021
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Greetings all,

Thank you so much for all of the prayers and donations! Our family has been coordinating a lot of things to help take some stress off my (Mark) shoulders as Jaala's focus is 100% on our boys. There are a few things to update, and I don't think about letting everyone know consistently with everything going on, sorry about that!

Carter's Belly Bulge: Please continue the prayers! He definitely has a happy demeanor, but every bowel movement seems painful for him, which is due to the air bubbles in there from what we understand. He does not have trouble going though, so that's a great sign! The pain isn't too bad, it's mainly his cute face all squished up and grunting and he curls up his whole body. He typically only cries if we're not feeding him precisely when he thinks we should be! :) (I personally feel bad, but also relieved when he cries...his lungs are much stronger!) We will see the doctor in a few weeks to check on his belly, if it hasn't worked itself out, they already plan to refer us to specialists in Columbus for possible treatment. Definitely pray God works that out for him naturally by then. All other areas of Carter's health continue to improve and he's doing great overall!

Finance update: We still haven't received the bill for the NICU stay, which should arrive this week. We did however receive a bit of a shocking hospital bill from the whole ordeal. The total bill for labor and delivery, to include staying in the hospital for 3 nights and an error on their part charging us for an Emergency Room visit (didn't happen). Right now that bill is a total of $14,706.38. The false Emergency Room charge is $3,359.00, and they -should- be removing that from the bill even though they had to email their supervisors to get approval to take it off our bill. So that right there is another moment of prayer that the hospital will do what's right, and not charge us for things that they did not provide to us. Just so you all know, if you want to vacation at a hospital, their hotel stay is about $1,700 per day so save up!

Family update: Hunter is smitten with his brother! We were a little worried that he might be upset that we were not able to give him 100% of our attention like before, but thanks to some prep work by us, and my sister's family...I believe we prepared him for what to expect. Jaala is doing a lot better rest wise since I took over the midnight feeding every night, she's now getting a long stretch of rest while it's DARK out, and she's in much better spirits! Me? I'm stressed constantly with trying to get hours in at work (from home thankfully!!!) and making sure we have everything we need along with trying to figure bills out. Grandma (my mom) and Lolli (Jaala's mom) will not be able to help us out again due to some virus scares. Our family in PA is currently fighting off the Corna virus, but all are in good health and spirits, it seems to be mild thankfully! Our family in Mentor is healthy right now, but likely going to stay where they are out of an abundance of caution. 

We are all very grateful for all of the thoughtful messages, prayers and help that everyone has given (including meals). We are eagerly looking forward to Carter being 1 month old so we can hopefully peel back our complete isolation and get back to some semblance of normal with cousins. We miss being with people (Hunter's 5 cousins are 9 minutes away, and other than the occasional brief outside run with them, we can't see them for a while).

Thank you again from all of us,
Mark, Jaala, Hunter, Carter & Cookie 
 

Update #4- A message from Mark
April 10, 2021
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Prayers for Carter and my family that I can keep up with his strict schedule. Mama's sleeping only 30min/1 hr naps between feeds. He is doing great but we are not out of the woods quite yet. Being that he is a premie there is a chance he could regress. What we don't want is the effects of CPAP, from his NICU treatment, to get worse. (He has a small bulge in his tummy that wasnt there at birth, due to using CPAP and the trapped air in his belly) Unfortunatly the risk is developing sepsis. The signs are if he's not nursing every 3 hr, filling diapers, and keeping temperature.  Thank you for lifting us up in prayer💖

Update #3: A Message from the Shivler Family
April 9, 2021
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A huge thank you to all who have donated toward the NICU bills! We received our first payout from GiveSendGo just in time for the first bill. Words cannot properly express our gratitude. I hope you enjoy the updates from Jaala! We love both our boys with all our hearts, and we're greatful that you chose to help out with this time of financial burden, especially when so many are going through their own burdens in this crazy world!
Mark, Jaala, Hunter & Carter

Update #2
April 6, 2021
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There is good news to report.  Carter is such a strong little boy!  His breathing has improved so that he no longer needs the CPAP for support. He is nursing well and also takes a bottle.  The nurses are just amazed at his progress in such a short period of time.

Another milestone reached:  On Monday morning, Carter passed all his tests and was able to come home!!!  Mark and Jaala brought Carter home Monday afternoon to meet his big brother, Hunter.  Hunter absolutely adores him.  Because Carter is still a preemie he's not allowed any visitors for a least a month, so the family will be pretty much in seclusion for that time.  Fortunately there is family nearby that can run errands and pick up necessities if need be.

As always, your prayers and financial support are welcomed and appreciated as there is still a long road ahead with expensive doctor bills and other things that are needed for an early baby (new car seat, clothes, diapers, etc).  Thank you to all of you who have contributed so far.  Please share this message and campaign to as many people as you know to get the word about about the needs of this precious family.
(see gallery for new pictures)

Update #1
April 1, 2021
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New photos have been added to the gallery.

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