Our perfect, precious boy!
You entered the world fast and furious and we wept when we met you. Our sweet miracle.
Welcome to the world, Ryder Thomas!
Ryder was born on Monday afternoon – his due date! – at 3:29 p.m. weighing 7 pounds and 7 ounces. He’s 20 inches long and completely perfect. We are so in love!
A couple of hours after Ryder was born he was admitted to the NICU for meconium and fluid in his lungs. It was terrifying as we waited for more information and heard the results from his first x-rays. Not being able to hold our baby, attempt nursing and snuggle up to his face has been so challenging. I’m trying not to focus on the fact that we will very likely be discharged from the hospital today and Ryder will not.
My focus has been on Ryder and his incredible strength and the amazing response he’s shown to his treatments. We’ve seen such incredible progress from our sweet boy in a short amount of time and I have full belief we will continue to see him improve and be able to take him home soon.
Ryder didn’t have a name until late last night. Yesterday he was transitioned off a CPAP machine for breathing and onto a smaller tube for oxygen which allowed us to better see his face and my heart to grow as I soaked in his precious cheeks and perfectly pink little lips. We stroked his dark brown hair and felt like we could really SEE our baby for the first time since he was admitted to the NICU and picked a name we hope will serve him well.
Ryder means warrior. Our guy is so strong. We selected Thomas, his middle name, as a tribute to Chase who knew all along he was going to have a little brother and confidently told everyone his name would be “Thomas the Train.” It’s a name that makes us smile so big.
When I shared some very short updates about Ryder and his time in the NICU on Instagram, I received so many comments and messages from all of you and I cannot thank you enough for your incredible reassurance, prayers and kindness. To those who have had little ones in the NICU, your comments have touched me so deeply. Thank you for sharing your experiences with me. I am reading every single message and comment and feeling so grateful for all of you right now.
Seeing such tiny babies fighting so hard in the NICU is unbelievable. They are so resilient! The parents we’ve met are so kind and so strong. And I can barely speak about the nurses and doctors who have watched our boy so closely without feeling overwhelmingly grateful for the work they do, their compassion, expertise and knowledge. I know Ryder is in the very, very best hands.
I am hoping to share Ryder’s birth story on the blog but right now that seems so distant from everything that came up after his arrival. I need some time to focus on our baby boy, pumping (which is incredibly challenging since I am getting nothing and my milk hasn’t come in yet), healing and pouring all of my energy into caring for our baby boy in whatever ways I can, even if they’re not the ways I envisioned right now.
Ryder Thomas, we love you so, so much and I am so lucky to be your mama.
Congrats Julie!!! Sending good vibes Ryder’s way! He is perfect in so many ways.
Congratulations on a sweet, sweet boy! I’ve never commented here before, but wishing your family all the best during Ryder’s NICU stay. My 2nd baby was also in the NICU for 4 weeks, but with more complications since she surprised us with having a rare genetic syndrome. Go easy on yourself when you get home without a baby. It was so overwhelming to be so exhausted, pumping and getting nothing for days, trekking back and forth to the hospital, and paying attention to my older child. Especially with the disconnect of having given birth, but leaving baby behind. My daughter continued to tube feed due to swallowing issues, but I hope Ryder will take to nursing quickly when he is able to (I couldn’t help but notice his OG tube). Sending lots of love and prayers. <3
Congratulations Julie, Ryan, and Chase! He is beautiful. I can’t imagine the heartache you guys are going through with the unexpected events. Wishing all the best for Ryder and that he’s home soon!
I know the pumping can be frustrating when you aren’t getting anything but when my little guy was in the NICU I would only get enough colostrum to fit in a dropper and would give that to him. You are awesome and are a great mom!
I have followed your blog for years and was thrilled to see your sweet, little warrior is here! I understand how difficult it is yearning to hold your sweet boy. My little boy was put in the NICU unexpectedly after a full term, healthy pregnancy as well. Rely on all of the support provided for you. Ryder will be in your arms in the comfort of your home soon. In the meantime, don’t get discouraged if your milk seems to take forever to come in. Get a hospital grade pump if you can.
Sending all positivity you’re way.
Big big congratulations! I’m a longtime reader and now I sort of feel like we are kindred spirits because 1) I’m a #boymom too! And 2) my boys names are Ryder and Jace! Ryder is 3 and Jace is 16 months! Brothers are the bessssst and I’m so excited for your sweet family.
Congratulations on your beautiful baby boy. I will pray for Ryder.
I love the story of his middle name. What a great story for his brother to tell as they get older.
Best to you
Hi Julie , I have been following your blog for years now … never commented till date ..
I am a mother to a 17 month toddler .. i still remember when i was in the ICU for 18 hours post delivery and he was in the NICU just because i was unable to support him due to various reasons . All my family had seen my baby boy and i was the last one to see him touch him feel him … and d moment i saw those tiny eyes lookinbg out for mommy everything else was forgotten …..
I can relate to what you are going through , but you know as well as we all know and truly believe that Ryder Thomas will be home with his family very soon .
Congratulation to you and your family and esp big brother Chase 🙂 and good wishes , love and blessings to young Ryder for a happy healthy long life . Take care
Congrats! What a beautiful name. A strong warrior he is. May he continue to get stronger and he home with his brother and family soon. Much love to you!
Finally he is here! Hooray! I wish u and the whole family all the best from Germany. I have been so excited for you! After my son was born he had problems with his lungs too but as u said, these little miracles from God are true fighters and today I have a energy packed 3,5 year old running around. My prayers are with you. Take your time now and don’t worry about the milk. Had the same issue and all of the sudden I had milk for two babies ?
Hi Julie—I’ve been following your blog since the very beginning but have never commented. Just wanted to say that I’m wishing the best for Ryder and your family ❤️ Am so happy for you, and thanks for sharing your life with us over the years!
Congrats!! 🙂 Ryder is absolutely perfect! Saying lots of prayers to St. Gerard for a speedy recovery for your little warrior!
Julie, Ryan, Chase, and Sadie,
So very happy for all of you that Ryder is here. I wish and pray for a short NICU stay. Your five-some will be cozy at home very soon and I can’t wait to read all about your future adventures!
Beautiful baby boy! And I absolutely love that you guys included Thomas in his name. That will be a precious story to tell them!
My second baby was also a NICU baby. She was born via c section and came out silent and purple. I knew something was wrong immediately. Before I knew it, she was whisked away. They stopped very briefly on the way out of the room and let me see her in the incubator. Then I had to wait hours before I could finally see her again. That was torture!
She’s a month old now and doing great! Thankfully, her little issues continue to improve. I have no doubt that your sweet Ryder will be out and home in no time. I will continue praying for your sweet family. <3 Congratulations!!
Congratulations! As a momma whose first born was taken to the NICU for breathing issues as well My heart aches for u. I know the emotional rollercoaster And I will keep your family in my prayers. Second I legit LOL about the Thomas the train….the same thing happened when I was pregnant with my second. He kept telling his teachers that his brother was going to be named Thomas and I only found out after his Birth and all the teachers started asking how Thomas was…I laughed so hard as I told them his name was Colton! Congratulations again!
My daughter was born at 29 weeks and spent a month and a half in the NICU. I was very sick for the first two weeks of her life with an infection and don’t really remember anything from that time. I have a photo of the first time I held her when she was 11 days old, but I have no memory of it. My biggest piece of advice is to take care of yourself. Allow Ryan to help with Ryder as much as possible and give yourself permission to rest and recover. Once I felt like a human again I didn’t give myself time to recover and it took me so long to feel like myself again. And know that things probably won’t ever go back to the way they were before. You will now have new anxieties you didn’t experience with Chase. That’s totally normal and expected. Seek out a therapist with experience with birth and post partum trauma that can help you work through your feelings and experience. I hope Ryder is discharged soon and home with your family!
Patricia @Sweet and Strong says
Congrats, he is so precious. I am thinking and praying for him! I love his name too and think it’s so sweet his middle name is a tribute to Chase, that’s so adorable 🙂
I’m SO SO happy for you, Ryan, Chase, and Sadie!! What a beautiful baby boy. I’ve followed your blog for years so I feel especially excited about this news. ?
I’ll be praying for Ryder and your family and look forward to hearing more about y’all’s journey. Congrats!
Thank you so much for sharing your life with us! Congrats!
Catherine l. says
Congratulations Julie on your beautiful baby boy. May he get stronger and healthier each new day. I think older siblings know more than we do at times. Especially when it comes to if the baby we’re carrying is a boy or a girl. Mine knew, yours knew and the actress Lea Thompson. Her older daughter told her she was gonna have a girl and her name is Zoey. Sure enough she had a girl and her name is Zoey. Blessings to you and your family. Hugs
Welcome to the ? and most loving parents Ryder!!!?…I wanted to tell you how all of your online aunties had been praying for you, for you stay strong and come home soon!….Did I mention you are overly cute?!???…I know God is watching over you and listening each one of us…so keep fighting as we keep cheering on you baby boy!?❤…God bless you!!!?
Congratulations Julie!! I’m so happy for you and your family! I love the meaning behind Ryder’s name and I can’t wait to see more pictures of him!!
My prayers are with you and your family. The same thing happened with our youngest…she was immediately intubated upon birth due to meconium aspiration. I felt such a loss at not having that time to bond the way I envisioned immediately after birth…but all is well and my little fighter turned into a spitfire of a 3 year old:) Congratulations!
Welcome to the world Ryder! Congrats to you all and lots of love and prayers your way for a successful, cuddly, no tubes night together at the hospital (since I’m coming to this blog post a little later from IG).
Congratulations to your family!
It’s going to be a Paw Patrol family with Chase & Ryder 🙂
congratulations! ha ha he is the image of his dad!!
Heather @ Life In Leggings says
Oh Julie, what an amazing little guy!! Isn’t the surprise of the gender such a crazy, but awesome experience? So many congrats to you guys on your sweet boy! He is just precious and so strong. Praying for you and your family! YOU are incredible! xo
Congratulations Fagan family!!! This makes my heart so happy! Thank you Lord for your grace and mercy ??❤️
Congratulations! Thinking and praying for your family. I love love love the story about his middle name.
Congratulations, he is beautiful! He looks so much like Chase in the photo where Ryan is holding him. Prayers that Ryder is out of the NICU and home with you soon!
Lisa Valinsky says
Congratulations to you and your family. Sending love and prayers.
Congratulations!!! I’ve been following your story since I discovered your blog after I had a miscarriage last summer and its so so wonderful to read about Ryder! He is a handsome boy!
Congratulations to you and the family. Best wishes.
Congratulations!!! Can’t wait to hear about your arrival home. Your family is in my thoughts.
Claudia Urner says
Congratulations ❤️ I love your blog your workouts are best to follow.
olive jason says
congrats for the little one..and more intereted on all your fitness blogs…