Imagine a love so strong that saying hello and goodbye at the same time was worth the sorrow.

November 14, 2010

Kolton's Birth Plan

Birth Plan for:
Kolton Sage Sanchez

Son of Kelby and Lacy Sanchez. Little Brother to Alexia.

On June 23rd, 2010, 18 weeks into our pregnancy we were devastated to learn that our son, Kolton Sage, had anencephaly. We realize that Kolton will look different physically and will have facial anomalies. We hope that everyone can see him for who he is, our beautiful little baby. We may only have seconds or minutes with him, but we may also be blessed with hours or days. As Kolton's parents, it is our greatest wish to be able to cherish every moment we have with our baby, in a loving and caring environment. We have compiled this list of requests and wishes regarding his birth and care in order to make this experience as easy as possible for all involved. Please do not hesitate to ask us for clarification, if it is needed. Please don’t mind if we change our wishes at any time. Our wishes all revolve around our need to spend as much precious time with Kolton as possible and to prevent him from suffering during that time. Our wishes are as follows:

We ask that our son be referred to as Kolton.

We wish to have a sign placed on our door that designates what type of situation Kolton's birth is. We prefer not to have extraneous staff entering our room without speaking to our nurse first (i.e. housekeeping, dietary).

If possible, we request nurses specifically trained in bereavement.

We are participating in a research study conducted by Duke for neural tube defects, which includes anencephaly. For this study, blood must be collected from both Kelby and Lacy Sanchez. Also, tissue must be obtained from Kolton after Kolton has passed. Supplies have been provided by Duke and can be obtained from Kelby or Lacy. Directions for obtaining the tissue and blood samples will be provided along with directions for packaging and sending all samples. If any questions arise you may contact Heidi Cope, MS- Certified Genetic Counselor at Duke University Medical Center Center for Human Genetics:: 1-877-825-1694.

We ask not to be judged and that each member of the medical profession provide us with excellent medical care and the compassion to allow us, as much as you are capable, privacy to celebrate Kolton's life with close family and friends. It is our belief that precious time with Kolton is the only thing that will soothe the pain of those that love him.

We are planning on a vaginal delivery unless a c-section is necessary. We prefer to have continuous fetal monitoring during labor and delivery. Also the monitoring of heart tones Any drugs used should have minimal side effects and present the least risk to Lacy and Kolton while still providing pain relief; given it in the smallest dose that will be effective; Lacy wants to, and needs to be, alert during and after delivery. Lacy would like to have an epidural. Please respect our right to make all decisions regarding the birth should anything unforeseen occur.

We have arranged for a photographer, Karen Bonar, to be present after delivery. She is affiliated with Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep, a bereavement organization and will be taking pictures of us and our baby. Her number is (316) 371-7846. Rachel Ford will also be taking pictures and video immediately after Kolton is born. Please accommodate these ladies as much as you can. Any pictures and video they obtain will be very important to us to look back on.

Kelby will stay in the room with Lacy at all times.

Assuming they do not rupture on their own, please do not rupture the amniotic membranes artificially. The membranes and fluid will help protect Kolton's head during labor and delivery. We feel this will increase Kolton's chances of being born alive.

Cutting of the umbilical cord is to be done by Kelby, if he wants to cut it.

We have a special blanket that we would like Kolton wrapped in as soon as he is born.

As long as it is safe for Lacy, we want her to be able to hold Kolton immediately following delivery. If Lacy is unable to hold Kolton, we would like Kolton to be handed to Kelby. We wish to cherish all the time we have with him. Every second counts.

We want Kolton’s airway to be suctioned as soon as he is born to help him breathe. We would like to hold Kolton as soon as possible. We want to be told right away if he is breathing or if he has a pulse. If he is not breathing, we would like efforts made to help initiate his breathing. We would also like him given supplemental oxygen if needed. If he is doing poorly, we ask that he be given to us to hold. If he is to die right away, we want it to be in a parent’s arms.

We would like mechanical assistance to be used only temporarily to initiate Kolton's breathing. We do not want any extraordinary measures taken to maintain breathing or to initiate his heartbeat. We request that blow-by oxygen be available if we want to use it.

Since it is possible that Kolton is going to be with us for only a short amount of time we want every second possible with him in our arms, beginning from the moment of his birth. Please delay (or even prevent if possible) any procedures that can be put off until later. If any procedures must be done we ask that they be done while Kolton is in our arms.

We anticipate that Kolton will be born with a large opening to his occipital area and neural tissue will be exposed. If he is in stable condition, we would like a dressing placed to any open area AFTER we have been allowed to see it.

We would like Kolton to be kept warm.

We may want routine admission medications given, such as erythromycin ointment, or Vitamin K, and we may want his blood sugar monitored, if requested.

We ask that you give us privacy, without abandoning us. Encourage us to do whatever feels right.

We do not want Kolton to be taken from the delivery room at any time, by any person, for any reason. For however long we may have with him, we want him in the room with us.

If Kolton lives long enough we would like to feed him. We would like to breast feed him. If he lives long enough to require nutrition, if he doesn't take to the breast then we want to bottle feed him, however, if he is unable to be bottle fed we do want a feeding tube inserted.

In the event that Kolton does not die immediately, or soon after birth, we may consider having an IV inserted for the administration of pain medication. We wish to make Kolton's time on earth as pain-free and comfortable as possible.

In the event that Kolton is experiencing severe seizures and seems uncomfortable or in pain, we may consider the administration of anti-seizure medication.

We want the nursing staff to weigh and measure Kolton when we request it. Should we forget to request it, please do it prior to him leaving the hospital.

We would like the opportunity to give Kolton his first bath.

If Kolton looks like he won’t survive during our time in the hospital we want him to be with us and we want to be holding him in our arms when he leaves us. When he has passed please notify staff members who will come in contact with us. Please do not take him away from us after he passes.We will let you know when we are ready for you to do any routine procedure on him. If we are blessed with the opportunity to take Kolton home with us please give us advice on how to feed him and care for his head (with dressings etc.).

Please do not allow anyone in our room without talking to us first. We want our daughter, Alexia who is 10 years old, in the room immediately after delivery. We would like to have the option to bring our family to in the room to meet Kolton and spend time with him. We ask your assistance in keeping them updated as we request it. We might need your help with getting visitors in when we are ready. Polly Potterf- Lonnie Potterf and Marlene Penton- Danny Penton are to be the first visitors. They are his grandparents. Followed by immediate relatives. Kolton has family that is very eager to meet him. If possible, we want them to be able to spend time with Kolton while he is still alive. Time is of the essence for us and we do not want any avoidable regrets or missed opportunities.

We do not want Kolton to go to the morgue at any time. We will call Bateman Funeral Home directly when we are ready to say goodbye to Kolton. We will be taking him to the funeral home ourselves. We have made prior arrangements for this. Bateman Funeral Home can be contacted at: (785) 890-6600.

If any caregiver has a suggestion or an idea that you think may be helpful, please share it with us, as there are many things we might not have thought of.

We would like to have as many keepsakes and mementos as possible. Please save the following items for us to take home:
the bassinet card
baby blanket
any photographs taken by the hospital
hospital ID bracelet and cord clamp
hand and footprints (we also wish to have footprints put in frames that we have brought with us)
mold of hands and feet (we have kits with us)
lock of hair if possible
clothing Kolton may have worn
heart rate/contraction strips from any monitoring
and any other things you think we may wish to have

This is a very difficult time for all of us. We truly appreciate your help and support, and ask that you understand the varied range of emotions we may experience. We also appreciate and find comfort in your expressions of grief, so please do not hesitate to show your emotions in front of us. We have tried our best to prepare for our short time with our little Kolton. Saying "Hello" and "Goodbye" in such a short period of time will not be easy. With your help and support we hope to make this time as meaningful as possible.
Thank you,
Kelby and Lacy Sanchez


  1. Great job with this plan for little Kolton's birthday! I hope everything goes smoothly and peacefully on that day.

    I want to encourage you to stand up to your doctor and make your wishes known. This birth plan is one great way to do that. We chose a planned c-section to deliver ^Amelia Grace^ and our doctor was very supportive.

    Prayers for you...

  2. Melissa,
    Thank you! I wanted a c-section but my Dr. is very much against it. I really wish I could have one. =(

  3. Your plan sounds great. We too agree that you need to make your wishes known to your doctor. Ours advised us to Deliver in Omaha,NE, then after the research we did on anencephaly, we told him that we'd like to deliver locally and we stated the reasons why and he graciously accepted our wish.

    Your family is in our thoughts and prayers.

  4. Lots of prayers for you and your family. We lost our little girl a year ago, she also had Anencephaly. She was with us for an amazing 22 hours.