It's far easier to drop a line to the mailing lists and BCC a few
others than to write back to many individually.

    Thanks for the concern and well-wishes from the many who wrote to
me during the last 10 days.  It's very, very kind of you, and much
appreciated.  I'm honored that you would think of me at all outside of
the context of the various mailing lists.

    For those of you who do not know, on Sunday my wife, Debi, and I
went into the hospital because she was nine months pregnant, but had
not felt the baby move for several hours.  She was attached to a
monitor, and while everything seemed fine at first, that quickly
changed.  The baby's heart rate - which should be between 120 and 160
beats per minute - dropped as low as 49, which is very, very, very
bad.  It happened a couple of times, and during an emergency
ultrasound scan, the baby - on the screen - stuck her tongue right out
at us, then proceeded to bring her fist to her mouth to suck.  And
inside her little fist was her umbilical cord --- she was literally
squeezing it so tight that she was cutting off the blood and oxygen
flow to herself.  Because of this, they decided to induce labor in

    After several hours of labor with no pain relief, the baby's
condition was continuing to deteriorate, so at approximately 02:30
EDT, the doctor made the decision to perform a Caesarean section
(surgical delivery) of the baby.  Things were rushed along, and I
walked into the delivery room just in time to see a purple leg
sticking out of a hole in Debi's belly.  As I walked past, they lifted
the baby out, cut the cord, and rushed her past me to get her to
breathe.  Her skin was purple, as is normal, but her eyes were wide
open as she went past.  At about 02:46 EDT, she cried for the first

    So Haileigh Grace Brown, born at 02:45 EDT Monday morning, 27
July, 2009, weighed in at 6lbs 4oz and was 17.5 inches long.  She has
blue(-ish) eyes and a full head of hair.  There have been several
other life-threatening complications in both her and Debi, including
the baby being completely unable to breathe due to fluid in her lungs,
requiring emergency response and suction, but as of today, she is
doing much better.  Because of all of this, and some complications in
the days just before her birth, I've been rather silent, which is what
apparently gained the attention of the thirty-four (yes, I counted!
;-P) people who sent me emails privately to see if I was alright.
Yes, I am, and thankfully, so is my little family.

    Both Debi and Haileigh are doing well now.  Haileigh doesn't sleep
through the night yet, of course, but she doesn't yet sleep through
the day, either.  She remains awake, wide-eyed, and very alert and
aware of her surroundings --- which is great, except for the fact that
it means that, during the day, we need to pay more attention to her,
and at night, I'm awake the whole time with her.  In the hospital (we
had her in our room) and here at home, I've been allowing Debi to
sleep through the night in bed, to heal from the surgery, and I stay
awake with the baby.  I sleep between one and four hours per day, at
maximum.  I can't so nobody warned me about this!  ;-P

    On a different note, thanks to all of the rain we've had here in
the northeast US this year, my basement office flooded while I was
away in the hospital, tending to more important issues.  As a result,
both my development and backup machines were destroyed, including all
of my undelivered work, research projects, et cetera.  So in addition
to no sleep, I get to enjoy no peace as I work to deliver what I can
(behind schedule) and distribute refunds to clients.  Having a baby is
difficult enough; having a baby and a career is more difficult; having
a baby and working as a freelancer or owner/operator of a company is
the epitome of masochism --- I'm learning that quite thoroughly
through experience.

    Still, all in all, everything is fine.  It'll be tight and
stressful until things are caught back up work-wise, but I'm just fine
with that.  Because from the moment my little girl filled those lungs
and executed her first "Hello, World!" application at quarter-to-three
in the morning last Monday, there's been a completely new Dan Brown.

    Thanks for everyone's checking in and well-wishing, once again,
and I'll get back to everyone personally as soon as I can.  In the
meantime, I'll be back here at my desk, so zip me an email if you need
me.  It may take a bit longer for me to reply until I get caught up,
but I will.

    For those of you with no interest in this, please exercise your
email-delete capabilities at this time.


</Daniel P. Brown> || ||
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