26 February 2012

Slowly, But Surely

Sorry for our lack of updates. And sorry if you've called, and I haven't returned the call. But here's the latest scoop:

Claire is doing really well. She was able to eat for the first time on Monday. But she didn't tolerate it well, spit up green again, and had a lot of air bubbles in her tummy that they had to suck out of her. She had a really rough day. They didn't feed her at all on Tuesday, and she slept almost the entire day. Wednesday we tried again, but this time only a minuscule amount. The poor girl is starving and wasn't impressed with the teeny amount given her. But she held it down.

Every day since, and now every 9 hours, they give her a little bit more. She's been moved to the graduate NICU which is much more of a calm and happy place. The babies there are all a little bigger, a little healthier, there's less hustle and bustle, less beeping from machines, and they have a snack room next to the breast pumping room. :) She's eating and pooping and doing really well. They've cut back her IV fluids and she's a happy little clam these past few days. She INHALES her food, though. It's comical - she's still a hungry little thing. But we're happy with the progress she's making.

We were hopeful that she'd be coming home early this week, but it looks like she'll be there at least until the end of the week now. I'm glad she's where she is getting healthy, but it is incredibly frustrating to walk away from your baby every day. And 3 days this week I didn't see her at all because I caught a nasty little cold. I was pretty broken up about it, but I couldn't go and expose those little ones. And the day before that I spent 7 hours at the hospital. 5 of those hours were spent waiting and waiting for them to get through 4 (4!!!) surgeries in the NICU and then a shift rotation before I could get in to see my little Claire. I'm so glad my mom has been here to stay with the kids while I've been away, and to spend time with Claire at the hospital when I was too sick to go. It's just very unnatural thing; I'm her mother and she doesn't need me at all. My other babies needed me every second of the day. I pump my milk for her, and that's all I can do. It's too bizarre. In a lot of ways I still feel like I'm pregnant - waiting for the day I get to bring my babe home, not knowing exactly when that will be. I'm very glad, though, to have a light at the end of the tunnel. And so grateful that my baby only has to spend weeks, instead of months, away from her family. 

Yes, that's the IV in her head. Looks sadder than it is. It started leaking today, so they moved it to her foot. Which she loves to kick around. So we'll see how long it lasts there. Just a few more days, baby. Then it will be off and all of this craziness will be a little memory.

She's totally getting cuter, isn't she? I resent that the lights in the NICU are always dimmed and that the pictures I've taken of her aren't doing her justice. But at least we can tell she's a looker. :) Love that girl.


Heidi Miller said...

She is so pretty....and I love that last picture with the little smirk. What a doll. I hope she comes home soon!

Washburns said...

Oh yes, Stephanie, how well I know. But the best part is when that little baby does come home, its all the sweeter. And the IV in the head - makes 'em tougher, nothing can stop them after an IV in the head.

We're thinking about you guys all the time. And you're right - she is a looker! Hurry home Claire!

merathon said...

she is adorable. i can totally relate to the whole "i'm not pregnant but i don't have a baby at home with me" thing but she's so close to being home where she belongs! now you KNOW she's got your genes since she's decided that she's loving the food! :)

GordonandChrissy said...

She is SO cute and looking more filled out! We're so glad things are progressing. And you're right, what a blessing that it's weeks instead of months away from her family.
She is a doll and we are just always thinking of you guys. Love you guys.

Sarah McK said...

She is darling! Her cheeks are already getting chubbier! :) So sorry that you're going through this. I can't imagine.