I have been having unexplained but regular bloody noses. Is it fatigue? I know it’s not because I’m pregnant. Because I’m not. Of that I am certain.
My daughter projectile poops on me basically once per day. Usually right after I’ve put on a clean shirt. So if you see me and I’m wearing a crummy shirt and no bra, it’s because I’m protecting my bra and decent clothes from pooh stains.
I wish I had taken a picture of her big (relatively speaking and round belly that sticks out on the sides from the rest of her body. Maybe next time. It was so pronounced tonight when I was changing her out of her peed clothes and into dry ones.
BGL makes A LOT of noise when she sleeps. Grunting and wheezing and snorting and so on. Her sneezes don’t sound like sneezes; her sneezes sound like something is wrong. My husband and I have both thought so on separate occurrences of her little sneeze.
I know what her “I’m hungry and I’m not going to take it anymore” cry sounds like. So does her brother. He is handling her crying surprisingly well. It hardly upsets him. And he doesn’t cry over it. Which is quite unexpected based on previous behavior. And previous statements that he has made. I’m sure his nursery teacher would be shocked to learn that he remains calm when his sister is wailing.
I told our next door neighbor about our new arrival today. She didn’t even know I’d had been pregnant. That should tell you what a recluse I was during the winter and how much I wasn’t yet showing in the spring. Turns out her son was born at 30 weeks when her preeclampsia turned to eclampsia and she started having seizures. We commiserated briefly about magnesium sulfate.
Preemies are everywhere. I’m sure my mom will tell you the same.
I’ve already said I pump 8 times a day. That’s still true.
I also put BGL on the breast 4-5 times a day. We are both still learning, but I believe I can tell that she is getting stronger and better at what she’s trying to do.
I have been doing football hold exclusively. Today I tried cross cradle on the left side and had more success than ever before.
My left breast is known to be a curmudgeon of sorts. Unwilling to put out without A LOT of coaxing. BGL is not much of a coaxer yet.
I’ve had clogged milk ducts on the left. Pumped and pumped and pumped my way through that. Including a long and miraculous pumping session.
Thrush has now made an appearance. Ugh. There is discomfort. That’s for sure. Haven’t decided on a treatment yet. BGL is already being plied with nystatin. Hope it works for her. I have not been officially diagnosed but I’m pretty sure.
In spite of these challenges and annoyances, BGL is gaining weight: 4 lbs 9 oz at the doc this morning.
We had our first outing today with BGL. If going to the pediatrician can be called an outing.
She’s an inch longer than she was at birth. Little weed is already 17.5 inches.
BGL also has gained 3 ounces since her last weigh-in at the NICU. She’s now a whopping 4 lbs 3 oz.
I’m ready for her to be strong enough and old enough that she can figure out breastfeeding so I don’t have to pump so much anymore. Especially throughout the night. My husband helps me remember to be patient and hopeful. And patient.
Pumping does afford me the opportunity to post these pictures of our little nugget. And I’m sure we’re all grateful for that.
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4 lbs even (1820 grams). That’s how much BGL weighs today. On her discharge day.
That’s right. People. We are home. The Larsens are all together.
I cried when we left. Those nurses, I tell you. I love them. So much.
But not enough to take pictures of them. Oops. I wish I had done that. I want to tell my little girl all about all the wonderful women who took care of her for the first 19 days of her life. Add Elena and Diane and Keri and Diane (another one) to the list. And Laura. And Megan. And Amy.
During discharge we were urged to keep BGL at home and away from people and germs for a couple of months. (Makes me really excited about our pediatrician appointments.) So we are going to be those parents for a while. Wish us luck that we all stay healthy and that people don’t hate us by the end for being so hyper about keeping our little girl (and son) healthy until she’s bigger and stronger and able to handle a measly little cold.
Oh, and now that we’re home, I don’t expect to be able to update this blog as often. Just a hunch.
BGL is a bit of an all star. Or so we’ve been told.
Here’s the thing. Since landing in the NICU she has had zero “alarms.” Which means that her oxygen saturation and heart rate have never lingered outside the acceptable range for 10 seconds or longer. Never. The nurses can’t believe it.
At this point they don’t expect that she will have any alarms. And we hope they’re right. Any alarm would add a week to her sojourn in the alcove of pod 2.
BGL still weighs less than 4 lbs, but she is gaining weight every day. Sometimes only a third of an ounce. We don’t mind as long as she’s gaining.
In the last day she has increased her milk intake each feeding from an ounce to an ounce-and-a-half. Four lbs will soon be a distant memory at this rate.
Nurse Kym asked me today if BGL has shown us by now that we can have confidence in her. If we aren’t confident in her, I thought, then we haven’t been paying attention the last couple of weeks. She’s certainly been consistent and determined.
Nurse Kym also said that BGL will be the one to decide when she’s ready to go home. The nurses and doctors are just reading her cues.
I like nurse Kym a lot and will miss her when BGL comes home. And Karen and Marlene and Charity and Barb and Rhonda and Krystan and Jessica and Chang ans Samantha and Megan. They have taken care of my baby (and us) so well. I have cried already about the idea of not seeing them anymore. I know I will cry when we actually leave and don’t see them anymore.
But I also am so excited to have BGL move in with us at home.
Just as predicted, BGL pulled her feeding tube out overnight. And they didn’t put it back. She’s on her own now and so far has been eating like she’s been doing it for a lot longer than she has been alive. Seriously.
Her biggest challenge in my opinion is maintaining her body temperature on her own. She’s skinny. She’s next to a window, and it’s cold here last night and tonight. Brrr. I know what I will be praying for tonight.
BBL really wants his sister to come home. I hope we’re ready because it’s going to happen sooner than we thought. Maybe this week. Soon. Yikes again. And hooray again.
BGL made it to 1750 grams today! BG stands for “Big Girl” now. She’s almost 3 lbs 14 oz. As long as she keeps gaining weight, then her small size will not be the reason she’s still here at the NICU.
BGL is also at 90% oral feeding today. See. Big girl!
She does not leave her feeding tube alone unless she’s sleeping. She is determined to yank it out. Again. Charity says that if she does they might not put it back. No pressure, BGL.
My husband and I suddenly felt today like she might be coming home sooner than we thought. Yikes! And. Hooray! And. We are NOT ready. (But who is.)
I can report that my breasts are gigantic. I mean, really. I have tons of milk. Which I love. It’s surprising how much confidence I have about her eating because I know I have milk.
I am still in the healing phase from giving birth and tearing when BGL flew out.
And that’s all the detail about my situation that’s going to be shared with the world on this blog. Bottom line is that I gave birth recently and am still dealing with that and all that comes with it.