Thursday, August 28, 2008

Update and Pictures of Our Reese

Sorry for the lack of an update since yesterday, but as I'm sure you could tell from the terrible spelling and grammar in the last post (which I just corrected) - the hospital computer and Internet is terrible. You basically have to lay in bed and type while looking at a computer screen that is on the wall 7 feet away! I was discharged at 7 PM tonight, so I figured I'd update now.

After looking at X Rays and everything, they think that Reese's condition isn't at all due to the C Section delivery (a vaginal delivery usually "squeezes" the baby on its way out, and when the baby gets squeezed the amniotic fluid comes out of the lungs). Instead, they think its due to underdeveloped lungs, which there is no explanation for. Reese is responding well to the intubation and the Surfactin. The goal on this machine is to eventually have Reese able to breathe on her own, and we need her breathing 21% Oxygen (which is what you and I breathe in from the air around us), and staying stable while doing it (her respiratory rate, blood gas, blood pressure, pulse Ox, etc).

Today we were told that they hope to extubate her at some point over the next few days, but we want to hold off on that until we're sure she'll be okay without it, because intubating her again would be awful. She does need to be sedated while she's hooked up to all the machines. We were told that when preemies go through this they're still pretty stationary, but with Reese being full term she's strong and squirmy. She'll reach right up and yank her tubes off if she's not under sedation. After she's extubated she'll need to go back on C-PAP for a few days and then she'll start the step down process. She's still on feeding tubes and everything, so the good news is that the NICU has a really great occupational therapist who can help me with the breastfeeding process once Reese is able to eat. Her nurse has said she has a great sucking reflex, so hopefully that's a good sign. My milk came in yesterday and I'm starting to get more and more milk that we're freezing for her. In either case, the hospital also has a "Courtesy Stay" program so Brian and I can stay there for a night of two before she comes home so we can get used to her schedule and everything so we'll all be more comfortable.

At this point it's a wait and see kind of thing. We don't know when she'll be home (today they mentioned two weeks, which I don't even want to think about), and while Brian and I are having a really difficult time not having her home and watching her hooked up to everything, we know that it's for the best. My philosophy is that I clearly have a very strong little girl and I need to be strong for her. Reese really responds to what's around her, if someone is stressed out while they're with her, she can tell. If I stand next to her and break down, she'll respond to it. Her nurse even had a baby moved because he was a cryer and every time he cried her blood pressure would rise. This isn't something that will continue, but it's something that needs to be monitored while she's getting healthy. We are confident that her Doctor's and nurses know what they're doing and that they're doing what's best for her right now so that we can bring her home soon. They keep telling us that this is just a "newborn thing" that she'll get over and have no real side effects from in the future. So from this point on we're going to be making lots of visits to the hospital to see our little baby girl as many times a day as we can. Fortunately the summer is winding down for Brian so we have nothing but time and a lot of volunteers to watch our little guy so that we can spend time with his "sissy."
Me before we left for the hospital on Monday
Family shot before we left
Brian's self portrait in his surgical garb

Brian insists I put the picture of Dr. George holding her up. I say a girl deserves some privacy...
Meeting our Baby Girl for the first time (yes, I am still being operated on).
This was taken by a NICU nurse for us to keep in our room. This picture got us through a lot of nights, a lot of tears, and has served as my main "motivation" while pumping all this milk for her.

The Reese's Pieces that we handed out to visitors at the hospital
Wyatt's first visit to the hospital
I asked Wyatt who it was in the picture I'm holding and he said "It's Sissy." He was mesmerized by her picture for a few seconds. I can't wait until he can meet her.
So tired! This is what the C-PAP machine look like.
First picture of Reese Lynn with her eyes open

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