Monday, December 28, 2009

Guess What!?

We're home! Literally home! And please don't hate me for not updating this for the longest time. It's been a long road here with much to do.

So what happened? Well, we had initially thought we would be released from the hospital on the 11th, but we had some issues with eating and gaining weight after the eye exam and shots and other busy days earlier that week. So we had to wait and see if she could get back on track with her eating and begin gaining weight again. Over that weekend, she began to again take her full bottles and packing on the pounds, although she wasn't gaining as much as they really wanted her to. Still, they felt good that she would be released on the 14th. I didn't plan for it, lol. I knew anything could happen between now and then and after getting my hopes up previously, I didn't want to feel that disappointment again. Sunday, Dec 13th, overnight, she had to pass one final test before we knew if she could go home. That was the car seat test. Still, our primary night nurse felt so confident that she would pass that she was almost in tears as I said good night to her. She knew it would be her last night to work with Elisa and loved her. Long and short...she passed! So I arrived at the hospital on the 14th and we walked out the door by noon!

We previously had tickets home for the 18th so we spent the week in Phoenix at a local hotel. Unfortunately, one of our host family became ill on the 14th and we just couldn't risk staying there with her. :( We were so disappointed because they had been wonderful and we were looking forward to spending that week with them.

Elisa handled her first plane ride like a champ. We kept quiet on my return home because we had planned to surprise Andrew's parents. They came down Saturday the 19th to find Elisa and I home already. They thought they were going to go to the airport with Andrew to pick us all up. Instead they walked into the nursery and there we were. It was sooo much fun!!

So really other than posting a few pictures of her on Christmas day, there's not much that's been going on. We've been adjusting to our new "normal." Andrew and I are learning to live with each other again, lol. 2 months is a LONG time to be apart. But I am sooo thrilled to be home and am enjoying my time immensely.

Oh, and by the way, we are two months old today!! Her personality comes out more each day.

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Play time!

We were wide awake after our feed today so we got to play in one of
the hospital's bouncy chairs. She loved it! Even after we scared her
half to death by turning on the vibrate! I love her more every day.

We also had a virtual baby shower. Friends gathered at our house and
we used Skype to see each other. It was great and Elisa received lots
of great gifts. Some even set up the nursery for me so I don't have to
do it when I finally get home. I have great friends! Love you all!

Friday, December 11, 2009

"Where's my baby?"

Three words that should never be uttered out of a mother's mouth, lol. This morning, I arrived at Elisa's room to find all the curtains closed, lights off and room EMPTY. I stepped in the room and one of our favorite nurses was following me and the first thing I said was "where's my baby?" Her response was "Oh, I don't know." In her defense, she wasn't Elisa's nurse today so it wasn't her job to keep track of her, lol. After a few panic stricken seconds, I realized that Elisa was actually in the room, just on the floor in a bouncy chair, lol. And doing fine. And playing with her hands. It was just those initial seconds of seeing an empty room and wondering what the heck happened to my baby and why she wasn't in her room.

Just had to share! :)

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Monday, December 7, 2009

Life is good

Working while my baby sleeps on my lap. I couldn't ask for more. Well,
maybe to be sitting at my house in Kansas City rather than the
hospital in Phoenix but I'll take what I can get right now.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Ok ok!


No tube, until I got my new one!

So hungry I'm eating my hand.

Just cuz I love this one.

4lb 4 oz. We backslid a bit on our bottles but she'll get back up there. She's taking a full one about once a shift, but then hardly anything for the rest. We now have a team of three day nurses who subscribe to the program along with a great night nurse. So hopefully our consistency frustrations are a thing of the past!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Quick update

Well, our favorite nurse was on yesterday - one who is one of our few primaries. She noticed all of the inconsistencies and frustrations we were having and went to work. We now have a written plan in place in Elisa's file, she brought in the big doctor on campus to talk to us and posted signs around her room. The signs are basically saying "I'm small, but I'm mighty - give me a chance and I might surprise you!" I'll post pictures of them later, she really did a great job with it. Overall, it brought me back to being able to deal and renewed my confidence that she will be taken care of when I'm not here.

More later, with photos, I promise.

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Yes, there is an end...

To my rope. And I've found it.

So I said in my last post, there was quite a bit to update, and there was. There still is. She's doing fabulous. She's taking at least 40% of her feeds by bottle/nipple. She's been maintaining her temperature and is very close to being in an open crib. She has not had a recordable brady in 3 days. Being home before Christmas is not a far off possibility. Some feel that they would be shocked if she were still in at that time. In fact, some were so confident that I even bought my plane tickets home!

Here's where the end of the rope comes in. The opinion above changes based on what doctor/nurse/specialist is on that day. When it comes to consistency, they don't have it. In fact, the reason I believe she is only at 40% feeds is because when I'm not there, and it's not one of my primary nurses, they don't even bother to try to get her to take the bottle. And this is not just an unjustifiable frustration. I had one nurse admit to me that she was only on the pump because she was too busy with other stuff to feed her. Really? I had another nurse who was so resistant to letting me breast feed her that after she reluctantly let me try (and SUCCEED) and even get her to take another 8ml by bottle, force another FULL feed down her throat. Through the tube. When we arrived in that morning, she was on the pump. The reason? She was sleeping and she didn't want to wake her. Uhhhh, she wakes up when you get in there to change her diaper and take her temperature. I mean, she screams bloody murder. And you are supposed to do this every three hours, before you feed her. So how can she NOT be awake? Poor Elisa was in so much pain after that double feed. I had to sit with her and burp her for the entire three hours after it was over to keep her even remotely comfortable. And then, by the time her next feed came around, she SO was not hungry. Eh, hello? So they pushed her feeding times back by an hour.

I keep being told to trust the medical staff. I know the majority of the time she gets good care. This one instance was the first instance of anything like this in the entire 5 weeks that we've been there. But it's hard to trust someone when the story changes. Day by day, hour by hour. It's not intentional, but how am I supposed to gain any sense of direction, or even have confidence that they know what they are doing, when I can't get a consistent answer to the same question?

I'm at the point that I don't even want to go into the hospital anymore. It's too stressful. I can't go from A to C to B to K to D and then finally to Z. My brain can't comprehend the constant changes in direction. They keep telling me it's Elisa driving these changes, but from what I've seen, it's not. It's the whim of whomever is caring for her that day. She'll take the entire bottle...if you work with her.

I just want to go home. I just want my baby. I just wanted a normal life, a normal pregnancy, a normal ending.

*Sigh* this to shall pass.

My little rock star, who makes this all worth it: