Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Home Alone


Thursday, June 15th
   My nurse, Karana, gave us my discharge papers around 2pm with care instructions, but we stayed until 4:30 because we were still waiting for a pediatric cardiologist to give us an update on her heart. She told us that Emma has a VSD (Ventricular Septal Defect) due to a narrow aortic arch, but said it was currently not being obstructed. They are doing echocardiograms every other day to keep a look at it to see if it’s something that requires surgery. We are definitely hoping not though even though she said it would be evasive and the problem could get fixed from the outside of the heart. We went down to see Emma before we left the hospital. 
   I got 36ml of milk pumped this night and was up to 54ml by Friday afternoon! (Now my average is between 70-90ml.) Pumping isn’t my favorite, especially due to the initial pull, but of course I am going to do it for Emma. I have heard that breastfeeding (or at least the baby getting the milk in some way) is very beneficial, especially if I continue it for the next six months. It sure sounds like a long time.. eight times a day, 20 minutes each time, for six months.. But this is my baby! Sorry Michael.. OUR baby.. and I want her to be so super healthy, especially since she is already needing so much other medicine to help her. I have some concerns about how much I’ll be able to get done once I go back to work if I have to pumped every 2-3 hours, but it has to be done, so I’ll definitely try to keep it up until Christmas. And once I switch over to the super early shift mid August, it will be less inconvenient since most of the county is asleep during that time.
   On the way home Michael asked if I was okay and I answered honestly saying yes. But once we got in the house and both laid down to take a nap (me being on the blow up mattress with Sasha because our bed is too high), I started crying a bunch because I hated her not being at home with us. Michael reassured me that she was fine and all of the nurses are taking care of her. That night we went to Target for a two step foot stool, since the one step foot stool I had been using the last couple months of pregnancy still made it too hard for me to climb into bed. I was able to get into bed decently with Michael’s help and he also helped me out of bed two hours later when I had to go to the bathroom, but another two hours later I couldn’t turn my body any way without feeling like I was being stabbed on both ends of my incision. I started crying again and Michael had to pull me into a sitting position by putting his hands on my back so I wasn’t using any of my muscles. He brought me all of the sheets and blankets from the blow up mattress and put them on the couch for me. Even the blow up mattress was hard to get out of because I couldn’t lay flat for a while and then get up again. I had nothing to hold on to and pull myself up with, so having the couch backing and arm rests helped, but I still slept propped up a bit.

Friday, June 16th ~
   Doctor McMan (another NICU cardiologist) called me this morning and I went into the bedroom where Michael was to put him on speakerphone. He basically gave us the same information as the woman at the hospital.  I was able to get out of the car by myself this afternoon when we got to the hospital to visit Emma, and found out in an unintentional way, which was pretty funny. I had been texting my OB about Emma (since she recently left the practice so she wasn’t at the hospital to see us), and since I was distracted by my phone, I kind of just quickly rolled out of the car, landing fine on both feet. Michael gave me a surprised look! I was also fine to get out of the car without help a couple hours later when we stopped by Publix for groceries, and then again when we got home. When we were dropping off my lunchbox full of proud milk bottles, we saw a man turning in a bottle with just a little bit inside. It had a #2 sticker on the top, meaning it was the second bottle they were able to turn in. I wondered if that mom was as proud as I was even just getting that little bit! I wanted to say, “Tell her to wait just another day and it will quickly start adding up. She’s doing great!”
 ^^ She has this little eye mask cloth on her face most of the time when we come in, just to block the sun and NICU lights and help her sleep. I joked in this picture that she was meditating because of how she kept her thumb and index finger together.
   This was another sweet peek she gave us when we were talking to her. It's actually a screenshot from one of the five videos we took of her that day. She was moving her hands and feet a lot this afternoon. When I watch it now I notice that she opened that eye three times, but I only noticed it at this point when I was looking at her as it happened. Another thing I think is interesting is that I use little names for her that I used to not like such as Sweetie and Honey, but saying it to her in my quiet baby voice just sounds appropriate. I noticed that a lot of the nurses also use "baby talk" or baby voices when talking to them.

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