July 15, 2013

day 5.

Our little Ruthe was wide awake when we got down to visit her this morning. Her eyes were open and she was talking a little bit. She's just the cutest thing :)

Her breathing has been a little faster than the nurses would like. She'll be up really high, to almost 100 breaths per minute, and then she'll be down around 35, and it goes up and down like that for minutes at a time. I don't know how else to handle that, except to stroke her head and tell her she's perfect.

Today I pumped a half ounce!! [more than once, too!] It doesn't sound like a lot, but compared to yesterday it's amazing! I'm starting a little stock pile in the freezer at the NICU, so as soon as they decide she can start having more than her baby-gatorade she'll have some breastmilk ready and waiting.

The rest of the day turned out to be a lot harder than I thought it would. This morning one of the cardiologists mentioned me being able to hold Ruthe, since she's not on the respirator anymore. It's a decision that her doctors and nurses all have to agree on, but it sounded really promising at 8:45am.

We went back down around 10:30-11ish and the nurse taking care of Ruthe said she'd rather have the IV line that's going into the artery at her belly-button removed before I hold her, but that they could probably get that out and put in a PICC line [an IV that goes through a smaller vein in the arm or leg into a larger vein closer to the heart] later today and get to snuggling. Well, they still hadn't done that by 2 because there was a set of twins they needed to get discharged. I was pretty much furious at all the doctors at that point. I'm so sick of waiting to do the one thing all mommas get to do all day long for their healthy babies.

We decided it would be a good idea to get me out of the hospital, so I could take a real nap in my own bed, and then come back later [they were saying it would probably be around 5:30 that they'd have everything done and I could finally hold her]. I cried pretty much non-stop through the entire discharge and finally calmed down to walk to the car. Literally as we're pulling out of the parking lot, Ruthe's nurse called to tell us her belly button was bleeding a little bit and she had to put a pressure-dressing on it, so there wouldn't/couldn't be any holding today. Remember how I was furious before? Yeah, that phone call really put me over the edge. I thought of every excuse to blame her nurse. I knew it was all just coincidence, and no one wants to make me wait longer to hold my baby girl, but for the whole drive home I just sat and fumed [and cried, mostly cried].

Once we got home I went straight to bed. John dropped my prescriptions off at Walmart and brought me home a sno-cone to make me feel better. And probably to boost my blood sugar so I would be a little bit nicer... I decided I couldn't go back to the hospital while the same nurse was still there, so I took another nap and we waited to leave until after the shift-change. Mostly so I could avoid seeing any of the same doctors or nurses from the day shift.

When we got to the hospital, Ruthe was doing really well. The nurse that was here for the night shift was so great. He gave us a full update when we came in, explained all the terms we didn't know, and even let me change Ruthe's diaper and take her temp. It was exactly what I needed - to do "mom stuff".

We spent an hour or so with Ruthe, and she did so good the whole time. She's really starting to get a handle on her heart rate and breathing. I even gave her a fancy new hair style :)

always with the spit bubbles...
Last night all of Ruthe's cardiologists had a pow-wow meeting to discuss the next steps on her treatment. They've decided to do a hybrid procedure for starters, to get her off the medication she's been on since birth. They'll put a stent in her ductus arteriosis [sp?] to keep it open and place bands on her pulmonary arteries to protect her lungs from losing/building pressure and any fluid build-up that might occur. We don't know when this surgery will happen, but it should be sometime in the next 10 days or so.

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