November 19, 2013

four months.

Ruthe is four months old. Well, four months and eight days.  

She is 24 inches long, and in the fiftieth percentile for height. She weighs 13.2 pounds, which bumped her from twenty-fifth back up to fiftieth percentile for weight too. Her head is (surprisingly) on the small side at 15-ish inches, and closer to the twenty-fifth percentile. She's in size 2 diapers, but they're a little big so we fold down the top a little bit.

Ruthe is a much happier baby. She has started talking and smiling and aaallllmmooossttt laughing. She still really loves to blow spit bubbles, but they're more like slobbery foam now, than the awesome bubbles she was blowing right after she was born.  

She tries so so so hard to get herself rolled on to her side, but still needs a little boost to swing her hips over. Next week we can start laying her on her belly, propped up on pillows and blankets. Hopefully she'll get the hang of it real quick and build up those neck muscles!!  

She loves her binks (or pacifier, passy, nuk, soothie, whatever you call 'em!), especially the weird pink cow-like creature on her first Wubbanub.  She'll tolerate the frog, and only likes the giraffe of we hold it for her - which kind of defeats the purpose of having the little animal stuck onto it...  

Ruthe is learning to enjoy being in the car - when it's moving.  Her initial reaction when you out her in the car seat is to give you the stink-eye.  And then she immediately goes to sleep, hoping that when she wakes up it will all be over.  It probably doesn't help that we call her car seat "the chokey," does it?!

Every single one of her doctors appointments has gone well.  It's so wonderful to hear the doctors tell me that she really is doing as great as I think she is!!  We've started slowly increasing the amount of milk she gets at each meal, with the intent of getting her off the pump at night, it's going to be a slow process, but I'm so glad to be moving in that direction!

We're still waiting to find out what the next heart surgery will be, and when they'll want to do it.  I'm hoping it's not until the spring... I would really really LOVE to be able to spend some time in Utah with John before she has another big surgery and has to stay in the hospital again. 

So far Ruthe has only spent 49 days at home... compared to 83 days in the hospital.  

hospital: July 11 - September 8  (60 days)
home: September 9 - October 9  (31 days)
hospital:  October 10 - November 1  (23 days)
home:  November 2 - today  (18 days and counting)

By the time Christmas comes around she'll have been home longer.  And I really really like the sound of that!!

November 18, 2013

a normal baby.

I have a complex-heart baby. She's fed through a g-tube. She takes meds multiple times a day. Her development is delayed because of multiple surgeries and extensive hospital stays. Her calendar is filled with follow-up appointments for surgery, cardiology, endocrinology, immunology, and gastroenterology. She has speech, physical, and occupational therapists. She has more scars than I care to count. She's a complex-heart baby every single day.

I have a normal baby. She cries to be held. She likes having everyone's full attention. She needs her fingernails clipped. She gets diaper rashes. She has to hold my hand to fall asleep. She stares at lights and fans and ignores me and all her toys. She hates diaper changes, being naked, putting on clothes, wearing socks or shoes, and the carseat. She smiles in her sleep. She's a perfectly normal baby every single day.

I put a post on Facebook and Instagram, that touched on what a heavy burden it is to have a complex-heart baby. And that I sometimes feel guilty, because there has to be someone to blame, and I'm the most obvious suspect.

But Ruthe is not a burden at all. She's a blessing, a miracle, a beautiful soul all wrapped up in a sweet little package that I get to call mine. She's the strongest and bravest person I've ever met. She's a warrior. And she's my hero. I love my Ruthe Clementine.