Monday, December 31, 2007

Newborn Pictures

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New Year's Eve Homecoming

Katen is HOME! Her Neonatologist cleared her for discharge this morning and we just got her home and settled. She's got some vitamins to take and thinks they're pretty yucky. That was pretty clear. Oh the faces they make. lol!
I plan to try actual nursing this evening so we'll see how that goes. She's spent almost 10 days on either a tube or a bottle so I'm crossing my fingers that she's not picky. If she is, I'll just keep pumping.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

December 29th

It looks like tonight is Mike and my last night alone. (YAY!!!) Miss Katen is still on track to come home tomorrow. She passed her carseat check, hasn't had any measurable episodes, and had her IV removed completely today. She's weighing in at about 5.5lbs and will go home in her preemie clothes that we ran out and bought after seeing her swim in newborn sizes. So cute! She did have a major regurgitation last night and spit up about 50ml of formula. (The entire bottle) but she ate really well for us all day and has really caught the hang of opening her mouth and sucking on the bottle. She looks like a hungry little bird straining her neck and opening her mouth for that bottle. I can't tell you how precious it is and what relief it brings me. lol!

Friday, December 28, 2007

December 28

Guess what! We're preparing to bring Katen home!
We're still on our countdown to 5 consecutive days without Bradycardia or Apneic episodes and so far so good! Katen has taken her bottle like a champ for two days now and is making it almost all the way through before tiring out. We could not be more thrilled!!!! Her IV is coming out tomorrow and glucose was stopped today. Her blood sugar levels looked great after that so we just need to continue without episodes tomorrow and complete our carseat test and then we can take her home on Sunday. Katen will wear a Respisense monitor at home when she sleeps to monitor her breathing. That will at least give me some peace of mind that she won't stop breathing while I sleep.
We are going to ring in the new year with our Daughter at HOME! (or we're pretty sure anyway.) We feel so blessed.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

December 27

What a great day! Katen has had her feeding tube removed and now only the IV and vitals lines remain. They're going to allow her to eat as much breast milk as she'll take as well. If that works for all feedings today then they'll continue but if she starts regurgitating it then they'll go back to limiting feedings to an ounce. There were no Apneic episodes or Bradycardia last night so we're still on the count down to taking her home. Her last episode was December 25 so if she continues without any more we can look at taking her home on New Years Eve. If she does have another then the 5 day countdown starts over and she'll have to stay longer. She was very sleepy today during her 3pm feeding and we had a hard time getting her to eat all of her bottle but you know what? She's sucking on a bottle which is good and she kept it down which is also good so I'm definitely calling today a win. :) Hopefully at some point she'll be able to nurse. One thing at a time though. I feel kind of like a Dairy cow right now using the pump but if it doesn't work out that's fine too. I'm just glad she's getting what I can give her. It doesn't really matter how.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

December 26

Katen is looking good today. Her jaundice is better so she's no longer under the lights. They finally put some clothes on her and she just looks like such a little lady. She remembered to breathe all night last night after an episode during the day so there's one good one in the books. We just need 4 more good nights. She also figured out that sucking on a nipple is good news so there's another hurdle down. (She's smart like Daddy) My husband fed her from a bottle tonight and she ate her ounce of milk like a champ. This is a vast change from even yesterday when she'd forget to swallow or get too tired to suck any longer half way through the bottle. She's still on IV but we're increasing breast milk and lowering IV levels each day. They've also moved it back to her head. Katen was fairly alert today and was moving her head toward Daddy's voice when he talked to her. All in all it was a very encouraging day. One step ahead and one step closer to coming home. Those prayers are working!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Christmas 2007

Katen is still under the lights today with her cool little shades. She's still having Apnea and bradycardia episodes where she'll stop breathing, her heart rate dips under 100, and nurses have to be stimulate her to get her to breathe. Although she was born at 36 weeks and at a good weight, she's responding like a younger preemie with regard to feeding and lung function. Our NICU nurse explained that Katen needs to be episode free for 5 consecutive days before she can come home so best case scenario - she'll come home in 5 days provided that the infection clears and she begins feeding better. Her neonatologist gave Katen a supository today and she was able to have a bowel movement. She's still regurging her milk but they're increasing her feedings.
It was difficult going to Christmas celebrations today without our little one. It felt strange traveling out of town and not being near her. Our wonderful NICU nurse did let us hold her though today even though Katen was not supposed to be removed from the billy lights. That meant a lot and Brianna is a very special nurse to us for that.
We're so ready for our baby to come home. We're also glad that the NICU is taking good care of her and making sure that she's stable before sending her home. It breaks my heart to hear reports that she's stopped breathing and it kills Mike to hear it too. We both hate to see her struggle.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas Eve

We ran to babies r us last night to get the rest of the baby basics we needed. We also picked up a few tiny preemie outfits that will fit her better than the newborn outfits we'd bought for her.
Katen is under the billyreubin lights today. She is jaundiced and she hasn't had a bowel movement yet. She has been taken off of oxygen and her numbers are looking good so she'll be allowed to breathe room air now. One less tube - yay! Antibiotics will continue for now. Katen is having trouble taking in food. She hasn't developed her sucking reflex yet and is regurgitating most of the breast milk she's given. She does still have a feeding tube though. They've moved her IV from her head to her arm as you can see here.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

December 23

I'm being released from the hospital today. It's so hard to go home and leave Katen at the hospital. I'll be pumping at home and delivering my milk to the hospital for feedings. Katen is looking better today. Her color is better. She's looking more pink. I hope we can bring her home for Christmas.

Here's a quick picture of the new family.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

December 22

I visited Katen in the NICU this morning. Usually a very strong person emotionally, I broke down sobbing in tears when I saw my tiny baby hooked up to a million tubes and struggling to breathe. I feel like such a failure as a parent already. Poor Katen must be so uncomfortable. There's a feeding tube in her nose along with a breathing tube, an IV in her head, and oxygen, body temperature, and breathing sensors all over her. I got to finally hold her and do some Kangaroo care. (Kangaroo Care is skin to skin bonding which is beneficial to preemies and mothers for health and bonding purposes.) Daddy also got to hold Katen while I went to pump breast milk. Unfortunatley her nurses in the NICU left for lunch and daddy was very upset and panicky when Katen's vital alarms started going off and he couldn't get anyone to help him. These are not the kinds of first moments with your child that you dream about.

We had many visitors today despite the horrible blizzard that is occurring. Unfortunately we couldn't show Katen off because of the "no visitors" policy in the NICU but it was nice to see close family.

Friday, December 21, 2007

Happy Birthday Katen Elisabeth Remer!

So... yeah. We're stunned completely but very excited to be parents!I had my 36wk ob appt this morning at 8:30 and was dilated to 1. My Ob said that baby looked pretty cozy in there and to go ahead and travel for Christmas. I then went to work and at 10:30 I grabbed some breakfast and went to sit down in my office chair when a huge gush soaked the chair, my pants, and pretty much everything. I freaked out. Seriously I had SO much to do at work today. So I told my admin assistant I was leaving, walked two blocks to my car, and headed to the hospital. Meanwhile I called Mike but couldn't get a hold of him. The contractions started right away and I was told that I'd probably deliver around dinner time. I was determined to tough out the contractions until I really needed the epidural so I spent some time in pretty good pain thinking Mike would call back at any time and he'd help me through. At 1:45 I buzzed the nurse. I was out of my mind in pain and figured I wasn't far enough along for the epidural but wanted to at least check. They called the anesthesiologist for the epidural and did a quick check to see how far I was. Oops! The next thing I know the nurse has really big eyes and says, "uhhh she has hair! Honey I'm so very sorry but you can't have the epidural. You're too far." All I could think of is holy moly this is going to hurt and where the heck is my husband? Seriously I went from 1cm to fully dilated and effaced in a matter of 4 hours. So, at 2:35 Katen Elisabeth was born med free. She is 5lbs and 10 oz. I held her briefly and then she was taken to the NICU and put on oxygen and IV. Mike finally arrived at 3:15. He'd taken his team out for a Christmas lunch and had left his cell phone at work. No big deal though. I'm glad he got his lunch in and he didn't have any reason to believe that we'd be going into labor at 36wks. Based on the info from the OB that morning he thought we had plenty of time. Shortly after Mike arrived he was able to see Katen in her special care nursery. Each baby in the NICU gets their own room which is nice for privacy and noise reduction.
Katen's neonatologist spoke with me around midnight to give me an update. They'd taken xrays of her lungs and they showed fluid/infection so they were increasing antibiotics. Best case scenario she can go home in 3 days but more likely in 7. This lung infection was apparently caused because of the quick birth. Usually the lungs have time to empty of fluid while the mother labors but it didn't work that way for us. She was too anxious. I will begin pumping breast milk for her because she has not yet developed the sucking reflex and her stomach isn't fully developed. It will be fed in a tube that runs from her nose into her stomach. I will go to see her first thing in the morning and am very anxious to see her. The room felt empty without her and panic came over me each time a code blue was called for the NICU. I just prayed it wasn't my baby.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Favorite Links

Homemade Babyfood
Baby food recipes and tips
Cuisinart Babyfood Recipes

Coupons, Bargains, Rebates, etc.
A full cup - coupons, rebates,etc
Diaper & Formula Deals for the week
Mamabargains - check daily for bargain of the day
Price Grabber - best prices and rebates
Slick Deals
Baby Cheapskate Blog
Proctor&Gamble saver

Betty Crocker - Recipes
Kraft Foods - recipes

Child Development
American Academy of Pediatrics
Dr. Sears
Funky Stork - for the Dads
March of Dimes
Mom 4 Life
Moms Wearing Puke - Reflux Support
Pathways Awareness - developmental delays
Zero to Three - child development

Nods & Ends - Land of Nod outlet
Manhattan Toy

Sign Language
Video dictionary of signs
Videos from SigningTime on
ICanSign - this is where I can chat with other Moms teaching baby sign language
BabyCenter - another chat resource

General links
Alpha Mom

Print Page

Pickle's Growth

Site for Interactive Growth Charts

12/30/2008 21lbs, 29 inches, 50% for height and weight. 75% for head circumference

9/30/08 19lbs, 3oz 27 inches 50th % for height and weight. Hemoglobin =14 (excellent)

6/24/08 16lbs, 3oz 26.25in. 50th% for weight, 75th% for height!

05/22/08 15lbs, 2oz 24in.

04/21/08 13lbs, 14oz 24in *Starting solids, 50th percentile for height and weight.

02/01/08 9lbs 19in

01/04/08 6lbs, 7oz 19in.

12/21/07 5lbs, 10oz, 18.5 in.

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