Sunday, October 30, 2005

henry comes home tomorrow!

And there's lots to do to get ready for him.

Mommies: any last minute advice?

Friday, October 21, 2005

progress

Last night when I went to the NICU to visit the boys, Henry was out of his isolette and in a bassinet! At first I didn't even realize that he was my baby. Thought maybe they had moved him to another part of the room. But the nurse on duty assured me that the bundle in the bassinet was indeed Henry and told me that he's "moving up". Music to my ears.

I think he'll be coming home soon. "Soon" being a relative term meaning sometime before Thanksgiving. But the evidence is this: He's already 4 lbs 3 oz. He's on full feeds (38 ccs of milk every 3 hours). I was taught how to give him a sponge bath last night (trickier than it looks). On Monday, he's going to start nippling (learning to drink from a bottle and a breast). And he's out of that damned isolette!

I unplugged all of his monitor wires and carried him over to Jack's isolette and the 3 of us just sat and chit chatted for a couple of hours. Heaven!

So now little Jack needs to take a cue from his big brother so that he can get on the road to coming home too. Oooh, I can't wait!

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

two weeks old

The twins are two weeks old today. I can hardly believe that I was being prepped for surgery at this very minute exactly two weeks ago. And that now I am a mommy. A mommy with a full two weeks experience in the mothering practices of the NICU.

I have been doing my part in taking care of the boys. I don't do as much as the nurses which leaves me with a strange and guilty feeling, but I do change diapers, wash faces, take temperatures, hold hands, rock and cuddle, read and sing. It's motherhood light on the caretaking parts, heavy on the emotion. Bonding with Henry and Jack has taken a bit longer than I anticipated, but we're all getting used to each other and falling a little more in love with each other everyday. At least I am. I shouldn't put words into their mouths. But I can say for certain that they recognize my voice and touch. Both boys open their eyes when I greet them through the porthole in their isolette. Neither of them cry when I slowly and clumsily change their diapers or attempt to swaddle them in a hospital issue receiving blanket. Not so when the nurses (as kind and as gentle and as efficient as they may be) do the very same tasks. It may be a small thing, not crying for mommy, but it means a lot to me.

Both Henry and Jack are doing well. The big news yesterday was that since both of them are off of supplemental oxygen, have no more IVs, and are eating like horses (okay, miniature ponies), they have been moved from the blue team to the green team. Which means they are not considered sick, just small. To use the NICU lingo, Henry and Jack are feeders and growers. They're essentially hanging out in the hospital eating and gaining weight. In a couple of weeks we'll teach them how to drink from a bottle, from my breast. My husband and I will practice giving them baths in a tub, dressing them. We're moving, they're moving in the right direction. Towards coming home.

In the meantime, I have to log in a few more sessions with the breast pump each day to accomodate the growing appetites of my growing boys.

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

early arrivals

Henry and Jack are here!

They made their way into this world 10 weeks early- on October 4th, at 9:25 and 9:27, respectively. 10 weeks early!

On Friday the 30th (the day before my scheduled baby shower), I went to my OB for what I thought would be a routine blood pressure check, but was sent right to the hospital by ambulance. My blood pressure was sky high. I was retaining fluids like crazy and was immediately diagnosed with preeclampsia.

Fast forward a couple of days (past the scary vaginal bleeding and dramatic drop in blood pressure) to early Tuesday morning when I woke up unable to breathe. A chest x-ray showed fluid in my lungs. My almost empty catheter bag showed that what was going in wasn't coming out- signs of kidney malfunction. I was delivered by c-section just a few hours later. Luckily, I'd been given steroid shots upon my admittance so that the boys lungs would be strong. And they are.

So the boys in the NICU and will be there for several weeks. It was hard to leave the hospital without them, but I know that they're getting the best care possible. And the silver lining in this cloud is that I can sleep through the night and can recover from surgery so that when they do come home, I am caught up on my rest and am no longer sore.

Despite their small size (Henry was 3 lbs 8 oz. and Jack was 2 lbs 9 oz. at birth), both boys are doing well. Eating a bit more each day, breathing on their own. We visit them often and read to them, sing to them, talk to them, hold them and love to have our fingers squeezed by their tiny hands.

It's a bit surreal to no longer be pregnant. To suddenly be a mother. To suddenly be a mother to 2 little ones who aren't ready to come home. But My boys are little cuties (if I do say so myself), already with distinct personalities and I look forward to watching them grow.