Saturday, January 31, 2009

BABIES part 2

So, where did we leave off? Oh yeah, babies have been born…

Shall we continue? Yeah, I think so too….

Saturday, January 10, 2009:
I wake up on Saturday, and am more lucid than I was on Friday. The nurse comes in and tells me they are taking away my “happy drug dispensing button” and switching me to Motrin and Hydrocodone pills. Okay, okay….as long as the pain killers keep coming my way, I should be good. The nurse tells me I have to ASK for the pain killers; they will not just bring them to me….great… I have to think…..this is a stretch….

I cry…..a lot…..this is a recurring theme……it happens everyday, several times a day….which is WEIRD for me…..because I’m not a crier…..I’m a screamer and a curser, but not a crier……so this weirds me out, which makes me cry more…..yeah, I’m not getting anywhere with this…

I also feel like someone else had the babies and I’m just a stabbing victim. I tell everyone that I would like to see the babies, because I have not seen them yet. They all look at me like I’ve grown 2 heads. They tell me that I saw them yesterday….I argue and say “NO I Did Not”…..they show me pictures of me in the NICU with each of them……I burst into tears….again…..’cuz that always helps….

They load me up in a wheelchair and cart me off to the NICU to see the babies for what I think is the FIRST time… was GLORIOUS!!!!! They get each of them out of their NICU enclosed cribs (which we have started calling their ‘Condo’s”) and I get to hold each of them. The NICU rules state that there can be no more than 2 people at each baby’s bedside… Memaw and Pa and the hubby and I take turns rotating between the two kiddos to maximize our ‘baby time.’ Simple GLORIOUS!!!!!

Back to my room….at this point, they trade out my 2 Heparin shots daily for 2 Lovenox shots daily…..still to be taken in the abdomen…..still painful…..what a shocker…..

My pain is still pretty bad, and I let it get ahead of me……I suffer thru the afternoon and evening trying to get back on top of it. I request the nurses to BRING me my pain meds every time I can take another dose, instead of me calling to request them…..I even ask for them to wake me up to administer the doses…they agree without hesitation…..the Nurses at Baylor Dallas ARE SO AWESOME!!!!!

E comes to see me. It has been a few days since I remember seeing her, so it is good to see her, even though I’m not at my best. She also receives her “presents from her sister and brother.” Her sister M gave her a Hello Kitty with matching Purse and book and a Kitty Rice Krispy Treat on a stick (she loves food on sticks). Her brother F gave her a hardback book containing 4 Superman comics (she loves superman too). She was thrilled with it all! She still did not -really- get that she has a new sister and brother. With this being RSV season, she is not allowed in the NICU, so all she has to go on is our word and some pictures we took.

But the hubby made her a ‘flashcard’ with M on one side and F on the other and laminated it so she can carry it around with her….which she does!

Sunday, January 11, 2009:
Memaw and Pa take a break from us and head to the house for some down time…. and our good friends the Korson’s take E to a Camping Expo in Arlington for the day…..she gets to see fish and hang out with her friends, so she is pretty happy.

I finally get to start eating real food today.

Monday, January 12, 2009:
Today they have added Coumadin to my drug regiment; there are significant food restrictions with this one. Anything high in Vitamin K will jack with my Coumadin levels…….which is bad. I will be on this drug for 6 months. Also, I have to continue to take the Lovenox shots until I reach the appropriate therapeutic levels of Coumadin. Now I’m checking out soon, so this means Memaw will be giving me these shots to the abdomen twice a day……ah yes… for everyone.

Dr. Graham’s partner, Dr. Weinstein comes by to check on me and basically says “you gotta get outta here before you catch something!” We agree. But at the same time, I’m not really trilled about checking out with out the kids. They are estimated to be in the NICU for about 2 weeks. We go over all of the drugs that I will be on upon leaving the hospital. Obviously the Coumadin is the one for concern.

He also mentions that the Coumadin will put me at an elevated risk for bleeding injuries….so a cut will bleed more than normal…..but something big, like, say, a car wreck, might be a significant risk……just what we need to hear….”Drive Careful”…’s like this is a never ending cycle of “gotcha!”…..

He also tells us to see Dr. Maisel by Friday. This is to check my blood for the Coumadin levels….he does not want me to go too long on both the Lovenox shots AND the Coumadin… too, so I’m okay with seeing Dr. Maisel sooner rather than later….

Also, I have started having back spasms, due to me having to use my back to walk and sit up instead of my abdomen……hell, I sneezed once and thought I -must- have popped a staple loose……the thought of using my abdomen for ANYTHING is really, really far in the back of my mind… maybe next year I’ll consider trying again….maybe….

Tuesday, January 13, 2009:

We check out without the kiddos……I cry A LOT today……

I’m checking out with doctor’s instructions/prescriptions to be on the following:
• Lovenox Shots (2 times a day)
• Coumadin once a day, and a healthy list of “do not eat…”
• Iron
• Prenatal Vitamins
• 1200mg Calcium
• Hydrocodone
All of the above come with ‘don’t exceed blah, blah, blah’ type of instructions. The hubby fills all my scripts for me.

My Back spasms have replaced the gut wound as ‘the most painful’ spot on my entire body. They actually take my breath away…..I’m beginning to think this will never end…..and yes, there is more crying…..{sigh}

Wednesday, January 14, 2009:
The Kiddos “graduate” from the North Hall to the South Hall in the NICU. This is GOOD! This means they are getting closer to release. They both have been moved out of the Condos and into the Regular Open Cribs.

M is on target for check out on Friday. However, they had to put F back on his Cannula (oxygen tube to nose) and moved him under a Heater – he is losing weight and can not keep up body temperature. He has lost weight 3 days in a row, and they are speculating that he is using his entire food intake to try to stay warm. However, once stripped down to his diaper and put under the heater, he stretches out and appears to be VERY relaxed....kinda looks like he is thinking "Ah.....I could use a beer...waiter?"

Late this evening the hubby discovers one of my prescriptions is wrong; I was supposed to be taking 1200mg of CALCIUM Carbonate, but the Pharmacy made a mistake and the Rx was filled for LITHIUM Carbonate. The hubby discovers the mistake after I had taken 600 mg of Lithium in the morning, and was retrieving the ‘second’ dose of what we believed was Calcium. WE ALL FREAK OUT! The hubby calls the NICU (pumped milk expressed after I have taken the Lithium has been dropped off for kids). It was a -rough- night for all with worry……and yes, MORE crying……{when will this part end???}

Thursday, January 15, 2009:
The hubby calls to check on Kiddos with regard to our Lithium scare. The NICU Pediatrician reassures us kids are not in any danger, due to the dosage being so small; however, he does instruct me to “pump and dump milk” for 48 hours from the time I ingested the Lithium. {sigh} All that effort, for nothing…..

The hubby goes by the Pharmacy to confirm our Prescription is for calcium. The pharmacist he talks with (not one who filled script) is visibly shaken over the mistake; we get a copy of paperwork documenting the Lithium mistake on -their- end.

I call Dr. Graham’s office to confirm I am supposed to be taking Calcium not Lithium – yep, they confirm it’s the pharmacies mistake. {NOTE: Dr. G’s office is also extremely Freaked Out by the mistake}. They also tell me the Calcium can be Over the counter; yeah us!

I should pause right here to address all those little voices screaming inside most of your heads……..MAYBE CHERISE –SHOULD- BE ON LITHIUM…….yeah, I thought it too, but come on! Talk about Wrong Timing!!! :o) This can be addressed at a later date, right? Right?

Back to the timeline…

The NICU had to put F back into the Condo to help him maintain body temp and gain his weight back; he had dropped in weight 3 days in a row. His temp is holding and he is starting to regain the it is working.

M had been cleared for check out on Friday!!! YEA!!! But NICU protocol requires us to “Overnight with her” prior to release. So the hubby and I pack a bag and head to the hospital for the evening with M. Memaw and Pa handle E at home.

The night comes and goes……very slowly…..I still have a lot of ‘ouchies’ and have to figure out how to get in and out of the hospital bed again, every 2-3 hours to pump; meanwhile the hubby is up every 3-4 hours to feed M. We are totally spent by the time the morning arrives……and I am thinking “Holy Crap! That’s just ONE baby…..I’m screwed….”

Friday, January 16, 2009:
We meet with Dr. Maisel to go over our blood levels and future treatment; he is a really nice guy. I am confused as to where exactly the filter was placed. He draws us a picture of where the filter is located….it is funny, and he keeps saying ‘this is not to scale’….but still, it is funny…..we ask him to sign it, which he does….he laughs at us! It is nice to laugh….almost forgot what that feels like…..we tell him it will be on our blog….he laughs again! :o) The drawing is included with the explanations added by the hubby...

He tells us the filter will be in for 2-3 weeks then we need to go get it out…..oh goody! Another round of the light flashing, neck pain, pushing fun…..wait! I won’t be pregnant this time……maybe I will get the FULL dose of Happy Drugs!!! Yea!!! Maybe I won’t even REMEMBER getting it removed??? Wouldn’t that be GREAT?!?!

Blood work comes back showing we are still too low on the Coumadin levels….we have to continue with the
Lovenox shots 2x/day plus Coumidin; we are scheduled for another check in a week.

Texas Oncology at Baylor makes me remember there are others out there also battling serious diseases/cancer….in addition to the massive amount of folks in the waiting rooms, there is a wig store located right next to the main check in counter…..Makes me very grateful for everything we have, and try not to complain as much…

Next we go to our Dr. Graham appointment to have our staples taken out….Man! That feels SO much Better!!! We tell her about the Lithium scare…..she just shakes her head and reiterates that life can change on a dime….we ask for an update on Baby Sophia….she tells us that the baby’s kidneys are functioning and her seizures have stopped, but that she is still waiting for confirmation of brain activity… is hard to ask for details, given the patient confidentiality rules she is working with…..God Bless Baby Sophia And Her Family.

F continues to gain weight and eat more; he is still in enclosed crib for temp issues for today. But otherwise, he is doing Great!

We bring in the car seat for the stress test for M. We also take a mandatory Infant CPR class. Then we sign all the release paperwork. It is VERY HARD to leave F in the NICU…alone….without his sister… :o( {it should be a given that there was more crying…}

M comes home! E is DELIGHTED; she brings all of her favorite toys over to M….she even shares “kitty” with her (it is a VERY special moment).

We are very blessed!

Oh! One of the pictures was just too cute not to share....I am holding M in the NICU and she is dreaming and smiling really big....the hubby managed to snap up the picture of me smiling back at the right time....totally too cute!!

Love to all,

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