Wednesday, November 30, 2011

week 3....getting into a routine

Things are going well. Alyssa's due date was this past Monday. I couldn't imagine being pregnant that long. Nursing still isn't going well. We went back to Breastfeeding Medicine on Monday and Alyssa nursed the best she ever has (about 20 min), and she only got 20ml's from me. I talked to the doctor and we came up with a plan. I am going to stop nursing her. It's a struggle, she's not getting enough from me, and there is nothing bonding about it. I will continue to pump, but will decrease it to 4-5 times a day to make it work with Gabe's schedule. I learned I can't be hooked up to the pump, while feeding a baby, and chasing after Gabe. So, we will have to supplement, but at least she'll be getting something from me. Alyssa has also been very gassy. Not just typical baby gas...twisting, back arching, grunting most of the night. After consulting with the doctor, I am starting to try to make her more comfortable by eliminating dairy from my diet. Gabe had a milk protein sensitivity, so we are wondering if she is having a little bit too. After thinking about it some, I have been drinking a ton of milk. It's weird, but I've been craving it since having Alyssa. I've been drinking 2-3 glasses of milk between dinner and bedtime. Alyssa is the most uncomfortable in the middle of the night, so hopefully eliminating the dairy will fix it. Let me just say I love dairy, but I would definitely give up ice cream for a good night sleep. Alyssa has seemed much more comfortable the past 24 hours. She woke up at 12 am, 2am, 5am, and 7am to eat, but went right back to bed afterwards, so I am feeling pretty good today. I had a fever on Friday and Saturday. It was weird because I had no other symptom. I was a little worried about mastitis. Lactation couldn't find anything, but said I may have had some infection and inflammation that worked itself out. Who knows, but I'm glad I'm feeling better now.

Alyssa is getting big. I can tell her face is filling out and her belly sticks out some. She weighed 7lbs 5oz on Monday which is a great weight gain. She very strong. She has actually rolled over from front to back 6 times.

Gabe is doing well. If we distract him enough, he'll stand on his own for a little while. He also cruised some around the coffee table yesterday. Little stinker could totally stand and walk if he wanted to...he's just that stubborn and we have to trick him into doing things on his own so he doesn't realize he's doing it.

I stayed home with Alyssa for Thanksgiving (she's still pretty tiny to be around a ton of people). Justin took Gabe to his cousin's house. I thoroughly enjoyed my take-home plate. Bring on Christmas time!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Week 1...survival mode

Week 1 Survival Mode has gone well overall. Poor Gabe got a cold the day we brought Alyssa home from the hospital. It's nothing extremely concerning, just a virus creating lots of drainage. 2 days later...Alyssa sounds congested. Lets just say we've been dealing with alot of saline and bulb syringe to clear out the sinuses on both kids. I didn't even think newborns could get sick this early, but I guess I was wrong. Alyssa is also making a little bit of a high pitched whistle sound when she takes a bottle. They think she may have a little bit of floppiness in her airway or it could be related to her congestion. Either way, the doctor is not too concerned as long as she does not appear in distress and thinks it will either go away with the cold, or she'll get over it when she gets alittle bigger. Either way, floppy airway are not words to throw around lightly considering Gabe's history. Alyssa's weight is 5lbs 15oz on Friday which is good. I still like the sounds of 6lbs a little more.

Alyssa is still a little bit of a lazy feeder related to her being pre-term. We went to lactation this week for some help. She did have a minor tongue tie (stage 2) that they clipped. It was so tiny and thin she didn't even really cry. That has helped some. She is able to nurse a little, but she falls asleep quickly. She takes a bottle fine because it is less work than nursing. She also doesn't open her mouth very wide, so it's not the most comfortable thing for me, but it has improved. The lacatation physician said to try to keep up with it and in 2-3 weeks, she'll be a different kid as she approaches her due date and has more wakefull periods. The process currently is try to nurse, offer her a bottle, burp her and hold her up right so she doesn't spit up and then pump. It's about an hour long process that we do every 2-3 hours. She only take 1-2 oz per feed because she's little and gaining strength still. It's alot of work, but like I said, I'm trying to stay with it for another 2 weeks and see if things improved. Otherwise, things have been great. She is an easy baby. I feel better emotionally this time around without the worry of heart surgery or health problems in our future. I feel like I am able to enjoy her more. Gabe is doing well. I am not able to try to lift him for another week, so that has been difficult. I am trying to make a point to give hime attention as well. We read books and work on puzzles and do some fine motor exercises. Justin has been great with Gabe's care from therapy, to bath time, to taking him and picking him up from school. Gabe has noticed Alyssa. He'll say baby and give kisses. He loves when we point our her eyes and nose and ears. He gets a little unsure when she screams for her bath, but otherwise, he kind of ignores her after awhile.

We're tired, but very happy and thankful.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Welcome Alyssa Rose!

I went to work on Friday feeling fine. Throughout the morning I was having contractions here and there. They started to pick up around lunchtime. My water partially broke while I was using the restroom....I thought it would be more obvious so I was unsure if it was the real deal. I called my doctor, Justin, and our mom's and went to the hospital. By the time I got there, the contractions were every 3 minutes and were painful. I was having back labor and it was much harder this time than it was with Gabe. I wasn't dialated, but they checked me and my water did break. I went ahead and opted for the repeat csection since I had a section with Gabe. Why risk it...especially since I wasn't dialated at all was laboring pretty intensly. Everything moved pretty fast from there. Alyssa was born at 2:58pm on 11/4/11. She weighed 6lbs 2oz and is 19 1/4 inches long. She's a petite thing. She was 3 weeks and 3 days early, so she was considered preterm. I thought she would be coming early the whole pregnancy. Gabe was 3 weeks early and I just felt the cues coming on that she would be early. Luckily she is perfectly healthy. She had a great cry as soon as she was born and her color was really good. They monitored her for jaundice. Jaundice can happen when you are born early and can be more severe when the baby's blood type differs from the mother (I am O+ and Alyssa is Justin's blood type A+). Luckily her bilirubin levels were fine. Her weight didn't drop too much. Nursing is going a little slow. Sometimes she latches on great and other times she falls asleep or gets impatient and cries which is typical of preterm infants. They encouraged me to stay with it and give her a week or two and she'll catch up. It was nice to have the weekend at the hospital to recover. Justin was running around back and forth to take care of Gabe and finalize things at home for her early arrival. Gabe came to the hospital on Saturday to visit. He is very cute with her. He says baby and pats her when we tell him to be gentle. He'll give here a kiss and then he's off to play with something else. We came home today. It was nice to get settled in when Gabe was at school. This evening went well. I tried to give him some attention and he ate well and was talking well like everything was normal. He does have a little bit of a runny nose, so I'm hoping he doesn't get a cold. It would be really bad timing. I am doing well....a little tired of course, but in a good way. It was so nice this time around to be able to come home from the hospital as a family. While I know it will be difficult and sleep deprived I don't have the worry I did with Gabe. The first 2 weeks will be difficult since I can't lift Gabe after having my csection, but we'll make it. Luckily we have lots of help. I am happy, tired, but very happy.