two days old

Thank you all for your wonderful wishes to our whole family. Mac and I read each comment and tweet in awe.

I’m still too exhausted to write Baby Z’s birth story, or even the aftermath. But I wanted to share a quick update.

I’m laying in my hospital bed and our tiny new baby is down the hall, one wing over in the NICU. At the moment she is asleep in a room with three other babies in need of intensive care. An at once amazingly awesome and terribly sad place, the NICU.

I’ve spent as much time as I could during my own tough recovery sitting in a wheelchair next to her little isolette by a window with a view of San Francisco Bay. In these hours, I’ve fought for as much skin time as they would allow, and held her tight while struggling to stay awake or forget my own pain. Holding her tiny body on my chest has been the best medicine for me, no doubt. But more importantly, it improves her vitals too.

Baby Z is an amazing little spirit, a fighter for sure. Her first NICU nurses described her as “feisty,” which is probably an excellent quality to find in a preemie. They took off her breathing mask (CPAP)  and replaced it with oxygen tubes, which she pulled out herself on day two. So incredibly, she is breathing on her own.

They won’t let her feed through her mouth yet, as she can’t quite swallow. So she is on a feeding tube which is rather unpleasant. I was able to pump some colostrum the night she was born, which Mac salvaged in syringes. So her very first meal hopefully offered some protection to her tiny system. But my milk has not yet come in, so they are supplementing with formula and nutrients through the IV. She weighed just under 4.5 lbs at birth, so they don’t want her to lose much weight.

At just two days old, she has been poked and prodded to the point of blood and bruises. One IV bruise may in fact be serious as it is affecting the surrounding tissue and concerning the doctors. Seems like one thing after another can arise, so it’s really just day to day at this point.

Right now I am just so awed that this child exists, that she was even created, that she fought so hard to make it here, that she was born, that she is alive, that she continues to fight with her feisty spirit every moment. It is truly astounding.

As expected, my recovery has been slow. Aside from my ginormous incision and soreness from the invasive hysterectomy, the biggest issue is my blood loss. My levels were still dropping even two days post-op, when I lost more than 3 liters of blood. While I did get blood during surgery — including my own, which was recycled — it apparently wasn’t enough. The doctors have advised another transfusion, which I wanted to avoid unless necessary. Aside from fatigue, the only concerning symptom is a slightly rapid pulse which peaked this morning but seems to be going down. I agreed to reconsider in the morning, so we’ll see.

I’m trying to take care of myself, to accept my body’s limitations — i.e., slow recovery and healing, no milk, etc. I’m trying to rest and drink, but my body is working so hard to heal. While I am trying to pump, I also need to sleep. I’m doing what I can, what I need to do. Speaking of which, it is time for bed.

Mac is worried about me but has been a superstar, tending to Jaye’s needs and whims while doing what he can for me. Jaye has been a great sport but does not love the hospital for any length of time. She does seem to understand that “mama’s belly is sore.”

But we’re all exhausted, and we’re not even home yet…


~ by luna on September 4, 2011.

34 Responses to “two days old”

  1. Hugs to you, you’re all in my thoughts.

  2. Fiesty is great! She will show them that she is just as amazing as her mother. 🙂

    Many hugs to you. You did it! You are both here and on your way to health. (Praying for a smooth and speedy hospital stay for you both) I am just so, so excited for you all!

  3. My daughter is a feisty former 4 pound six ouncer. I was told: “Nothing is better than a feisty girl in the NICU,” by the doctors and nurses. Thinking of you and wishing you and your girl healthy healing…I’m ready to be your meal pit crew whenever you are ready 🙂

  4. Yay for a fiesty girl! Take it easy – one step at a time, both for you and her. Thinking of you and sending many hugs.

  5. Can we give her the middle name Feisty? What a star.

    I know this is information that will fall on the floor (I know. Believe me, I know) but the NICU nurses and staff are superheroes — they all wear magical capes and swoop in and do their awesome superpower thing. So you can rest. They will not judge, and neither will we if you take some time to recuperate and rest. It’s why they’re there, and why they are so particularly awesome. I know that’s easier said than done, but please take care of you!

    Anxiously awaiting the next update luna. I’m just over the moon for all of you.

  6. Found you through Hedra, praying for you, baby Z, Mac, and Jaye. So happy for all of you.

  7. While my son was in NICU for 3 1/2 weeks, his nurses were incredible. They became our family, our biggest supporters. They were encouraging and sensitive and really kept us afloat. According to them, our son (at 3 lbs, 13 oz.) was “feisty like a girl.” Apparently, girl preemies tend to fight harder to survive and thrive than boys. We were thrilled, of course, and still laugh when we describe him that way. All the best to you and Baby Z while you continue to get better.

  8. She is one amazing special little girl. You are one strong mama. Take the time to heal or it will even take longer, she’s getting the best care possible, so glad you are getting some skin to skin time. Yay fiesty girl!! I don’t blame Jaye one bit, glad she’s dealing ok with all the changes. Can’t wait to hear more updates.

  9. Sounds like you are both fighters in this battle. Had a good friend that used to have to receive transfusions pretty regularly. He always had a marked improvement in how he was feeling. Joked that he must’ve gotten the blood of a teenager. If you decide to got the transfusion route, maybe you’ll get someone with boundless energy to help restore your’s.

    Thinking of you all, still and hoping for a recovery.

  10. Reading this entry takes me back to the birth of my nephew at 29 weeks. My cousin had complete previa, vasso previa, and accreta. She had such a rough go with continued internal bleeding post deliver/hysterectomy, 3 transfusions (16 pints of blood) and a week long stay in the ICU, her first days in a medically induced coma. Her milk came in, she pumped and pumped and was able to breast feed my nephew through his first year. She made a full recovery and he just started Kindergarten this week at age 5 1/2.
    I won’t minimize what a rough go it was for both of them and the early days and weeks (and for him, months) in the ICU/NICU were untenable for each of us pulling for them. She was a warrior mom for him and it is so heartwarming to see the outcome for them both.
    I have had a lot of surgery and my last surgeon told me something profound: recovery is not linear. It is one step forward, three steps back, two steps forward, one step back. Know that your daughter is in capable hands and the best gift you can give her is the one of your own recovery.
    Much love to you both from So CA to No CA.

  11. I’m so glad to hear from you, from this side of things, knowing that both you and Z are well on your way to recovery.


  12. Oh Luna, what an intense time. I hope all goes well in the next few days and weeks and that you and baby Z come home soon healthy and happy.

  13. Belated congratulations to you, Mac and Jaye on Baby Z. I hope you both continue to make steady progress.

  14. A belated congratulations on the birth of your feisty daughter! It’s clear that she has a very strong will to come into this world. Two days is a short time for yourself to heal, so be easy on yourself and get as much sleep as you can in a hospital. Even two weeks recovery will be a short time for the birth and surgery you had. You and your daughter are both very strong and brave women! Looks like your new daughter is taking after you. I’m with Jaye, don’t like hospitals much for too long.

  15. Heal well and fast. Be grateful for the time you are in the hospital together because going home with a baby still in the nicu sucks.
    Still so happy for all of you!

  16. Wonderful to hear from you, and glad it’s such good news. Sending healing loving thoughts to you all.

  17. Oh, Luna! I have been praying for you since you first announced the presence of this miraculous little one in your womb. Now I will pray for quick healing for both. Congratulations!!!

  18. My Tamale was feisty in the NICU (hence, the name Tamale), whereas my Burrito was very mellow. That lasted a few months. Now he is a wildman, and Tamale is the one who’s more laid back — but her fighting spirit is still there when she needs it.

    FYI you can pump and sleep simultaneously — I used to pass out sitting up all the time (months after delivery), and only wake up when the pump timed out and started beeping. I also have some fond memories of falling asleep during kangaroo care in the NICU. Unintentional multitasking!

    Love to all of you.

  19. Wow! Congratulations and continued strength and perseverance to you and your new baby girl. Keeping you both in my thoughts and prayers!

  20. So glad you’re up to writing and that you’re able to spend lots of time wiht Z. She sounds wonderful! Hope that bruise goes away without causing any more problems for her.
    Being really anemic won’t help your recovery nor the milk situation. I hope you and your doctors can come to a decision on the transfusion that you’re comfortable with, and that the bleeding stops soon so you don’t need to get any further ones.
    Wishing you well!

  21. Wow. Hang in there and congratulations!

  22. Please rest, you need to heal, so you can be there for Ms. Feisty. No need for long messages on our account. We’ll be here when you get to it. So proud of you, so proud of Ms. Feisty too!

  23. Oh my Lord, I just got caught up. Congratulations! I’m sending my best thoughts your way for a speedy recovery and a strong little girl—two of them, with a strong mama.

  24. Wishing you both strength and continued healing. And, to echo what others have already said, please don’t push yourself to do too much too quickly. Take all the time you need to rest, otherwise you may well find that your recovery takes even longer. xx

  25. Crying as I read these past few entries–so happy and sending much love to this strong little girl. You are both so strong. Congratulations on Baby Z! Pryaing for rest and healing for you all!

  26. Congratulations on your new little miracle! I hope she grows fast and is out of the NICU soon, and speedy recovery to you. Your story is just amazing. This baby was truly meant to be.

  27. Congratulations!! Take care of you and the rest will come with time!!

  28. Congrats! I love to hear “feisty!”

  29. I know this era if recovery is stressful & exhausting. I wish I could cone visit you and tell you silly & gross jokes to help the time pass more swiftly. Know that you and your entire family are loved and thought of constantly. Xxoo

    ps: pull my finger

  30. Luna! I have thought about you and the little one all weekend and the first thing that I had to check upon arriving back home was your blog! I am so happy that everything appears to be going the way that it should, and trust me as a NICU nurse- FIESTY is an awesome thing to hear! Baby Z sounds like an amazing little fighter, I always loved the ones that would tell us what they wanted- pulling out the O2 and watch she sounds like she will be one of those that will get her little fingers curled around that feeding tube and pull it out 😉 I hope you continue to recover the way that you have and if you do/did require another transfusion don’t look at it as a set-back, your body has been through A LOT, keeping little Z safe for those 33wk 3d and now keeping you safe. I smile every time I think of you and your family- you did it! You achieved so much more than you ever imagined. You and Mac have received so many wonderful blessings and I am so blessed to have been able to meet you and follow you along on this beautiful journey from LP to here- dreams really do come true- you, Mac, Jaye and Baby Z are living proof. Congratulations my friend! Love and Hugs to you and your family ❤

  31. Dear Luna,
    WIshing you big, huge congratulations.

  32. Oh my word! That’ll teach me to not check in often enough… CONGRATULATIONS, LUNA! I am so proud of you. And I very, very much looking forward to hearing what happens next as your family of 4 settles in at home together in the near future. Sending you lots of loving, healing vibes — and hoping for good milk-making (it was really weird/surprising to me how it took many days for it to actually come in). Hugs to you all…

  33. My heart is with you, full, overflowing.

  34. Feisty!! Of course she’s feisty. The mister and I are still holding you all in our thoughts and sending you so much love. Hoping your recovery is as good as can be and little Z continues on just how she has been so far.

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