Tuesday, March 18, 2008

What have we been up to you ask?

This......From last Thursday night to Sunday night. Back at the hospital is where we were. It was absolutely MISERABLE. To be so powerless and not know a single thing or understand why these people are doing all of these things to my baby......it was indeed the scariest experience of my life.

It started out with a low temp, which can still be sign of infection. Our peed sent us to the ER and let me just tell you, every imaginable test that can be done was done to our baby. They had no clue if there was an infection, but at this tender age any infection can take a turn for the worse in the blink of an eye so they proceeded to treat him for sepsis which includes a round of antibiotics for 48 hours. I was understandably upset that they were giving him meds for the sake of giving him meds, but with sepsis there is no messing around. The cultures take 48 hours to grow and the worst imaginable thing can happen within 48 hours so it isn't as if we can wait. He was also dehydrated so the first thing was to hook up an IV to rehydrate the little guy. They were dropping terms like MRSA, blood/brain barrier, spinal tap (!!!) , arrhythmia and so on. ACK!

Exclusively breastfeeding wasn't going so well and we had begun supplementing with formula earlier in the day but the temp was the major worry. To have my baby poked and prodded and every possible test in the world.....he was only a week old and has had more tests run on him than I have my entire life. My poor little itty bitty baby. There are all kinds of details I could go in to because quite honestly between the lab and radiology, I am still pretty irked, I just prefer to not relive the entire thing.

Part of me wonders if it wasn't my selfish need to exclusively breastfeed that got us here. He wasn't getting everything he needed from me and I had no idea. Needless to say, many a tear were shed. I felt like a total failure, my first week on the job as a Mom and this is where we were. I know this isn't the case now, but of course at the time this is where my mind went. How far do I push myself? What IS my breaking point? Do I go exclusively to the bottle or do I continue to drive myself crazy along with everyone around me and breastfeed because honestly the thought of it scare me at this point - I didn't want to come back to this place! I was so confused. Well, it would appear that my body made the decision for me. While at the hospital I was pumping and giving that to him along with the formula but after coming home one afternoon and napping for about 5 hours, I got up to pump and nary a drop of milk came after 20 minutes with a hospital grade pump. Perhaps it was the stress, perhaps it was my body's way of making a decision for me that I was afraid to make myself. There is a small part of me that feels relieved. I was so exhausted, so stressed, so scared. There are so many other emotions flying around I can't even begin to articulate and the bottom line is, my baby needs all of my attention. So, after a little more than a week, breastfeeding efforts came to an end. There is a part of me that feels like I gave up too easily, but this is where we are and so far, it is working. We do skin to skin time every day and this is working well for us. There are so many ways I can bond with my baby so why limit myself? I can feel the endorphins firing when we do the skin to skin. Who would have known that just holding my son would make me feel so euphoric?

So what came out of all of this you ask? Well, first off, I learned that my baby is perfectly healthy. No infection, every test came back normal or negative or whatever it was supposed to be. He just needed some hydration and some food. The good thing is the kid never stopped eating. He is definitely his father's son. I have learned alot about myself and the strength that I need to put forth for my child. This has always been my greatest fear, that I wouldn't be able to be strong enough for him. I have learned alot about my relationship with my husband, how strong we are, how much we need each other and how much stronger our family has become.

We are home now and things are going very well. I am keeping track of feedings and diapers. His temp has been perfectly normal and the Peed gave us a clean bill of health on Monday. We go in on Thursday for the 2 week check so we are just watching his weight but I have total faith that things are looking good.

Oh yeah...I have a picture of my baby's brain. Who can say that?


Andi said...

I am soo happy that you guys are home and that everything is going GREAT!! Give Lil Ricky a BIG Smooch from Auntie Andi!
Love you all..

my crazy family and life said...

I'm so glad that every thing is going well now. I hope you got the pictures I emailed you. take care and talk to you later

Beth & Steven said...

Hi there.... I found your blog through another blog... anyway, just wanted to say that your son is adorable! I had to stop nursing after 2 weeks (supplementing the whole time) b/c my milk never really came in. I was a little (well, a lot) bummed at first. It turned out to be just fine. I knew that he was getting all the nutrition he needed AND I could tell exactly how much food he was taking in. I personally feel that the bonding can be just as intense with bottle feeding. I hold him really close, we look into each other's eyes... it's beautiful. He'll be a year (unbelievable!) next week and I still feed him his bottle. He knows how to feed himself but I still love that bonding time with him.
So glad you're back from the hospital and that your little guy is 100% healthy. That's what counts! :)

Jessica said...

Girl... I'm STILL in PR and missing you guys like crazy. I'm so glad that you're home, healthy, and happy. You've been on my mind throughout the whole trip (could it be b/c of your birth pics?? :)) And I'm so glad that you're not beating yourself up over your first week on the job as a Momma... You're doing a stellar job, and the love you're showing that little kidlet is phenomenal... I love you all and can't wait to see you.
Oh & btw... That pup looks so familiar :) I love that in our NICU stay we had our little stuffies from you and Rick, and during your stay you had a stuffie from us... how funny...

Girl said...

smoooches to you.