Saturday, December 31, 2011

2011; Coming To A Close

This year has been eventful, to say the least. Zed returned from Afghanistan and only a month later we found out I was pregnant. We have had our ups and downs, dealing with a difficult pregnancy, PTSD, and now a sick child. This has probably been one of the hardest years of my life, even harder than the year Zed was deployed. I have spent nights crying. I've had days where I couldn't quit smiling. And there have been days when I just wanted things to be easier.

But now that I look back, I wouldn't trade a moment of this year for anything, because through all the trials and hardships I've faced, I've been blessed with a lifetime of happiness. Her name is Wendy Lee.

I sit here smiling as I type as I watch her laying in her Boppy staring at the lights on her feeding pump. I never knew how much I could love a child. I had no way of knowing just how much she would mean to me when I got pregnant. I wanted a baby. I had wanted a baby since Zed and I got married. But God knew that he was going to give us a special child and He knew that I was going to need Zed home to help.

Today I was getting Wendy dressed in her cute 2012 "My First New Year" onesie and I realized how hard it was going to be to run her feeding tube through the outfit. If I ran it out the bottom, it pulled on her Mic Key Button. If I ran it out the top, it was rubbing her neck. So I decided to be creative and I just cut a hole in the side of the onesie. It actually worked really well. The hole is small enough to not be noticeable, but I can fit the feeding tube through there without it pulling on her or being in the way. I've decided I'm going to do this to all her outfits that don't button up the front. We won't be able to use the clothes with another child or pass them down since they'll have holes, but I would rather her be comfortable. And who knows, maybe when she grows out of them, I'll take them to the NICU and give them to other parents who have a child with a G tube. One thing is for sure though, I have decided that Wendy should not have to be any different than a normal newborn. I am not going to let her miss out on anything, including being dressed in completely ridiculous (but totally cute) outfits!

Monday, December 26, 2011


Well, of course, since it was Christmas, there had to be some excitement at the McLanahan house.. unfortunately, that excitement consisted of calling 911. Everything was going like it normally does. It was almost 6 o'clock and Wendy's bag was coming off so we were changing her bag and g tube dressing. Once we finished that and got her dressed for bed we put her in her swing so we could eat. She was crying. We ate really quick and got her out and realized she wasn't breathing right. We tried to calm her down because we thought she was just upset but even after she relaxed she was still gasping for breath. We called 911. Around her lips were turning blue and her eyes were beginning to look dazed and they were lazy. We were scared because Wendy has never had a problem breathing before. Zed and I both know infant CPR but she was still breathing so we didn't want to risk doing CPR and breaking any bones. We just kept talking to her and trying to keep her awake until first responders got here. By the time they arrived she was back to breathing pretty normal. They gave her a bit of oxygen and we waited on the paramedics to get here. When the first responders first got here her heart rate was low but within a few minutes it had picked back up to normal. The paramedics arrived and said she looked okay but asked if we wanted to take her to the hospital or if we just wanted to put her back on her apnea monitor and watch her. We decided to just watch her because the paramedics told us with her extensive medical history she would need to go to Vanderbilt but they could take her to Gateway then transport her. They also told us that while in the ambulance if she stopped breathing all they could do was the CPR like Zed and I was trained to do and give her oxygen. Zed and I decided we were capable of keeping an eye on her and taking her to the hospital ourselves if necessary. Not long after everyone left her breathing seemed distressed again. We tried sucking her nose out because it's so tiny that any little thing in there can obstruct her breathing. I got nothing out. I decided to put a few saline drops in and suck again and that time I got a huge clump of dried mucus. As soon as I got it out, you could tell her breathing was noticeably better. She was fine after that. Only a week after bringing her home we have a terrifying experience, but at least now we know that if she is gasping for breath to check her teeny tiny nose for buggers!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Best Medicine She Could Get!

So it's taken me a while to get an update on here, but we've had a lot going on lately. We've been settling in with Wendy's routine and celebrating Christmas as a family! As I type, I am currently using my Christmas gift from Zed and Wendy, a iMac! I feel kind of stupid sometimes trying to copy and save pictures and do different things on here, but I really do love it. I just wish I were more tech savvy so I could get more out of it!

On to Wendy... She is doing great at home. She's really thriving! I think being home is the best medicine she could have gotten. Her home health nurse comes out 3 times a week now instead of 2 times. Little Wendy was a little stuffy the other day, but we got a vaporizer like the home health nurse said to try and she seems better. She wasn't congested so apparently it was just sinuses not a respiratory infection, which is a good thing. The only bad thing about Wendy is she wants to be held 24/7. I suppose that's our fault because when she was in the NICU we held her all the time when we were there. I can't really complain about her being a bad baby though. She only gets up about twice during the night and that's for diaper changes. Some nights when her belly hurts she'll want us to rock her instead of her sleeping in her bassinet. I guess this is what parenthood is like. Except where most mothers wash bottles the end of the day, I'm washing syringes. I wouldn't trade her for the world, though.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Best Birthday Ever!

Yes, I said it... yesterday was the best birthday ever. I didn't have cake or presents, except for one sweet little girl coming home. But honestly, that was the best gift I could've asked for. And Wendy was actually really good and let me get a good night's sleep :)

I'm not going to lie, it's a bit overwhelming taking care of her, just Zed and I. I'm sure taking care of any baby is hard, but especially Wendy with her constant feeds, several medications, and colostomy. She takes Pepcid twice a day, at 9am and 9pm, Amoxicillin once a day, at 9pm, multivitamins once a day, at lunch, and Nystatin for her yeast infection on her neck three times a day. Unfortunately, Wendy is a baby that spits up. I feel like I'm constantly mixing up my breast milk and powder formula to make it 28 calories, cleaning up spit up, or administering medicine, but it is an amazing feeling!

We took her to her pediatrician today. She has another appointment in 2 weeks with her pediatrician again and then the next day she goes back to Vanderbilt for an appointment. She also has specialist appointments with urology and surgery and genetics within the next several weeks. It's going to be a lot of work taking her appointments dragging around a feeding pump, but I suppose it could always be worse. Wendy is home-bound other than going to doctor appointments. She's not allowed to the store or anything. She has a home health nurse that comes twice a week and soon another nurse will start coming here to do occupational and physical therapy.

I'm sure it will take a few days but we will eventually settle into a routine. I even cooked supper tonight. I'm hoping things will continue to get easier and more comfortable, I know Zed and I will eventually be so used to using a feeding pump and changing colostomies that we won't know anything else ever even existed.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

BIG Day For My Little Family

Tomorrow is my 22nd birthday. It should also be the day we take Wendy home! I say should because anything can happen between now and 2:00 tomorrow. But I am very hopeful this time.

We've been close to bringing her home before, but we actually have a discharge nurse and tons of paperwork this time! They wanted her stay until Monday because they're taking her off continuous feeds tonight and going back to feeding her every 3 hours. She has been having problems with spitting up on continuous feeds. The all night feeding was supposed to be so Zed and I could get some sleep, but I honestly got less sleep the past few nights with her spitting up constantly. I felt like I needed to lay awake and listen for her. So we said we would rather get up every 3 hours to start a new feed.

Wendy will be going home on several medications, so we went to the pharmacy and had those filled today. Her pump, monitor, g tube and ostomy supplies were delivered yesterday and Thursday. We are ready! I really can't put into words how I feel right now... Kind of nervous, a bit anxious, and very excited! I know we have a long road ahead of us, but this is a huge step in what I feel is the right direction!

Maybe I will have time to write more tomorrow, maybe not. But for not I'm going to try to get some sleep. We've been staying at the hospital with Wendy but the nurse practitioner said for us to go back to the RMH and get a good nights sleep before we take her home.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Passed With Flying Colors.

Wendy's EEG came back normal! Yay for no seizures! She also passed her carseat test. Could this mean our time here is actually coming to an end? I think so! She is supposed to be discharged Sunday or Monday. Im not getting my hopes up though because she seems to be spitting up way more than usual. I stayed last night with Wendy and it went pretty well. She sleeps pretty good through the night except when her bag comes off. And of course you have to add more milk to her pump every 4 hours. She has grown quite a bit- she's 6lbs 1oz now. Which she is 2lbs 2oz more than her birth weight. I am pleased with her progress.

Pennyrile Home Medical delivered her monitors and feeding pump today. The taught me how to use everything I will need for when my little princess is home. They will also be the ones delivering her ostomy supplies and her special formula. I will have to get her medicine from the pharmacy and I pray that the pharmacy on post carries her medicine. The nurse said for some reason some pharmacies dot carry her medicine in liquid form. We will cross that bridge when we have to, if we have to.

Right now, Wendy is sleeping pretty soundly in the glider. I had to change her and her bedding because she wet through her diaper. So since she fell asleep in her glider I just decided to leave her for now. Her daddy will be here shortly and I'm sure he wants some snuggle time anyway.

Monday, December 12, 2011

2 Month Shots

Wendy has gotten her 2 month shots today and yesterday. She is still doing about the same. They're trying to get her on a home schedule. They also tested her for seizures tray because she does this twitching motion with her hands. We should have results tomorrow. We are still anticipating bringing her him within a week or so. They have to do a carseat test before we can take her home too. They put her in a carseat and monitor her for an hour to make sure she is stable enough for an hour long ride. But that's pretty much all the update I have. Excuse how random and jumbled it probably seems, zed and I are sitting in the drive through at KFC getting supper and I'm trying to update on my phone really quick.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Back To 7 South, But Still No Relief For Us

Wendy is still improving at a decent rate. Her G tube is still leaking a bit, though. She had her picc line out today and they moved her to 7 South- which is in the main Vanderbilt hospital.

Unfortunately Zed and I are wore out. We are drained of happiness and energy. I went through the bad stages of it last week and I feel like it's caught up with Zed this week. I feel bad because if I could take all his sadness and worry from him, I would. I just want to see him smile again. And not just any smile, I want to see that smile that makes his blue eyes sparkle.

I'm hoping we'll both be a lot happier once we get Wendy home, which is supposed to be before Christmas. But I honestly feel like we're walking in circles here.

They're try to get her on a discharge feeding schedule, which means they'll reduce the time on her feeding pump. Well we already know if they take it below 2 hours she's going to have emesis. I just wish they'd leave well enough alone and let us take her home already. I mean really, who cares about condensed feeding?

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Christmas Party

Zed and I both had appointments at Fort Campbell this morning so we went home last night. We ended up staying there and going to the company Christmas party tonight. It was nice seeing everyone and sad, too. It was sad because we were seeing everyone else's new baby and it made me miss mine. So we left at 7 and headed back to Nashville.

I dropped Zed off at the RMH because he was tired and I drove his big jacked up truck to see Wendy. Well the problem is his truck won't fit in the parking garage, so I had to park a block and a half away at a bank and walk. So yes, at 9:00 at night I walked by myself to the hospital.. The things you'll do for your baby.

Wendy's nurse didn't really have much news because the day nurses hear what the doctors say when they round and the night nurses don't. So all I got from Wendy's nurse tonight was that she had a bit of emesis earlier and so they kept her at 30mL but if she does okay with her next feeding they'll take it up to 34mL. I'm going to try to get to sleep soon so I can be up early enough to talk to Wendy's doctors.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Santa Clause Is Coming To Town! Well, To The NICU At Least.

Wendy is continuing to improve and they are hoping to have her off all IV fluids in 2-3 days. They put her feeds back on a pump and she's not spitting up anymore. I'm not sure if she will be home by my birthday or not, but if she isn't she will be having her picture made with Santa. Zed and I signed the consent form today. He will be visiting on Sunday, December 18. Either way, whether she can come home before then or not, it gives us something to look forward to. If she is home before then, I would love to find a Santa to have her picture made with! Zed said if we couldn't find one that he would dress up as Santa! Wouldn't that be a sight?!?

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Progress, Slowly Getting Better

Wendy is doing okay, not great, but okay. They went from 6 to 10 to 13 and now 17mL of breast milk every 3 hours. It's still less than half of what she was taking but we're getting there. Today she had problems spitting up. She spit up twice and had to be bathed and have her clothes and blankets changed. I told the nurse that she would probably do better on a pump, rather than a bolus feed because her tiny tummy doesn't tolerate a bunch of food at once. So she said she would mention that to the doctors. Maybe tomorrow she will be back on a pump like she was before and they can continue to increase her feeds.

She had a bit of a hard time getting rset today. If you're my friend on Facebook you probably saw me complain about Wendy not having a private room. She's in a twin room. The poor baby in the room with her is obviously in pain. She has a sign up that says "be gentle with me, I have two broken clavicles and a broken femur". I heard the nurse say they're giving her Tylenol for the pain. I feel bad for the family because they can't hold her. She was born on December 2 and is almost a 10lb baby, which is huge for a kid in the nicu! And she honestly has more hair then Wendy! A lot of people probably thought I was being rude when I complained earlier but I truly did not mean anything negative toward the baby or her family, because honestly I think she and her family need their privacy as much as I want it with Wendy. I'm really hoping a single room frees up soon so one of us can be moved. Or even better, I wish they could get us home soon!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

The Sound Of My Voice

Today I sat and read to Wendy for a while. We are reading Percy Jackson and the Lightening Thief. When she was first born we read the little kid's picture books. But then I realized she doesn't understand what I'm reading so I might as well read something I could sort of enjoy too. I didn't want to read anything trashy to her (like the Sookie Stackhouse Novels, that I love!) so I picked a good teenage book. I still haven't watched the movie. I'm waiting until I finish reading Wendy the book, then I will watch it. After I finish reading her that book, I will read her the second one because they are coming out with a second movie.

As for an update on Wendy's progress; she's doing okay. They gave her 6mL of Pedialite a few times yesterday. They are switching that to breast milk today. However, 6mL is not enough to tell if her G tube is going to leak or not. They're going to keep increasing her feeds and hopefully her G tube won't leak. And eventually when she can come off the TPN and lipids they will take her picc line out and we can go back to 7 South which will be a transition to come home. We will learn how to use all of her equipment and we will take an infant CPR class. Then hopefully within a week after going to 7 South she can come home.

A lot of people tell me to rest while I can because I will be super busy once Wendy comes home. But do you know how hard it is to rest while you're worrying? It's pretty damn difficult. It just bugs me when people act like it's harder to take care of a baby than it is to sit with a baby in the NICU for weeks and weeks. I'm not trying to complain. I'm also not saying I'm a better mother, or that my life is harder. In all honestly, my life is pretty great (other than Wendy being sick). I have a husband that loves me and provides for me, who is also one amazing daddy! I have a very supportive family and friend base. And I have a beautiful daughter that is more perfect than any baby in this entire world (at least in my eyes; I know, I know, I'm biased!!) . I just don't like when people pretend to understand what I'm going through. Unless you've been through this yourself, YOU HAVE NO FREAKING IDEA! That's why I try to never judge someone unless I've been there. A lot of people go through things that I can't imagine, such as losing a close family member, being a single parent, etc. Those are hardships I haven't had to face and so I commend anyone that does, but like I said, unless you have had a preemie with a chromosome anomaly, you have no idea the difficulties I face on a day-to-day basis, so unless it's words of encouragement, you can keep your opinions to yourself :)

Saturday, December 3, 2011

One Step Forward, Hopefully Zero Steps Back

Today was a pretty good day. Some of Zed's family (Rod, Kelly, Codie, and Kelson) came for a visit. It's always nice seeing family! We got to go see Wendy, then we went downtown and ate at the Hard Rock; then we went back to the hospital to see the baby. After going to the Ronald McDonald House to rest a while, Zed and I headed over to their hotel and we hung out in the bar/restaurant and watched the Georgia game. Once the game was over we all had dinner.

It was a pretty good day for Wendy as well. Not only did she get to spoiled by visiting family, she also got a little bit of Pedialite through her G tube. Only 6mL at a time (which isnt much considering she was getting 40mL of milk/formula at every feeding) but it's a start. Hopefully it will continue to heal and not leak so my baby can come home! All I can do is hope and pray. I can't speed up the process of getting her home; I can only try to stay positive.

As for me, I made a pretty big decision today. I made it 8 weeks and I have decided to stop pumping. My body isn't responding as well to the pump and I was having to pump every 2-3 hours to keepy my supply up. And that was ridiculously hard considering we are constantly back and forth from our house in Fort Campbell, to the hospital, to th RMH. Plus I used to pump in Wendy's room some, but she's sharing a room with another baby again and I don't feel comfortable pumping there now, and I'm not going to waste my time at the hospital in a lactation room, I'm going to spend that time with my baby. Luckily I have a freezer full of milk at home so between my supply at the house and hospital, I have enough for about 60 days (and that's if she goes back on full feeds immediately). I'm actually proud of myself. Most mothers with babies in the nicu only last about 2 weeks exclusively pumping.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Still Not Being Fed :(

Well, as you can probably guess, they tried again last night and was unsuccessful at getting a NJ tube in Wendy. The doctors are now deciding how badly they want her to have one. If they decide it's worth being exposed to radiation they will put it in using fluoroscopy. So for now, she is still on the tpn and lipids. Either way, whether they get a NJ tube in or not, I really hope these next two weeks goes by fast. I hate seeing her with a tube in her nose and I hate the thought of her being hungry. Either way it sucks for me! Also, they won't be able to take her picc line out until she gets on full feeds. Many prayers would be appreciated, for me and Wendy. Wendy needs them to heal and I need them to keep me sane, because my heart is aching seeing her like this. I keep telling myself, it'll be over soon. I kind of feel like that's a lie though. I've been saying that since I got put in the hospital on Sept 6. And I know that even when Wendy comes home her life (and mine, essentially) will be loaded with doctor appointments. But at least once she comes home she will feel like my baby. I almost feel like I'm just borrowing her now because I have to leave her every night. In 17 days on dec 18 I will be 22 years old. If Wendy could come home around then, it would be the best present I could ever hope for.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Poor Little Wendy Can't Catch A Break

When we talked to the doctor this morning they confirmed that they were going to give her a NJ tube (the one that goes past her stomach) and begin feeds tonight. So we left and when we came back she did have a tube in her nose, however they said they can't use it. They said they couldn't get it past her stomach into the jejunum. They tried twice and said they would have another nurse try tonight. If they didn't get it on the next try then it would be up to the doctors whether they wanted to continue trying or whether they are just going to keep her on tpn and lipids until her G tube starts working. Every time they try to put it in, they have to do an xray and they have to decide if it's worth exposing her to radiation. She can live and grow with the nutrients in the tpn and lipids, but it does nothing to eliminate the hunger. My poor baby has gone without food in her belly for almost 2 weeks now. And she has another 2 weeks before they attempt to feed her through G tube again. The thought of her being hungry hurts my soul. And even if they get the NJ tube in, feeding her through there won't make her feel full because it's not going into her stomach, but they said it'd be better than what's she's feeling now. Plus breast milk is so much better for her. I'm praying things look up soon. It seems like all we've gotten lately is more and more bad news.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Home Before Christmas? I Doubt It.

So apparently they're not even going to attempt to feed Wendy through her G tube for at least 2 more weeks. They're going to put another feeding tube through her nose tomorrow. It will go past her stomach, into her intestines. It has to go past her stomach because if they put food into her stomach, it will leak out around her G tube. Having a G tube put in is supposed to be a simple procedure and you should be able to use it within a few days. Unfortunately Wendy's isn't healing as quickly as it should. I really hope it eventually heals and can be used. If not, they may have to go back in and try to fix it.

The doctor said we can try to have her home by Christmas. I doubt that will happen though. Nothing else has gone easy for us, so I doubt this will either.

The more I think about Wendy, the more upset I get. It's like theres a permanent lump in my throat now. And tears that are always threatening to fall. I can't stand the thought of her being stuck in that hospital baby bed for almost 8 weeks now. And when Zed and I are there visiting her, there's only so much we can do with her because she has so many monitors and iv's hooked up to her. It breaks my heart to leave her, but you can only sit there looking at her for so long. And since she is back in the NICU at the childrens hospital we can't stay overnight with her.

I am honestly so sick of Nashville! I wish I could go home every night and drive down in the mornings and spend the day with her, but I can't. It's too expensive. And I can't go home and stay for a few days because I miss her so much. So it's a catch 22. When I am home, I just love spending time in her room! It makes me happy.

I was really hoping Wendy would be home before Christmas. I am going to keep my tree up until that baby comes home, even if she's in there several more months

Monday, November 28, 2011

A Day of Rest, Because Lord Knows I Need It

I decided to take a day to myself to rest. Zed is going to stay with Wendy and talk to the doctors. I will be driving myself back down tomorrow. I am trying to actually rest while I am here. Of course, it's a bit difficult when I really want to scrub my house from top to bottom. I'm so glad momma, Grammy, and Sherry helped me clean the week after I had Wendy. Otherwise my house would be a real mess. As it is now, I still need to vacuum and dust, but that can wait until right before Wendy comes home- I want the house to be sparkling clean when my angel arrives home for the first time!

I have decorated a little for Christmas. Last year Grammy gave me several Charlie Brown Christmas decorations (a tree, some Snoopy Christmas dolls, snow globes, etc). So I put those up. And last night when I went to Walgreens to get my Zyrtec I saw some Christmas stockings. I realized Wendy did not have a stocking and they had Snoopy ones! There were only 2 different Snoopy ones, so Zed and I have matching ones and Wendy has her own unique one. I felt really bad about not getting Peanut and Pandora one, so I will have to find them ones later, probably just plain red ones. And since we are likely to be staying here for Christmas I am going to get a fake tree soon. One with colored lights! The colored lights will match the Peanuts decorations and I'm sure Wendy will love looking at the different colors!

I really hope Wendy gets well soon! I long for her to spend Christmas in our home.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

We Need Prayers...

Please forgive any misspellings or weird auto corrections, I'm on my cell phone. I wasn't sure I even wanted to tell anyone this yet, I'm still not sure I want to. But maybe if I write it down and get it off my chest I'll feel better. Maybe if I know people are reading this and praying for Wendy I'll feel better. Maybe posting this won't make me feel any different at all. Either way, it couldn't hurt.

As of this morning Wendy was doing great. She came offend ventilator friday. They took her off oxygen yesterday. And when the doctors rounded today they decided they were ready to try giving her a little breastmilk. Unfortunately that's where things went wrong.

Zed and I had come home because he has to go into work every monday. We had been here maybe an hour when the hospital called. They tried to feed Wendy and when they did, the milk got backed up and started leaking around her G tube. Then her respiratory and oxygen rate dropped. Now she's back on oxygen and doing okay. About an hour later, they called again. She has an infection. Not sure if it's from her picc line, surgery, or if she just caught something. She's now on several antibiotics. We should know more about the infection in 72 hours. Also, a surgeon (not her surgeon) looked at her G tube and said it didn't look healed and that's why it was leaking. But he couldn't give a definite answer because he didn't do the procedure. Wendy's surgeon will be by in the morning. Depending on what kind of infection she has they may give her an NG tube (on through her nose) again to feed her until her G tube is healed/fixed.

I just feel like its one setback after another. Can this poor baby not get a break? It sucks enough that I have been going constantly since I gave birth (and have been sick twice) but to see Wendy suffer hurts me so much more! I was hoping to stay home for 2-3 days and let Zed go stay with Wendy, but now knowing she's sick, I can't not be there for my baby. And I feel damn guilty because I want/need a break. I know I need to take care of myself too but hopefully she will start to improve soon and I can take a few days before she comes home to catch up on some rest.

And on top of everything, my milk production is going down again. Maybe it's because I was sick last week and not as hydrated but whatever the cause I'm fighting to get it back up.

On another sad note, it doesn't look like we will be visiting family for Christmas. I don't think we are going to want to take Wendy on a 7 hour trip once she gets out of the hospital... If she's even home by Christmas. Wherever we are (at home or in the hospital) anyone who wants to see us can come to us.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Black Friday

I hope everyone had a lovely Thanksgiving. I didn't get to spend it with family, but I got the next best thing. For the past 3 years I have spent Thanksgiving with a couple of friends. Zed and I are so grateful to have such good friends. We all went to visit Wendy last night, but didn't stay there long because she's still on the ventilator (more on that later) and then we all ate at Margaritaville (it was one of the very few places open in Nashville last night). Our friends have a baby that's just a few months old and it's always nice to see him. I would never begrudge anyone having a healthy baby, but last night I was a little sad. When we walked into the restaurant the hostess was asking about my friend's baby (how old, etc.) and then when she sat us down she told my friend congratulations. At that moment I realized the hostess had no way of knowing I even have a baby. At least when I was pregnant I had the evidence under my shirt. It just made me wonder if I will ever have the pleasure of people asking about my newborn when we go places. I'm not sure Wendy will be able to go out a lot because of the equipment she will need. Soon after we sat down, the sadness and feeling bad for myself went away because we were laughing and having such a good time. All in all, I had a pretty great Thanksgiving. Friends, food, and seeing my sweet baby makes for a great day.

As for an update on Wendy, she's still recovering from surgery. Since they had to do the Ladd procedure, it is prolonging her recovery time. It's a more extensive surgery than simply putting in a g tube. As of last night she is still on the ventilator. They were going to check her levels again this morning and see about taking her off but we haven't heard anything from the hospital, so we will see when we get there. The reason she's having to have a breathing tube is because she is still on a Morphine drip for pain. I hate that she's hurting and I want her to have all the medication she needs to control her pain, but I also hate that she's still on Morphine. It's really a double edged sword. If they take her off the pain medication, she hurts. If they leave her on it, she could get addicted and go into withdrawals when they take her off. They said if she is on Morphine for more than 7 days then they will put her on Methadone when they take her off the Morphine to try to help her not go into withdrawals. I really hope it doesn't come to that. No one wants to see their 6 week, (almost 7 week) old on Methadone. I specifically would not accept pain medicine during my 40 hours of horrible contractions because they said the baby could get addicted and I wanted to do everything I could to not put her through that and to see that she go through that anyways makes me feel like efforts were a waste. Maybe it won't come to that though. Yesterday they cut her dose in half. And it won't be 7 days until Sunday. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. On a positive note, her bowels/intestines are beginning to wake up from the surgery. So hopefully she will be able to be fed again soon and the replogle taken out.

My mom and dad are on their way up to visit her now. Grammy and Grandpa Lamar are coming too. I can't wait. My daddy hasn't seen her since she was a day old and Lamar has never seen her! Grammy hasn't seen her since she was a few days old. Wendy has changed so much in a short amount of time! They're not going to believe how big she is now. Her chart says 5lbs 10oz, but really she's more like 5lbs. They said the reason she weighed so much is because she is still swollen from surgery, she's pumped full of fluids, and the ventilator tubes and picc line weigh so many ounces. But still 5lbs from 4lbs is a big difference in a baby that small! At least it is in my opinion! I'm really praying for Wendy to come off the ventilator today so they could all hold her tomorrow! Wendy is so sweet, you can't help but want to cuddle her.

I will try to post more soon, when Wendy has made some progress. Have a safe Black Friday.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Tis the Season... To Be Sick :(

Wendy seems to be doing fine after her surgery on Monday. She is still on a ventilator because she is on a morphine drip. They had planned to take her off yesterday, but she was showing signs of discomfort so they didn't want to take away her pain medicine. I, unfortunately, have not seen her since before surgery. I am sick with yucky allergies/cold/sinus- whatever it is! I went to the pharmacy this morning and talked to the pharmacist and she helped me pick out medicine that is safe for breastfeeding. I really hope it works fast! I just want to get better so I can see my baby. Since she's not really awake it hasn't been so bad, not being able to see her, but if she wakes up soon I'm going to have to wear a face mask to visit my sweet girl!

Monday, November 21, 2011


Today was Wendy's G Tube surgery. When they got in to do the g tube the surgeon realized Wendy's intestines did not grow in the right place. She has what's called intestinal malrotation. They are going to do a Ladd procedure. This is going to extend her recovery time. I hate to see my baby suffer. I just want her to be well. People don't realize how blessed they are to have a healthy child.

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Due Date

Well, today was my due date. But Miss Wendy didn't want to hold out that long! Yesterday she was 6 weeks old. I can't believe my baby is that old already! It breaks my heart that she's 6 weeks old and hasn't been able to leave the hospital. :( Hopefully it won't be much longer now. Her surgery is set for tomorrow. I don't know why it took them so long to schedule it. I am honestly just so ready to take Wendy home! She's gaining weight too! She's 5lbs 4oz now! She will probably lose back down to 4-4.5lbs after her surgery, but I'm sure it'll pick back up soon after. We were hoping to have her home by Thanksgiving, but that's not going to happen. Maybe she will be home the beginning of next week though!

Sunday, November 13, 2011

My Preemie Baby

My sweet little angel turned 5 weeks old yesterday. It's amazing how fast the time has gone by. It's also amazing how much she has grown. She weighs 4lbs 12oz now! What a chunky monkey! For a normal baby, gaining 13oz in 5 weeks isn't astounding, but for Wendy it definitely is. Especially since they said they didn't know how much or fast she would grow, not only because of her being a preemie, but also because of her chromosome anomaly. I'm just amazed by her development (even though the doctors haven't mentioned her development being great, as a mom, from what I've read, am proud). No, she still can't take a bottle. BUT she is starting to try to hold her head up, which is the same thing a normal month old baby should be doing! That's amazing because you should measure a preemie's development by their adjusted age, not chronological age, and Wendy's adjusted age is below zero because she still isn't supposed to be born for another week. The doctor's haven't said anything different, we're still just waiting for surgery. Hopefully they will set a date tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Not Long Now.. At Least I Hope

I've been waiting on an update from Wendy's medical team before I updated her blog. Well today we finally had a consult with her doctors. Next week she should be having a g tube put in. As long as everything goes okay she will be able to come home 4 or so days later. Tomorrow she willhave an echo done to check her heart again. She has a murmur and they want to see if the vein ever closed up. Also, an ENT will be looking at her airway to make sure she can breathe okay- because when she tries to suck on anything it sounds like she's gasping for breath. Finally, we got the MRI results. Her brain is not normal. It's too small and not as wrinkled as a normal brain. We don't exactly know what that will mean, but it certainly shows why she doesn't understand the suck swallow reflex right now, however the doctor said she can learn to suck and swallow. Her MRI results doesn't necessarily mean she will have severe mental delays, but of course it is possible. If her brain isn't growing by 6 months of age, then the doctor said we should worry. As of now, it's still simply wait and see. Right this moment, I'm just hoping her surgery goes well and she can make it home soon.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Fussy Little Baby!

Today was the first day I have seen little Wendy be fussy and not content. Usually she just likes to look around and sleep. Today though, she would be fine one minute, screaming the next. I held her for two hours during her feeding trying to get her to go to sleep, but she wasn't having any part of that. I read her two books and rocked her. Finally, after my arm went to sleep, so did she. Zed went to see her not long after I left and he said she was crying and ill the whole time he was there too. Hopefully she will get some good rest tonight and have a better day tomorrow.

Wendy is growing now too! She's 4lbs 1oz, which is 2oz more than what she weighed when she was born. By the time we take her home she will probably be 5-6lbs. She is actually filling out her preemie size clothes nicely.

The nurses are still having problems with her colostomy bag. Zed said the doctors had mentioned her having surgery again because her stoma isn't high enough and that's why her bag constantly comes off. I hope that if they have to do that they can do it the same time they put in her g-tube that way she isn't put under anesthesia twice. I hate seeing her on a ventilator.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

November, Already

It's hard to believe it's November already. Only 18 days away from my due date. And Wendy is almost a month old!

Zed and I just talked to the doctor. One of the problems Wendy was having when she was admitted to the nicu was her right kidney was swollen. At the time they didn't know why but today they did a test and it showed that her urine has a bit of backflow from her bladder to her right kidney. It's only a grade 1 so nothing too severe. She will have to continue taking Amoxicillin and will be treated as an outpatient with a urologist.

Also, it's almost guarantee they will put a g tube in. That surgery will most likely be done around Thanksgiving so we can expect to be home around the beginning of December. One more month and our little angel should be home.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Beginning Is Always The Hardest

I meant to post this a week or so ago, but honestly just forgot. Zed and I had ordered take out from PF Changs and we both got a fortune cookie. I'm not a superstitious one (I've got black birds tattooed on my body, haha!) so I usually don't even pay much attention to what the fortune says, I just like the way the cookie tastes! But this fortune caught my eye. It said "Don't give up; the beginning is always the hardest". On the back, my word in Chinese was "milk". This fortune hit home in so many different ways. For one I'd been having problems with pumping. My milk supply had went from about 500mL a day to 240mL. So I was having to pump constantly, every 2 hours trying to build my supply back up. For another, it's simply hard having a sick baby in the nicu. But rest assured, it will be so worth it once she's home!

Now for a more recent update. My milk supply has went back up to about 350-400mL a day. And I'm happy with that. Wendy only eats 33mL every 3 hours and part of that is formula. So I'm making enough to feed her plus I'm able to freeze a bit too. As for Wendy, she's doing okay. Her bag is still refusing to stay on, so yesterday they just put a wafer around her stoma and they're putting gauze over it and tucking it in her diaper. Her poor skin was getting raw from them having to change it every few hours. She's been spitting up a bit too. It makes me nervous because it comes out of her mouth and nose, then she's gasping for breath. They haven't tried to bottle feed her recently because she gets choked. Zed said they mentioned a consult with surgery next week about a g-tube for feedings. I'm not sure why we're doing the consult though until she can get the suck/swallow test done, which she can't do until she can take 20-30mL from a bottle and right now she's only been taking 8 (at the most, it's usually more like 2-4mL). Depending on how Wendy does with food will determine when it will be safe for her to come home. It'll probably be the beginning of December because they said they wouldn't push the bottle feeding until after her due date. If she's taking half her feedings from a bottle then we will go home with a tube through her nose for feeding, if not she'll have another surgery to place a g-tube. Either way, I know she will eventually be fine. I have faith. And I know Wendy is a tough one. I just pray that she will begin to improve. We are anxious to have her home, but ultimately it's her safety that's our main concern.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Small Town Life

A lot of people complain about living in a small town. I used to be one of those people. But now, I can't wait to take sweet little Wendy back to Elberton. Yes, everyone always knows your business, but when you really need something, the people will get behind you and do what they can to help. Having a sick baby has proved that. I've had so many people give me well wishes and ask me what I need, even though we are 400 miles away in Nashville right now. We even had someone anonymously send us cash to help with food since we are staying in a hotel right now; the card was simply signed friends in Christ. I'm really glad we are stationed at Fort Campbell right now because Wendy is getting great care at Vanderbilt, but I definitely miss my little hometown. :)

One Step Forward, Two Steps Back

The worst part about having a preemie with a chromosome abnormality is that things never seem stable. Wendy was able to maintain her body temp for a few days then her heat lamp had to be turned back on, and now today it's off again. Yesterday they said I couldn't try to breast or bottle feed and now today I can. Yesterday Wendy had a bit of a rough day, spitting up constantly, however I think it's either the vitamins they started her on or the Amoxicillin (because I'm allergic to that too) that's causing her tummy to be upset. Speech said yesterday they think she may have severe reflux but today she took 8mL for the speech therapist fine. The doctor still ordered a suck/swallow test for next week where they'll look and see if/how she is swallowing in an xray. Another problem is she's not growing as much as they'd like. I'm hoping things will even out soon so she will be closer to coming home. For now it's still just one day at a time.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


Today was my first attempt at actually breastfeeding Wendy. I've been pumping since the day she was born, but I would like to actually be able to nurse her. We brought in the lactation consultant and she showed me how to properly hold Wendy and how to position my nipple. Wendy never fully opened her mouth or latched on but she would suck on her lips some when she tasted my milk. They said that was a good sign. It was nice just being skin to skin with her and bonding some. We are going to start doing Kangaroo care since she has her picc line out now.

She is trying to maintain her own body temp now but she's been running a little low so they may have to turn the heat back on. Also because of the problems with her intestines she had to have surgery and get a Colostomy bag, not sure if I have mentioned that before. Well they are having problems finding an adhesive that will stick to her skin. Her bag has come off or leaked 4 times in 2 days, and it breaks my heart seeing them peel the adhesive off her akin while she screams and cries. I hope they can figure something out soon.

Doctors are still saying her discharge date will be around her due date and that if she can't learn to bottle or breast feed by then they'll send her home with a feeding tube. Gah, November 20 cannot get here fast enough!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

So In Love

Zed and I just got back to the hotel (we are still trying to get in the Ronald McDonald or Hospitality House). When we got to the hospital earlier Zed got Wendy and held her for a while. She was so content laying in her daddy's arms. After a while I told him I wanted to hold her. He passed her off and went for a walk, leaving Wendy and me to have some mommy/daughter time. I read her two of the Little Golden Books, Baby Dear and Color Kittens (the ones that have been around forever). Once Zed got back we tucked Wendy back into her soft squishy bed and left. I could have stayed and stared at her for hours. I love all her wild curly hair, her crazy long eyelashes and the way she pouts her lips. I adore her big dark eyes and her long fingers and toes. I especially love the fact that she is a part of me and always will be my little girl. It's safe to say I'm so in love!

It's Been a While

I know it's been a while since I have posted anything. I honestly feel like all I do now is eat, sleep, pump, and visit Wendy. Wendy is tolerating my breast milk really well. They up it by 2cc everyday. She's still breathing on her own however, she had to have a feeding tube because she doesn't have the reflex to take a bottle. We are hoping she can learn that soon. She's had 2 sessions of phototherapy because she's a bit jaundiced, which is normal for preemies. She is down from 3lbs 15oz to 3lbs 10oz, which is again expected. Other than that, things are about the same. They said she would probably be home around Thanksgiving- which is close to her due date. We are taking it day by day and hopes she will get better soon. We are ready to have our tiny angel home!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

One Week Old Today!

At 1501 Wendy will be a week old! Oh how fast she is growing up! I will be glad to get her home so I don't feel like I am missing out on her growing up. On the bright side, today is the first day we have really gotten good news. For her to be able to come home she has to be able to eat, maintain body temperature, and breath on her own. She has one down, two to go! They are going to try to feed her Pedialite today and if she does okay with that they will give her breast milk! That's so exciting to me! We are still not sure if she will be able to take a bottle or if she'll need a feeding tube, but we are taking it one day at a time and hoping for the best. They will check her other problems again before she goes home, but they shouldn't prolong her stay. Unfortunately we called the Ronal McDonald house and they are still completely full and have a very long waiting list. But as long as that's the only bad news we get, I'll take it!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Wendy's Progress

After being tested and evaluated they found a few problems with my sweet baby girl. There is a vein and a flap in her heart that should be closed but aren't. While they are in utero these two places have to be open and since she is a preemie and her gestational age is only 34 weeks we are hopeful they will close on their own. One of her kidneys is swollen. And they found a cyst in one part of her brain and her choroid plexus is swollen- which could be from where she had cysts that healed there before. They thought the main vein in her tummy that goes to heart was interrupted, but after a second look that found that it just flows a different way than normal, however it is still pumping blood to the correct places. Her eyes, her spine, and her limbs all look fine. She had her first surgery this morning to begin the process of fixing her intestines. It will be a 3 step surgery. Zed and I were called at 0630 and told they were taking her back. We went and saw her then Zed went back to the hotel while my mom and I waited for the surgery to be over. She did wonderfully and after an hour she was back in her room in the nicu and we were able to see her. She was still on a ventilator and paralyzed but they said they weren't rushing her off the anesthesia because she was so small. We decided to leave Wendy alone to rest and wake up and we will see her again in the morning. Hopefully she will be awake and breathing on her own sometime tomorrow. While we weren't doing anything today Momma, Grammy, Aunt Sherry and myself went to clean mine and Zed's house. That way when I go home its not messy and it'll smell nice. Zed spent the day with his daddy. I also bought Wendy a little pumpkin that lights up to go in her nicu room. That little girl is so loved its amazing. And its true what my Momma always told me, you never know love until you have a baby of your own. :)

Sunday, October 9, 2011

The World Welcomes Wendy

At 3:01pm on October 8, 2011 Wendy made her way into the world. After having contractions for 40 hours the doctor finally allowed the nurse to check my cervix. I was dilated 5cm and was immediately taken to labor & delivery. Within 30 minutes I had my epidural and was dilated 7-8cm. Not longer after that I was fully dilated and ready to start pushing. I pushed through one contraction with the nurse and then they brought the doctor in. I pushed once with her as well and Wendy was here. They immediately noted she had a flat nose so they put a breathing tube in. Luckily she's breathing on her own and hasn't needed help. During evaluation they noted a few physical anomalies that need to be addressed. She was transferred to Vanderbilt's Children Hospital for evaluation today as soon as tomorrow. Her daddy and I have decided not to discuss what surgery will be performed unless its with immediate family. Its personal and it was a decision we made with Wendy's best interest at heart. Our baby girl is the most beautiful thing I have ever seen, and I may be biased, but I don't think there is another baby that holds a candle to her beauty. I absolutely adore her sweet chubby cheeks and head full of black hair. They even had a bow in her long hair in the nicu. We are hoping she just needs this one surgery and that she will be able to come home soon with us. Eveunn though I just gave birth less than 18 hours ago, I'm just waiting on the doctor to come by and discharge me. I hate not being able to see/hold my little girl whenever I want but it wont be long until we are reunited again.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Baby Maybe?

I have been having contractions every 5 minutes for the past 42 hours. Yes forty-two! And guess what? That's with taking Terbutaline shots and being on a magnesium drip. I have finally started refusing the Terbutaline shots because the side effects are so awful and they only slow my contractions to every 20 minutes apart and that only lasts for about an hour or two and then they pick back up. So far I'm not sure if/how much I'm dilating. My nurse wants to check me but has to get permission from the doctor first. I know my cervix went from being 24mm and closed to 1cm dilated with 12hours of contractions, so I'm sure I've dilated more in the past 30 hours. Personally I think Wendy is ready to be here- my little impatient baby. I can see her trying to claw her way out- which is probably why I'm bleeding lol. All I know is, this pain is horrible and I went 24 hours with no pain medication and yesterday I only took it once. Today I've already taken some, but hopefully I can go 8-10 hours without needing anymore. I don't want poor Wendy going through withdrawals because she's going to have enough problems as it is. I guarantee you that if my sweet baby is born addicted to pain pills I'm going to have some not very nice things to say to this ignorant doctor for making me be in labor for so long. I understand at 34 weeks they don't want to encourage it, but its not like I'm asking for Pitocon. I'm asking for them to let my body do what it wants to do naturally. I read somewhere that your body is smarter than doctors and knows when to go into labor so you shouldn't plan to induce or anything- well I think my body and y are trying to tell the doctor something. Crossing my fingers for good news. :)

Oh and I've changed my mind about breast feeding. I was not going to do it, at all. But since Wendy is coming so early I'm going to try to breast feed as long as I'm producing colostrum then we'll switch her to formula. Breast feeding reduces the risk of her getting an infection in the NICU by 86%. So if I weren't going to have a preemie, I would stick by my decision to formula feed, but having a special baby means making special sacrifices.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

First Night Alone

Tonight is my very first night alone in the hospital. I sent Zed home to try to get some rest in a comfortable bed. I realized he needed to go home yesterday when he layed in my bed and said "omg, your bed is so comfortable". I knew if he thought a hospital bed was comfy, he deserved a night in our bed at home. I just got put on the monitor and was given some pain meds. I called my nurse and told her my back was hurting pretty badly thinking I'd get Tylenol but they brought me Percocet instead. At this point, I would have taken anything. I'm pretty positive Wendy is on my spine since I lost so much fluid. And the pain only gets worse when I have a contraction. Luckily I'm not contracting often. They did an ultrasound today and Wendy weighs 3lbs 12oz. She wasn't "practicing breathing" thought so they're going to do a BPP again tomorrow. The doctor said its nothing to be concerned about because she looks great on the monitor. Also, the doctor said we could talk to the other doctor on Monday about what day we will deliver since I'm getting close to 35 weeks. I'm ready to deliver anytime after Friday- I only need to wait until Friday because that's when the kit to bank her cord blood and tissue will be here. Zed decided he wanted to bank it because a lot of cases of chromosome translocation the kids end up with Leukemia. So he called ViaCord yesterday and we are getting it done. Anyway, I'm watching True Blood on HBO Go (there is nothing on tv and the hospital has very few good channels, mostly sports and news) so I'm going to relax and try to get some rest. I'll post more when something changes

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Everything Is Staying The Same... For Now

Even though I'm bleeding we are not doing anything differently. The doctor was worried I was getting an infection because my crp levels were a bit elevated yesterday but they were back down today. Last night I started having contractions pretty frequently, every 6-8 minutes, but they eventually subsided. I'm still cramping today and my tummy is tender. I guess we'll see what the doctor says. Probably, the same- we're just waiting to see if Wendy decides to make an appearance or if she is going to be patient and wait until we take her.

Monday, October 3, 2011

Quick Update Before I Go Back To Sleep

I just finished breakfast and I'm going to try to get a little more sleep, but I wanted to update everyone really quickly. Yesterday morning I started bleeding slightly. Nothing major but enough to alarm Zed and I both. The nurses and doctors suspect my placenta could be detaching since the top of my tummy is sore and I'm bleeding. Today I will have my normal doctor back today so hopefully she'll give me some insight on what we are/will do if my placenta is ruptured.

Yesterday I turned 33 weeks!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Ready For My Next Doctor

After being taken off the Procardia, my chest quick hurting and my pulse dropped back to normal (100-110). Well normal for me. Also my blood pressure is back to being a little higher- which is good because it was 90/40. They did a BPP on the baby today and she looks good. I still have 8.95cm of fluid- from 13cm on the 29th. I'm still steadily leaking but as long as Wendy doesn't start showing signs of stress they wont take her. However, if her fluid level gets way too low, her growth will be restricted and there wont be any need to delay delivery. I'm hoping the other doctors will deliver if my AFI gets super low. Another reason I don't like the one doctor I'm seeing now (she's one out of four at MFG) is because she was going to put me on a shot of insulin at night that I don't need. She came in saying my blood sugar was over 120 this morning and it wasn't. It was 94. My nurse tried to explain to her that she was looking at the wrong line and she didn't listen. Finally when she told me I was going on a shot of insulin I told her my blood glucose had been steady for the past 2 weeks and I wanted to know why they were giving me more medicine. She said she'd look at my charts again and sure enough, my nurse and I were right. I don't need the extra insulin- my Glyburide is working just fine. And the doctor put me back on four sticks a day- but maybe since she made a mistake and misread my results I can stay at two. The doctor said for now I was fine staying off the Procardia and we would try to manage with that I magnesium as long as I didn't start having contractions... if I start having more contractions I'm not sure what they'll do. But I refuse to go back on the Procardia. Can a patient refuse to take a medication? I'll have to ask my nurse haha. Anyway, only two more days with this specific doctor then they rotate again. Thank God!

Friday, September 30, 2011

Yesterday Was Bad.. But Today Is Worse

I know I said yesterday was bad... but today has been worse. I woke up at 0500 this morning in so much pain, not in my stomach, in my chest. I was having a hard time breathing and could not get any relief in any position. I called my nurse. She listened to my heart and lungs and then hooked me up to the pulse oximeter. Everything looked and sounded fine- other than my pulse racing a bit, which was normal because I had just taken my Procardia. After a bit I had to call my nurse in again because I was hurting that badly. There was a sharp pain right through the center of my chest all the way through my back. She called the doctor and the doctor ordered an EKG- it actually looked normal other than a high pulse (they actually had to do a repeat EKG later because it didn't record on their tape, the second one looked fine too). They also ordered an ultrasound to check some of my organs. That came back normal too. To get to the ultrasound though they had to put me on a stretcher and push me to the other hospital- we had to cross a walkway, like the one at Athens Regional- and it was about a 5-10 minute ride! At first this morning they gave me Protonix (it's their version of Zantac) and Maalox to make sure it wasn't a gas bubble or heartburn. When that didn't help they gave me a shot of Nubain. They said they'd give me a shot every 2 hours if I needed it. The Nubain didn't knock out the pain completely. And in less than two hours I was hurting again. So when I got back from my ultrasound (they gave the first shot an hour before the ultrasound) I told my nurse I was hurting again. She talked to doctor and they decided to give me Percocet orally because it has an anti-inflammatory in it and they said it could possibly be Costochondritis because I've had it before. Also the oral medicine would last longer. Well by the time the nurse got in here to give it to me I was vomiting. So I had to have a shot of Zofran. I finally took my 10mg of Percocet and then I got my lunch. I'm on an all liquid diet because they said it could be my gall bladder. They really don't know. So for the time being I'm just waiting to see what happens and see if anything shows up in the bloodwork (did I mention they tookbmy blood?) If they don't figure it out and I'm still hurting tomorrow, they're going to do a CT scan. For the time being, I'm taking 5-10mg of Percocet and trying to rest. Of course they've put me on the monitor and Wendy is just fine. Oh, and they are skipping a few doses of my Procardia since it makes my pulse race so I'm now having contractions and leaking a bunch of fluid. I really try not to complain, but today has sucked and its only halfway over. I'm going to try to sleep and maybe I'll feel better later.

Ps- please excuse any misspelled words that were autocorrected on my cell phone. :)

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Waiting on the Doctor

Before I begin, I'm going to go ahead an apologize for any misspellings or weird autocorrects from my phone. I'm not feeling my best, but wanted to update because alot has happened.

Yesterday I had my weekly ultrasound and cervix check. Everything looked fine. I had even more fluid than the week before, so my AFI was high but that seemed the only problem. Soon after having my cervix checked I began gushing fluid. I poured fluid for over 2-3 hours. The doctor didn't seem to worried when I told her. An hour or so later, I started cramping really bad. It was so bad they had to give me a shot of Nubain for pain. Once my night shift nurse came on I told her I wasn't feeling Wendy move. So I was put on the monitor and it showed I was having contractions. Luckily Wendy seemed fine. They started an IV and put me on a magnesium drip. And true to what the nurses warned it has made me feel like I have the flu. My pulse has been racing because of the magnesium and procardia (my pulse is already naturally high because of my mitral valve prolapse). They did an ekg this morning, which I'm sure came back abnormal- everyone I've ever had has came back abnormal. They also did another ultrasound today. My fluid level went from 32cm yesterday to 13cm today. So now I'm just waiting to see what the doctor says. And if she doesn't thnk I'm going to delver soon then I'll be talking to someone.e about getting s pick line because 2 veins blew yesterday and this IV is starting to hurt. Hopefully things will start getting a little easier soon.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Still Too Much Fluid

I just had an ultrasound done to check my fluid level and my cervix. My cervix looks fantastic- still long and closed. My fluid level has actually gone up from last week. Last week it was 27CM. Today it was 32CM. I don't understand how my body is producing so much extra fluid. I am honestly pouring, not leaking fluid, now. Its not very common to have PPROM and polyhydramnios. Of course, I have to have a weird pregnancy- I mean my baby has a chromosome translocation that the doctors can't find a record of. I'm just getting really restless and homesick. I miss my Peanut. I miss my bed. And I definitely miss my bath tub. :/ Hopefully these next few weeks will go by fast and we can get Wendy here as healthy as possible, and then I can go home!

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Thankful for Progress

I thought I was having a rough morning... make that week. I barely slept Sunday night. Yesterday morning I was woken for bloodwork at 0400. Great way to start a day. And then I just couldn't get back to sleep and everytime I dozed off I was woken for more medicine. This morning I was put on the monitor and was actually falling asleep with it on, until my nurse came in and told me to turn all the way on my side instead of just being tilted because I was contracting pretty badly and close together. I had already taken my Procardia thirty minutes prior so I should have been fine.. even turning on my side didn't seem to help. So she made me get up and empty my bladder even though I could only go a little bit. I'm not sure if that little bit of pee was causing me to contract or if they just randomly evened out after that, but it worked. While I was laying there (not moving, because Wendy was already bouncing off my uterus walls and I didn't want to bounce her right off the monitor) I realized that my stay here could.e going much, much worse. What made me think that? I hard some poor girls IV going off. That was me a week and a half ago. Having an IV not only restricts how/when you bathe, but it also always seems to run out of fluids at the worst times- like as soon as you fall back asleep after being woke up. And after being thankful for not having an IV thought about how nice it is not to be on the monitor 24/7. The first two days I was here I had to have it on constantly unless I was showering. Even when I went to pee I had to unplug them from the machine and drape the cords over my shoulder... then come back plugs them in etc. It made going to the bathroom alone nearly impossible. And I was having to pee every hour then because I was being pumped full of fluids. So my point being- I've professed and I'm honestly grateful. And now my breakfast is here, so I'm going to go!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Craving Chocolate.... Badly :(

They ended up not changing my dosage of Glyburide. They changed the time that I take it. Instead of before breakfast and before bed, I now take it before breakfast and before dinner. That seems to have helped because I'm down to only 2 sticks a day instead of 4. They take a fasting one first thing in the morning and every day the second one will be rotated between breakfast, lunch, and dinner. My craving for chocolate has not subsided one bit. I do sometimes get decent snacks that are a bit sweet though, like Teddy Grahams and milk.

Another positive note, today marks 32 weeks! 3 weeks spent in the hospital. Hopefully only 3 to go. :)

Friday, September 23, 2011

Waiting on my Snack

While I'm waiting on my snack I figured I would post a quick update. I just had my blood sugar checked and it was 102- after dinner, which is great! Crossing my fingers this continues. I told Zed as soon as I have Wendy and we leave the hospital, we are finding a Cold Stone Creamery. I deserve a damn coffee lovers ice cream!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Higher Dose of Glyburide

Well ever since I started taking medicine for the gestational diabetes my blood sugar has been even higher. It really blows my mind that the day they checked my blood sugar and I was eating a normal diet, my blood sugar was under 120 after every meal- even though I had orange juice for breakfast and sweet tea and cherry cobbler for lunch. Now that I'm on this restricted diet it has gotten worse.. and it continuing to get worse with the Glyburide. One thing I am looking forward to after this pregnancy, chocolate and coke! And hopefully no more diabetes.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

A Turn for the Worse

My day started off fine- but soon after going on the monitor for the second time today they realized my contractions were stronger and my uterus was much more irritable than usual. The doctor came in and decided to give me a shot of Terbutaline to stop the contractions and he upped my Procardia again. They're having to monitor my blood pressure because the last time I was on a higher dose of Procardia my blood pressure dropped to 80/30. So right now I'm not feeling too hot- I'm shaky and my pulse is racing from the shot and I'm starting to get a headache
Hopefully tomorrow will be better.


I just had my ultrasound for today. I still have too much amniotic fluid- last week it was 28 and this week it was 27. My cervix is still closed and long (30). The last time they checked my cervix it was 39. So far, everything is still looking good. I'm eagerly awaiting 35 weeks... I'm ready for Miss Wendy to be here (just not too soon because we want her as healthy as possible).

As for me, they started me on oral insulin twice a day and my blood sugar has been great since then. I'm getting tired of not eating sweets though! I love me some chocolate!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Ultrasound Tomorrow

This morning I woke up and had lost a lot of fluid. It was 4am and I called my nurse. She said it was normal, that once your membranes had ruptured that you could get a gush of fluid when the baby changed position. However, it scared me to death because I haven't lost anywhere near that amount of fluid the whole time I've been here. They scheduled an ultrasound for tomorrow to check to see how much fluid I have left.

Also, I'm starting oral insulin today. My blood sugar has been high at lunch for the past 2 days. This whole diabetes thing is irritating. I've never had a problem with my glucose before, so I hate dealing with this on top of worrying about Wendy and being stuck in the hospital. On the bright side, I am off IV antibiotics so my IV was taken out today! Woohoo! I can finally shower without having to have my arm/hand wrapped up.

I'll try to post the results of the ultrasound tomorrow. :)

Monday, September 19, 2011

Almost Two Weeks

Tomorrow will be two weeks that I've been at Centennial. Seems like so much longer. The days are beginning to run together. And I really miss getting a full nights sleep.

Wendy is fine- she's been looking great on the monitor. The only thing wrong with me is my blood sugar has been a little high the past 2 days. Tomorrow I will probably start my oral insulin. Its weird that the day I ate normal food my blood sugar was fine, and now that I'm on this diabetic diet its been 140-160. But its only high at lunch. Breakfast and dinner are fine.

Its kind of frustrating... all these medications and all. Especially the IV antibiotics. My IV has started bothering me again, which means my vein is probably about to blow. I guess I will be getting a picc line when this one blows. I was hoping I was going to get to come off the antibiotics soon, but the doctor hasn't mentioned it. I'm going to write it on my board to ask him about that tomorrow when I ask him about my birthing plan. I want to go ahead and get it ready in case I go into labor sooner than expected.

31 weeks yesterday!

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Delivery Date Set

One of my doctors came by today and he said he was shocked by the chromosome results and said he hated we didn't have any other cases to go by. But he said on the bright side, I was looking good and very stable and that we would deliver at 35 weeks (if I make it that far without any other complications). Tomorrow I will be 31 weeks- only 4 more weeks!

I had to have my IV changed again- the 4th one I've had since I got here- the 3rd in the last 4 days. My veins keep blowing, so if I don't get taken off all IV meds soon I will get a picc line. That'll last for my duration of the stay and I can have my meds through it and they can take my blood through it every week.

Other than that, it was just another boring, repetitive day in the hospital. I hope I can keep my sanity- because I'm really homesick right now.

Friday, September 16, 2011

One Unique Little Baby

Have you ever experienced a life-altering moment? A moment that you knew your life was about to change forever? In the few seconds it took those two pink lines to show up, I went from being scared, to nervous, to excited, to knowing that nothing would ever be the same.

March 13, 2011. It had been one month and four days since my husband returned from a year long tour of duty in Afghanistan. We both knew we wanted a baby, however, we had tried for a while before he left and on his two week leave, so we both assumed it would take a while for us to get pregnant. We assumed we would have months to adjust to him being home before we began growing our little family. We were wrong. One month and four days after he got back I found out I was pregnant. Zed didn't believe me or the positive pregnancy test so he made me take another one. 

April 11, 2011. I went to the hospital and took a blood test. During that first appointment, I also filled out paperwork and was told I would come back on the 28th to hear the heartbeat.

April 15, 2011. I made an unexpected trip to the hospital because I was vomiting nonstop. They did an ultrasound to make sure my body wasn't aborting the fetus and I got to see my tiny baby for the first time. The little jellybean was bouncing off my uterus walls, literally. The doctor said I must have one happy baby because he/she had a high heart rate and was moving a ton. I was told I was 8 weeks and 5 days pregnant. 

April 28, 2011. I met my midwife. I was still nauseas and vomiting quite a bit. I had lost 1.8lbs. 

May 10, 2011. I had to go to the emergency room because I was vomiting so much. I received 2 bags of IV fluid for severe dehydration. I was miserable. I was only 12 weeks pregnant and already I was ready for November 20. I loved my sweet baby, and the thought of holding my precious little one is the only thing that got me through the vomiting, the aching, and the hospital visits. 

May 26, 2011. At my checkup I found out I had lost more weight. I was down 5.5lbs from my pre-pregnancy weight.

May 28, 2011. Today was the big day. We got up early for our appointment in Nashville, TN. We were going to Focused 4D Imaging to find out what our little jellybean was going to be! I was so excited, but I was also absolutely positive I was carrying a baby Zayden Odith McLanahan. I was wrong. After a good, long 45 minute ultrasound we finally got a picture of jellybean's princess parts. We were having a beautiful baby girl who we had already named Wendy Lee. Zed and I picked out baby names way before we got pregnant. When we were only dating we decided if we ever got married and had a little girl, she would be Wendy Lee. Wendy was Zed's mother's name and Lee is mine, my mother's, and my great-grandmother's middle name. I later found out Lee was Zed's sister's, aunt's, and great-grandmother's middle name. Our boy name, Zayden, was picked out while Zed was deployed. I wanted something odd and something that started with a Z. I am now very happy we had a baby girl because several people have named their baby boys Zayden. 

June 9, 2011. I was 16 weeks pregnant and I had lost 9.8lbs. At this appointment they gave me another bag of IV fluids. They kept telling me my baby was fine, and I was only experiencing morning sickness, but I knew something was not right. I should not have been this sick, all the time. 

July 18, 2011. I had my "20 week ultrasound". I was really 22 weeks pregnant. At Blanchfield Army Community Hospital they do one ultrasound during your pregnancy. They do it at around 20 weeks. The only reason I had one at 8 weeks was because I was so sick and at 14 weeks because we went to Nashville and paid for it. 

July 21, 2011. I had a checkup and I received the results from my ultrasound. They said my baby was measuring a little small and that they found something. Coming from a doctor, the words "found something" completely fills you with dread. The midwife said my baby had Choroid Plexus Cysts. CPCs are a somewhat common finding in pregnancies and usually disappear on their own by 32 weeks, that's what we were told. Zed and I were given the option of a second ultrasound at BACH or we could go to a maternal-fetal specialist in Nashville. Zed was quick to say we were going to Nashville. As we left the hospital that day, I will never forget that feeling of dread. My heart was heavy as I called my mother. I told her what the doctor said and read off a list of statics the midwife had printed out for us. I kept telling my mom, it was fine, I was fine, Wendy was fine. But all I really wanted to do was cry. 

August 4, 2011. This was my first appointment with maternal-fetal group in Nashville. They did an ultrasound. We then talked to Dr. Mayor-Lynn. Wendy was measuring about a week behind and the CPCs were still present as well as fluid around her heart. Dr. Mayor-Lynn told us we had about a 1% chance of having a baby with a chromosome problem. 1% doesn't sound bad, but when you think about it, that means one in one hundred babies. We wanted to know for sure so that we could prepare and give our baby the best chance possible. I had an amniocentesis that day. We were told if the baby did have a chromosome abnormality it was most likely Down Syndrome or Trisomy 18. Those are the two most common with CPCs. Down Syndrome we could handle, Trisomy 18 we were told chance of survival was low. Most Trisomy 18 babies are stillborn, the rest usually don't make it past a year old. I was heartbroken. This was my baby and I couldn't do anything to help her or fix her. And on top of me feeling sad and helpless, I was hurting, physically, from the amnio. I was cramping and my belly was extremely sore.

August 12, 2011. At 25 weeks pregnant I was told Wendy had a problem with her 7th chromosome. They were doing further testing and we wanted to test mine and Zed's blood to see if we were carriers.

August 18, 2011. Zed and I went back to Nashville to give our blood samples. We still didn't have final amnio results. We were in limbo. We didn't know what to think or how to feel. All I could do was look up stuff on the Internet and that was scaring me to death. All I kept reading was mental retardation and leukemia. 
August 25, 2011. I was 27 weeks pregnant and we were heading to Georgia for my baby shower. We were stopping on the way to have yet another ultrasound. This time, they said I had too much amniotic fluid and would have to come back weekly for ultrasounds. At this appointment I also had 3D pictures done. When we left, I cried for the first time. She was beautiful and I was terrified that she wouldn't survive. I wanted Wendy so badly. I didn't know what to do or how to feel. Not long after we left Maternal Fetal Group, BACH called to tell me they wouldn't be seeing me anymore and that I would be finishing my pregnancy out with the specialists at MFG. I was happy about that, knowing Wendy and I would both have better care in Nashville than we would at Fort Campbell. 

September 6, 2011. We had been back from Georgia for a few days. I had went grocery shopping and cleaned my house top to bottom. I was cramping some and having Braxton Hicks contractions. I decided to take a warm bath because that always helped before. As I was getting undressed, I noticed some fluid leaking down my leg. It wasn't a lot so I didn't panic, but I did call my doctor. I had an appointment scheduled for the next morning. I asked if I needed to go to the hospital or if it would be okay to wait until the morning. My doctor called back a few minutes later and said just to be safe I should go to the hospital. They put me on the monitor and watched me for a few hours. They said I was having some irritabily but not full blown contractions and I wasn't in active labor they wanted to do a quick test to make sure my water hadn't broke and then I could be on my way. Well, instead of the nurse coming back to discharge me, the ER doctor came in and told me my water had broke. Zed actually said, "shut the ____ up". The doctor said I would be camping out at the hospital until I delivered. Zed was drilling him with questions. He was wanting to know would Wendy be okay if she came now. I was just trying to breath.

After 8 weeks of waiting, the results are in. However, I feel no better about it now than I did the day I had the amniocentesis. Wendy is missing part of one of her 7th chromosomes (the other 7th is fine) and she has a part of the 10th chromosome in the missing place of her 7th. You're probably thinking, "At least you know what is going on..", unfortunately, that's not the case because there are no recorded cases of any other child having the same genes as her displaced. Therefore, we still have no idea what to expect. The geneticist said that most cases of chromosome translocation the kids had mental delays, funny facial features, growth problems, and problems breathing. She said we will have to wait and see how Wendy is once she's born and deal with the problems then, but for now we need to keep her in utero as long as possible because premature birth can worsen any symptoms she will already have. The survival rate is not known either since there are no other cases. Also, once we go home, there will be a person who comes once/twice a week or as often as necessary (if it's necessary at all) to work with her from the time she's a month old- helping with exercises for muscle development, etc. No matter what, Wendy will be loved, but it's very frustrating not knowing the challenges we will face.

As for me- it's my 11th day in the hospital. I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes today. I think it's ridiculous because I have no symptoms of it (extreme weight gain, big baby, high blood pressure, etc). They are testing me 4 times a day- when I wake up and after every meal. For breakfast I had a regular diet breakfast- bacon, eggs, biscuit, jelly, and orange juice. My blood glucose reading was 108. I had a regular diet lunch- turkey and gravy, dressing, roll, butter, and cherry cobbler. My blood glucose was 113. It's supposed to be under 120 after I eat the diabetic meals. (I didn't get my first diabetic meal until this afternoon.) So in reality the only time my blood sugar is high is when I drink that insanely sugary cola. And I'm kind of angry they are making me eat 2000 calories a day- when I am used to only eating 1600 (I only ate 1200 before I got pregnant.) So now I feel like I am overeating because I have to have 3 full meals a day plus 3 snacks, and I have to eat all of it. On the bright side, I'm 30 weeks and 5 days- so I probably will only be here 4-5 more weeks, and I'm already a week and a half down. Another positive is my IV stays unhooked until time for my antibiotics so I am able to wear normal pajamas now.

Today has just been rough- with the diabetes thing, Wendy's test results, and my contractions have been awful. But today is almost over, and after all tomorrow is another day.