Tuesday, April 29, 2008
Sunday, April 27, 2008
Keeping babies alive
The changes in the newborn intensive care unit reflect how far the care of pre-term children has come.
Als, 67, has spent a lifetime advocating for pre-term children.
The new facility that Phoenix Children's Hospital runs at Banner Good Samaritan Medical Center is growing from 8,000 square feet to 38,000 square feet. The renovation cost $31 million, nearly half of which was raised through private donations.
Helping them grow
The good news is I got to go down to the NICU this afternoon and see our little girl. She, again, is too cute :) And she nursed like a champ again - Yay! I took some pics of her (and her sisters). I hope to post them soon. You won't want to miss these pics ;)
Please keep praying for Brielle!
Saturday, April 26, 2008
BTW, Suzan weighs 7lbs 10 1/2oz and last I heard Brielle weighed 6lbs 9oz. Very cool!
Friday, April 25, 2008
I don't know if you can tell or not but Brielle definitely has her own look to her. She doesn't look like Anna and Bethany (the identicals) and she doesn't look like Suzan. She just looks like Brielle :) She does have darker hair, bigger eyes, a different nose and, from what I witnessed at the NICU, an expressive mouth. It's so fun to look at each of our girls and see how individual they are, even the identicals (btw, Anna has chubbier cheeks than Bethany :) ).
While at the NICU, I was able to hold and cuddle with Brielle (talking to her about how much we want her to get big and strong and come home!) and then change her clothes and diaper and nurse her (which she nursed AWESOME! Yay!!). We hope and pray that the Bradycardia goes away and that she can come home soon. We want her home!
Tuesday, April 22, 2008
I did see her yesterday (Monday). Yay! It had been two weeks since I last saw her in the NICU. She has grown! She is now 6lbs 9oz. Wow! That is great! She is so cute. She definitely has her own look. She was quite awake and wanting to eat. I enjoyed just holding and talking with her. I told her that we all want her home soon but want her to be big, strong and healthy when she comes home. She is so precious!
Please keep praying that God would take away her Bradycardia episodes and that He would bring her home soon!
Friday, April 18, 2008
Thursday, April 17, 2008
She and twin identical sister, Bethany, are both about 8lbs. I think Anna is now at 8lbs 1oz and Bethany at 8lbs even. And Suzan just crossed into the 7lb range and Brielle into the 6lbs. They are just growing like weeds - Praise God!
Having three at home was a little hectic getting used to. One newborn was really easy and so were two. Three threw us for a loop and I am sure four will just be like three, but one more ;)
We now wait for Brielle to get home. She passed her car seat test (when they do the test, you know you're getting close to having the baby come home!) and they have her on the "5 day Brady countdown," where she can come home if she doesn't have any intervention Brady's within the five-day window. So like I said, when they start talking about the car seat test and five-day countdown, you know you're getting close. Yay! Can't wait to have everyone at home then...a bit crazy but it's good :)
Wednesday, April 16, 2008
Some things I've learned in being a mom of six-week old quads...
- You need your systems! We have a system for feeding them, e.g. every three hours, staggered with two babies feeding at one time and the other two feeding about 30 minutes or less after the first two. We have a system on filling bottles and storing them, e.g. have bins with bottles, Dr. Brown vents, caps, nipples, etc. readily available for filling, have labeled shelf areas in the fridge (with "formula" and "breastmilk"). We have a system on daytime and nighttime feedings, e.g. nurse/bottle feed them breastmilk in the daytime and give them formula or fortified breastmilk at night. We have a system on identifying them, e.g. Suzan wears yellow, Anna wears pink, etc., etc., painted big toe toenails with "her color." We have a system of organizing their clothing, e.g. Suzan has a drawer with "yellow clothes," Anna's drawer has "pink clothes," etc., etc.
- I didn't realize that my stomach muscles could separate so much! I guess it's a given, carrying four babies with a combined weight of more than 16lbs! I can fit four of my fingers between my stomach muscles. Ewe! Hopefully, with some help from a physical therapist or orthopedic surgeon, my stomach muscles will come back together on their own. We'll see?
- We change a lot of diapers. Right now, with three of the girls at home, we change at least 24 diapers a day. Whew! With four, it will be at least 32 diapers at day. Praise God for the folks that have given us diapers!!!!
- We need help! We have friends, family and folks from the church helping us out in the daytime. THANK YOU for your willingness to serve! We REALLY appreciate it! We have folks dropping off meals to us, as I can't imagine trying to figure out "what's for dinner" in between taking care of a baby or two (or three or four!), taking care of Jared, taking care of me, taking care of Paul, taking care of the house, etc., etc. Oh my! THANK YOU for the meals!! We also have help at night, which has been a huge blessing and opportunity!
- You can feed two babies at once, either nursing or bottle feeding. Nursing two has been going well. Bethany is a great little eater. Suzan and Anna need a bit more experience with nursing (and I am guessing Brielle will need more experience with nursing too, just from talking with the NICU nurses about how she's been eating). We also learned how to bottle feed two babies at once, thanks to talking with another local quad mom.
- Sleep is a must, for all parties involved!
- Each baby has a different cry (and, most of the time, Mom can differentiate between them). Suzan has a short-lived cry and Anna and Bethany have a different sounding cry (although, since they are the identicals, their cries sound very similar - great! :P )
- They are all so precious and sweet! You just want to hold and linger with each of them :) And with big brother Jared too!
It will be fun, and different and probably a lot more challenging, to see them get older...to see them smile, to "coo" at you, to get more mobile, to see their personalities come out more.
This afternoon he's getting a very short haircut/buzzcut from Mom ;)
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Here she is...isn't she a cutie ;)
Saturday, April 12, 2008
Dr. Slater Myer reassured us that there is nothing physically wrong with Brielle. Just as Bethany came home earlier (@ 3 weeks old) than our expected 4 to 5 week discharge, Brielle might just be a baby that will be on the outer edge of the bell curve and come home later, like around 6, 7 or even 8 weeks old.
Please continue to pray for Brielle, that God would make her stronger and be able to overcome the weight and Bradycardia issues.
Wednesday, April 09, 2008
Um yeah, I'd say, with 90% confidence, that Anna and Bethany are the identicals. They both have the same blood type. They both are the "big girls." And now, looking at them side by side, they look the same. Yeah, I'd say it's them two. Anyone else think so??
Monday, April 07, 2008
All of this weight gain has been in the last month. That's amazing! Praise God for how well He is taking care of, and growing, them!
**and thank goodness my weight trend is the opposite of the girls ;) Somehow, I lost 70+lbs of my 85lb pregnancy weight in the hospital. It must've been all baby, placentas, blood volume and lots and lots of fluid. Now, only ~7lbs left...and a very wrinkly tummy ;)
Friday, April 04, 2008
5lbs 14oz (birth weight was 3lb 13 oz)
6lbs 9oz (birth weight was 4lb 3oz)
6lbs 14oz (birth weight was 4lb 11oz)
5lbs 7oz (birth weight was 3lb 9oz)
Also, Brielle got off of her feeding tube today. Oh my! Now, all we need is Anna and Brielle to stop having the Brady episodes in order to come home. Who knows, maybe they will both come home next week? Then, we will really have a full house ;)
Praising God for how awesome these girls are doing! It is all Him!!
Thursday, April 03, 2008
Her wearing her "green" hat
Her wearing a hat or bonnet handmade by a friend's sister (thanks Jan!)
And her wearing a green knitted hat from my niece (thanks Nicole!)