Friday, July 31, 2009

"I'm singin' in the rain... just singin' in the rain!"

Posted Jul 31, 2009 7:55pm

What a rainy, yucky day it was today!

But it was bright and cheery in the NICU. Sarai is looking fantastic! Hardly any dips in her oxygen at all. They decided to thicken her milk with rice cereal to help with any possible reflux. I thought it was a little overkill since she’s doing so great with the caffeine, but hey, I’m not the doctor. Thickening her milk will make it harder for her to take her bottle. They’ll try that later tonight and see how she does. But, again today, she did a great job with her donuts!

Christen, Beth and Melissa came to visit our little lady today. It was so nice to see friends and get to chat and beam over how adorable our daughter is! Thanks for visiting guys. Hopefully the next play date will be in our living room!

Bedding arrived today. Furniture coming on Tuesday. I can’t wait until her room looks like a baby’s room!

Thursday, July 30, 2009

"We go together, like a wink and a smile."

Posted Jul 30, 2009 9:00pm

Sarai had another good day today. (Are you sick of hearing that?) They do blood work every Wednesday. The blood work yesterday showed that her caffeine levels were low, so they gave her a bolus of caffeine last night and increased her level today. She had MUCH less dips in her oxygen levels and the ones she had, most of them she got herself out of. So that was GREAT. We didn’t have to sit there holding her staring at the monitor the whole time (well, old habits die hard).

Right after we got there, of course I picked her right up and started kissing her and telling her how beautiful she is, and then I noticed…. Her cannulas were off!!! They decided yesterday that they really weren’t doing anything (like I said, they were usually just on room air anyway), so they took them off and she looks marvelous! It’s funny, Adam and I didn’t even notice at first.

Last night, and the night before, she didn’t do great with her bottle feeds. But she did another great job today taking her donuts like a big girl! She just likes donuts, what can I say?

I forgot to say thank you to Titi Michy, Tio Swel, Grandma Tirado, Big Mario and Alison. We got tons more clothes for Sarai from them, her mattress and her pack and play! Her nursery will be all set when we get her furniture! Dad and Elda also sent a bunch of adorable clothes. We took everything to be washed today so Sarai can start sporting her new outfits!

We met Coleen and Bob's baby RJ today! He is so adorable! Congratulations guys! We can't wait to take the kids out for walks around the ponds together!

I managed to make it through a day without flashing anyone in the NICU. (Thanks for sharing your stories Miriam, you made me feel better!)

And thanks to everyone for all your comments and well wishes and support! I can’t believe how many people are reading this and I SO look forward to reading comments from everyone! Believe me, you bring smiles to my face everyday!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Forgetful Jones

Posted Jul 29, 2009 7:39pm

Sarai had a good day today. Less dips in her oxygen and she did good eating her donuts, even though last night she didn’t do too great with her bottles. Hopefully tonight she’ll do better.

Her doctor talked to us about whether or not we’ll want to have a monitor for her when we take her home, to alert us if her oxygen dips or if she stops breathing. He said they don’t really recommend them, but if it will make us sleep better, then they could recommend it. So we’ll just see.

We’ve all heard of baby brain. Has anyone else ever experienced it worse after you have the baby?? I’m a total space-case, much worse than usual, much worse than when I was pregnant. Two days ago after I was making donuts, I walked out of the room with my shirt still pulled half down, exposing my donuts to the whole NICU! (Well, my “apron” was at least on.) A couple weeks ago I came out of the bathroom with my dress tucked in to my underwear. Can I think of any other new and interesting ways to flash the NICU staff?

I’m sleep deprived.

But all I want to do is hold Sarai! She makes the most adorable squeaks and squirms. Her little tongue is so cute! And she’s just so alert. I’d sleep there if I could. So, don’t ask me to stay home. I love her more every day!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

... It's time to make the donuts!

Posted Jul 28, 2009 7:40pm

Sarai is gaining weight like a champion. Still having trouble maintaining her oxygen, but I think she’s getting better with the caffeine. Her bottle and breast feedings are going really well.

Speaking of which…. You guys know I’m breast feeding. I’ve wanted to gripe a little about this, not breast feeding, but pumping. But this is hard to talk about, it’s a little personal, so I thought it’d be easier to talk about if I change the terminology. So for the purpose of this blog, pumping is now called “making donuts.” See, it’s already easier to write about!

I am a slave to making donuts. I wake up around 6:00am to make donuts. I have enough time to have breakfast, shower, get dressed, make lunches and BAM… it’s time to make donuts again. I pack the car, drive to the hospital, give my beautiful girl a kiss and…. You guessed it… time to make the donuts! Basically, that’s my whole day. Everything I do revolves around my making donuts schedule. I can’t be more than 2 ½ hours away from home or hospital without all my making donuts equipment. I know it’s the best thing for Sarai, especially with her compromised immune system because she’s a preemie, but is this going to get easier when she’s home and we can make donuts together?? At least we won’t have all the equipment to worry about. Aye.

Aunt Kathy Murray, Mason and Grace are my cats. They are not looking forward to Sarai coming home. I don’t think they’re very well prepared for being a big brother and sister!

The Bachelorette was a joke last night. If SNL doesn’t do skits about half the cast leaving, then coming back, they should be ashamed of themselves.

Monday, July 27, 2009

"Oh baby let me be, your little teddy bear!"

Posted Jul 27, 2009 7:13pm

Not too much to report today. Sarai continues on her feeding frenzy and will probably start to get an extra feeing by bottle tomorrow, bringing her up to three (out of eight) a day. Yippee!

Sarai’s attending doctor, Dr. LaGamma (who we love), did his three weeks and will no longer be rounding on a regular basis. Dr. Mintzer, who was a fellow, I think completed his fellowship today, so we also won’t be seeing him anymore. He was with us when Sarai was born and has been wonderful! THEN, Sarai’s nurse Fran, who’s been an angel, left today on a mini vacation and we’ll probably (hopefully) be discharged before she comes back. Why is everyone we love leaving us??

Our new attending said today that she’ll probably be another two weeks in the hospital, so just for that, it’s going to take a little longer for him to grow on me. He said, with her just starting the caffeine, they’ll want to monitor her on that for a week, then monitor her off it for a week. Plus, she’s still on oxygen, and just starting to eat on her own. So, two weeks. I’m counting the minutes!

Adam and I went to scrap-booking class today. They have the coolest stuff! Adam even started a “daddy page.”

One of the hospital’s occupational therapists came to show me how to do infant massage. Sarai didn’t seem too into it. I wanted to tell the lady, “You know, you can demonstrate on me! I won’t squirm or squeal!” But, no luck. She’ll come back to show me more tomorrow.

It’s 8:00pm and I’m ready to sit back and watch some TV! Bachelorette season finale! Who will it be? Kiptyn or Ed?? I’ve had my eye on Kiptyn since the first episode!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

"Luck be a lady tonight!"

Posted Jul 26, 2009 8:22pm
Another great day to report for the Tirado family!

First of all, it was a day for breastfeeding champions!! And Sarai and I took the lead! I haven’t shared the breastfeeding trials and tribulations (and there have been many), I wanted to spare the men who read this the details, but I can tell you that today was the first really successful day we’ve had! (You know, for something that’s supposed to be so natural, it’s really HARD. I don’t know how people do it on their own. I’ve had a team to support me and help me through this. I’ve been totally clueless.) And after a whole 15 minutes of breastfeeding, Sarai finished her meal with the bottle! So, for the first time, Sarai had a whole meal without using her feeding tube. That’s a big step! If she does that again tonight, maybe they’ll increase her bottle feedings tomorrow, and we’ll be one more step closer to bringing her home. : ) Cha-ching!

I have to say thank you to Fran, Sarai’s nurse today (and tomorrow, thankfully!). She was absolutely wonderful. She was my good luck charm today and she was WONDERFUL with helping me to breastfeed. A positive attitude goes a long way!

What else?

Oh, we had a whole slew of Tirado’s come to visit Sarai today! Titi Michelle, Titi Sharon, Tio Slope, cousins Mari and Brena, and second cousins Kenny and Arianna. She’s really getting to know everyone! Poor Baby Kenny really wanted to see her…

Kenny: Why can’t I see Sarai?
Me: Because you’re too little. : ( But you can see her when she comes home from the hospital.
Kenny: Can she come to my house someday?
Me: Yes! : )

After the hospital, I went out to Jersey and had a wonderful dinner with Uncle Tom, Aunt Teresa and Andrew. Thanks guys! Delicious, as always!

I won an e-bay auction today to get Sarai her bedding. Yippee!

I have a bunch of pictures ready to be scrap-booked tomorrow in the scrap booking group that meets at the hospital. I’m psyched.

Happy Birthday Natalya and Grandma Tirado!

Good day. Good times.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

July 25, 2009

Posted Jul 25, 2009 6:57pm

We all had a pretty good day today. Sarai’s breathing is still sort of “weird.” The nurses keep saying, “It’s almost like the monitor is broken.” (I’ve heard at least 3 different nurses say that.) Then they say, “Let me try and move the lead.” (That’s always what they do next.) It’s never the monitor, it’s never the lead, she’s just a medical phenomenon.

Because it’s Saturday, you get any (seemingly) random doctor on rounds. The doctor today decided, enough talk about caffeine, start her on caffeine. So they did at 5 today. She’ll get it every 24 hours. It has no effects on babies like it does on adults (won’t make her stay awake or make her jittery), but it helps to mature the part of her brain that controls her breathing. The doctor said that if it works, she may not even need the cannulas for extra oxygen. They did say that, starting caffeine now, almost surly means she’ll have to be on caffeine when she comes home. One doctor said that if that’s the case, she’ll also come home on a monitor. Then a nurse practitioner said that’s not true. As usual, it just depends on who you talk to. I could go nuts.

Adam’s brother Mario, girlfriend Alison and Grandma Tirado all came to visit Sarai today. Of course, they were all struck by her natural beauty. She’s a looker… big time.

Friday, July 24, 2009

"Gray skies are gonna clear up.... put on a happy face!"

Posted Jul 24, 2009 7:36pm

Today was a better day for Sarai, and for us. Her breathing was back to normal; still had a few dips, but that’s not unusual. It didn’t seem like they had any new test results. What they had so far still didn’t show any signs of infection and the results of the pneumogram (the test that will say if it’s a breathing problem or reflux) still wasn’t back yet. That should be back and read by tomorrow. Dr. LaGamma said to figure she’ll be in the hospital for another week to 10 days. I’m thinking more like 10 days. She’s got to be eating all her food by bottle, and so far she hasn’t finished a bottle yet. They try twice a day, but it depends on who her nurse is, it hasn’t been consistent. She’s got the suck, swallow, breathing down perfect, she just needs the stamina to make it through to the end of a feeding.

Sarai is now up to a whopping 4 lbs 3 oz! I can see her little face changing! Her checks are getting chubby, just holding her feels different.

Adam and I got stuck with the worst diaper yet! I can’t even tell you! If we were home, I’d have just thrown her into the tub!

We’re starting to be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel, to bringing Sarai home. It’s so scary! I still don’t know what we need. She’ll get here right about the time her furniture does. Ahh! Are we ready for this??

Congratulations to my friend, Coleen! She had a baby boy today!

Thursday, July 23, 2009

July 23..."Tomorrow's another day, and I'm thirsty anyway, so bring on the rain!"

Posted Jul 23, 2009 7:41pm

Well, it was bound to happen, right? We just HAD to have a rough day, it couldn’t have all gone so perfect.

I came into Sarai’s room this morning to find her nurse all flustered (as she’s been for the past 3 days) with Sarai’s breathing. Last night when they were doing a test, they had to take the nasal cannulas off. So I thought her oxygen was dipping low because of that. But even after turning her oxygen up… and up again…. and up again… it still wasn’t stable the way we’re used to. They just brought her food up to 35 cc’s and started giving her vitamins yesterday. When she threw up a little, and I asked if it could be either of those things causing a problem, the doctor said, “Probably not.” Ok. Because of the instability with her oxygen, they decided to move her back to a room where there are less babies (instead of one nurse for 3 babies, there’s one nurse for 2 babies). Walking down the hallway behind Sarai, being pushed back to a room that we thought she had progressed past, felt like a walk of shame. But, whatever they have to do to give her the best care, we’ll do it.

They gave her a chest x-ray, that was normal. Then they did some blood work to look for signs of infection, and so far that’s not showing anything. So, they’re telling me, all signs are pointing to reflux. If that’s still the case tomorrow, they’ll probably start treating her with antacids. If they find that it’s apnea related, they’ll start treating her with caffeine.

On another note, Sarai gained 100 grams yesterday! She’s now a whopping 4 lbs! What a porker!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

"Lovesponge, I don't wanna let you go!"

Posted Jul 22, 2009 8:23pm

OK, the first person who can name the artist who sings “Lovesponge” gets to hold Sarai first at the next big family gathering!

Not much to report today. Sarai is still doing well. They’re bringing her food up to 35cc’s at each feeding. Last night when they gave her a bottle, she drank 20cc’s, that was the most so far! Hopefully she’ll soon start to take a whole bottle and we can do more bottles and breast feedings everyday.

Sarai’s oxygen can sometimes dip way down, then go up, then dip down…. Watching her monitor can be like watching a roller coaster. So they’re doing to do a test to see if it’s apnea related or reflux related (those are the two theories that I know of). That test is going on tonight and we won’t know the results for about two days. If it’s apnea, they’ll give her caffeine to stimulate her breathing. If it’s reflux, they’ll give her something for reflux.

Adam and I took infant CPR today. I started a Nicholas Sparks book that Amy sent me. Thanks Amy!

Sorry this update is so dry. But nothing funny happened today!

(Oh, Happy Birthday Christin!)

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

"I'm walkin' on sunshine... WHOA!"

Posted Jul 21, 2009 8:07pm
…. "And don’t it feel good! HEY!"

I came in to Sarai’s room today to find her… in a bassinette! I was so excited I can’t even tell you! Now, she can hear us talking to her when she’s laying down, we can pick her up and put her down when we want to on our own, I can play the cow Aunt Sharon got for her! YAY! She’s really on her way.

One of the hospital’s social workers, when she saw her in her bassinette, gave me a check off for things we need to do before she’s discharged. That reminded me that I’ve got to learn how to change her clothes and bath her. I asked the nurse about it today so she let me change her clothes. Aye, she’s so TINY! Putting her into an outfit was scary, but I’m getting used to it. Even picking her up on my own… today was my first time! I had to ask her nurse to really show me what to do. Then later, after I changed her, I got her out on my own, positioned her on my lap and we just hung out. Her nurse said, “Look at you!” Yep, I’ve come a long way too!

So we’re trying breastfeeding every day now. (I’ll spare the guys the details here.) The doctor wants her to also be bottle feeding each night, so she’s on double duty now. She can handle it. She’s tough!

I got a call from the furniture store today and her furniture is here! They told me it wouldn’t be here until September, but now it looks like we’ll have her things here before she gets home! Hip, hip…. HURRAY!

And that’s why I’m walkin’ on sunshine!

Monday, July 20, 2009

July 20...Happy two-week-old birthday to you!

Posted Jul 20, 2009 8:33pm

Sarai is already two weeks old! Kids these days, they just grow up so fast!

It was a rather uneventful day in the NICU. Mom and I got out there bright and early. When the doctors came for rounds, Dr. LaGamma called Sarai “a champion!” And he’s the CHIEF! So he knows what he’s talking about. I say, she’s a NICU champion tri-athlete: GOLD in Temperature Regulation, GOLD in Messy Diaper, Silver in Maintaining Oxygen Level. Gotta get her off those cannulas, but she’s not ready yet.

Sarai’s weight is up to 1745 grams (about 3 lbs, 14 oz!). The night nurse said she thinks the doctors wanted her over 1700 to try her in a bassinette, so she might be out of her isolette tomorrow! That would be great!

In the hospital every Monday there is a group of mom’s (and dad’s) that meets to make scrapbook pages for their babies. I got a chance to go today for a little while. They have AMAZING supplies. It was fun to chit chat with some of the other mom’s, see their stories on paper. I wish they did that more than once a week.

I made it all the way home today with just one trip over the Tappan Zee Bridge. It was a good ride, but a lot less silly!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

July 19, 2009

Posted Jul 19, 2009 9:15pm

Happy Sunday everyone!

Sarai had another great day today, of course. She's picking her head up, she's sucking on her pacifier like CRAZY (she was even holding the pacifier in her mouth with one hand!) and doing a good job with her bottle too. Her nurse was VERY impressed. We tried her at real breastfeeding today, but we're going to have to keep working on that. That's ok, we've got plenty of time!

Sheena came out from Long Island to meet Sarai today. It was great to see you, Sheena!

Mim will come back to the hospital with me tomorrow before heading home in the afternoon. : ( We'll miss her!

You guys keep telling me how beautiful Sarai is (and you really can't say it enough, I just love hearing it!) Mom was saying today that pictures really don't do her justice. So I think you need to know the top ten things that are the most adorable about Sarai (that you may not notice from pictures)....
10. Her little smiles
9. Her finger nails
8. Her tongue when it sticks out
7. How cute she is when she sucks on her pacifier
6. The wrinkles on her legs (she's got to grow into that skin!)
5. Her occasional double chin
4. Her little circle mouth
3. Her pink eye lids
2. Her rose petal ears (you've got to be careful with those things!)
1. Her pound puppy butt

Oh, we just love us some Sarai!

Saturday, July 18, 2009

"Dear Sarai, Keep up the good work! Love, Jenny Craig" July 18

Posted Jul 18, 2009 9:13pm

I hope you’re all having a beautiful Saturday!

Yesterday was a rough day. (I told you Sarai had a rough morning, and everything turned out fine, but it was a stressful day for me.) Today was MUCH better. Sarai was breathing really nicely and was very calm all day. She didn’t even poop on me! She saved that for her nurse!

PLUS, Grandma (henceforth known as ‘Mim’) came to visit and got to hold Sarai for the first time. Sarai had a great time sucking away on her pacifier in Mim’s lap!

Sarai drank about 10cc’s from her bottle again today, and the nurse was surprised to see that she gained 60 grams in a day! (A good weight gain is 20-30 a day!) Mom said we’re going to have to start calling her “Pork chop.” I said, at this rate, we’ll have to call Richard Simmons and have him put out a “Sweatin’ With the Preemies” DVD! So now she weighs about 3 lbs 10 oz.

Grow, Little Peanut!

Friday, July 17, 2009

The Little Baby That Could

Posted Jul 17, 2009 8:49pm

Sarai got off to a tiny rough start today, but ended like a champion, as usual! When Katie and I got to the hospital, she looked like she was having a hard time breathing. Rather than sleeping soundly, her eyes were half open, she almost sounded like she was snoring and she looked like she couldn’t get comfortable. After a couple rounds of suctioning her nostrils (poor baby, she HATED that!) she was breathing much more comfortably and seemed fine for the rest of the day.

I was worried about how trying the bottle would go after all the suctioning and her being really agitated (plus, she still just looked like all she wanted was to sleep). But the nurse tried to give her the bottle, and she drank 10cc’s on her own today! Woo hoo!

We just called the NICU to check in on her and they told us that she’s been moved again. “It’s a little advancement,” the nurse told me. So again, our daughter, rising though the ranks with ease!

Aunt Katie went home today. : ( But Mim is coming tomorrow! : )

Keep the prayers coming!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Nursery Rhymes

Posted Jul 16, 2009 8:28pm

Top o’ the mornin’ to ya!

Aunt Katie came to visit today and we had a great time with our little peanut! They brought her food up to 30cc’s, and so far she’s tolerating that well. Like the doctors said yesterday, they tried her on a bottle today. As you’ll see from the pictures, it made her REALLY tired. She was able to eat 2cc’s, then fell fast asleep, exhausted. They’ll continue to try to work on this with her once a day until she gets the hang of it. But I thought for day one, she did great!

Read with a baby voice: “Who’s the smartest baby in the NICU??.... SARAI IS!”

FYI, I got pooped on again! And Katie was right there with her video-recording camera and got it on tape! Sarai, what a stinker!

Katie came down this morning like Santa arriving on his sleigh! She delivered TONS of things for Sarai from cousins, aunts, uncles and friends; clothes, bassinette, car seat and extra base, high chair, entertainer, stroller, gift cards, and more! Thank you to all my Losier family who pitched in for all these gifts! We are so lucky, I can’t even believe it!

While Katie and I passed Sarai back and forth, we decided to write her a limerick…. ENJOY!

There once was a girl named Sarai,
Who was born on the 6th of July.
With a head full of hair,
People stop and they stare,
‘Cause she’s cuter than pumpkin pie!

Her wrists are as big as my thumb.
She’s happy with milk in her tum.
Dark eyes like her dad,
And spiky hair that is rad,
Sleeping to the NICU hum.

Sarai is getting stronger each day.
When you change her get out of the way!
Be careful where you stand,
She might poop on your hand!
But we welcome visitors anyway!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

"If you had carried her to term, she would have been born with.... a HAIR-DO!"

Posted Jul 15, 2009 6:52pm

Thanks to Titi Liz for the quote about her hair!

Hi guys!

Sorry I didn’t write yesterday, but like Mom said, I was exhausted, and there wasn’t much to report. So I’ll catch you up today!

Sarai is up to getting 28cc’s of milk for each “meal.” They’re giving her an extra 4 calories in her milk to help her gain weight. Her nurse said once she puts on about 200 grams (8ish oz?) she’ll be able to transition to a bassinette. Yesterday she gained 30 grams, gotta keep that up for a week and we’ll be good to go!

I thought they weren’t going to try to bottle feed her until next week (when she’s 34 weeks) because that’s when they say babies learn to swallow, suck and breathe all at the same time. But Dr. LaGamma says they’re going to try to give her a bottle tomorrow! (She’s so advanced for her age!) Really though, I think it’s a long shot to think it’ll work right away, but I’m excited about trying. This will probably be a slow process.

So, Sarai had a nice little surprise for me today! Her nurse asked me if I wanted to change her diaper, and I said, “Of course!” So I’m changing her, making sure I’ve got another diaper ready to go (I was warned by a wise old nurse!). While I was taking off the old diaper I noticed a little skid mark. I started taking off the old one, had the new one in the air ready to scoot under her….. and she started PROJECTILE POOPING RIGHT INTO IT! Luckily I caught it all in her diaper and didn’t make a mess of her isolette, but geez! This little stinker doesn’t want to give me a break! Later, Daddy got a poopy diaper too!

Now that we can hold her, they let us just sit and sit with her for as long as we want. I could just look at her all day! Tomorrow Aunt Katie is going to come meet her niece! Prepare to be smitten, Aunt Katie!

Monday, July 13, 2009

One week old today!

Posted Jul 13, 2009 6:19pm

Miss Thang had another great day today! First of all, she “graduated” from the room she was in. Now she’s in a room with other infants who require less care. Less machines, less noise. Two of the 4 babies in there are in bassinettes… hopefully Sarai will make that move soon too!

But the best news for us is that they took the line out of her belly button and we FINALLY GOT TO HOLD HER! You have no idea how nice it was to hold her and kiss her little face. She felt so tiny, but she looked so happy and comfortable. I don’t know how they’ll get us to leave her in her isolette from now on.

We have accumulated a TON of preemie clothes in the last couple weeks. We sorted through everything and brought all the preemie stuff to the hospital to be washed today so we’ll be set for when she comes home. Since we can hold her now and she’s out from under the blue light, they said we can leave some clothes for her. We tried her in a preemie shirt, and as you’ll see from the picture, it was WAY too big. It went down past her knees. She’s got a lot of growing to do! But when she does put on a couple pounds, her full wardrobe will be waiting!

Beth and Christin came out to meet our little lady today. It's been a great couple of days!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

...I can see clearly now, the blue light is gone!

Posted Jul 12, 2009 7:07pm

Sarai made a couple big steps today! The blue light that’s been on her everyday since she was born was turned off! So she can finally have her eye mask off! The doctor said that this is a trial and not to be disappointed if they have to turn it back on, but it was WONDERFUL to be able to look at her, and actually have her look back at us! She even smiled a few times! (I don’t know if this was voluntary or not, but hey, I’ll take what I can get!)

They also turned the CPAP pressure down. But later in the morning, I noticed that the mask wasn’t even in her nose like it should be. I told the nurse and she said, “I think it’s time to go to cannulas.” So they switched her to cannulas, and her oxygen stayed good all day. So now, we can actually look at our precious daughter’s face! And she can look back! Ahhhhh, what am amazing feeling!

The isolette she’s in was turned down last night to “manual,” so she’s been regulating her own temperature all day and doing PERFECT! Can you believe this girl??!! I’m pretty sure tomorrow she’ll be speaking in full sentences!

She’s still getting 20cc’s of food for each meal. They were going to bring her up to 25, but she vomited this morning. The nurse thinks she may have some reflux. It just happened the one time, and her other feedings were fine. Once her feedings go up to 28 or 30cc’s, the tube going into her bellybutton will be able to be removed. (They’re giving her extra nutrition through that tube.) Once the tube comes out, we can finally hold her!

Sarai had a bunch of visitors today. Her Tio Louie and Titi Liz brought Abuela Tirado. Plus John and Sara stopped by. It was so nice to see everyone!

Soooooo…… think my day can’t get any better?.................WRONG!

My friend Christin came to my house today and dropped off a ton of baked ziti, a chicken casserole and a chocolate pudding cake! Let me tell you….. YUM! We just had some ziti, it was delicious! Thank you Christin (and her mom!)!

We’ll try to get some more pictures up tomorrow! Love you all!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

5 days old

Posted Jul 11, 2009 6:19pm

Sarai is 5 days old today!

No real big news to report. We had a nice visit with the little lady. They increased her food to 20cc’s every three hours now, so that’s really good. The CPAP was still on today, I was a little bummed, but they turned down her blue light from hi to low. Hopefully just another couple days with the light and the CPAP.

Ajene came to visit Sarai today. She was very happy to see him!
I noticed a paper hanging in the NICU that talked about the “Family Laundry Room.” Looks like during the week we can bring laundry and do it right there in the hospital! I’m super excited about that. We’ve got to wash this girl’s clothes and I had no idea when I’d be able to do that.

We got to spend a little time with Sarai with her eye mask off. I think she looks like Adam. The nurse said she thinks she looks like me. What do you think? Check out her new pic!

Friday, July 10, 2009

4 days old!, first post July 10, 2009

Posted Jul 10, 2009 10:27pm

I’ve been home from the hospital now for two days. Adam and I are starting to get into a routine going to visit Sarai in the hospital. Everyone there has been so nice!

When Sarai first got to the NICU, she wasn't able to eat and was put on a ventilator pretty quickly. By day two, they started to give her some food, 5cc's of milk, and today she is already up to 15cc's every 3 hours. She's off the vent and on to something called a C PAP. The C PAP provides some breathing support, but much less than a vent. It gives her one breath every few seconds, rather than continuously. And today they turned down the C PAP so it doesn’t take breaths for her anymore, it just gives her a little extra oxygen. If she does well with this, by tomorrow she’ll just have the little tubes in her nose to give her that extra oxygen.

The question of the hour is, “When will she be home?” and the answer of the hour is, “We really don’t know.” I’ve heard anywhere from 3-6 weeks. So far, she’s been doing SO GREAT! This little girl is a FIGHTER! I’m ready to throw her in the ring with Tyson!…. Well, maybe not Tyson, she is a lightweight after all!

The most exciting news for the past couple days is that Adam and I have both been able to change her diaper! YIPPEE! Bet you’ve never heard a mom so excited to change a diaper before! We’re high-fiving for poops!

We still can’t hold her yet and she’s still under the blue light. Hopefully that will be gone in the next day or two, too. Keep the prayers coming!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

My last day in Westchester

Hello everyone!

Well, I had a very busy weekend here in Westchester Medical Center!

Katie came down this weekend. We had a great time playing cards. Anyone remember how to play Spit? We were making so much noise the nurses came in to check on me and make sure I was ok! My friend from college, Malinda, came down with her husband on Sunday morning and brought me all kinds of snacks and goodies, had me all set up for a long hospital stay.

Of course, that changed quickly.

Sunday evening I started having a stomach ache and I asked to be put on the fetal monitor to see if the pains were contractions. But the machine didn't show any contractions, so Adam went home and I tried to go back to sleep. My stomach aches didn't get better. The nurse called the doctor and the doctor said.... "no more monkeys jumping on the bed!" No, actually, he said to send me to labor and delivery for more monitoring. I thought they were all bored, having a slow night because, obviously, the monitor already said I wasn't having any contractions. I went to labor and delivery, pouting and complaining, where they put me on the monitor, which said again, no contractions. My stomach aches got worse and I started to notice a pattern. I got my phone out and started timing the cramps, they were lasting a minute and coming every minute! The doctor did a check after I told her that and found that I was about 3cm dilated, so they decided I was in labor after all, told me to call Adam and things really started moving from there. That was at about 1:30am. I got an epidural around 2:00am, Adam arrived at 2:30. I was ready to push by 5:00 am. After pushing for about 5 minutes, we met Sarai! It all happened VERY fast! In fact, I think we're all still in shock.

So Sarai is in the NICU being well taken care of. For a 3 1/2 lb baby, she's big for the NICU. She was taken off the ventilator last night and is now on a less invasive C PAP to give her some support for breathing. They also started giving her milk last night too. You know, I had a doctor come check on me Sunday morning while I was still pregnant. He was very sweet, optimistic, he had a little accent, kind of sounded Caribbean. He said they take care of babies in the NICU that are only 24 weeks, 25 weeks, and he said, "You are almost tirty-two weeks! Dey be jumpin' for dat!" And in fact, I've heard the doctors refer to her as a "big baby" more than once.

My mom came down on Monday. It was SO GREAT to have her here to help ask questions, and of course, Aunt Kathy has been just a phone call away helping us in that department too. I know the paparazzi may have leaked a picture or two of our little girl (well, I said it was ok!) , but I'm waiting to take more pictures until she's got a few less tubes. So, you'll just have to be patient!

I was discharged from the hospital today, so today was not an easy day for us. But we're ready to head back tomorrow and see our little lady. Thank you all for your cards and prayers and e-mails and thoughts! It's been very comforting to know we have so many people thinking of us! I'll let you know if we have any major changes, and I promise I'll send pictures soon!

Love, Mandee/Amanda

Thursday, July 2, 2009

30 weeks, 6 days

Good morning everybody!

I've been in the hospital for over a week already! I can't believe it. It's actually gone pretty quickly and I'm feeling pretty good. I've had several visitors, I'm attaching a pic of Beth, me and Christin (warning: people in hospital gowns appear MUCH larger than they actually are! They kept telling me how good I look, but the picture doesn't lie, ladies!).

Yesterday I woke up feeling very nauseous and it sort of stayed with me all day. The doctor said he's 90% sure (finally, a percentage over 50!) it's the antibiotics so they stopped them yesterday. I woke up again last night not feeling well, but I feel ok now. Just had breakfast.

I was doing some research on premature rupture of membranes on-line last night and I found a pretty good article. It basically outlined what my experience has been so far. It mentioned that this only happens in 3% of pregnancies (I mean, we all knew I was UNIQUE, I wasn't planning on proving it with a medical emergency!) and that within one week 50-75% of women go into labor. I'm on day 9 today!

They're still watching me very closely for infection, I had blood drawn yesterday, and so far, no signs. The doctor is very happy I've made it to 31 weeks and is optimistic that I'll make it to 34. If I do go into labor, the only thing they'll do to try and stop contractions is hydrate me, if that doesn't work, it's go time!

I felt the baby with the hiccups for the first time this morning! She's being such a good little girl!

Adam's been so great. Going to the store for me, bringing me food, heating it up and running around while he's here. He's here for hours everyday. My friend Coleen stopped by with her husband on Monday, she's 38 weeks pregnant! Beth and Christin came yesterday with food, snacks, clothes for me for after I have the baby, and two tiny little summer outfits for the baby. My friend Kate sent peanut butter balls. Another friend Sue is stopping by today, Katie's coming this weekend, and I might see some Tirado's this weekend too. The book my mom gave me, The Help, is SO GOOD. I've gotten a million e-mails and text messages. Everyone's helping the time pass so quickly. I'll keep you all updated if anything changes! Love to you all!

Love, Mandee/Amanda