Sunday, July 29, 2012

Landry: NICU Week 2

Saturday, July 14th: we got to put Landry in his first outfit that night. Everything was still big on him but he looked adorable :)

Sunday, July 15th: probably my hardest day! I went home to see the boys that morning, that was amazing!! They were so excited to see me and I them. We snuggled, hugged, ate breakfast and just loved on each other. We then went back up to the hospital, ate lunch, went to Build a Bear and then the boys went home with daddy. It tore my heart out to say goodbye to them.

Brody would say "I be a good helper and stay with you and baby brother"
or he would ask if daddy could stay with Landry and I come home with him. He would tell me he was gonna miss me and it just tore me in two. I get teary eyed just thinking about it. I know they were well taken care of and that they won't remember this but wanting to be with them, knowing they want me and feeling guilty for not being with them was my worst pain!

This is the day/night that I say I lost my shit. I was in pain, exhausted, missing my family, worried sick about Landry and what was causing his low platelets. I was just mentally, emotionally and physically exhausted and this was definitely my low point. That night I had nurse Brandy and a great charge nurse. We had to do a lot of blood work that night with Landry and I just lost it. You know the ugly, snotty, I can't stop crying type. I wanted to be home, I wanted Landry to be ok, I wanted to not be hurting, I was just done!! Luckily my nurses were AMAZING and picked me up! They told me it was ok that I was here and not home, that my 2 older boys would survive and forgive me for not being there with them, etc...They understood and got the stress and pain that I was in. The head nurse even said she would sit with Landry while I go and take a hot shower and just let it all out, get all my crying out and that I'd feel much better. You are in such a vulnerable spot being so emotional and feeling such raw pain and I will be forever grateful for those 2 ladies that night as I lost my shit and then got it back together again!

Monday - Thursday: I stopped journaling but basically everything began to stabalize for Landry and he spent those days just being a baby and eating, pooping, sleeping, etc. Wednesday the buzz was that if Landry could pass 4 test: gain weight, maintain temperature, pass carseat and hold steady on platelets that we would be able to go home Thursday!! And boy things started moving fast! Brandon and I both had to watch several videos together. CPR and don't shake your baby to death(so sad we had to actually watch this!) and then get the car seat, make sure it was for a baby under 5 pounds, get some vitamins that L needs, etc...and then we began what Cooks calls "rooming in". It where they take Landry off all monitors, warmer, etc and I'm to do everything (although I was doing that anyway) for the day/night. We both did great and come Thursday morning we were being discharged!! Landry passed all his test although he was making us very nervous during the carseat test as he was having several little decels but he passed!

We came home and life has been great. We are so abundently blessed and in love with our family of 5

Friday, July 20, 2012

Landry's NICU stay week 1

There's so many blessings in Landry's story that I hate to even think of our NICU stay. When he got over to Cook's Children NICU we found out that he had a critical platelet count of 7(measured in thousands), you are suppose to have between 100-150. He was at extreme risk for internal bleeding, mainly brain bleeds.

Blessing: if Landry was born vaginally it would have almost guaranteed him a brain bleed with platelets that low and the pressure of contractions and birth canal.

He also had low sugars and a heart murmur.

Sunday, July 8th: He was born at 10:57 pm on Saturday and when I called over to Cooks at 6 am they were telling me he needed a platelet transfusion (this begun the fight of get me over to him right now or I'm going to lose it). So when I got over there he had an IV in his foot because his blood sugar was low and they needed to start him on D10 (pretty much like sugar water). He also had to get a feeding tube in. He ate a bottle over at Harris and took 15 out of 20 cc's for the 2nd feeding but by the third feeding he only took 5 cc and he had to eat to keep his sugars up. So he was now getting 20 cc's every 3 hours via his tube. They then had to start an IV in his hand for the transfusion.

Hell: watching your itty bitty peanut get poked and proded on for blood sugars and IV's.

It is torture watching him scream in pain and the nurses dig around in a vein to get it started. I know it is necessary but that doesn't make it any easier to stand there and watch.

After the first transfusion his platelets went up, I believe to the 170's.After the transfusion I had to go back to Harris to get assessed, get pain pills, pump, etc. Between the time I left and checked in with Brandon a hour later Landry had been placed on CPAP as he was working too hard to breath. It was actually called bubble CPAP because his lungs were sticking together. They were slightly premature in their development and were "sticky" from his body not producing enough surfactin. The bubble CPAP put moisture in his lungs to help them from sticking together. He HATED the mask that went over his nose and hated the nose prongs even more. Sunday night he fought the nurses all night long pulling out his CPAP and even pulling out his feeding tube.

His sugars were up and down. Anything under 50 meant he had to get tested every 3 hours, once before a feeding and then again after a feeding.

Hell: multiple heal pricks. Those nurses bend and squeeze the crap out of those hells to geth enough blood. At one point both his feet were black and purple. His right foot actually had a tissue break down from the constant tape being taken on and off. At first it looked like a blister but then it quickly started to get yellow puss and oozing. We stopped all heal pricks and blood pressure cuffs on that foot. I put a sock over it and it was the "don't touch that foot" sock and we applied antibiotic ointment on it.

Monday, July 9th: I finally got to hold Landry Monday morning. It was the greatest feeling ever and he absolutely loved it. His entire face became puffy and swollen from the CPAP and his eyes were swollen shut. Heartbreaking to see him try and open his eyes and they were just too swollen :( He was a little yellow looking so they checked his rubella and it was an 8 but luckily quickly went down from there. He was extremely tired today from the previous days event and didn't have much energy at all. His sugars that night were in the 30's so they had to turn up his IV and increaed his feedings to 28cc's. His platelets that night were 93.

Tuesday, July 10th was a hard day. The doctor's began telling us all these things that they thought could be going on with Landry. Things like NAIT, an antibody that my body launched on him that was attacking his platelets. CMV virus, Parvovirus, MMA, and numerous other scary things that shouldn't be googled by a postpartum mama. He also pulled out his tube again and the nurse didn't even know it. We had just returned from Harris and when I went to check on him he had formula everywhere. He also started spitting up occasionally, was very gassy and sugars were very low. Tuesday night we had our first experience with an awful nurse. It was so hard for me to leave him that night and I ended up staying til almost midnight until I was in so much pain I had to return to Harris to get medicine. Luckily Brandon had been staying with him every night and assured me he was keep his eye on the nurse.

Wednesday, July 11th was by far the longest and crappiest day of our stay. I got discharged from Harris! So there was a lot of going back and forth that day. I was so excited to finally be in one place and to stay the night with Landry. They took him off CPAP and he did great! He was much happier without the mask. That morning his platelets had plummeted to 44 so he needed his 2nd transfusion. We were about 20 minutes into the transfusion that his IV blew in his hand and the platelets were going into his hand. His entire hand, fingers and part of his wrist were black. He looked like Dumbledorf's hand on Harry Potter. It looked absolutely awful. The nurse called it an IV burn and said it would be tender and painful for a couple of days and slowly fade away. He also began spitting up after every single feed. At first it was just a little but by the end of the day he was losing everything he was taking in. My milk had finally come in so I told the nurses no more formula and they agreed that he was having a formula intolerance. Once we switched over to my breast milk he stopped spitting up. We facetimed with Brody that evening and Landry became wide-eyed and was searching for Brody's voice, it was so sweet. That evening when the nurse changed his bedding and I held him while he did that he began rooting around, it was so exciting! They did morning labs at 3 am every morning. That night we slept from 12:30 - 3:00 and his blood draw went smoothly and he didn't cry until she pulled out the needle. When the lab ladies draw the blood it's defintely better than when the nurses do it. His sugar was 76, which is great so he didn't have to get a heal prick for another 6 hours and they could decrease his IV fluid (if it's above 60 they can decrease by 1, he was at an 11) Platelets were 165.

Thursday, July 12th: he got to nurse! I was so excited and cried when he knew exactly what to do. With preemies you never know if they will remember to suck, swallow and breath as they usually forget one. He actually nursed for 25 minutes. His sugars were borderline at 51 so they didn't get to lower his IV but didn't have to prick him either until 6 hours later. His platelets were 148 (starting to decrease again)
That night his sugars were 89 so they were able to turn down his IV. He was also having some desats that night and his breathing became labored. So we started watching him and the little stinker was holding his breath! The nurse and I couldn't believe it. He also had his first bath! He loved it and was so snuggled in his warm blankets after that he immediately zonked out.

Friday, July 13th: Platelets were 138 and he blew his onlhy good iv so they were going to start one in his head. This was the 2nd time I got pissed at a crappy nurse. All the others were simply amazing. There is a "iv specialist" that is great at getting IV's. All of Landry's locations were shot and the only place they could get one was his head. So they were waiting on this "specialist" to come start it. I told my nurse that I wanted to wait for her and that I wanted to be there to sooth Landry while they started the IV. She said she would be a little while if Brandon and I wanted to go grab lunch. So we went down to the kitchen (you can't eat anything in the rooms) and ate really quickly only to return to the crappy nurse trying to start the IV in his head!!! I was pretty sure I was going to punch the lady but she had a needle in my kids head so I refrained but boy was I boiling. Of course she didn't get the vein and blew it! My poor baby had been a pin cushion. Luckily the other nurse that was there pulled out the blown IV in his arm and found a good vein on that hand and got it going. He was able to completely ween off the fluids throughout the day and night and we stopped the D10 fluid. This also began the weight loss, that night he lost 30 grams. That 3 am blood draw was torturous and took 3 hours!! They had order a few test that morning so they needed quite a bit of blood. When they would find a good vein and get in it would quickly stop bleeding soon after. It was just awful. The charge nurse even came in and tried and kept apolgizing to Landry and I, we were both in tears by 6 am when they finally got all the blood they needed only for labs to tell us some of it wasn't good because it had already clotted. AWFUL! So they had to stick him one more time to get blood. The charge nurse went off on the lab people telling them not to be sitting on their butts letting this blood clot and my mama claws didn't have to come out thanks to her.
Friday, July

Saturday, July 14th: Landry is one week old!! He spent the majority of the day sleeping thanks to his 3 hour blood draw and didn't even attempt to nurse, we tube fed all his feedings until about 3 when he finally decided to wake up. His blood sugars remained high and we got to dress him for the first time. He also was moved to room air to see if he could hold his body temp without the help of the warmer. He did great as long as he was bundled up or skin to skin.

I will update NICU stay week 2 shortly!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Landry's Birth

I'm afraid if I don't get some of this down I will forget it, I'm sure there are parts I've already forgotten. I also know one day I will want to read back on all we have gone through. So here goes:

Friday, July 6th
I had not been sleeping well for the past couple of nights because of comfort and worry. Landry hadn't been moving very well for weeks but it had further decreased the past couple of days. We are so busy with the boys that during the day it's hard to really know if I'm feeling slight movements or not. At night, I know when and how often I feel him so there was no denying he wasn't moving a lot, hence the not sleeping because then I would lie there and worry. Friday night was by far the worst night as far as I just couldn't get him to move. On top of that I was having some really bad dreams that we lost him. Morbid, I know.

Saturday, July 7th
Woke up and ate breakfast. Still hadn't felt him move. Brandon was tired as well as we had a few days of the boys just being off their schedule and they were whiny and tired. So I decided to load them up and take them to my parents to give Brandon a little break and the boys a change of scenery so to say. Got over to my parents and just didn't feel right about things. I started to mention it to my mom that maybe I should go into hosptial to get checked but then got distracted. Luckily she asked me a short while what was wrong and I told her what was going on and that I hadn't slept because I just had that feeling something was wrong. So I called the doctor, they decided to load up the boys and go driving around so that I could hop in the shower and get ready to head to hospital. I called Brandon and told him to get ready himself and meet me up there.

We went into Maternal Obs and they got me hooked up to the monitors right away. The nurse didn't even have me put on a gown because she said it'd probably be an in and out visit and everything would be ok. Landry looked great on the monitors for the next 30 minutes or so but still wasn't moving. She brought in some juice and crackers to try and get him to move around while she went to check me into the computer. About that time he had a dip in his heart rate in the 90's for about a minute. So the nurse had me turn to my side and we waited and watched. About a hour and half laster, around 2:00 pm, I was getting hungry so sent Brandon down to get me a drink and snack. While he was gone Landry took a big dip into the 70's for about 1 1/2 minutes. I paged the nurse, she came running in and was concerned with what just happened so told me not to eat or drink anything else in case I need an emergency csection right as Brandon was walking in with my drink and snack. All of a sudden this became very real that there was obviously a problem with Landry so we started notifying everyone and making arrangements. Dr. Bradford's on call doctor, Dr. Wylie came by just to let me know she'd be monitoring him for a couple hours to see what he did. Not long after Dr. Tabor, the OB specialist came to get me for an ultrasound. He said he had been following me on the monitors across the hospital and saw his dip so wanted to take a look at him on the ultrasound. He said everyone in the room was fine except baby Landry and that he was showing signs of distress in there. He looked at his bloodflow and said although it wasn't to a zero yet it was worse than when he saw me last week. So they were going to admit me and keep an eye on him and reassess in 24 hours if he behaved.

Around 4:30 we went up to L&D. My parents and Brandon's parents came up and Marcy watched the boys for us. They got me hooked up to the monitors and started an IV (took two tries). I was having small contractions, some of them I didn't even feel and he would decel on most of them. Sometimes his decels were only 125bpm and others were down in the 90's. They also varied in length, some were 10 seconds and some were a minute or two. His baseline was 145 bpm. This continued for several hours. Dr. Wylie came in and explained that we were in a tough spot because although I was 35 weeks pregnant and most babies do great at that gestional age, Landry was more of a 31-32 weeker. So there was a slight risk for respiratory problems, we worried about his weight and being small, blood sugar problems, etc. but he could also come out kicking and screaming and doing just fine. She also said she was 100% certain I'd be having a csection. She said there was no way he'd be able to tolerate a vaginal birth. This, of course, upset me. I, of course wanted to do what was best for Landry but there was so much more to  a csection because of my Lovenox and Factor 5. I was afraid of clotting, bleeding too much, etc. So Dr. Wylie said we would just wait and see how he did through the night.

Around 8:30 I was starving and thirsty so the nurse asked if I could have anything. Dr. Wylie said I could have clear liquid so we thought that was a good sign that I wouldn't deliver that night. Everyone started to head home for the night. Probably about 30 minutes after everyone left Landry decelled into the 60's for about 2 minutes. Brandon and I looked at each other and we knew this would be it. Sure enough the nurse and Dr. Wylie come walking in. She basically said he was in destress,  his decels are getting deeper, lasting longer and we just didn't want to get into a situation where we would need to rush back for an emergency csection and he decel for who knows how long. I completely agreed and we started getting ready for the csection. Family turned back around and came up and I was taken back to the OR. I was able to get a spinal, which is different from a epidural. It felt the same but came all the way up to my chest. I hated the feeling that I couldn't breath. By the time they got me laying down, all steriled up and Brandon back there she was already cutting into me. Landry had meconum, which Dr. Wylie said the only reason a 35 weeker has meconum is because they are under stress. He also had a very thin, flimsy cord that was wrapped around his neck. He wasn't crying and they took him over to the Neonatal team. They had to intabate him to suck out all the meconum, which didn't go past his vocal cords and then he began crying. The best sound ever!! Brandon went over to see him and the antesialogist took pictures and showed me. She was absolutely amazing! They cleaned him up, assessed his situation and weighed him. He was 4lbs6oz. They finally came over to show me Landry and he was the cutest little peanut I've laid eyes on. The neo. doctor told me we absolutely made the right decision and we wouldn't had a good outcome if he stayed any there any longer. Thank you God for protecting us and giving me the intuition that something wasn't right.

The hardest part was sewing me back up, it was uncomfortable! I felt very sick to my stomach as they were putting me back together and it just wasn't fun. Brandon had left to go with Landry back to the NICU. They wheeled me back into my room where my family was anxiously waiting. Brandon and I were texting back and forth and because Harris NICU was full they were going to transport Landry to Cooks NICU. I was very excited as I know they have a room in NICU so that I could stay with him 24/7. Again, God looking after us. They stopped by the room before they sent him next door so that I could hold him for the first time. Mandy captured that wonderful moment for us.

I will update on Landry's NICU stay sometime soon.