Greetings from the NICU…and home. Life has certainly changed since our last post. Anna and Lucy are adjusting to home with Mommy and Daddy. Brenna is still in the NICU, but is making positive strides. It’s been difficult to split time between home and the NICU, but we do it because we have to.
Our last post, we detailed some of the trials Brenna had been facing with infections, and possible tummy issues, among other things. Brenna has been looking and acting like a new girl in the last couple of weeks. After several rounds of meds to alleviate swelling and some steroids for an extra little burst, she is off the vent and back on VapoTherm nose prongs. She gets tired easily, but after a month of the vent doing most of the work, it’s understandable. Feeding is going well, she’s getting 45 milliliters of fortified milk every three hours; the most she had previously was 8 milliliters, so needless to say, we are relieved her digestive system seems to be responding. She’s gaining weight, 6lbs 2oz at last check, and we feel confident it’s legitimate weight, not skewed by fluid retention. All of her IV lines have been removed and all meds are now being administered orally through her feeds. She is a little jaundiced, but food and getting rid of the IV fluids should help.
All in all, she is vastly improved from just a few weeks ago. She is more alert and awake than we have really ever seen her, and we love every minute of it. She looks right at you with her big brown eyes and we can’t help but smile every time. It’s so nice to see her wanting to interact with you and her environment. We brought her a swing so she can get out of her crib now and again and sit up, and her nurses were nice enough to find a radio, so she has been listening to Christmas music for the last few weeks. Normally, the rule is no Christmas music until after Thanksgiving, but Daddy will let it slide for now. We are truly amazed at her progress and we pray she continues to improve so she can join us and her sisters at home.
Home life… where to begin? We still can’t believe we have two of our girls home with us now. It was a little surreal at first. In the hospital, they were our babies that we got to visit. Now, they are our babies for who we are completely, totally responsible for. We knew it was going to be a lot of work, but I don’t know if we really knew how much work it was going to be. For the most part, the girls have taken it pretty easy on us. There have only been a handful of sleepless nights so far. Our days are filled with doctor’s appointments, bottles and diapers. Lucy is still loud, Anna is quiet, but she seems to be learning from her sister. She has been a little more vocal about things the last few days, but it’s not nearly as loud and demanding as Lucy. At their last check up, both girls weighed exactly the same, 5lbs 15 oz, so we may have three 6lb babies by the time this gets posted. We can’t believe how far they’ve come since birth.
So overall it’s been a good couple of weeks. Dividing time between home and the hospital is hard, but all three of our girls need us regardless of where they are at, and we’re going to make sure we are there. We thank God our parents are close, as they have been wonderful babysitters. Without them, we’d be hauling the girls back to the hospital everyday to see Brenna. They have visited, but leaving them at home with grandma and grandpa really give us some quality time to focus on Brenna, and I feel like it has helped her tremendously.
That is where we stand right now. As always, prayers are appreciated. We see them working every time Brenna peeks at us with those big brown eyes, or Lucy wails for her bottle, or as Anna snuggles in on our chest for a little cat nap. Having Anna and Lucy home has really made us realize how far they have come, and how far they still have to go. We look forward to getting Brenna home and starting life as a family of five together. Have a good holiday.
In His name,
Brad, Angie, Anna, Brenna, and Lucy Kamps