Mr. and Mrs. Marsh came over to see the babies. Mary Jane Marsh is a very sweet and beautiful lady who bought a car from my husband a while back and has been very supportive and helpful to me during my pregnancy. Today she and her husband got to meet the babies for the first time. They brought over a rocker to give to us and more importantly arms to rock a baby. Here she is with Alexandria. We hope she comes back to visit us often.
Friday, April 28, 2006
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 4:56 AM
Thursday, April 27, 2006
Okay 35 would be ordinarily be terrible, but I am a new mom so I am content with the number. I had a tearful episode receiving a touching e-card from my dad today. He's not a "mushy" kind of person, so when he says something sentimental it really means something to me. I sit here recalling my youth and wondering where the time goes. He called me his "little girl" in the card. I guess every woman is someone's little girl.
Here's a pic of me today (courtesy of a birthday present, a book from Lauran entitled: The Incredible Truth About Mothers by Bradley Trevor Greive). I thought it was appropriate as I attempt to continue putting on makeup and curl my hair; what a joke!! I had curlers in my hair while I tried to feed Hunter. He looked at me curiously, like "Whoa!! Who is this? This ain't the momma."
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 8:26 AM
Today was rough!! Our three babies had their first follow up appointment with the pediatrician. We picked Dr. Deshpande at Heartland Pediatrics. We don't have any mode of transportation big enough to transport the 3 babies, much less the 4 we will have. Fortunately, we borrowed a van from a family member to take the babies to the doctor. Since daddy had to work and nana had a doctor's appointment herself, mommy transported the babies to the doctor alone. 3 babies bathed, fed, changed, and put into the car one by one. At the doctor's office, the staff came outside to help get the babies out of the car. All that work put into dressing them was for nothing. They were stripped down to their diapers one by one and brought back into the room after measurements to wait for the doctor. All 3 of them lined up on the table and AWAKE!! at the same time!!! Who planned this? Mommy had to start feeding the babies in the doctor's office, while trying to keep the other 2 from fussing too much and kicking off their blankets. FUN FUN!!! The good news is all three babies are doing well and gaining weight. No concerns were expressed by the doctor. We have a follow up in 1 wk to make sure weight continues to be gained. 2 are up to almost 5 lb right now!! We will have lots of doctors appointments. The babies have 2 more appointments in the next week alone, 2 in Orlando. It will be rough trying to borrow vehicles and transport the babies for all these appointments.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 7:31 AM
22 days after her birth, Gabby comes home from the hospital. Preston continues to do well. It was sad leaving him there by himself. He shouldn't be there long though. He is up to 4 bottles a day and he is gaining weight well. He is now up to 3 lb 4 oz or 1460 grams. He has to get to 1700 grams to be in an open air crib and then regulate his body temp for a few days. Then, he should be able to come home. Gabrielle slept all the way home from the hospital. She was met by a lot of family when she arrived. Aunt Lauran, nana, and great gramma were all at the house waiting to see her. Aunt Lauran spent the night to take care of the girls and give mommy a break the first night. It was wonderful to be able to only get up for 1 feeding. The ladies from the Gabrielle Project (Nancy, Jeanette, and Gloria) have been so helpful in organizing the room for the babies. Thanks so much for all you did to help.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 7:22 AM
Can anyone say sleep deprivation? Can only imagine what having 4 home will be like.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 7:21 AM
Photos: Top-Alexandria bites her fingers while Aunt Nicola holds her. Middle- Uncle Bobby holds Alexandria for the first time. Bottom- Proud big sissy Savanah holds Alexandria before coming home from the hospital.
20 days after her birth, Alexandria comes home from the hospital. Daddy, Savanah, and I took the trip to pick up baby Lexi. It was Savanah's first time getting to see the NICCU and her other brother and sister. We left Hunter with his Auntie Nikki, Aunt Lauran, and Uncle Bobby. We had to make our rounds to let everyone see Alexandria after picking her up from the hospital.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 7:19 AM
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 7:14 AM
Monday, April 24, 2006
Hunter got to meet his big brother and sister, Dylan and Savanah for the first time the day after he came home. Savanah has been showing excitement for quite awhile, while Dylan has contained his well. However, Dylan expressed a lot more enthusiasm with Hunter home. He was begging to change diapers. I am sure that excitement will dissipate quickly enough and mommy will get stuck changing all the poopy diapers. Here are some pictures of Dylan and Savanah with Hunter and daddy. I am sure there will be plenty more pics to come.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 5:24 PM
Today we continue to enjoy our little boy being home. There have been some growing pains as we adjust to his sleeping/feeding schedule. Uncle Rusty (Anthony's brother) came for a short visit to see the babies. We took a trip with Hunter up to the NICCU to see the rest of the babies and drop off a car seat for a fit test for Alexandria. She comes home tomorrow. Before we went over, Aunt Nicola and Aunt Laruan came over to visit with Hunter and check up on momma (I don't think they trust I can do it yet). They started laughing at how I needed them to hold Hunter so I could take a shower, put on makeup, and do my hair. They said that they want to take a picture of me in 2 wks because I guess they think I won't be able to do that. Lauran suggested cutting my hair but that was met with fierce resistance. Investing in lots of scrunchies seems more realistic. A pic of me all made up (the last you might see) is posted above.
Our visit at the NICCU was short but wonderful. Uncle Rusty seemed to have a hard time figuring out how to feed the babies, but he was put on the job anyways. He said he was afraid he was going to break them. Above is Uncle Rusty hoddling Gabby. Preston is doing okay with his one bottle per day and is now weighing 2 lb 14 oz. Gabby will be coming home soon. She was moved up to 4 bottles per day. It was a long trip for Hunter to make to see his siblings, but he slept most of the way. We made it home safely, but I think when we go for Alexandria, Hunter will be better off with a babysitter.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 5:00 PM
Hunter came home today!! We took pictures of him to remember this special day, which shares the same day as my father's birth, but unfortunately I don't have them available yet. They are in Auntie Desiree's camera still, but I will post them when I get them. Auntie Lauran said that he looked like a ragamuffin because the outfit was WAY too big for him and swallowed him whole. However, mommy thought he looked precious in his little winnie da pooh ear hat and halo gown with pooh paws. It was such an exciting day. For the first time, I felt like a REAL mom. Reality set in.. oh about midnite when he had his first night feeding and then he woke me up two more times before the sun came up and each time he didn't want to go back down. I tried everything... rocking, singing, bouncy seat. Inevitably, when I would put him down to sleep he would start to cry. I put him in the bed with us and my husband said I tried to smother him. I remember falling asleep with my hand on his chest to make sure he was still breathing and I guess my hand kind of rose up as I was sleeping till I was covering my face with his hand. Daddy to the rescue. It has taken awhile to write this post because momma has been REALLY busy!!! I can only imagine what it is going to be like with 4.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 4:54 PM
Tuesday, April 18, 2006
Okay...Today my heart stopped. Doctor Rallings called from the hospital to let me know that the babies are thriving. Gabrielle has been doing well with her bottles and is in open air crib herself. He braced me before he announced I could have 3 babies home in just a few days. Unbelievable. I wasn't even prepared for just one to come home in a week and was just starting to let it sink in, when the news was tripled and the length of time shortened. I am really excited. We got a crib and lots of other goodies given to us last night by a manager, Mr. Beebe, at Walgreens in Sebring and a basinette yesterday afternoon from The Gabrielle Project. So, I just have to prepare mentally for this now. I can't believe they are trusting me to take my babies home. I hope I am ready for all of this!
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 9:42 AM
Monday, April 17, 2006
Continuation of growth today. Hunter is up to 4lb 3.5 oz, Lexi is 4.2 oz. Gabby is over 3 lb and 13 oz. Preston is almost 2 lb and 10 oz. They took all their bottles today - no new orders. I have to call the plastic surgeon as he needs some information from me on Preston. Not sure what that is about, but the office was closed by the time I got that request. I will find out tomorrow.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 3:07 PM
All 4 of us together for the first picture
Today, Hunter has received orders to go into an open air crib and due to the fact that last night he took his whole bottle in 5 minutes flat, he is now going to 3 bottles a day. He is progressing well. As soon as a crib big enough comes available, Alexandria and Hunter will actually share a crib. Gabrielle is now up to 3 lb and 10.5 oz. She is getting up there. Preston is still not big enough to do any bottle feedings or go on to an open air crib, but he is doing well and continues to gain. He had his first bath given by momma last night. We didn't get any pictures of it sadly, since daddy was busy doing bottle feedings. He is still the gifted one when it comes to giving bottles. I have a lousy bottle feed I guess. Today I tried to give Hunter his bottle and he slept right through it and gave me a hard time. He consumed only a little over 1/2 his bottle in 25 min. So, the nurse helped me out after she assured me she didn't think she would have any different results. She had been watching me on and off and said I was doing everything right. She took over and guess what? He took the rest of his bottle in 5 min. I guess I just put them in a trance or something, but I now have a good excuse to make my husband do all the bottle feedings. Less work for me.. hurray!!!
Each of the babies had special Easter cards on their cribs today with pictures of them in bunny ears. We decided to leave the photos there for now, but will share them with you sometime soon. The Easter Bunny came for a visit, but I don't think my kids were that impressed since they slept right through the visit. Gabby was up for her feeding and so the bunny gave her a stuffed animal which we had to take home with us. My husband didn't advocate for the other three to have bunnies, so one day we will have to explain why it is that Gabby got special treatment and has a pretty little bunny and the rest don't. Before we left, we finally got an answer to a question we had been wondering about: "How soon is the soonest we should expect one or more babies to come home?" The answer? 1 week. WOW. Wasn't expecting that answer, but it is good news. I think Hunter will be the first one home, while daddy thinks that it will be Alexandria. They are almost neck and neck so maybe it will be a 2fer deal. We shall see. Anyways, Happy Easter everyone.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 2:26 PM
Sunday, April 16, 2006
Today is a great day. We got to bottle feed 3/4 of our babies and Alexandria is doing great in an open crib. She is maintaining her temperature well. We aren't sure why Hunter isn't in an open crib and Alexandria is, as Hunter is bigger than Alexandria. But, by tomorrow he may be in an open crib. For some reason Daddy has the magic touch. When he bottle feeds, they turn into little piggies and take the whole bottle. When I bottle feed, they only end up taking 10-11 cc's and the rest had to be given though a tube. Maybe it's just luck? Hunter took both of his bottles today, so he is mastering the skill of sucking, swallowing, and breathing simultaneously. He's pretty gifted for a baby that under other circumstances would still be in the womb getting nutrition supplied for him without any work. They are all growing so fast too. Alexandria is now over 4 lb and Hunter is now 4 lb 2 oz. So, we have 2 big ones. Gabby is hanging in there at the same weight and Preston gained again and is up to 2 lb 8 and 1/2 oz. Soon he will be up there over 3 lb. but he is just taking his time. We got to take pics with Preston and Hunter side by side. It's amazing. They look identical, except Hunter appears to be almost twice the size as his brother. Well, I guess he almost is!
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 3:53 AM
Saturday, April 15, 2006
Tonite, we came up for the weekend to be with the babies. We went to the Ronald McDonald House to check in and then headed over to the hospital. We got such wonderful news from their nurses Samantha and Terry. First of all, we have our first 4 pounder!! Hunter weighed at 4.02 today!! Alexandria is right behind him at 3 lb 13.8 oz. Gabby is staying at 3 lb 8.4 oz. Preston has gained though. He is now 2 lb 7 oz!!! They are gaining and mommy continues to lose. I am up to 55 lb lost!! Amazing.
Better news: Alexandria will be the first to be in an open air crib, starting tomorrow. If she can maintain her body temperature, she will be close to coming home; if not, she will return to her isolette for awhile.
BEST news: 3/4 have started bottle feeding. Hunter and Alexandria are on 2 bottle feedings a day and Gabby is only getting one, but while Hunter and Alexandria are only consuming part of their bottles and getting the remaining nutrition from tube feed, Gabby took her entire bottle today!! Woohoo. WE are so happy. We are hoping they catch on to bottle feeding soon, because this is 1 of the 2 steps that 3 of them have left to be able to come home! We get to do our first bottle feeding with the babies tomorrow starting around 11 am.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 3:00 AM
Friday, April 14, 2006
These are some pics of the boys, Hunter to the left and Preston at the top.
On April 12th, we drove up to Orlando for a short visit after Anthony got off of work. We held all four and fed all four in 2 1/2 hours and then made the return trip home so that my husband could make it to work in the morning.
Preston is now with his brother and sisters!! He made it over 1000 grams which was the goal to go to the Special Care Unit (NICCU level 2). Tonite all the babies were weighed and Alexandria is now 3 lb 12 oz. Gabby is 3 lb 8 + oz. Preston is 2 lb 3 1/2 oz and Hunter is our big one at 3 lb 14.6 oz. They have all started to gain weight and pass their birth weights, after their initial losses. Gabby is now off of skin control/probe and able to wear clothes in her isolette like her brother Hunter and her big sis Lexi. My littlest one continues to be on skin control. He has a long way to go to make that goal. He has to be at least 1500 grams. I am thinking that Hunter and Lexi will probably start bottle feedings in a few days. The nurses are trying to get them to suck on their pacifiers while they are getting their tube feedings so that they associate sucking with a full stomach. This is preparing them for bottle feeds. All of them did well at that tonite, even Preston. They say the hard part will be getting them to swallow. I guess we shall see if they are ready for bottles on our next visit - Friday. We will be staying the weekend there at the Ronald McDonald house again, spending as much time as we can with the babies. We look forward to our visits but can't wait till the babies come home so we can be a real family. If Lexi and Hunter keep progressing so fast, I imagine they will be home by the end of the month. Gabby and Preston will probably be there a little longer.
More good news: I have lost a total of 50 lb in a 10 day period. The fastest weight loss I have ever seen. I thought it would take months to lose 50 lb. Can't wait to get the remaining pounds off of me, but I can't exercise yet. It will take time I guess. At least I can burn a few calories with the breast pumping. I hear that works on weight loss as well as being good for the babies!
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 6:34 AM
Monday, April 10, 2006
Today I had to meet with my doc because I inadvertantly ripped off several of the steri strips (used in place of the staples they removed) and another cluster of them were clumped and bleeding. He examined me and said that the wound was healing so I could go ahead and take off the steri strips and apply hydrogen peroxide and keep site covered. I am still swelling pretty badly. If I cross my legs, the place where the leg touches the other leg will indent and stay that way for up to an hour. Thus, I look deformed. I heard someone talk about water pills helping, but I am not allowed to take them. The doctor doesn't feel they would help me at all as they dry out the veins. He tells me not to stand. i can walk and I can lay. If I sit, I have to put my legs up higher than my hips. Yeah, that doesn't really work when you spend your day at the NICCU.
Today we also signed the birth certificates. I hadn't gotten the chance to sign them before I initially left the hospital. It will take 4 wks to get a copy of this record. We will need copies of these to get any coupons/discounts from the multiple programs at the baby companies.
Today would be known as BATH day. 3/4 had baths today. It started with Gabby. The nurse demonstrated how to give a bath and then it was our turn. Daddy bathed Hunter. He opted to sponge bath vs. emerging the baby in water. I took about a hundred pictures of this and got a few good shots. I will add a photo here as soon as I get my camera back from my father. He is busy uploading photos of the babies onto his computer before he leaves for Iraq on Wednesday. After daddy did the bath and the feeding, he held Hunter. Meanwhile the nurse and I moved on to Alexandria. Now it was my turn to give the bath. Lexy did really well for awhile. I decided to do it like the professionals and submerge her in water. Funny how you add a little water and soap and a baby bath becomes a slip and slide. With one hand supporting her neck and head, we proceeded to clean the bottom of the bathtub with Lexy's bottom. She was sliding everywhere and I was laughing my head off. She didn't find it all that amusing and started crying. Another nurse took a couple photos of me giving her a bath. It looks like I am strangling her. After I bathed and fed her, I held her for awhile and then held Hunter for a short while. Then daddy held Gabby and I went to see Preston. I held him for almost an hour before we swapped and Daddy came to hold him and I went to hold Gabby.
Preston did not gain the weight he was supposed to and went back to 997 grams. They are increasing the calories of his feeds from 20 to 22. This should help him put on some weight he needs. The doctor said they were not moving him over with his siblings until he was over the 1000 grams. He is back on the phototherapy, as he rebounded and his billirubin level went back up. He had been having problems digesting his food, having residuals from his feedings. Today, we got good news that he is tolerating his feedings better. I hope he maintains this track. At least he is off of the IV's.
The doctor said that all of the babies were doing fine. He asked how we ended up with identical twins. I explained about the procedure and the odds of 1 in 10 million that this occurs. He laughed and said he thinks are odds are in totality approaching the billions. He explained that this is the case if you add the fact that we had such a long shot in having quads with the fact that I carried so long and that the babies were all born so healthy. we praised the work he and the team of neonatologists and nurses were doing and he said it was easy "with the good protoplasma" we gave them. Protoplasma? I think that is my new word for the day.
We left the hospital and Ronald McDonald House to return to Sebring around 4:30. Both of us are exhausted from the trip. The plan is to go back up there Wednesday evening after my husband gets off of work, for a short visit. We will go back again next weekend. More good news - In one week I shed 40 lb. Amazing!!! Thankfully I am still only able to tolerate small meal portions so that should help with me losing the remainder of the baby weight. Maybe then people will stop asking when my baby is due!!!
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 11:19 PM
Sunday, April 09, 2006
I had a very hard time sleeping last night and was up and down several times. I ended up sleeping late till almost 10:00. We got up and got ready to see our babies again. Today we had a planned schedule, upon advice of one of the nurses there. We planned to hold 2 in the morning and 2 in the afternoon and it is centered around their feeding schedule so they can continue a definite sleep/wake schedule.
Today, I got Gabby while Daddy got to hold Alexandria. We held them for over an hour and then went to eat some lunch. After lunch, I went to be with Preston, while daddy went to hold Hunter. Preston has gained some weight. He is up to 1040 grams. I inquired about moving him with his siblings. They are going to hold off and see if they can maintain this weight and there are no other beds available for Preston in the Special Care Unit yet. Holding my Preston was wonderful. He is just so tiny in comparison to the other 3. While you can see his resemblance to his identical twin, it is a discernable difference. He is so small in comparison to Hunter, that he looks very different. Preston is also very different in personality. While Hunter is a happy, laid back baby, Preston is very high strung and fussy. Most of the time, he doesn't want to be bothered with.
He stayed awake for a long time while I held him skin to skin. His little face was upturned, looking at me and he wriggled himself into a position where he was perched like a little monkey on my belly and chest. His feet were tucked under and he had his butt up in the air. I talked to him as if he could understand me, sharing stories about the strength of some of his ancestors. Intermittently, he sneeze and cried. It scared me that I didn't know what was making him cry. Each time he cried, it only lasted a few seconds. Yet, I was left in the dark about that which he was crying. We had planned that daddy would come to hold Preston at 3PM, when he is fed and that I would go over and hold Hunter. Daddy felt that Preston needed a break. The nurse was inclined to agree, saying that keeping him out too long can be detrimental due to the need to preserve his body temperature with his size being so small. I just felt very strongly that he needed to be held more. The nurse felt that I was projecting these feelings onto Preston and that he is actaully content. I left right away so nobody would see me crying. He goes back on the billirubin lights tonite because his level climbed after coming down. The doctors said this might happen. When he is on the lights, he is only allowed to be held for 30 minutes in a 24 hour period. I guess this made me so emotional. I want my baby to know he is loved and so far he has been left behind nutritionally in my womb and now left behind when his siblings progress. My mother used to tell me that a mother loves the one the most that needs the most at the time. I am finding that saying true. I worry bout our little peanut. I hope that he can continue to progress and that as he does, he will know how much we love him.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 2:20 PM
The babies are 5 days old today. I have been missing them terribly the last day and a half that I haven't been able to see them. I woke up in the middle of the night and had to find pictures of them to satisfy my loneliness and longing for them. But, today we left for Orlando and I am so excited to see them.
We checked into the Ronald McDonald House around 4:30 pm. I wasn't sure what to expect; they only charge 15.00 per night. The place is wonderful. There are 3 floors of rooms with numerous common areas: a laundry room, study, living rooms, a community kitchen, and a play room for the kids. The play room is great because we plan to bring Anthony's older children, Dylan (11) and Savanah (8) with us next weekend when we come to see the babies. They also have tons of movies and video games that can be checked out. For convenience, they have volunteers who make dinner every night, serving us at 6:30 pm.
After orienting ourselves and dropping off our bags, we headed over to the hospital to see our babies. It is only a short block, but for me any walk is tough since I have been on bedrest so long. Three of our babies, Gabrielle, Alexandria, and Hunter have been stepped down to level 2 NICCU and are together. Preston is in a private room, by himself. They say he needs to be 1000 grams before they can move him with his siblings and he is 930. So, hopefully in the next couple of days he can be moved.
It was so exciting to see them. We went to see the three in the special care unit first. We were met by the charge nurse at 5:30 pm and I inquired immediately about holding them. She said that it wasn't a good time. They would be closing the unit for shift change in 1 hour and every visitor had to be off the floor by then. I asked about holding them after 7:30. I was expecting "Yes, of course." But, instead she said we would have to talk to the nurse when we come back to see what was going on. I was a little upset, but tried to hide it. I knew that if I had a problem holding them when I returned, they would be having a problem. We tried to visit with our three precious ones, but all of them were sleeping soundly. Gabrielle was so cute, sleeping with her butt high in the air. So, we went over to the private room to visit with Preston. The nurse over there at the time, Aida, was much more welcoming and put us to work right away. I changed Preston's diaper and allowed the nurse to continue with her assesment/medical care. She had to check his glucose and did a "heel stick" which made Preston cry. My heart breaks everytime I hear his little cry. He like his siblings, gets his food through a tube. Unlike his siblings, Preston has problems digesting food and has been behind in the number of CC's they give him daily. We helped give his feeding and then daddy got to hold his littlest boy. We affectionately refer to him as our little "peanut."
When daddy held Preston, he started to cry and for awhile I didn't think he would stop. Daddy must not of either, because he said "I don't think he likes me." I told him I thought he was just giving us heck for not being there the last day and a half.After a few minutes, he calmed down and enjoyed being held kangaroo style (skin to skin under a shirt). I let daddy and Preston bond alone. We then had dinner and went back to the Special Care unit, prepared to advocate for ourselves if they wouldn't let us hold our babies. Instead of being met with the same negativity, we were pleasantly surprised by the friendliness of our babies' nurse, Samantha.
She had us prepared to do all the personal care for our babies. While I get all the poopy diapers, daddy changed a poop free Hunter. I administered the feeding while daddy held Hunter. I started feeling deprived, so we switched roles until the feed was over. It was wonderful to have my baby boy in arms. After the feeding, daddy got to hold Hunter kangaroo style, while I went to prepare Alexandria. HOlding her was heavenly. She kept her eyes open, just staring up at me. I felt her fingers and toes wiggling against my skin and had to look to appreciate the 10 fingers and 10 toes that I helped create. Gorgeous feet and fingers!! They are really daddy's feet and aren't so cute on him. But, she makes them look good. She started to sleep in my arms, making herself very comfortable in my arms. I don't know why, b ut everytime I hold them skin to skin, I feel mesmerized and am drawn to sleep. I made the nurse and daddy very nervous because I kept shutting my eyes and drifting off.It's not like she is going anywhere. She is secure inside my shirt.
Anthony finally put Hunter down and took on holding his main girl, Gabrielle. He has held her the MOST of all the babies. I tell him he's playing favorites. He and Gabby continued to bond while I went to hold my littlest boy, Preston. After an hour had passed, Anthony came to get me. Preston and I both were asleep. I think I could of stayed like that all night, but I was forced to give up the baby. I asked if I could just take him home with me. The nurse said "one day, but not today." I feel like I am waiting for Christmas. We returned to the Ronald McDonald House to get some sleep and after a couple of hours, I wish I was back at the hospital with the babies. It won't be long before they are mine 24/7. That keeps me going.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 1:50 PM
Saturday, April 08, 2006
Thank you to everyone out there who have been calling and writing to us. We appreciate the well wishes/congratulations. April 3rd was the best day of my life. I will never forget having my first and I think only babies. Florida Hosptial Orlando treated me wonderfully and continues to provide wonderful treatment to our children. Those NICCU nurses are amazing and have taught me so much in just this small amount of time. I have learned how to comfort preemie babies, change preemie diapers, do tube feedings, how to hold, etc. Nothing is as I thought. Nothing, including how much I would love them. There are no words. They are amazing. I sit back and look at them and go "Wow." I don't know what I did to deserve them, but I thank God for them. When I look back at our option to Selectively Reduce this pregnancy, I am so glad that I didn't give in to fears about their health and finances. People have commented many times... "Wow! Four? I couldn't even imagine..." Well it's funny, I couldn't imagine having just one now. All the miseries of pregnancy that I complained about were entirely worth it.
As you all probably know, we did hit the news. The hospital Public Relations set those interviews up just a few hours after my c-section delivery. I was still under the influence of drugs. I use that as my excuse for how terrible I looked and sounded. My husband reminds me that it was more than that - "you didn't sleep for 3 months" he said. Everyone says how beautiful the babies are and many only saw them on the news. They are not given justice on the news. You have to hold them and look into their little eyes to appreciate just how beautiful they are.
Right after delivery, 2 of the 4 were on room air. Gabrielle was on room air, but had a little oxygen by nasal cannula. Hunter (the biggest boy) was on CPAP for 2 days. They had some concerns about defects with Preston - holes that hadn't closed in on his head, but the Plastic Surgeon who consulted said that will heal in time and no surgery is required. Alexandria has some apnea related to prematurity which should resolve. All four had high billirubin levels and received photo therapy for a few days. Hunter has been taken off the light therapy and the girls are anticipated to be off of it tomorrow. I have been told that there is nothing wrong with the kids to be alarmed about. They are actually ahead of their gestational age and very healthy preemie babies. I was discharged from the hospital on Thursday. I came home and my husband and I are on our way back to them today. I've missed them so much in the just one day I have been away from them; I have cried many times. I have so many pics I would like to share and I am sure they will be put up soon.
Last night we went out for a celebratory dinner. I still look pregnant, so I got a lot of looks when I ordered a mixed drink. Maybe I just felt like I was getting looks. In my defense of not looking svelt after all this is that I did have FOUR BABIES!!! Now I just look like I am pregnant with one. I hope that I can lose some of this weight soon so people will stop asking me what I am having or when I am due.
We are trying to figure out how to transport the babies with our small car. They still have a few more weeks in the hospital so I have some time to figure this out. The church has assured me that we will have what is needed when the baby comes home. I honestly cannot wait to bring them home!!!
Thanks again to all who listen.
Posted by Elisa Ewing at 3:06 AM