I’d like to start today’s update with a huge thank you to everyone for your support, gifts, food and advice. It’s commonly said that “it takes a village” and we feel lucky that we have such a fantastic support network. I’d also like to apologize for not emailing people back individually (it’s sorta a choice between doing these blog updates or emailing people 😉 but we do really appreciate hearing from you all!
The girls are now into their 40th week so we can stop referring to them using gestational age…and start using their adjusted age. Since they are preemies most of their developmental milestones are based on their 40 week due date, which was 1-Aug, so even though the girls were 11.5 weeks old by 1-Aug their developmental milestones start on that day. That is, they are not expected to be acting like a 3 month old until they are 6 months old. Clear? This apparently resolves itself around 2-3 years of age when they catch up to their full-term brethren. So by my calculation this makes them 0.29 weeks (0.067 months) old. And according to the books and app on my phone they should be…..crying when they are hungry, or annoyed, or bored, or have gas, or have reflux, or are colicky, or are too hot, or are too cold, or can’t get to sleep. All those bioreactor troubleshooting skills are coming to the fore (I mean, when you think about it, an infant is sort of a bioreactor…)
First up today, Katarina is still in the hospital, has made some progress but still has her feeding tube in and requiring some, but less, oxygen. She is still not tolerating her feeding and it is probably reflux, which will hopefully resolve itself…but is difficult to watch (discomfort while eating, seems to be in pain, vomiting etc). She is however, still putting on weight and is now 2.9kg (6 lb 6oz), so has been steadily increasing since last update. It seems like she can come home if she gets one of these issues resolved but not while she has both. So she might come home with a feeding or oxygen tube which seems a little strange but apparently once they get to full term the socialization aspect of their development becomes even more important and she just cannot get as much attention in the hospital as she would at home. I still don’t have a good video of her because I keep forgetting to take the camcorder into the hospital, but this is what she looks like now:
People say she looks like me but I don’t see it:
Oh wait, here we go:
Oh, and while I think of it we currently have 0.5 GB of pictures and 3.6 GB of video. But some of that is of Bruno, so y’know, not as bad as it sounds….? (does that make it better or worse?)
Natasha has been home for 5 days now and had her first visit to the pediatrician on Wednesday, where she weighed in at 3.25kg (7lb 3oz) and measured 50th percentile on everything but length (smaller). Her (obviously) cute idiosyncrasies have already appeared and we have had to start compensating for them. My favorite is when I have her up on my shoulder and she arches her back turns her head towards me, gives me a wide-eyed, slightly crazy smile and then throws herself violently forward, smashing her face straight into my shoulder. She then starts crying. I start laughing. Yes, I am a bad parent. I’m wise to this now and it hasn’t happened (that often) since I now see the warning signs (that particular crazy smile). On the bright side, this is probably a great way for her to learn about cause and effect, but apparently that comes later than 0.3 weeks adjusted age. Could be as late as 832 weeks adjusted age.
We have been getting a lot of questions about how we are coping, and we are doing ok. We’re splitting the days up so that I usually go to bed late (2-3am) and Lara gets up early (3-4am) and that seems to be working ok. The one that is having the hardest time adjusting is definitely poor, poor Bruno. He knows that he is not the only one in our lives now and so is torn between being dejected (walking around with a Danny-Glover-I’m-too-old-for-this-shit expression on his face: http://youtu.be/wrDoWK-HFnI), trying harder to be a good dog (following us around and trying to get into our laps whenever he can) and petulantly taking ownership of things that are not his (http://youtu.be/K830bHMABqA). He has also started photobombing:
We think he is going to have a complete meltdown when he realizes there are two of them. Now, it might take him a while to realize there are two separate entities (counting isn’t his forte), but it is going to be worth recording. Don’t worry, we’re sure his discomfort will only last until he realizes they are capable of feeding him and then they will be his best friends/partners in crime.
EDIT: I have no idea where the related articles below came from so click on them at your own risk.