After four x-rays, an enema, a round of suppositories, and two weeks of antibiotics, the conclusion that the doctors have come to is this: Annaleigh “needs a big fart.” Yup. That’s it. A fart. And the tall, middle-aged female British doctor who gave us that news said it with a complete straight face. We both burst out laughing, ‘cause we’re just that mature. (Okay, I burst out laughing; Brooke was more chuckling or giggling.)
Poor Annaleigh had an x-ray yesterday, another at 8 this morning, another at 1 this afternoon, and a fourth at 8 this evening. The doctors compared them and saw no change. We were hoping for a positive change, but at least things aren’t worse. She also had a surgical consult today but the surgeon seemed unconcerned, noting that her belly is “soft” and she doesn’t seem to be in any sort of discomfort. The concern is that her GI tract isn’t functioning as normal. Another x-ray is planned for tomorrow morning and the hope is that there will be some progress. If not, there are some options for how to proceed, but hopefully this will take care of itself soon enough. In the meantime, our poor little monkey can’t eat anything and is getting all her calories and nutrition via iv.
As if the barrage of x-rays wasn’t enough, Annaleigh also had her brain ultrasound today. They were looking to see if the blood clot they saw a couple weeks back has broken up. Fortunately, the results were “optimal,” according to Dr. Hiatt. The clot is starting to liquefy and there is no swelling in the parts where swelling would be a problem.
Charlie and Lily both had ultrasounds today too, but the results won’t be in until tomorrow afternoon. Dr. Hiatt told us that there is only a 3% chance that this round of ultrasounds will find anything that the first round missed, so we’re not too concerned.
Lily remains the same as she’s been for the last four or five days: stable but moody. She has episodes pretty regularly but usually manages to correct herself without any help. The good news on her is that she keeps packing on the pounds (not literally, unfortunately). She’s increased her weight to 876 grams, up from 770 just three days ago. If she continues to increase her size at this rate, she’ll catch up to Charlie in no time.
Charlie is doing well, with only a small hitch today. The doctors decided to give him some extra calories in his breast milk. They just mix in a powder to the milk (I wonder if it’s the same supplements that body builders take?) and he gets about 24 extra calories per feeding. After the first feeding with the supplement, he had a bunch of spit up, which isn’t normal for him. So they reduced his feeding for a couple meals and stopped the supplements. His latest feeding (9 pm) was back to his normal 13 ml without the supplement, and they’re hoping to increase him to 15 ml tomorrow if all goes well. They’ll try the supplement again too, though it’s not imperative that he gets it.
We’ve noticed some definite personality quirks with all three babies, and we get so much joy out of watching them develop. Annaleigh still prefers to be left untouched, making faces when we try to hold her hand or touch her back. Charlie is so docile and calm all the time that absolutely nothing bothers him at all. Today we saw his night nurse change his iv; you’d think that poking a needle into his arm would cause him some discomfort and get some kind of reaction, but our little man didn’t budge. He laid there prone and slept as content as could be. And then there’s Lily. Oh, how Lily made us laugh tonight. Whenever she’s handled a lot (bath time, weighing, changing positions, suctioning, etc) she gets “shell shocked.” She’ll lay there with her eyes as wide as can be and her arms raised up and not move for minutes on end. She looks like a statue! Tonight, her nurse was suctioning her throat and mouth, and Lil kept thrusting her tiny hands in front of her mouth and trying to push the nurse’s hand away. And when the nurse finished, she lay still with on hand stretched out next to her head and one hand on her hat and her eyes staring straight ahead like a deer in headlights. Oh, how we laughed!
Lastly, we wanted to put a call out to any newer parents of multiples out there who may be reading this. We found a list of companies who donate products (diapers, formula, etc) to parents of multiples and we put my mother in charge of writing to them. If any of you have had any luck getting free stuff from companies please let us know. We’re going to need all the giveaways we can get! Thanks for any and all suggestions!