Thursday, August 20, 2009

The Air Smells Sweet (and kinda' stinky too)

Big News: Annaleigh is breathing on her own! No respirators, no CPAP, no nasal cannulas... just Annaleigh!

We knew Annaleigh's time on the breathing aids was limited and when we arrived for our morning visit, her nurse told us that Dr. Hiatt wanted to try her with nothing but room air tomorrow. But while I was holding her, he came over for a chat and decided to give her a try right then. So the nurse unhooked everything, and as of 10:00 this evening she's still breathing perfectly with no help whatsoever! This is great that her lungs are strong enough to do the work on their own, but Brooke and I are even happier because we get to see her beautiful face all the time now. (The picture here was taken before the cannula came off.)

But the pooping... oh, the pooping! Annaleigh has managed to create a stink that has (until just yesterday) gone undiscovered by human olfactory senses. And the frequency with which she poops would make even the most regular of us look backed up. But the most amazing thing about Annaleigh's raunchy stink is the fact that today she managed to teach that stink to Lily! Brooke opened up the Bug's isolette to change her and BAM! she was punched in the face by the stink. It was like the opening of Pandora's Box-- the world now knows the meaning of evil smells. Who would have guessed the the boy was the least stinky of the bunch?

On a more serious note, Annanleigh actually lost weight today, which is somewhat worrisome. If Charlie or Lily had lost, it wouldn't have been such a big deal because they're much bigger and more consistently gaining; Annaleigh has had issues even maintaining her weight so now losing isn't a good thing. We were told that breathing independent of help is a lot of work for a baby so they burn a lot of calories, so we're hoping it's nothing more than that.

Lily, however, is up another 45 grams (to 1565, or 3 lb 7oz). She goes on the nasal cannula when she's out for visits but will be on the CPAP regularly for a few more days at least. She was wide awake during her time in Brooke's arms this morning and we were marveling about just how different she looks now then she did a month or so ago. I have been carrying Lily's first tiny purple hat from her first few weeks in my pocket with me since she outgrew it and we were looking at it this morning. She was all skin and bones for the first month or so and this last month she's put on so much weight that she looks like a different baby. If you go back and look at her pictures from early on and then look at her pictures now you would never guess she was the same baby. We couldn't be more proud of how she's fattening up!

And when it comes to being chubby, Charlie is no slouch. While he hasn't been weighed yet today as of this post, just looking at his face reveals how big he's getting. And since he's been doing so well with his four-hour rotation on/off the nasal cannula, Dr. Hiatt decided to let him try it more permanently... and so far, he's doing great! It's been since mid-afternoon that he last was on CPAP and since then he hasn't had a single episode. If this keeps up, he's going to challenge his sisters to be the first home.

During her evening visit (with her mom and Nana), Brooke learned how to give the babies their sponge baths! She practiced her first bath on Annaleigh, who was a fairly willing test subject. Tomorrow, the nurse promised to teach Brooke how to suction the babies noses-- the fun never stops at the NICU!

Outside the NICU it was another busy day. We spent some time test-driving some more cars and we may have found a surprise winner: the Honda Pilot! We had just driven a Town and Country and it was nice but not blowing us away. As we were leaving, the salesmen mentioned that they had an older Pilot that was in our price range. We had previously thought that it would be too small and not fit the three car seats, but after a careful re-examining, we think we may be wrong. We're planning on bringing the car seats to the dealer tomorrow and trying it out, and if it fits, we may have found our car.

After the car shopping, we rushed home and then right back out to Delaware Valley Pediatrics where we took a tour to see if we wanted to use them as our baby doctors. We've gotten some good recommendations about them and we liked what we saw at the office (and they're pretty close to home), so I think we'll be seeing a lot of them.

And that is that. It looks like another busy day tomorrow, but if it's as good as today was we won't have any complaints.

Just for kicks, I took a picture of our freezer today. These two-ounce bottles of breast milk have taken over our freezer. We now keep our meats salted and cured and hanging from a tether in the back yard.


Michele from FTHS said...

What a wonderful day AGAIN! Keep it up, Little D's! You three will be home in that beautiful nursery in no time.

Lori said...

It is great hearing such wondeful news about your kids. When you are test driving vehicles, don't forget about cargo room. Triple strollers take up a lot of room. A Pilot might fit 3 carseats, but will it fit a triple stroller? We have an 8 passenger Toyota Sienna and love it.

Anonymous said...

C'mon Annaleigh - we need some weight gain here. I'll give you whatever you want of mine...

Those three pictures are absolutely adorable. I am hysterical with them and of course Michael is laughing at me.

Good luck with the van.

All My Love, Auntie :) xooxo

Denise said...

Glad to hear your children are doing well! We take Abby to Delaware Valley Pediatrics. We love it there. If you have any questions let me know!

Denise and George

OMG Triplets said...

Awesome news! I agree with Lori. We are in that predicament now. We have a Nissan Murano and can't fit the triple stroller in the back. We will be test driving pretty soon as well!! Right now, we use a double and single stroller and when I'm by myself I use the double and carry one on the front of me. But now they are older, we need the triple stroller and there's no room for it in my vehicle : ( Good luck! Grow babies grow!

Jade said...

I am so glad to hear that the babies are doing well and growing. Sorry about the stinky diapers!! Maybe they will get better.

We have a 2009 Honda Pilot and absolutely love it. We do not have children, so as far as the car seat thing goes, I'm not sure, but the car itself is wonderful! I really hope that you are able to get that one. I don't think you will be disapointed expecially since you are familiar with Honda already. Good luck

Quince Family said...

Also, make sure that you think about their rear and forward-facing convertable car seats too. Sometimes the infant seats fit but, depending on the brand, you might have trouble fitting 3 across on the big kid car seats. Just a thought...and also remember cargo room. You have to carry a lot of stuff with you when you have multiples (strollers, big diaper bags, etc.)
So glad to hear the kiddos are doing well and you're right--they ARE looking bigger in their pictures! Becoming cuter by the day!
Shady06 (multiple mamas)

Anonymous said...

Great news on the trio! As far as all that breast milk, I can't help but think "Thank God it wasn't in the extra refrigerator/freezer!"

Annie said...

I look forward to reading your blog every day and seeing how the babies are doing. Ah, love to see all that breast milk in the freezer - I remember those days! Nice work, Brooke!

We just got a Honda Pilot in March and are absolutely crazy about it. I can't attest to how many car seats it fits, but I do know that it is a great vehicle. We are a Honda family too!

mrsolsenk12 said...

Yay Annaleigh!! That is great that she is on total room air. What a big step. Now she just needs some weight gain. Yay for Charlie and Lily for their milestones as well. Just think, soon they will all be coming home.

tibicheri said...

What a touching story, I'm having a hard time reading with the tears flowing. I wish you so many blessings and the strength to get through this. My heart goes out to you with the loss of little Annaleigh! Are they allowing you to hold these babies skin-to-skin as in kangaroo mother care. I notice you're both always so covered up and the babies are wrapped. Ask them, no tell them that your babies need that if that is not being done.

Good luck to you and your babies are so lucky to have that wonderful milk supply and both of you loving parents