Saturday, February 27, 2010

Together Again!!!

13 days out and the boys are still doing great! We're still working on eating but the other night both Nick and Jake ate their entire bottles! The goal is to get them eating all of their bottles withing 30 minutes. We're on our way! Yesterday they were all acting hungry either right after they ate (making us think they needed more) or much earlier then their next scheduled feeding. So, today I'll ask about moving them to a three hour schedule. I know the doctors there are wonderful and trust their decisions but I don't like seeing my babies hungry! It never hurts to ask!

Our nurse yesterday, Bridgett, is a mother of twins. She was asking me if I've held all three boys at the same time yet. I told her I had not and she was floored! She was determined to make that happened. She unhooked all of their monitors, brought me a big chair and filled my arms with three precious bundles of joy. It was the first time the three of them have been together since they were born and it was wonderful! They all seemed so content lying there together. It was 15 minutes I'll never forget. All that was missing was my Mr. Luke.....then it would have been perfect!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Almost Cord-Free!!!

(Jake, Mack, Nick and Luke!)
The boys are ten days old today and still moving through all of this like little champs! All of them are off of their IV nutrition which means their getting everything they need just from the food they're given every four hours! Because of that, Jake was able to get the UVC out of his belly and Nick and Mack were able to get their PICC lines removed! Nick got his out yesterday but we had to wait and do Mack's today because his temperature warm around 99 yesterday and they were worried he might be trying to fight something off. It turns out his isolette (his little condo!) was too warm and he's doing a great job of regulating his own body temperature which is something else we're working on right now! So....although we were concerned that he might have a fever, it turns out that it was great news and we're another step closer to getting him home! Our little Jake is now 4lbs 2ozs so he's finally in the 4lb range! Nick was 5 lbs yesterday but lost a couple of ounces today so he's weighing 4lbs 14ozs and Mack is at 4lbs 8ozs. The doctor said he's not concerned about them losing a couple of ounces and is going to continue to increase their feedings. They're all trying to nurse and we're trying to get them to take their entire feedings from a bottle. Once they get that down they'll be able to get the ng tubes removed from their little noses (that's how they're fed right goes directly into their bellies). It's much easier to hold them these days because the only wires hanging from them are from the electrodes that measure their heart rate and respiration. It's such a relief to know that if one of those cords gets "stuck" it won't hurt them if it pulls! They're all finally in little jammies and look so cozy! So....things continue to look up and we're looking so forward to the day when we can bring them home!

Friday, February 19, 2010

Growing and Feeding

The babies are a week old today and doing amazingly well!! It's been an emotional week but every day gets better and better. We really have been lucky and have had only minor obstacles in our way, and the boys have overcome every single one of them fairly quickly and easily. Here's the latest on each boy...

We'll start with Jake. He came out breathing on his own and has been ever since. He never needed any oxygen, which was wonderful especially since he was the littlest of the bunch. On Monday, the nurses told me they needed to put a PICC line in him. That is basically a port for an IV. They kept having to change the site of his IV and were worried about breaking the skin in too many places. The picc line would allow them to use that instead and that can stay in as long as they need it to. I was a mess when they told me that.....just so hormonal. Well, they tried to get it in an weren't able to so they ended up going through his belly button. It's basically the same thing but this can only stay in 7 or 8 days before it has to be taken out....a higher chance of infection if it stays longer than that. Then....the next obstacle. He wasn't digesting his food and they were pulling yucky stuff out of his belly. They made the decision to stop feeding him for a couple of days just to let his belly rest. That too broke my heart. But...they started him again on Friday and he's doing great and has actually just about caught up to Nick (they're eating the same amount)!!!! We got the news yesterday that he was digesting everything and it was the BEST day yet!!! He was also jaundiced and had to be under the bili lights but was taken off of those yesterday too. He's doing great.....such a little fighter!!!

Nick.....He came out breathing on his own too but started having trouble when they got him up to the NICU. They gave him some surfactant to help his lungs and put him on oxygen. He was only on oxygen for a couple of days and has been off for probably 4 days now. He got a picc line put in too and that went fine. He's digesting fine. He was jaundiced too and I think they're going to take him off the lights today! Joe called last night and they were trying to get him to drink from a bottle!! So....everything's awesome with him!

Mack....(His picture is not updated....he's no longer on oxygen!) He wasn't breathing when he came out and they had to intubate him. The little stinker had pulled the tube out before they even got out of the OR!!!! They got him taken care of and put him on some oxygen (none of them needed a ventilator...just a tube in their noses). He's been our little champion. He got a picc line too just to avoid having to keep changing the IV placement. He's been digesting fine and is eating so much he's almost ready to come off of IV nutrition completely. He was jaundiced but has been off of the lights since Thursday. There really haven't been any issues with him (knock on wood). He's doing amazingly well and at this point just needs to learn to eat from a bottle. They actually tried the other day but he wasn't ready. He also tried to nurse too! It was awesome!

All of this stuff is VERY common for babies born at 34 weeks. In fact, the nurse the other day told me she couldn't remember the last time they had "healthy" triplets in there and told me how much fun it was to take care of them. So...despite all the things that we think are so scary, they're actually pretty routine and the boys are considered "healthy" among the NICU staff.

The doctor told us that they'll probably be able to come home in two weeks!!!

Luke's been amazing through all of this. He has yet to meet his brothers but is very excited about it. (it'll be interesting to see how enthusiastic he is once they're really home!). He's been having a blast with Moma and Boompa and feeding the ducks with Aunt Sheila! I think the time we have with him now preparing him for their arrival is priceless.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Our Valentine's Day Gifts

The boys have arrived!! On Saturday, February 13th I started having contractions that were about nine minutes apart. Contractions were nothing new to me.....I had gotten quite used to having them and having them often, they just normally weren't consistent. Joe and I went back and forth about whether or not we should go in. I kind of thought maybe I was just having them because I had been on my feet a lot that day and not resting as much as I should have been. We finally decided it was better to be safe than sorry and we should just go make sure everything was OK. Papaw and Aunt Mary Ann came over to watch Luke and we were off to the hospital. It was about 6:30pm. We called mom and dad to let them know and they were in the car on their way. I thought it was a little ridiculous that they were coming but they insisted.

I was taken to a room shortly after we arrived at labor and delivery. They started monitoring the babies and the doctor came in to check me. I had dilated to 4 (the last time I was in I was at a 2) and I was 50% effaced. They made the decision to check me again in an hour and if nothing changed they would keep me until morning and check me again then. hour passes and they come to check me again. At that point I was still at a 4 and about 60% effaced so the decision was made to just check again the next morning. About 15 minutes after the doctor left I started to have very painful contractions and horrible back pains. I decided to call the doctor back in to check me again. This time I was dilated to about 4.5 and 80% effaced! She went to call Dr Demay who had been caring for me all along. She came back in and said "Are you ready to have these babies?" I asked "when" and she said "Right now!". I was scared to death....

They had given me a drug called Stadol to help with the pain from the contractions and it made me absolutely loopy. I hated the feeling! When it came time to head to the OR (c-section, of course!) they had to give me a spinal block. I was so dizzy and so was absolutely awful. Thinking back, it was actually an amazing experience. I was awake, so I could hear the babies cry as they came out but I couldn't feel a thing.

Jake was born first at 1:36am weighing 3lbs 15.5ozs and was 17.5 inches long. Nick was second at 4lbs, 11.5ozs and 17.5 inches long. Mack came third at 4lbs 5.5ozs and 16 inches long. Jake and Nick were breathing on their own but Mack needed a little help so they had to intubate him. He had pulled the tube out before they got out of the OR....little stinker!!

Oh....Mom and Dad.... They weren't able to be there when the babies were born but they made it all the way to TN and arrived at 4:00am!! Mom stayed at he hospital with me that night and Joe and Dad went home to try and get a few hours of sleep. Aunt Sheila was able to be there when the babies were born and she was our official photographer!

Welcome to the world Jake Douglas, Nick Brendahl and Mack Joseph! We love you so much and are so thrilled you are here! Can't wait for you to meet your big brother, Luke!!!