Tuesday, August 23, 2011

The Girls Are Here! (update #2)

Wow, we’re already d-day +1! Time is flying by so quickly. I didn’t want Meg to be alone in the hospital, so I stayed over with her last night. She got the big cushy hospital bed and I got the couch that converted to a slab of concrete. It must be nice to be mom :)

I went back and read yesterday’s update and realized I didn’t really explain how we got to this point at 29 weeks and three days. During Meg’s weekly MFM appointment last Wednesday, they decided that they wanted to start seeing her three times a week for monitoring, as they were concerned about Isabelle’s cord blood flow. Basically, her end diastolic flow had been occasionally absent. They told us last week if they began seeing reverse flow that they would take the babies out to make sure that Izzy wouldn’t be at risk.

Well, what began as a very ho-hum Monday morning, turned into the most amazing day of my life when I received a call from Meg at 8:20am as I was pulling into the parking garage at work. Meg had her 8:00am appointment and as soon as the sonographer noticed that Isabelle had some reverse flow, they called the MFM into the room, he made an executive decision to get our girls out, and off to the OR they went.

While Meg was surprisingly calm, I was extremely panicked. These babies weren’t supposed to be here for another three weeks. Meg said, “Honey, they’re delivering the babies this morning. Go home and get our hospital bag and get over here.” Then, about ten minutes later, as I was minutes away from the house, she called back and said, “Forget what I said. Get to the hospital because they want to deliver within the hour.” I told her I was minutes away from home and received approval to pick up the items we needed, as they would wait for me if I could get there quickly.

I’m not exactly sure what happened, but my brain kind of stopped working. As soon as I walked in the house, I forgot everything I had been sent there to retrieve.   My wife must have figured this would happen because she left a list at home for me. When I finally arrived at the hospital, I couldn’t remember “Do I park in the North or the South parking lot for Labor & Delivery?” Even though Meg and I took an entire five-week, 10-class Marvelous Multiples baby session, which included a tour of the hospital, I completely blanked on how to get to L&D. After receiving instructions from some very nice ladies at the front desk who obviously witnessed this sort of behavior before from expecting dads, I finally found Meghan, who was already gowned up and ready to go into the OR.

I had to put on my own hazmat suit before being allowed to participate and couldn’t help but think of lunch lady references once I put on my hair head net. How childish am I?

They wheeled Meghan back to the OR first and came to get me once they had set up her spinal. She was feeling no pain. In fact, since our heads were behind the big curtain, neither of us realized they were actually cutting in to her belly until I saw a moderately red latex glove reaching up to adjust the light on the other side of the curtain.

They told us as they were pulling each of the girls out, but we didn’t hear cries right away. In fact, they had to put tubes down each of their throats so they could apply surfactant to their lungs. Once that was done, while we were still in the OR, we heard each of them cry before they were whisked away to the NICU. The original plan was for me to go with the babies, but they needed about an hour with them in the NICU before they would let me see them. At that point, Meg needed me more. The spinal had worked great, but as they were “cleaning up the insides,” Meg felt some uncontrollable visceral pain. They didn’t really prepare us for that. She was squeezing so hard, I thought she was going to snap my thumb right off. Well, we survived, thumbs intact.

My wife is such a trooper. She didn’t end up falling asleep until around midnight last night and it was only because I needed to get some sleep and strongly suggested that we turned out the lights. I think she was on such a high yesterday. Besides that 15-30 minute clean-up period in the OR, she had a permagrin pretty much all day long. She was told not to stand or walk around during her first day, but by the evening, she was in the NICU, walking around with her IV bag, cleaning the babies with little wipes.

I even got in on the action and changed Isabelle’s diaper. I’ve faced some pretty tough challenges, but I’ve never encountered anything more intimidating than a 1 lb 7 oz girl with a wet diaper. Talk about scary! She looked so frail and I was so afraid that I was going to hurt her with my meat hooks. We both survived.

We went to bed last night with all of the girls doing extremely well. They all had just the nasal cannulas and were breathing on room air. The nurses in the NICU did tell us that the first 24 hours is considered the “honeymoon” period and that hours 25-72 could be a little unpredictable. Madelyn had a small bout with apnea earlier in the day, but by bedtime, that had disappeared. Besides being featherweights, none of our girls are having any obvious issues at this time.

Meg did well overnight and had her catheter and IV removed this morning. She’s up and walking around and even got to shower. She began pumping last night and I can already tell this is going to be an arduous process to keep up with. We’ll get through it though, just like we always do.

We’re off to see our babies and spend some time in the NICU. Enjoy the pics below!

Baby Madelyn - apparently the hair is a protective mechanism for preemies and it will fall off of the places where it doesn't belong

Baby Madelyn - apparently the extra hair is a protective mechanism that you see on preemies and will disappear as she grows larger


Baby Isabelle

Baby Isabelle - grasping Meg's finger

Look at those tiny digits

Apparently, there is a diaper size smaller than Preemie.  It's called WeePee.  How funny!

Isabelle's miniature foot and ankle.  The nurse was putting a bandage on after her heel prick.

Hi Baby Sophia!

Sophia was doing what I was thinking

Sophia taking her first look at us


Baby Sophia soaking up some fake sun with her eye protectors

Baby Isabelle catching some zzzzz's

Look at the small little red hand

Baby Isabelle taking a quick peek at us

Proud parents

Dad and Baby Madelyn

Dad and Baby Sophia

Baby Madelyn


Mom and her tiniest daughter

Dad being intimidated by someone weighing < 2 lbs

I'm not sure who was more scared


14 comments:

  1. Our baby c had the exact same cord flow issues. She was 2lbs even at birth and is now 15-14 and as wild and healthy as can be! Congratulations on your beautiful girls!!!

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  2. Congratulations on your babies! They are beautiful!

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  3. wow, so glad they are here and healthy! congrats!

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  4. Congratulations! They are so beautiful. My husband can relate to your feelings on that first diaper change.

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  5. Praise God! So happy for y'all! In one of those pictures of Sophia, I think she looks just like her Mommy:) The other 2, I couldn't tell. As hard as it is to have the NICU experience, enjoy the amazing help and love of those special NICU nurses!

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  6. now the tough part begins...be ready for the NICU two-step and don't be afraid to cry. it's a major roller coaster ride. here's a great website for "clothing" for your little beautiful girls...http://www.jacquispreemiepride.com

    the owner is terrific!

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  7. Congratulations on your sweet babies! My triplets are now ten months old. Trust me, as hard as it is to leave them in the NICU while they are growing, tell your wife to use that time to heal. She's gonna need all her strength when they come home!

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  8. So happy things are going well so far! Keep your chin up and just be ready for the roller coaster. Nothing may happen at all, but it is still an emotional journey you go thru while they are in there. There are a lot of people out here pulling for your guys and don't hesitate to ask and advise from any of us! Congradulations Dad!!! Your going to do great!

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  9. Wow! I still can't believe they're here! They are so precious! You got some really great shots of everyone, which will no doubt be treasured for a lifetime. The night I finally got discharged and was preparing to go home, after being in the same hospital with the babies for a week, I unexpectedly SOBBED. And I mean, uncontrollable, obnoxious sobbing. It felt so strange to leave my 3 tiny babies there. But it got easier (Well, until I got to bring 2 home and still had to leave Colton.) But that's another whole saga. But really, those NICU nurses and docs become like family and you KNOW your babies are in good hands. It was kind of nice for someone to teach us how to bathe miniature babies and exactly how to feed them, diaper them etc. ANd quite frankly, I attribute their great sleeping to the routine they came home from the nicu with! Enjoy this time and keep taking pics! We're soaking em in! :) Tell Meghan she is gorgeous! And good job to you, Jeremy! Your girls are lucky to have you be so involved!

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  10. As a fellow TTTS Mom, I kind of, sort of understand what you have been through.....but I only had twins! I am amazed by the three tiny beauties you have. What a story, and what a wonderful family you are. We will continue to send good wishes and prayers from Ohio. Congratulations!

    Laurie H in OH

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  11. This is a beautiful website and the pictures of the lovely babies are amazing. I am so very happy for you and your wife and those amazing girl's.

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  12. Your girls are beautiful! Pretty soon they'll all be running around and painting their nails pink :)

    CONGRATULATIONS Meghan and Jeremy. You'll make wonderful parents!
    xo
    Ania & Chuck

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  13. Congratulations on your beautiful girls and welcome to the wonderful world of multiples! I love your blog and I can't wait to watch them grow up!

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