Friday, August 21

Friday Update

It's Friday again already? My how time flys in the NICU...well, at least when Bryce is doing well. And boy oh boy is Bryce doing well.

He's 4 pounds, 4 ounces and gaining almost daily.

The docs adjusted his feeds for his new weight this morning so he's getting 40 cc of 27 calorie breast milk every 3 hours and tolerating it amazingly well. They had to adjust his feeds to go in over two hours (up from one hour) because his glucose was getting low between feeds. That did the trick though and he certainly doesn't seem to mind.

The gang of neurologists that stalk the halls around here made another surprise visit this afternoon. Actually they just left. Dr. George wants to hold off on making any concrete plans until after the weekly head ultrasound they do every Monday. He said he can tell that the pocket of fluid is a litter stiffer but it seems to be holding up really well.

All in all it also seems from my perspective that Bryce's head must be okay right now. Usually his oxygen needs go up and he becomes less tolerant of even the most minimal stimulation when its shunt time again. But he's hanging out at 32 - 36% oxygen and wide awake for at least a couple of hours in the morning and evening. He looks around all bright eyed, following voices, movement or his new mobile.

He's also got several nurses and respiratory therapists so wrapped around his cute little finger that they will gladly stand at his bedside for prolonged periods of time holding his paci for him. You see he absolutely loves it but he sucks so passionately on it that he pushes it out of his mouth. It's pretty much the cutest thing. It starts with his nose moving up and down with the sucking, then pretty soon his whole head is working on the movement, his jaw smacking up and down dramatically, even his ears get in on the labor.

Caleb's big, persistent request finally became a reality yesterday. He's been asking and asking to hold Bryce like a "real" baby (his words, not mine). And yesterday he did. I keep reminding him that Bryce is a "real" baby - trying to persuade him of this so he's ready for the day they let us take him home. Of course, Caleb knows he's real but he wanted so badly to be able to hold him facing up so he could stare at him the whole time. And, indeed, he did stare at him for a solid hour yesterday as they both got to enjoy some special time together.

Well, we're heading home again for the evening tonight. I'm excited to be picking up a Pottery Barn changing table I found on craig's list for Bryce tomorrow morning and putting the first piece of furniture in his nursery. It's finally starting to come together and I know it's going to be great. Abuelita has been working hard on it and so far the blue walls are done, the green Seuss hills have been added and the Lorax begun. Caleb installed the rope lighting last weekend and we put up his big red B I found him too.

Here are some pictures of where we are now. I'll continue to post updates as progress is made.

Thanks to everyone who has sent or brought gifts recently. I'm sorry I haven't had a chance to formally thank you for the cutest preemie clothes (he wears them all the time and is oh sooooo cute in them), homemade cookies (Bryce got a little taste from my milk and said they were the yummiest - Daddy and I agree whole heartedly) and blankets (he regularly goes through several a day).

And of course, thanks for continuing to stick by us with your calls, comments, prayers and love. We can't even imagine how other families get through this without all of the love and support we have - we are so blessed, in so many ways.

Tuesday, August 18

A New Friend is Born

My precious baby boy is growing up so fast! He's now officially 4 lbs and 3.5 oz!! I held him in my arms this morning and he looks just like a regular new born now, well only a bit smaller.

No new changes today, except that Bryce no longer has any IVs, PIC lines or ART lines. He is wire free - now if we could just get that tube out of his mouth we'd be making some serious progress. All in due time.

I was blessed enough to witness another birth today, too! One of my oldest and dearest friends, Jennifer, had her own baby boy today. Cayd was born at 1:40 p.m. weighing in at a whopping 6 lbs 14 oz and was 20 inches long. When I saw Cayd all I could think was what a miracle child birth is...well that and, holy cow that baby is HUGE! Of course, he is just right. Just a bit bigger than our precious boy.

Watch out Cayd - Bryce is working on growing big and strong so you guys can keep your moms on their toes together someday. Just like we used to our own parents!

Monday, August 17

Special Visitors

We had a couple of special visitors today! Bryce's Great Aunt Rhoda and Great Uncle Chuck came by today to see how he's growing. It's been a few weeks since they were here and they were so pleased to see he's bigger and more alert than ever. He opened his eyes wide open for them and they even got to witness a temper tantrum as he was having his diaper changed.

Of course, neurology just came by as well. Bryce's weekly head ultrasound was this morning. It hasn't officially been read by the neurologist yet but the neurology nurse practioner reviewed it and said it looks mostly the same as last week. She was pleased with his growth and surprisingly said she thought we might be able to set up Bryce's VP shunt. We are excited because it means there is a chance this could be the last time we have to take him down to the OR but hesitant because it's a new, more complicated procedure.

I'm trying not to get too ahead of myself though because it can all change in the blink of an eye.

Sunday, August 16

Big Boy Bed

Yep - Bryce is no longer an incubator baby! Okay, okay so they don't actually call them incubators anymore. The PC term is "isolette." Same difference and no matter anyway because Bryce is in a crib now!

He is so stinking cute in it too, if I do say so myself. It's the most wonderful thing in the world to be able to walk right up to him, rest my head on the edge of his crib and just watch him sleep. Or talk to him and know that he's hearing me loud and clear.

I loved having visitors yesterday and watching them all stand around him and coo over him. I think he liked it too.

Abuelita and G2 stayed with him most of the day yesterday so we could enjoy our weekly hiatus home. But then Jeff and Mary brought by Bryce's girlfriend, Adalyn, for a visit. Of course, Adalyn had to stay out in the waiting room with uncle Caleb and Jeff was more than a little concerned about this but they both did great! And we were thrilled to see a cute little baby we could hold and pass around. I can't wait until that day with Bryce.