Tuesday, December 20, 2011
Preemie Life - Day 53 A foot in the face....
Cheetah had another speech evaluation today. She did awful...or did she? Her suck was atrocious, her breathing pattern erratic, she fell asleep after only a few minutes. BUT...that was actually an improvement. The last two times she was given a bottle she refused to eat anything. This time she drank 15 ounces. Of course that doesn't win you any points with the team. They are ordering another week of nothing hoping she will mature. For me being there and watching was a major breakthrough. I never wanted her to have a bottle in the first place but agreed to it hoping it would get her home by Christmas since I couldn't be there to nurse at every feeding. Today watching them hold her sideways, gloved up blue hands poking her lips, the messed up latch she had after using the ridiculous nipples they insist on, it hit me...why am I even allowing this. It's obvious she's not making it home for Christmas so why rush. It will be another week before they let her try again and when they do I'm going to insist on it being momma. Dr. J has the week of her due date off. That is 2 1/2 weeks for her to figure out her breathing and then maybe I can get those two days of full PO feeds in. And then hopefully we can get her home ....because 70 days of living in a hospital, well let's just saying it is getting a little excessive! Dr. J says he doesn't know what he's going to do with me if she doesn't make it home on her due date week. He's thinking monumental breakdown. Let's hope we don't have to find out.
Meanwhile in true doctor fashion, Dr. J is working nights this month, including Christmas Eve and Christmas. Obviously not the most ideal. It would have been my nature to gripe, gripe, gripe but this Christmas I'm on the other side as well. My little darling is spending Christmas Eve and Christmas day in the hospital, and it really struck me what a stress a hospital stay is. As a hospitalist there is no such thing as days off. People are sick at night, they are sick on weekends, they are sick on holidays, and they need people to be there for them. What they don't need are people who are grouched out because they feel they are getting cheated out of holiday. Dr. J and I talked about how disappointing it must be for these kids and their parents to be in the hospital over Christmas. We decided the man for sure needs a Santa hat and perhaps should fill his pockets with candy canes. I guess there are always lessons to be learned, and maybe my mom is right, these are lessons that make you a better doctor that no one is going to teach you in medical school. Enough already though! Please no more lessons this year :) At least not while we are on night shift. The whole 5pm to 7am shift has it's own weird little quirks. For one we eat dinner at 3...which means people who don't need more then three meals a day (ME) are eating at least 4. Then there is the lack of sleep. The bright spot, my husband can sleep through anything. When I was a child my step father worked night shift. It was a nightmare. My parents kept their room completely black, kids needed to stay completely quite, and he always did these random prep nights where he'd be up in the middle of the night watching weird movies and sleep days he wasn't working. Blah!!!! My husband starts his first shift with just a nap, then when he comes home for any following shifts he conks out like someone hit him over the head. The light doesn't bother him, the noise doesn't bother him, conversation doesn't bother him. This morning I came in and Peach was jumping around on the bed. I brought her into the bathroom with me to shower and the noises didn't bother him one bit. A half hour later I came back upstairs and found her again in the bed. This time she was laying with her feet at his face, kicking him with her fur lined boots, saying, "Wake up daddy, wake up." He never even shifted out of REM sleep! Later I found Gigi in the room talking at him about her My Little Ponys. I gathered her up out of the room and he rolled over and was out again quicker then I could say dream state. The man is a sleeping machine. When we were first married it used to drive me crazy. His elaborate setting of multiple alarms, multiple times, the amount of time he let pass before he'd get up, I found it exceptionally distracting. And then there was his lack of alert. I'd wake up in the middle of the night freaked by a noised I'd heard, and he was totally out of it. It became glaringly obvious that if someone was going to knock robbers on the head with a bat it wasn't going to be him. But now with four children and crazy night shift hours I see the man was born with a pure gift! I'm so grateful because it makes my life/the kids lives so much easier.