Friday, May 30, 2008

Ducks, Hippos, and the ER

We have been super busy around here. In fact a friend told me today that she thought I was avoiding her calls!
It was a great Memorial Day weekend. We stayed in town and had a picnic at a fun park and went to a local petting zoo. Elizabeth wasn't crazy about the animals, but Ava loved them all. I did not care for the ducks who were biting my toes- too many people feed these things and they think they are to be feed by everyone who goes near them!

Elizabeth is still giving us trouble with eating. Her volume is way down and now she is vomiting for no reason. I can't begin to describe how frustrating it is to me to try to get her to eat and all she does is cry and push the bottle away. Now it seems that she is vomiting every thing up! Last night Elizabeth and I had some special time together-in the ER. She cried for two hours and was vomiting and continued to do so one the drive to the hospital. I had to ask for a wet washcloth to clean her up while I was waiting (which wasn't long). As soon as we walk in the door Elizabeth was all smiles. This girl loves the hospital! It must be the antiseptic soap smell or something that reminds her of all her days there. After 3 hours there we were discharged with a "crabby baby" diagnosis. Since she had a clean bill of health and was wake, at 11pm, we went up to the NICU to visit some of the night shift. We obviously never visit them, so it was really great to see them. In fact there were 3 people there who were there the night she was born.

In regards to her eating and vomiting, I spoke with her dermatologist today about taking her off the steroid we are treating her hemangioma with. He agreed and we are starting to taper off this drug, just stopping is dangerous so we have to give her body a chance to wean off it. Lets hope it works and she will be back to her old self, because I don't know how much longer I can take it! Just tonight she has thrown up twice and has taken more than 3 hours to get to bed.

Today my mom and I took the girls to the zoo and were there all day and had a great time. Elizabeth liked watching the water fountains in a pool and Ava liked the frogs, monkey, and grandma! I liked the baby orangutan (so cute!) and watching a hippo wake up and go get in the water. You wouldn't believe how slow that thing moves!!! I think grandma like Ava and Elizabeth best!

Elizabeth also got two new teeth on top last week! That makes four total.

Here are a few pictures to enjoy!

Elizabeth's First Picnic

Not to be out done

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

How Preemie Moms are Choosen

How Preemie Moms Are Chosen

--by Erma Bombeck

Did you ever wonder how the mothers of premature babies are chosen?

Somehow, I visualize God hovering Earth, selecting his instruments for propagation with great care and deliberation. As he observes, he instructs his angels to take notes in a giant ledger.

"Armstrong, Beth, son. Patron Saint...give her Gerard. He's used to profanity."

Finally, he passes a name to an angel and smiles. "Give her a preemie."

The angel is curious. "Why this one God? She's so happy."
"Exactly," smiles God. "Could I give a premature baby a mother who knows no laughter? That would be cruel."

"But does she have the patience?" asks the angel.

"I don't want her to have too much patience, or she'll drown in a sea of self-pity and despair.
Once the shock and resentment wear off, she'll handle it.

I watched her today. She has that sense of self and independence so rare and so necessary in a mother.
You see, the child I am going to give her has a world of it's own. She has to make it live in her world, and that's not going to be easy."

God smiles. "This one is perfect. She has just the right amount of selfishness. "
The angel gasps, "Selfishness! Is that a virtue?"

God nods. "If she can't separate herself from the child occasionally, she will never survive. Yes, here is a woman whom I will bless with a child less than perfect. She doesn't know it yet, but she is to be envied.

She will never take for granted a spoken word. She will never consider a step ordinary. When her child says "momma" for the first time, she will be witness to a miracle and know it.

I will permit her to see cleary the things that I see - ignorance, cruelty, prejudice - and allow her to rise above them.

She will never be alone. I will be at her side every minute of every day of her life because she is doing my work as surely as she is here by my side."

"But what about her Patron Saint?" asks the angel, his pen poised in the air. God smiles.
"A mirror will suffice."


My favorite line is that "she will be witness to a miracle and know it". I really like this, although I do think it is a little over the top!

Elizabeth climbing the steps this weekend. Another moment of a knowing that we are witnesses to miracles

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Indy Photo Shoot!

Here are a few of the pictures that Matt's cousin Kiera took this weekend. We are so lucky to have her talent in the family! Thanks Kiera!

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

First Post

Elizabeth had a weight check today. We have finally hit the 13 pound mark 13 pounds 2 ounces to be exact!!! I held my breath as the nurse was sliding the slides on the scale, I was almost afarid to look. I wasn't sure what her weight would be, she didn't eat well over the weekend and has had bouts of vomiting after she coughs. The steroids seems to be working and reducing the size of the hemangioma. Her blood pressure was normal today, so so far so good. We see her dermatologist on Friday, so we will find out how much longer she will need to stay on the prelone.

Eating continues to be a struggle. Elizabeth has good days and bad days. Last night she had over 26 ounces of her 30 cal formula! She refuses to eat baby food now. She is a big girl and will only eat table food, who knows how much any food actually makes it down. It looks like most of the food is spit out as soon as she puts it in her mouth. She loves cheese and veggies. Really anything on the floor will do too. My shopping has taken a different turn. I still look at labels, but when it comes to anything Elizabeth will eat; the higher the fat the better!

We had a huge and busy weekend. We started with Ava's soccer game, she scored a goal! She was so cute jumping up and down, very proud of herself while everyone cheered for her. We traveled to visit both sets of grandparents and had a stop in Indy to visit some more family. We spent the day at the Indy zoo, the girls had fun with their cousins (second really) and we were able to see some great animals. Ava had her first pony ride and was all smiles, it was worth every penny! Elizabeth loved her cousin Eli, who is the same gestational age, but literately twice her size! Elizabeth did about everything she could to get a hold of Eli. Eli isn't much of a mover, so he was an easy target for Elizabeth!