Friday, June 10, 2011

Appointment Updates Home Day 10! (118)

Well home life is getting much easier and everyone is settling in. Since day 1 Joey has been great with Calen. We have not had any problems with him being jealous or acting out negatively because of a new person being in the house. We believe Joey is just happy that we are home everyday now with him. Calen has had plenty of follow up appointments to attend and we have got through a majority of them. Two days after being out of the hospital we went to the pediatrician. They did a well baby check up and gave him some routine shots. He is healthy, no noted problems. Last known weight was taken yesterday and he is 6 pounds 8 ounces. 

We had a home health care visit the next day, we really didn't have any question for her though because we had already seen the pediatrician and she answered our questions, plus this lady was kinda wacky, she told us that we should not swaddle him, thought that was odd. 

Next thing we did was go see the surgeon and the audiologist. Surgery is scheduled for July 13 at Children's in Dayton. They will be doing surgery to repair the left inguinal hernia but prior to operating the surgeon will laproscopicly look at the right side as well to see if there is a hernia on the right side, he said that hernias were much more common on the right than the left and since he did have one on the left, there was a good chance that he had one on his right, it just wasn't showing, so he will check that out. The surgery is pretty simple and is normal one that they have and go home same day, but due to Calen's age and oxygen needs he has to stay for 23 hour observation, so we will be spending the night. As for the audiologist, it was great news and that he passed his hearing test on both ears. I held him though out the test and he was pretty well relaxed so it went quickly and smoothly. 

The next day we went back to Children's to see the Dietician to check up on his eating patterns. The Dietitian did a check of height, weight, head circumference, all those good things and said that he was doing great, that there was no real eating concerns at this point and as long as he is growing then we have nothing to worry about. We do have to keep him on Neosure though until at least the end of the year which is an expensive premie formula. 

We were supposed to be seeing a Pulmonologist in two weeks after discharge but there was no available appointments. We have to wait until July 8 to see one. They will be managing his oxygen and lasix therapy. So until we get around to seeing them Calen has to stay on oxygen and the meds. 

Speaking of medications, while we were at the pediatrician we asked about Calen having really bad acid reflux, she had no problem with treating it and he was started on Zantac, it is working like a charm already and he is able to lay flat in his bassinet now without lots of crying. Calen really is on a schedule and is pretty easy. We feed him every 3 hours and other than that he is a really quite kid and he loves being in his swing, that is where he sleeps the best at. 

I know you guys are probably ready for some pictures so I ill get them up, hopefully tomorrow, I am excited for Saturday, it will be the first day where Holly and I actually don't have to be anywhere, we can just stay at home and relax a little bit and we finished a surprise for Joey so he will have fun playing on his new Jungle Gym tomorrow. 

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

We are at Home! Day 1! (109)

6 pounds 4 ounces

Calen's weight at discharge wasn't to bad. It is actually surprising, I was expecting to take home a baby that was around 5 pounds but we got a whole extra pound out of him. Of course we were at the hospital an extended period of time and he packed on the weight really fast. 

So lets start by saying that we are very excited to have Calen home, this is for many reasons; 1. He is our son and we love him and he belongs at home with his family. 2. We no longer have to drive every single day to Miami Valley to see him, and this will play a huge role in freeing up a lot of time to tackle all the major projects that must occur around the house this summer. 3. We get to spend lot's more time with Joey, get him used to Calen, spend ampule time with him during these young years of his life. There is of course the difficulties that will be present with him home; we have to get up all through the night to ensure he is eating, we have to work with this apnea monitor and oxygen he is on. These are simple machines but the tubes and wires and all can really get in the way fast. 

Last night I stayed up with Calen till 1 am while Holly slept. After we attempted to eat at 1 am I got him all wrapped up an ready to sleep for the first time in the bassinet. I am going to need to elevate the head of his bed, something under the mattress in order to keep his head up a little so that he doesn't have a bunch of problems with acid reflux. Last night it seemed that he was experiencing some issues with it when I laid him down, he sleeps fine while he is in the swing or while being held. Holly ended up getting up with him at 4 and 7am. Then I got back up at 9 with him. Same thing though with his eating patterns being pretty wacky. 

Calen's oxygen setup. The concentrator run's 24/7. It is kinda noisy. We have it in the kitchen now because sitting in there his tubing will reach his room, the living room, and our bedroom, so we don't have to move it around. They supplied us with 80 hours worth of portable tanks, which should be plenty for a long while, well at least until next week when we get busy with appointments. 

This is the sleep apnea machine. We have to keep him on this machine 24 hours a day, which is really the worst part because we can't get rid of these wires. It simply just runs and has some blinking lights and then if his heart rate was to go high, low, or he is to stop breathing for 20 seconds there is a alarm that goes off that sounds like 10 fire alarms going off at one time, so that has happened 2 times since we have been home, not sure if there was actually a problem or if it was because of a false reading, it doesn't display any numbers so it is hard to know what it actually happening. This thing has long cords and is a pain cause you have to carry it around with Calen. 

Before we left the hospital yesterday we decided to make sure he got a bath. The funny thing about it was that Holly wanted him to have a bath because we are currently unsure of the where abouts of our baby tub. We think it is stored with a bouncy seat and a boppie, so I have to find those today, I think they are stored up the attic, hot days are my favorite time to be up there. 

Getting ready for his bath. 

Packets full of paper work that we got sent home with. Check out his chart, it got pretty thick which is an indicator that it is time for him to go home, so lucky he did, don't think much more paper is going to fit in that chart. 

This was probably the last good bottle that he has taken and it was right before we left the hospital. We have not changed anything on his feeding regimen but he is still not eating well here at home. We really think that it is because he is in a completely different environment now. He has to deal with the sounds of being in the house, of people, the tv, a 2 year old hovering over him. So he is off a bit but I think that we will be able to get him back on track here soon. He is eating a decent amount, it's just instead of eating every 3 hours, he is wanting to eat every hour, but only take like 10-20 ml so we are hopeful that we can work that out soon. 

All the machines at the hospital discharged and all there things unhooked, kinda of a sad and good feeling at the same time. So much growing and developing occurred right there in that room and as much as we are glad to be home we will definitely miss those who took care of Calen. 

All settled into his car seat ready to head for the car. The car seat swallows him up he is so tiny. 

His eye's wide open ready to head out.

Holly and our Nurse Stephanie gathering up all the supplies to walk him out of his room. 

Out the NICU doors.

In the elevator watching him do something cute. 

He is in the car ready to go. He was quite the entire drive. He slept I am sure the most of it. I forgot what it's like to have a child facing backward, you can't look back and see them which really stinks. 

Quick shot as we were leaving the hospital. Last time we should see that sign in a good long while.

Were home and this is the first time that Joey has ever for to see Calen. He did really well, he knew his name and was very nice to him. 

Joey was the first one to hold him once we were home. He enjoyed holding him. 

Joey giving Calen a kiss. 

Joey is doing a really good with Calen. He is not acting out because he is jealous or anything like that, he is acting pretty normal. He has been sitting in Calen's swing, he seems to think it is a comfortable seat to be in. He was trying to swing Calen in his swing last night ratherly hard so we had to stop that. He also likes to climb up in the chair with whoever is holding Calen and pull Calen's bottle out of his mouth, don't know why but that is something that he has done multiple times.

So this was pretty cool. They save this card of his foot prints when he was born and then on the day that he goes home. It is incredible how much he has grown since he was born. Very cool to see that.

We did a late night wrist band cutting ceremony. I think I would have actually preferred to have them removed at the hospital when they took off Calen's but they didn't. Thats ok though Holly and I had a nice ceremony with Susan at home. 

We have multiple appointments coming up for Calen. It will be a lot of visiting for a while in order to meet all of Calen's needs. We will be seeing our pediatrician in the morning, we have appointments with the surgeon, audiologist, and nutritionist next week. We have to see to see a lung doctor in July and in 4 months we have to go in for a comprehensive developmental exam. Calen did have to come home with some medicines, he came home on lasix every day and multi vitamin twice a day. 

So I am not sure if it is Calen or if it is the Dr. Brown bottles but he has so much gas, he passes tons of gas and after about 20 ml of breast milk he will burp like 3-4 times. I have never known anyone to burp that much . So it makes me wonder why he is doing it, cause if it is the Dr. Brown bottles causing it, I think that is impressive, that means poor babies using other bottles probably have very air filled bellies. 

Just to update you from today since I did not post this last night but had started it, Calen is improving on his bottle's. We are now taking 45-50 every 3 hours consistently. He is getting more comfortable in his environment. Hope I covered everything that is happening. We are home now, I plan to continue the blog all the way through his surgery and then I am not completely sure what I will be doing with it.