NICU Day 27: Fabulous Friday

The countdown has begun: 3 days ’til Sol comes home. We are still on track for discharge on Monday: Sol is now eating 80% of his feeds by mouth and is stable on room air. He had two full bottles with me during the day and three overnight. What a champ!

This is what our days have been looking like lately –

Sleeping instead of burping: IMG_1229.JPG

Enjoying the view:
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Gulping down lunch:
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Snoozing:
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Lounging with Mom:
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NICU Day 26: Keep On Truckin’

Another day in the NICU, and luckily it was a good one. After having a dream last night that I arrived to the hospital to find Sol back on oxygen, in reality, I arrived to find him sound asleep in his crib, on room air, with almost perfect oxygen levels. It’s so hard to not to worry that we’ll take some steps back when everything is going as well as it is.

Sol is still on the path for a Monday discharge (knock on wood!). He had a near full bottle for me at 9am and then chowed down a full bottle at 12pm. He was a bit crabby for his OT session at 11:30, but we still got some good stretching and tummy time in. He also had an MRI last night (we’ll likely hear results tomorrow) and was having his final round of EEG this afternoon. We’ll do a “car seat challenge” this weekend to see how his oxygen levels fare while in the car seat. Other than that, our main focus over the next couple of days is to keep on truckin’ with breathing and eating!

(You’ll have to excuse my poor quality photos. Sol’s regular photographer, his Dad, is a little under the weather. I’m hoping the good photos will return this weekend!)

Quality time with Nana:IMG_1218.JPG

Sleeping, cross-legged style:IMG_1221.JPG

NICU Day 25: Stop the Presses

We have a tentative discharge date!

The doctors are liking Sol’s progress so much that they’ve said as long as everything continues this way, he can come home on Monday, November 10th.

A few things to accomplish before then: stay off of oxygen support (it’s been over 48 hours since he’s needed it), continue feeding the majority of his meals via bottle and ideally be eating all of them by bottle by Monday, have an MRI, have one hour of EEGs to make sure there’s no breakthrough seizures, and complete the “car seat challenge” to make sure his oxygen levels stay good while in a car seat.

Whew! A lot to do in just a few days. We’re keeping all fingers, toes, and paws (thanks, Bella & Bentley) crossed that we stick on this path and can bring the little man home next week!

NICU Day 24: What the heck is normal, anyway?

No major updates today, folks, other than this one: Sol ate two full bottles overnight!! (I just took a pause from writing to throw confetti and dance around the room. Woo hoo!) When Mike and I got to the NICU today, it was clear that those two bottles took quite an effort because, boy, Sol was pooped. He did wake up for OT, though, and to take a bottle at 9am, 12pm, and 3pm, downing 30ml, 40ml, and 52ml, respectively. The rest of our visiting time was spent snoozing and snuggling, which was fine by me – I love to snuggle with the little man.

One thing that I’m sure most folks wonder is how a 3.5 week old baby acts after suffering an in utero stroke. It varies on a case by case basis, but Sol looks and acts like a normal newborn. He tracks us by both vision and sound, grabs our fingers, stretches, kicks, cries… When in tummy time, he lifts his head, turns it from left to right, and is really working to strengthen those neck muscles so he can hold his own head up. If he didn’t have a nasal feeding tube, you wouldn’t know he hit a bump in the road during his first days in the world.

Now that I’ve said that, I’m going to throw the concept of “normal” out the window, as well as what Sol’s MRI shows. Neither of those things exist in our household. We know that Sol may have some developmental challenges as he grows up, particularly with his motor skills (per his head ultrasound), but we also know that Sol will do what he can, when he can. He’s already showing us this everyday with his progress. Everyone in this world has their own set of issues and faces setbacks from time to time, so Sol really isn’t that different from anyone else. What the heck is “normal” anyways, right?

Ok, enough rambling and on to the cute photos. In his sleep, Sol gave many cute faces today, so perhaps I should rename this post as “Vogue”.

Bottle time with Dad: IMG_1206-0.JPG

Burp! IMG_1208-0.JPG

Waking up is tough stuff: IMG_1210-0.JPG

Vogue #1:
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Vogue #2: IMG_1211-0.JPG

Vogue #3: IMG_1212-0.JPG

Close up of that cuteness: IMG_1213-0.JPG

Snuggle time with Mom:
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NICU Day 23: “He’s An Overachiever…”

“…Just like his Mom.” Not my words, but those of Michelle, Sol’s Occupational Therapist. I don’t know about being an overachiever, but, man, Sol is a strong little fighter.

During Occupational Therapy today, we watched as Sol learned new things – lifting and turning his head while in tummy time, tucking his chin, shifting his gaze – after being shown what to do only once. Michelle’s words applied to our stellar progress with feeding as well. After Mike fed Sol a 20ml bottle at 9am, the doctors rounded and changed up his orders: he is now not being restricted by volume, but instead is allowed to eat as much of his 60ml bottle as he’d like in 15 minutes. When I fed him at noon, that amount was 45ml. (!!)

Sol also had an evaluation by the developmental pediatrician. She was pleased by his ability to track noise and visuals and noted that his tone looked good. The areas of improvement that she saw was his trunk muscles, his tendency to favor looking to the left, and favoring one side over the other – all things that we knew about and have started to address, thanks to Michelle’s help. The pediatrician wrote a prescription for Sol to see Physical and Occupational Therapists once he’s discharged, and will follow up with him in a few months.

Sol got to end his very busy morning by snuggling with his Papa. Lucky fella!

This little man continues to amaze me every single day. To everyone who has sent prayers, thoughts, and words of encouragement – thank you. It means so much to us that Sol is loved by so many around the world!

Rocking with Dad:
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Warmin’ up the noggin:
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Snoozin’ with a new teddy (Thanks, Kathie and Aunt Georgeanne!):
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Grabbing Mom’s finger:
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We call this one “Jeeves”:
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Snuggle time with Mom:
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Post-lunch time with Papa:
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