Isabella Danielle, born at 24 weeks and 1 day, 1lb 11oz, 12.5in

Zachary Michael, born at 36 weeks, 5lb 13oz, 18.5in

Alexander Charles, FULL TERM, 7lb 1oz, 20in

Friday, January 9, 2009

Baby Bella Day 35 - 5 Glorious Weeks

Three quarters of Bella’s day was very uneventful. Daddy and I let her rest as much as possible while we sat in the waiting area taking care of a few different things. Based on her irritability over the last couple of days we felt sleep would be best for her. Sitting in the waiting area made it easy for us to pop in on her once an hour to check her vitals, see a feed, change a diaper, and just whisper “we love you”. Overall Nancy said she did well during the day. Most of her feeds had no residuals on pull back, while only a few had trace amounts. Today was her last day of trophic feeds and normal feeding schedule starts tomorrow. Then they will start to increase her feeds gradually every nine hours. Bella’s bowels still continue to work well with good matter and air output. Another thing we may not have mentioned before is that they are also trying to ween her off of the IV fluids. They cycle about three hours a night to see how she will handle not being on that fluid intake. Hopes are that she will eventually strictly go to mommy’s milk. Bella's vent settings were weened another 2 down to 32 breaths per minute. Nancy explained that once she reached a rate of 20 that they would attempt to extubate her. So we are thinking that she won't be on the ventilator starting some time in the middle of next week. We have noticed that she has been pulling on her ET tube quite a bit, indicating that she may be ready for it to come out. Although our angel seemed more peaceful today, she still came across as easily irritated. At our first visit when we lifted her isolette cover to say hello, she threw her arm over eyes as if to say, "Get the light out of my sleeping eyes!" So we covered her back up and walked over to look at her chart. I poked my eye back in real quick to see what she did with her hand. Sure enough she moved it off of her eyes to rest her arm on her ET tube. Gotta love the attitude!!!

Boy did the night get EXCITING…

Daddy got to hold his baby girl for the first time. She was in snuggle heaven!!! On top of this fun time, Janet (the RT…she says “hi” Ellie) let us know they had done some major changes to her vent in the last three hours. Bella’s rate per minute is down to 26. Janet is trying to get her on a plan to be extubated tomorrow or the day after. They are going down generously to see how Bella handles the changes. All of the vitals and other factors tell the staff that this is okay to do. Based on whether Bella tells them if she is ready or not, they will proceed with this plan. All of her blood gases today have been excellent, so they feel right now she is saying it is time to move forward. Please pray that this goes smoothly and our baby girl has a good transition to CPAP (once again, will explain more what that is when she actually gets it). On another awesome note, our little princess is turning out to be a chunky…wait for it…monkey!!! She is up to 1350 grams which is just shy of 3lb…and she just finished her 29th week. I told you all she was going to be a thick baby.

Look how big she's gotten...Chris's ring won't even fit over her foot now!!!


lauren said...

What an AWESOME day!!!

Ryan said...

Wow! That was a great day. Good job Bella. Olivia used to pull on her tube before they extubated her. In fact, she succeeded in pulling it out several times. She was always good at communicating to us what she didn't need anymore. Bella sounds like she is the same way. Extubation is a HUGE step in a preemie's journey home. Please do not be disheartened though if they have to switch back and forth between the vent and CPAP a few times though.

Congratulations on getting to hold your little miracle for the first time, Chris. I know that is an exhilarating experience.


Shauna said...

Love the pictures and your Chunky Monekey comment was hilarious!!
So glad you finally got to hold your little princess. How exciting.

stephanie said...

Praise God! Bella's fighting spirit is absolutely inspiring.

Amber said...

Chris you look so very happy to be holding your precious baby girl. Just wait, with her cute little attitude she will have you running for a while. I am so happy that Bella is doing well and that there is a possibility of her being extubated soon. This is a great step in the right direction, she is making such leaps in her progress. We will continue to pray for the family and Bella's continued healing. The pictures are great and it really captures what wonderful parents you guys are and how Bella is so at ease in your arms.

God bless you guys,
Amber, Brian, and Aubrey