What a day of contrasts for me today! I was beaming with delight in the afternoon after a morning of sobbing over the phone to Andrew! Eva is of course doing really well and oblivious to my dramas.
I’ll start with the good stuff. Eva likes breast feeding and is really getting the hang of it. It is so exciting and such a wonderful feeling. All that expressing is paying off now. Eva fed at the breast at 4.30 and 6.30 for 15 minutes before her tube feed was given. She fed well and thus only had half of her feed volume via the tube so as not to make her too full. Dawn, the nursery nurse who had Eva today, was very impressed that she got the hang of it when she is so small. Dawn looked over the screens and was pleasantly surprised to find Eva drinking! Dawn was lovely and told me that both Eva and I must be naturals at this. I really am a mother. I guess from here it is seeing how Eva is going on a day to day basis. Eva should sleep very well tonight from all that effort.
Andrew arrived in between the feeds from work. He was practically bouncing with excitement when I told him that Eva had fed really well. Andrew was of course thrilled to see her feed and to help with the tube feed. He even got to have Kangaroo Care cuddles while I went expressing so I guess he had a great day. Eva really followed his voice this evening. She obviously recognises it and it’s unusually deep for her as she listens to females all day.
This morning it was decided that if Eva remains stable and on her back for 24 hours her observation machine will be removed. She will have an apnoea (stop breathing) monitor like all the other babies in Nursery. This is an exciting plan and step forward.
Eva’s dietician review today hasn’t seen any changes. I guess they are currently happy with her weight gain. Yesterday Eva had a new feeding tube inserted. Her previous one had lasted 5 days, a record for her, but it was getting blocked from all the thickener.
Of all the interventions in the unit Eva and all babies are most disturbed by the nurses checking their temperature. The thermometer probe has a plastic covering and goes under their armpit. It’s quite funny to see how grumpy they get for something so simple.
As you can all tell we are eager to have Eva home but as Uncle Nic pointed out last night a few extra weeks in the hospital now is not long in the context of Eva’s life. A good reminder for us.
This morning’s upset seems a world away now that we have had a great afternoon. I was waiting at home for someone to repair the door and tap. I only found out about this appointment with a message on the machine last night. I realised that I would miss a ward round that I wanted to go to and a coffee date with another mum but I figured that was ok. I really should have cancelled the repairman at this point.
The repairman came late of course, and then left to buy a new tap set (why he didn’t have one when that is what I reported???) and didn’t return for 1.5 hours, then took over an hour to fit it! Of course I should have known better but I figured the whole process would have been over sooner. I did keep myself busy with cleaning the house, which was well overdue. By this stage I missed the 12.30 feed, thus Andrew received an upset phone call where he tried to console me by saying that Eva wont be upset that I missed it. Then I needed to get something certified and posted by today. Of course the post office line was very busy as it was lunchtime. Good news was that I saw Pete our Pastor there who cheered me up by talking about Eva’s great progress.
After I did that I drove to the hospital where I couldn’t find a park and got lost in the local streets. At this point I just sat in the car and sobbed. I find the driving stressful and realised that I could have walked and been with Eva in the time I had been driving. I composed myself and looked at the map (Andrew did have to suggest this step) and drove home. I sat down and ate and expressed then tried again. I got to the hospital and drove straight into an easy park (God was definitely watching).
Eventually I saw Eva at 4pm 23 hours after I had last seen her. My heart was just aching and it was painful but of course I felt refreshed after releasing my emotions. We then had a lovely afternoon and my cuddle with Eva topped with great strides in the breastfeeding was just what I needed! My favourite time of day is when she is on my chest. Today I enjoyed singing You Are My Sunshine to Eva.
It’s amazing what a difference such a short moment in time makes let alone a week in Eva’s life. We just pray that Eva continues to go smoothly. Dawn gave us a “Going Home” booklet to read today. She says that her job is to send us home and she plans to do that successfully.
One more sleep until Aunty Suzanne comes to meet Eva. Poor Suzanne is coming from 36 degrees to 2 tomorrow!