Eva’s due date has passed with a little flutter in my heart realising that this is the start of another journey. We have survived the past week at home and have only considered returning her a couple of times! No seriously we are having a great time. It’s amazing how great it is just to spend time with her when you have had that time restricted for so long. I just love seeing Andrew’s enthusiasm for anything to do with Eva. I hope it continues.
I am so glad that Andrew was home this week. It is just a really special time for us as a family and we will never have these moments again. We are gradually learning about Eva’s habits and desires although we realise that they change daily! Eva is most unsettled in the evenings and just loves to be held in the Kangaroo Care position. Luckily she seems to like the Kari Me sling so it means we can hold her and have our hands free. In the mornings she sleeps well in her carrycot in the middle of the living room with music on. Eva really does like some light and noise to feel most settled. The nights have been varied. We have found that we get a good chunk of sleep after her bottle, which obviously fills her tummy well. After the overnight breast feeds she tends to settle but not for as long. Each night one of us has been up for some time pacifying her.
The giving of medications really does become tiresome. By choosing breastfeeding and not formula we have given ourselves more work. The supplements we give by syringe are already in the formula. Medication time really reminds me how much harder it is for Eva having come so early. We have our own little medication chart to record her medicines so that we both know where we are at. We have now started putting the sodium phosphate in just 10mls of her bottle at the start to avoid her spitting it out. This seems to be more agreeable for all of us.
The Community Neonatal Team have been to visit twice. Alison, the nurse, was very happy with Eva’s progress. She encouraged us to increase the volume of Eva’s bottle, which we have done and she seems to have tolerated. Eva weighed in at 2.18kg, meaning an 80g gain since coming home. This was great as we were expecting static weight if not a loss due to the stress of a new environment. It must be such a huge sensory overload for poor Eva. New smells (cooking), new rooms, new bed and new sounds. Sometimes she needs cuddles in order to cope with all this change.
We have had lots of lovely meals ready prepared and in the freezer, which has been a real blessing. I guess at some stage we will need to cook for ourselves. Also Ruth cleaned the house ready for Eva’s arrival so that is a chore I can delay. Andrew and I have done a few odd jobs around the house that we normally don’t make time for. Andrew has started Eva’s photo book and is checking his work emails daily. I am leaving the house twice daily whilst Andrew is here and can look after Eva. It is lovely to be out in the real world but strange not having Eva with me. We are both looking forward to her first outing.
Andrew gave Eva her first bath at home today. Again she seemed very relaxed and enjoyed it.
I have downloaded lots of new podcasts from the ABC to keep me awake in the middle of the night. I am enjoying Dr Karl and Andrew Denton.
We’ll keep you updated as things change or interesting things happen. We will be more likely to up date the Flickr photos.