Day 105 – Monday February 23rd 2009

We are home with our gorgeous daughter! What a long wait it has been for this day to finally arrive.  Eva chose to wait until nearly her due date to grace our home with her presence.  Wonderfully Grace and Eva left St Michael’s at exactly the same time after the journey they have been on together.  It was really a lovely moment to be sharing with Claire and Barry after our girls were born 5 days apart.

The whole day was one of quiet excitement as the reality of taking Eva home was drawing near.  Eva weighed 2.10kg, which is an increase of 20g meaning that we can be discharged.  Dr Laura came to visit after her night duty and was relieved that all was well and we would be going.  Dr Manal came to do a final check and printed out Eva’s discharge summary letter, which is 6 pages long!

The nursing staff ordered some more medications from the pharmacy to make sure that we had enough to keep us going for over a week.  When at home we will need to get repeat prescriptions from the GP and then have them filled at the pharmacy.  Of course even this could be a challenge as they may not normally have these type of medications. 

Eva had her eyes checked this afternoon.  The area of concern has faded so Eva needs no further follow up, which is a great relief.  Of course it is always unpleasant for Eva to have her eyes checked, however today was the first time we have heard her scream.  Luckily Daddy was on hand to give her a cuddle afterwards!

We rugged Eva up in a warm growsuit, cardigan, hat and a snow suit to put her in the car seat.  Of course all these layers meant we had to extend the straps and she couldn’t move.  Eva and Grace slept soundly through the whole procedure.  They both look lost in their car seats.  Andrew very proudly carried Eva to the car and we managed to put the seat in without too much drama.

Luckily we had a mild day at 11 degrees but Eva was still cold when we came inside.  Luckily Daddy was on hand to offer warming up cuddles. 

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Day 104 – Sunday February 22nd 2009

Eva had her first bath today and she rather liked it.  Eva calmly lay in the water and enjoyed it being gently splashed over her.  She wasn’t even bothered by the hair washing.  Pauline, the nurse, did her bath in order that it was done quickly to reduce heat loss.  It was very cute to watch her enjoying this comfortable experience. 

Eva is keeping her temperature well without a hat, which is great news for our impending discharge.  We have purchased another type of bottle today as yesterday’s bottle made her drink too quickly and have small vomits. 

Grace and her mother Claire have moved into the ward tonight which is great.  They may only be here for one night as Grace has progressed so well on her bottle feeding down on SCBU.

Andrew and I enjoyed going to Church this morning.  The Queen’s Chaplain, George Kavoor spoke about the wicked people and how they get their way in the world.  We put in a Praise Report to tell people about Eva’s imminent homecoming.  Pastor Pete has organised for the church to shout us to dinner this evening to celebrate Eva’s journey. 

It is with much excitement that we go to bed tonight with the thought of maybe going home tomorrow!  Please keep Eva’s continued good health in your prayers.

Day 103 – Saturday February 21st 2009

Sadly Gran and Pop left today.  They travelled back to Jackie and Tony’s in Thame to then travel to Heathrow Sunday.  They both had lovely cuddles with Eva this afternoon.  Gran did Eva’s wash whilst Pop videoed it.  We then got to dress Eva in her new 2kg celebration outfit from Jackie and Tony.  No doubt Gran and Pop are feeling a little sad to leave their granddaughter today but relieved to think that by the time they get home to Melbourne Eva will be able to wave at them on Skype!

Today really was all about yummy food and free babysitting for Andrew and I.  I signed out of the hospital 3 times today, perhaps looking like an irresponsible mother.  But we were encouraged by the staff to make the most of these opportunities before our new life begins.  We all went out for Brunch at the delicious Deco Lounge only a 10 minute walk away.   It was lovely and nice to not be as tired as last night when I wasn’t very good company.  This afternoon we left again to buy a bottle for Eva to practice with before we leave the hospital.  This evening we returned to the Deco Lounge for a burger and I even had a small glass of wine (an advantage to Eva having a bottle of previously expressed breast milk).

Eva seemed to have a good day although hungry and doing small feeds again.  Dr Laura did reassure me yesterday that although the bottle feed is quick breast feeding offers a lot of developmental and loving opportunities not just the administering of food!  I still feel nervous that she will reject my breast.  It’s hard to know what is happening with her routine having been changed so much recently.

There has been no issue with Eva taking the formula as fortifier in her 2 bottles per day.  Eva enjoyed the new bottle and teat although it was a faster flow so we needed to wind her more.  She is getting very good at taking her medicines by syringe directly into the inside of her cheek.  I do wonder if she will learn to spit them out. 

We are starting to clear out my stuff from the room that I have collected over the past 31 days.  It is hard to remain calm about the possibility of her discharge.  I am delighted that Andrew will be home next week as we get to know Eva together. Again we are impressed with how supportive Andrew’s work have been since Eva’s birth.

We are going to church in the morning as the staff can give her the bottle while I am gone.  Also we will be unable go with Eva for the next 6 weeks due to the risk of infections.  I am pleased to be going to participate in singing and praying preparing us for the next phase of our lives.