Everyday lives of the Meabon Household

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Home again, home again, not so jiggity, jig

Today has been a complete rollercoaster of emotions. Jared and I went down to say goodnight to Harper last night and had a little uncomfortable situation with her night nurse and a soothing technique she decided would be a good idea. I won’t go into detail but a parent’s instinct kicked in and we ended up calling the nurse to request a change in her "soothing procedure". There’s no way I could have slept with that on my mind but she was very compliant and allowed us to have a peaceful night’s sleep. I spoke to the Charge Nurse in the morning and, guess what – momma was right! I kindly requested that the nurse not be a part of Team Harper and was told the nurse asked the same request. Huh, go figure! Thank you God for this immediate instinct called parenthood!

We came down to greet Harper this morning and Team Harper was in the process of cutting the umbilical cord away from her omphalocele. It was a very tense situation as the cord was adhering to the sac and could have caused a rupture had something gone wrong. We had faith in Dr. Kenton and Jared and I sat with sweaty palms as we watched the procedure. Once complete, we gave a very well deserved golf clap. I would have yahooed for joy but thought the better of it. We are in the NICU after all. We got a good look at her O and there’s a nice fresh ring of pink skin that looks new. The O is drying out as it should be and Dr. Kenton still thinks it will continue to sink more into her abdomen. We asked a lot of questions and there are still a lot of unknowns hanging around. They are very hesitant to do a CT or an MRI since the studies posted in the NY Times this week are pointing towards a negative result from too much exposure. I haven’t had time to look up the articles today but I will give a full report or try to post a link once I track it down in the next few days. They think it’s mainly liver with little bowel or intestine. They don’t know if it’s the entire liver or just the majority of it but do know its malformed. We are still extremely confident in Team Harper and their course of action so, on we march.

Post cord removal, Jared was able to hold his little girl for an hour and a half. He briefly held her on the day of her arrival but this was a good, true snugglefest. Now, you know that part of the Princess Bride when the story teller tries to pass over the mushy stuff when reading the story to his grandson? Well, if you don’t like the mushy stuff, please skip to the next paragraph. I’m about to unload a gusher! My cousin, Ashley, said that when Jared walked out of the OR on the day of her birth, his shoulders stood taller and she could tell he was a bigger man than when he walked in the hospital that day. I could not be more thankful for the man in Harper’s and my life. I always knew he’d be a great dad but he is an INCREDIBLE father. Over the last five days, he has been my rock, my nurse, my shoulder to cry on, my best friend to cry with and I’ve fallen in love with him all over again. I always thought I’d be a bossy wife when kids came in the picture (it’s just my nature and not a good one at that) but this has been a true partnership and I know will be through our lives. His parenting instincts are spot on and he is so good with that little girl. I can’t wait to continue to watch the love story that develops between those two. I think the only disagreement we’ve had is that he wants to glue a Troy Polamalu bobble head on the top of her bed – and for those non-football fans, he’s a Pittsburgh Steelers superstar and my favorite player. Compromise is that one can sit on her bedside table, as long as its not in the doctors way. Okay, gushing over. But first, some pictures to show off my hubs.

We went back to the room, had lunch, packed up our belongings and went to spend a little more quality time with Harps. I got to hold her for an hour this afternoon and we played dress up for a little while with some of her array of attire. Then, the heartbreaking, gut-retching part of our day began. We checked out of the hospital and had to leave our sweet baby girl behind. We’ve known since week 12 of pregnancy that this day would come. There would be a day that we wouldn’t be sleeping within footsteps and a short elevator ride of our little Nugget. I knew I would cry but, man oh man, have the tears been flowing. I just don’t think it’s natural for the mother that is going to raise the child to leave the hospital without her. You always see those amazing “coming home” pictures but there were no pictures taken today. Only tears flowing as I was wheeled down to the car. I just know Harper is in the right place right now and that she is in the best hands possible. I just know that Rooney and Kitty would try to jostle our little girl out of curiosity and could be problematic. I just know that she is safe, sound, warm and will have no recollection of these days but it just broke my heart to wheel out of there, knowing I wouldn’t be kissing her goodnight at 10pm like I have been.

But, my friends, God is good! We had Becky, one of our favorite day nurses and member of Team Harper during the day. She was so good to us today, knowing it would be a difficult one and gave us lots of one on one time. I just called to check in and Jennifer, our favorite night nurse, is with Harper tonight! She gave me a full report and our little champion has grown ½ cm, is staying steady at 6 lbs. 7 oz. with her O wrapping on and has been bumped up to 17 cc per hour of feeding. You go Harper Meabon! A little more in depth for my fellow past-NICU parents and O parents, she only had 11 cc’s of residual. To explain, they pull what is in her stomach out to see what she’s digesting and how much air is in there. On 17 cc’s per hour, we would be upset if they pulled out 34 cc’s or more from a two hour period. Well, our girl Harper only had 11 cc’s of residual. Chant with me: “Here we go Harper, here we go (clap, clap)”!!! They will pull some blood tomorrow to do further chromosomal tests but feel good about going in to this since we had good amnio results. Jennifer also said she was happy to open up Harper’s draw and find her wardrobe left for her by her mother. They played dress up and she’s currently wearing her pink hat with zebra bow courtesy of her Honey (Janet/Mom), her pink mittens and her pink maryjane Trumpet socks courtesy of Betsy. And yes, I will take pictures of her tomorrow. Jennifer is on a three night stretch with her so thank you Heavenly Father for this gift of comfort and peace. You are AWESOME! Additionally, we came home to a house cleaned to the bone by my mom, my aunt Bonnie and Cindy Knocke, as well as sweet notes all around and a home cooked meal waiting for us. Oh, that was just about the best gift we’ve received in years!

Her bag is packed tomorrow with some new soft muslin Aiden & Anais blankets since the nurses said they loved the Aiden & Anais blankets, books from my sweet friends for story time, just a few more hats, socks and mittens for dress up and of course the camera. They’re going to have to leave me a trunk by the time next week rolls around! We are off to an early bed time, with a few evening pumping interruptions and we’ll be there to wish our sweet girl a good morning. Jared will head back home to work and I'll play the day by ear depending on how I'm still recovering. We'll definitely be there in the afternoon since we have a NICU parent pizza party. I don't expect any disco balls but it will good to share stories, tips and information with the other NICU parents.

Love to you all,



Tootle Family said...

Thanks for the updates. Been thinking about you all day today! What a beautiful mom Harper has!

Pam said...

I'm so sorry it was a tough day. But you will have a home again home again jiggity jig one of these days and hopefully sooner then later.
So great to hear the progress little Harper is having.
I think I need to look up some more adjectives to discribe your precious little girl. I've used adorable and precious each time.

Kristin said...

I should have scrolled down when you said the mushy part was coming. :) Ugh - nothing like a good cry to start your day! I know you guys are wonderful parents even just a few days into it. What a joy to hear you tell these stories! We pray for you two and dear Harper every night. I know you'll get into a routine and that will help you feel more "normal." Also so thankful that you are producing milk! Yippee! Thank you so much for the updates. (And yes, I'm probably going to comment on almost every post so just deal with it:)

Meghan and Tom O'Dell said...

Isn't it so much fun to play dress up?! The nurses loved Fiona's wardrobe haha! Glad her O is doing what it is supposed to and that she is doing well! I think of you guys every day!

The Brown Family said...

My name is Megan Brown and Susan Gee told me about you several weeks ago. She emailed and told me the wonderful news of Harper's birth last week. I have been following your wonderful blog over the weekend and have been anxious to meet you as I belive you moved into our same neighborhood. I live in the stucco and white stone house directly next to the neighborhood pool. I am praying for you, Jared and your beautiful, strong Harper, every day and have been telling all my friends to do the same. I look forward to the time that we meet in person. For now, just know that just a few houses away tonight, this entire family is sending your entire family all the warmest and most positive thoughts. You are being so stong and as a fellow mom, I am so proud of you.

Courtney said...

Congrats on that beautiful baby girl. Just want you to know that i have been thinking about and praying for Harper for weeks. Your words are so inspiring and I know that you guys are terrific parents already. I will follow your blog and will continue to pray for all of you. God is so good and I have faith that he will guide all of you through this journey. Bless you and your sweet family. Lots of love,


The Cheltons :) said...

Brooke it is so great to hear about the steady progress Harper is making.....and by the way I love love love her name! As hard as it is to leave your little princess in the NICU while you go home, just know she is in great hands!!! I wish you, Jared and baby Harper all the best and you all will continue to be in our thoughts and prayers! Keep up the great work Harper!!!!

OmomtoJ said...

Brooke I can totally relate to EVERYTHING you just wrote about. I know it is hard right now but you and your husband's incredible attitude and love will help you get through this. Please please feel free to email me or post on my blog is you need anything!!
-Morgan (Jackson's mom)

bethanyjones said...

Hey Brooke! I just found your blog via facebook! I just want you to know that we are praying for your sweet Harper girl! She is absolutely delicious and she is beyond blessed to have you and your hubby as her parents!