Monday, November 29, 2004

Photos of Kian - Including his Hospital Stay

We haven't had a chance to update our website with photos in a while, but I wanted to get some of them in my blog right away. Hopefully we will have photos up soon for viewing.

First, here's a photo of our little Packer Fan (shhh...don't tell Daddy hehe)

Here's Kian with Nurse Shelley. She cared for Kian during the day shift for almost the entire time he was in the hospital. She worked really hard to get a feeding plan down for Kian too :)

Here's an upclose shot of Kian with his feeding tube. I think he was the happiest sick kid in the entire hospital!

Here's another one of "Happy Man" with Daddy

Here's a photo of him sitting in his highchair ready for some cereal - this was before he was sick. His little head barely comes over the tray hehe

Here's one on Halloween. Kian was Spiderman :) I think he's trying to tell us that it's time for some trick or treating hehe It was hard to take photos of him because he kept wanting to play with the bag!

Monday, November 22, 2004

Pretty Gosh Darn Bad Seems Like Nothing Compared to This!

We got home Sunday, November 15 after being in the hospital for 9 days! Yep – that was 9 days of no going outside for Mom or Kian. Poor Kian had a stomach virus that just totally wiped him out. He was vomiting for an entire day and was very lethargic the next day which was also the same day that me and Jamie started puking ourselves. It was so bad that both of us ran to the bathroom in the peds office to throw up in the middle of telling the doctor what was going on. The doctor decided to admit us to the hospital because it was Friday and she was afraid that Kian would really get dehydrated. They started an IV on Kian so he wouldn’t need to eat but he could if he wanted to. Since I was sick my milk pretty much dried up – I couldn’t keep even two sips of Sprite down so it was good he had the IV in for a few days. Thankfully there was a bed in the room that they just let me and Kian sleep in together so I could rest and be with Kian. Co-sleeping helps milk production anyway so I didn’t mind :)

The next day I was able to keep food down and I started taking my herbs again for milk production (I had found out the day before Kian got sick that my milk supply had decreased by half due to some odd sucking Kian has). From all the vomiting I did, my milk was dried up anyway and needed a boost. In the mean time, they put an NG tube or a feeding tube down Kian’s nose that went right to his stomach so they could dump food into it. Kian was refusing a bottle – he was having an oral aversion to anything foreign in his mouth. Kian hated the tube…he was gagging on it at first and then started vomiting…the nurses slowed down how fast they were giving him the formula and the doctor told them to lower the amount. At first she had him getting 4.5 ounces when he hadn’t had any food in 3 days at all in his stomach and before that he was only used to 2 ounces anyway. For the next 5 days I tried not to pick him up or move him at all when he was eating to help him not throw up. It was so sad :( I would play with him or cuddle with him to go to sleep.

They ran tests on his poop to see what kind of virus he had but they all came up negative. He had x-rays to see if there were blockages and a radiology test to see how things were going through his digestive system. Everything came up fine. Part of his small intestine was inflamed from the virus and all the vomiting so that is why he continued to vomit. The last four days we were in the hospital Kian stopped vomiting and I started to breastfeed again and supplement what he didn’t get either with a syringe or through the feeding tube. I would weigh him before and after I would feed him so we would know exactly how much more to give him.

After 9 days of being there I think I know all the nurses names on the unit! We were so ready to go home. Kian has slowly been gaining weight. I think I have weighed him every day this week either at the doctors office or at my lactation consultant’s (LC) hehe

Last Tuesday I went to my LC and found out that Kian got 4.5 ounces from me! That is exactly what he needs :) She told me to stop force feeding him with the syringe and just get back to normal with him. I talked to the doctor yesterday and he said to also stop force feeding him. I was so glad as it took about an hour and a half to do all of that! Not fun for all of us.

Then on Friday I weighed Kian and he was back down to the weight he was when he left the hospital. My LC suggested mixing cereal with fruit because he won’t take the food with formula or just water…he just wants my milk. Since I had already given him sweet potatoes and he reacted well to them and liked them I decided to start giving him that mixed in with the cereal and he has eaten a lot more of that and I can actually sneak in some formula to make the calories higher.

This last week we have also been getting meals from some wonderful ladies at church. I would have no idea how I would eat otherwise. It’s so hard being so far away from family and being in need of help. Also, the moms from my Mom’s Group have been SO wonderful too – I honestly don’t know what we would do without these ladies. Jamie is still working a lot of hours right now. It’s been pretty exhausting taking care of Kian and myself to make sure my milk is doing good.

It sure was a rough 9 days for us. Especially because Jamie’s Mom, sister and aunt flew out here from Kentucky for a visit that has been planned for months. I felt so bad for being the germ Nazi, but I think that everyone understood my fears. Hopefully next visit they will be able to spend more time with Kian and he will be well.

Kian sure charmed all the nurses in the peds unit! Sometimes it was hard to believe that he was sick because he was so happy and talkative. It sure made those 9 days easier to bear with a child who was in good spirits.

This situation has really taught me a lot. It has taught me to really enjoy Kian. For a while there we weren’t sure what was wrong with him and part of me still wonders if he could have CF, which was something that doctors were going to look into if he didn’t gain weight in the hospital. It was amazing to see that in a matter of moments I wasn’t worried about how much Kian was sleeping and where or if he was rolling over or not from back to front – I was worried about him and the thought of losing him or some disease would be too much for me to take. I realize now that all the things that I think are petty now are just details. The most important thing is Kian – period. I am here for guidance, teaching and love – he will sleep through the night when he is ready, he will roll from back to front when he’s ready. Right now all he needs is my love and attention and the rest will all fall into place someday. I just feel so grateful to have Kian and such a wonderful husband.

I have heard people say that when you have a child your heart lives outside your body – my heart laid in that bed for those 9 days praying for recovery and my heart still is with him as I pray that he gains weight and remains healthy.

We took some photos of Kian while he was in the hospital for his baby book – I will post them as soon as Jamie has uploaded them.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

From Bad to Worse to Pretty Gosh Darn Bad

The Bad

What a day yesterday was for me and Kian! From my last post as you know Kian hasn't been sleeping well and Jamie has been working a lot so stresses and lack of sleep have been taking their toll on all of us. Kian has become better with sleep though so at least that was going well.

The Worse

Yesterday afternoon we went to see our lactation consultant, Andrea Heron. I am still breastfeeding and hope to do so for at least until Kian's a year old. Lately the way he's sucking has been different - it's like he wants to put the whole breast in his mouth - so I thought that maybe my milk supply was down.

When I go to see Andrea I bring Kian ready to eat. Before I go into my appointment they weigh him naked and then I dress him and they weigh him with what clothes I wan to feed him in. Then I go in to see Andrea and after we are through with one breast she weighs him and sees how much food he’s getting. To make a long story short, Andrea said that Kian does not have a strong suck and since he doesn’t it has depleted my milk supply. He should have 4 ounces every feeding and he only gets about 2 from me. He was as happy as could be in the visit! It was odd because you would never know that he was still hungry or looking for more food!

So, right now I am working on getting my milk supply up. I am taking herbal supplements – 8 pills in all to swallow 3 times a day with meals – these herbs are known to increase milk supply. I am also using an SNS (Supplemental Nursing System) while I am feeding Kian. Here is what it looks like in use: I put formula or my milk in the bottle part and there are two small tubes come from it to the nipple and as Kian sucks he will be encouraged to keep sucking because he will be getting food which will encourage my milk to kick in more. I am also pumping after every time I feed him because he doesn’t empty my breasts and that is what has caused the depletion. After I pump I give him another two ounces of formula or breast milk to help fill his belly.

Andrea will see us again next Wednesday and she seems to think that my supply will be back up by then. I certainly hope so. I really want to continue breastfeeding – not only is it cheap it’s healthy for me and gives Kian great immunities against illnesses.

The Pretty Gosh Darn Bad

We just got back from the ER about a half hour ago. Kian has been throwing up since about midnight last night and threw up after every time I fed him. Finally at 5AM we decided to head to the ER being afraid of dehydration and that something serious could be wrong. So, we got dressed quickly and piled into my car to find that we had a flat tire as we left the carport. Luckily we can all still fit in Jamie’s truck – not comfortably but it’s doable.

We were in the ER for about 3 and a half hours. The Dr. assessed Kian and said he didn’t think he was dehydrated but that we could give him some Pedialite to help him out. Of course Kian vomited that up – twice. He was vomiting bile by that time. Poor guy :( He had X-rays and a test of his blood sugar since his was so low at birth they wanted to rule anything related to that. Poor Kian was so tired he was falling asleep in my arms without a swaddle or a pacifier which he almost always needs to go to sleep. The Dr. thought there might have been an obstruction or something else wrong with Kian, but he didn’t present any other signs it being something serious and he didn’t want to put Kian at risk doing something more invasive – Jamie and I agreed. He talked to our pediatrician and he said that he had seen a lot of kids lately who had symptoms just like Kian’s and that if it didn’t get better by this afternoon I needed to call him.

We are relieved that Kian doesn’t have anything serious wrong with him, but it sure makes trying to get my milk supply up pretty difficult. We are just praying he will be better soon.

Wednesday, November 03, 2004

Wow! It's been a while!

I can’t believe how long it’s been since I posted a blog entry! Things have been pretty crazy for all of us this entire week. Jamie hasn’t really been home before midnight much and has had to work Saturdays which leaves me to care for Kian without much help from him. It’s been tough especially about two weeks ago when he wouldn’t sleep for more than 20 minutes and the only way I could get him to go to sleep was to lay down with him in our bed. The last two nights he has actually slept! It has been so nice to have my evenings back to clean (well, that’s not be nice lol) and get laundry and other things done that I can’t during the day when I have him. Kian unfortunately doesn’t entertain himself for very long so the last two weeks having pretty much no time to do anything has been rather stressful. I used to think Kian didn’t sleep long enough when he would wake every 4 hours and now I am happy to have the two he is giving me! I guess you can see a blessing once it’s been taken away.

Kian’s first Babysitter

Kian was watched by his first babysitter yesterday! I went to get my haircut and vote and my friend Christine watched him. I was so grateful! Jamie hasn’t been home enough or know what will be happening with his schedule that I couldn’t make an appointment over the last two months! My friend Christine offered to watch him - she’s a stay at home mom to her 15 month old son, Jacob. Thanks Christine!