Thursday, November 24, 2011

An extra gratitude filled thanksgiving!

As I'm getting ready to head off to the hospital so I can see the boys for a little bit before we go to Marty's family's thanksgiving lunch I can't help, but think of how much I have to be thankful for this year. My little pumpkins are 1 month old as of yesterday and that is certainly my number one item to be thankful for. Everyday they've been in our life, they've brightened it. (Even the hard ones where mom cried a lot) The amazing growth they've had continues to astound me. When they were first born they slept for 23 1/2 hours a day and now they are so awake and alert and aware of the world around them. It's amazing how connected they are to us when we speak or touch them, their bright little eyes are so very much a part of this world now, it's hard to remember a time when we barely ever saw them (or in the case of Oscar with them being fused shut we really didn't)! With all the changes in how they move and interact with us, sometimes I forget about the actual physical growth which is astounding as well. Victor reached 3 lbs 2 days ago (now 3lbs 2oz) so he's added half his birth weight since in just a month! Oscar and Mylo are 3lbs 12oz and 3lbs 13oz so before we know they'll be over the 4 lb mark! Mylo continues to store all his weight in his super cheeks and is now getting dimples! I'm sure those of you with full term babies would disagree, but I think I'm about to have full fledged chunky monkeys on my hands!

In all of the gratitude that surrounds the boys is the gratitude for all the support that we've had through all of this! Our families and friends are truly amazing and there aren't enough thank you notes in the world to express how grateful we are for meals delivered, rides to appointments, house cleaning, remodeling projects, hand-me-downs and the list goes on. These boys have entered the most loving world! It's truly incredible to imagine what their future holds knowing what an amazing community they will be surrounded by as they grow.

My list of gratitude could go on and on and include each of my boys toes and fingers and tiny little eyelashes, but I'm just about done pumping (and there's a whole lot of gratitude for my body for what it did to grow those boys and what it's doing to feed them now, but that's a whole other post) and will be heading off to the hospital so I'll end this post of gratitude with a HUGE thank you to our medical team at Minnesota Perinatal Group, all of our amazing neonatologists and surgeons, and more than anyone our nurses at Children's! Our primary nurses are truly the most loving and caring hands we could ask to have surrounding our boys when we can't be there. They've also been an amazing support to us when our roller coaster has gotten a little scary. Children's is really a remarkable place because of it's remarkable people and as I've said many times if you have to be somewhere other than home with your children you couldn't ask for a better place to have to be.

Happy Thanksgiving to you all-I'm off to see my little turkeys!

Friday, November 18, 2011

The boys in action!

Almost a month old and growing big and strong. Here's a little taste of life in the isolette for our little men...




Monday, November 14, 2011

Has it really been three weeks?!

This blog post is long overdue and I'm sorry for all who've been hanging out with no updates in weeks...being a NICU mom is an adventure and then just as I thought we were settling in, I lost the charging cable for my laptop so a sporadic facebook post from my phone confirmed I still existed, but a full on blog post was out of my reach. It is found and I'm ready to share our early adventures in parenthood with you all. First, a look back at a very important day: the boys' birthday pictures!

I can't begin to express the wild ride this last three weeks has been. The doctors describe parenting a preemie as a roller coaster ride and when you have three preemies some days it feels like a ride you'll never get off. So far, we're thankful that ours is the little Alligator roller coaster ride at Como Zoo not the giant Valley Fair ones. Here are three weeks in review for each of our little men!

Our little man Victor has had the roughest road so far, but is doing very well and GROWING fast! His first week was pretty uneventful with feedings gradually increasing and oxygen assistance gradually decreasing. We were amazed that such a little man could keep right up with his brothers. Then when he was nine days old and still not moving the food through really at all he had an x-ray (the first of many things a mother shouldn't have to watch--I'm getting tougher by the minute!) and it showed that there was a blockage in his intestine and it would have to be corrected surgically. So the next day our friend (really--he is our friend and we knew our Victor was in good hands) Dr. Kreykes performed our triplets' first surgery. They found nothing anatomically wrong, just a muconium plug that got him all backed up since he was so little. They were able to take out that little piece of intestine and he will have to have a second surgery to reconnect everything when he's a little bigger so for the time being he has a stoma and an ostomy bag. He had a rough few days after the surgery and I learned how different and heartbreaking the "something hurts" cry is than the "don't change my diaper" cry, but with wonderful nurses and lots of love and snuggles when we could  he got through those yucky days and is doing much better. Now that that little road block is corrected, he is making BIG strides in the growing department and today weighs in at 2 lbs 12 oz (11 oz over birth weight).

Beyond all of the clinical side of Victor's life, he's our most sensitive little man. He will let you know when his diaper is even the littlest bit wet or if his bed isn't perfectly positioned to his liking. He loves to hear his family talk and when we are around his room, he's very alert and his eyes really track where the voices are coming from. Victor is our first official thumb sucker and is good at calming himself this way. He's our blondest and we haven't figured out for sure which side of the family he looks most like.  Here's a peek at  Victor's first week (the pictures after that haven't all been sorted through yet):

From the beginning Oscar appeared to be on the fast track home. He was eating more and faster than his brothers and was off off oxygen in what felt like the blink of an eye. The doctor last week even began talking about transitioning to a level 2 nursery and then Oscar decided to stop pooping (you'll notice that in the land of itty bitty babies it's all about poop and oxygen) which of course sent me into panic mode as I began picturing surgery number 2. Well it doesn't turn out that he needs that surgery, but he will need another down the line. The x-ray on Oscar didn't show a blockage just a lot of air and distention in his tummy so he got a couple of days off from real food and is on IV feeds again to give his tummy a rest while he has a tube that suctions out the gas from his tummy. He HATES this tube and we hope he gets to lose it tomorrow in favor of the feeding tube which is much preferred. In the process of all this, it was discovered that Oscar has a hernia, so even though he doesn't need the surgery that Victor has, he will have to have a surgery in a few weeks when he gets a little bigger to fix that. 

Oscar is by far our strongest little dude. He can pick up his head and move it around to his liking and he is a squirmer and we are always curious to see which corner of isolette we'll find him in when we pick up the cover. He's a man on the move whenever he has a chance! The first week Oscar's eyes were still fused closed and we got the neat experience of seeing him open them for the first time when I was holding him one day. One eye opened before the other and he still likes to have one or the other eye peeking out not both. I'm pretty sure Oscar is my little guy as he reminds me a lot of my nephew Jori and my uncles, but rumor has it he looks kind of like his Uncle Tim, too. We'll have to wait and see. Here is Oscar's first week. 

Mylo's been our least worry as far as any major medical issues. He loves to eat and has no troubles giving us some serious poo--after the road the other two have had I'll take all the poo necessary to mean less time in an operating room! Mylo's only real struggle is that when he fills up his big belly he gets lazy about breathing so he can't seem to get off that last little bit of oxygen in his canula.  He's our biggest at the moment at 3 lbs 2 oz! 

Mylo looks just like Marty and loves to stretch out long and show us what a big boy he his! Mylo also loves to watch things going on in his room and is already very excited about anything he can put in his mouth: pacifier, Marty's hand, q-tip with milk, MOM (he's pretty determined that he's ready to eat like the big boys if only he would remember to breathe!) Mylo is very easy going and is content in any position in his bed. Here is Mylo's first week.