Friday, January 31, 2014

Still In The NICU

I can't believe it's been over two weeks since Andrew was born. It's insane how quickly the time is going by. He is still in the hospital. He's been doing great, but he's small, so he has trouble gaining weight and maintaining his temperature at the same time. He's been in a crib instead of the isolette the last few days, though, and still gaining a little, so we're headed in the right direction. I just want him home so badly. He's such a sweet boy. He just sleeps and squirms and eats and poops. He almost never cries or fusses. We're so blessed to have him, and also that he's done so well. He hasn't had a feeding tube or anything. He's just little. I'm staying with my parents right now because the house had stairs which were painful, and because he works and I can't lift Evie right now. With the C-section I just couldn't chase her like I needed to. I'm going home in a few days. It's been so odd that I have been sleeping well and such. Like.. I have a new baby. I should be sleep deprived! I know I will be when he gets home. He needs to eat every 3 hours since he's so small. We can't just let him eat when he is hungry or he'll sleep through his feedings. I'm trying to enjoy the sleep while I can get it.

Here are the latest photos of Andrew with daddy, me, and being held by his mom-mom just chillin'. He doesn't look as small to me in pictures as he does in real life, but trust me, he's small. Though he is up to 4lb 10.5oz!

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

Birth Story

It has been almost a week now since Andrew was born at 33w 4d. I'd been in and out of the hospital a few times, and we knew my run as a pregnant lady was coming to an end. 

I got up on Monday morning (1/13) and I didn't feel well. My BP was high, and I knew I needed to see the OB anyway, so I made an appointment for that afternoon. I finished working, and went met my mother at the office. Andy was home with Evie but we figured I'd end up at the hospital so she wanted to come with me. He sent me straight away, and they decided pretty immediately that they were going to admit me because my BP was out of control and my kidney function had declined way too much in two weeks. They gave me steroids and tried to buy 24 hours to get Andrew time to get the full effect of the medicine. They scheduled the c-section for Wednesday at 4:30, but in the middle of the night they woke me up and told me they wanted to do it at 7:30AM instead. Andy couldn't get there by then, but the nurse said she guessed my numbers were getting worse and worse, so they moved it up. I told them I would not do it without my husband, so we waited until Andy arrived. He had to wait for my parents to come to watch Evie, so he got there at 10, and they immediately had him change and wheeled me back.

They didn't want me to go through labor and put any extra stress on my kidneys, so we went straight to a c-section. It went much better than last time. The anesthesiologist was great, and it only took 1 try to get the spinal in, and I could breathe. I actually got to pay attention to what was happening, and he was very responsive and able to stop my nausea when I told him I felt sick. It didn't take long to get little Andy out, and he started crying which made me happy. I asked Andy how little the baby was and he said "He's pretty small"! He went with the nurse to take pictures of him, but he only got to stay a few minutes because they had to hook him up to all the machines, so he came back to sit with me. That was nice because it started to get so uncomfortable so he let me squeeze his hand and talked me through it. He kept telling me how well I was doing, and at one point the doctor said "OK I'm putting your uterus back". Uhm.. ok... great to know it was out. But I knew it was getting close to done. The worst was getting my tubes tied. It was hard to sign a paper that said "I consent to be sterilized" but we knew it was the right thing to do. We can't risk another pregnancy. the procedure was extremely uncomfortable. It felt like they were just pushing my organs around. 

Once they finished they wheeled me into post-op, and I got to recover there for a bit before moving to my room and puking all over myself. But that happened last time, too. I couldn't get over to see little Andy that day because I couldn't move and had a catheter, so I just slept and saw him the next day. At that point we had discovered that my kidney function was still getting worse, and my BP was not leveling out. It was consistently 200/100 and my creatinine continued to go up for a few days. Finally with a ton of extra medicine we got my BP to stabilize, and my kidney function stopped getting worse, though it's really terrible now. At this point, with me, we are just waiting to see how my kidneys shake out in a few weeks. We are hoping my body realizes I'm no longer pregnant and I gain a little function back, but only time will tell.

As for Andy, he's great! The doctor warned of "wimpy white boy" syndrome. Apparently caucasian males have the most trouble when born premature, but he's been defying the odds. He was on CPAP for one night, but then he didn't need it anymore. He also pulled out his feeding tube so they just let him eat from a bottle and he did it. His IV came out today, and the only thing he still needs to do is gain weight so he can regulate his temperature. He's only 4lb 3oz right now, so he needs some fat so he can stay warm. He's spending most of his time just sleeping away happily in his isolette. 

It was so hard to leave him today. I cried and Andy held me. I get to see him every day, but it's hard to leave him in a hospital when I could spend most of his feedings with him in my arms and I can't now. But it was also hard to be away from Evie, and it's nice to get to hold and comfort and love on her again. I'm going to see little Andy in the morning, but I just need to bring him home. I can't wait to have my family with me. Big Andy was amazing this week. He's not good with dealing with change and he really adjusted and did everything he could for me while I was terrified in the hospital. 

This is the day he was born - the day I didn't get to see him when he was on CPAP. Evie just poked and said "baby". She will understand more when he's home.

This is the first time I saw him. He was breathing on his own but had a feeding tube which he promptly ripped out. You can kind of get an idea of how little he was by the size of my hand. He was 4lb 7oz at birth but was closer to 4 here, and maybe a little less.


This is Andy yesterday. He looks like a normal-sized baby, but he's not. He also looks exactly like Evie did when she was born. I love this sweet face. I can't believe he'll be a week old tomorrow!

Sunday, January 19, 2014


I will write more later, but for now, I wanted to let everyone know that Andrew Lee Sterlachini III was born on Wednesday, 01/15 at 10:48am weighing 4lb 7oz and 17 inches long. He was born at 33w4d. Little Andy is doing very well. He was on CPAP for one night but has been doing amazingly on room air since. He is in an isolette right now learning to regulate his temp, but he is on minimal fluids so I expect his IV to come out soon. He is drinking from a bottle like a champ, and I'm pumping but my milk still isn't in, so we are trying to nurse once a day just to get him used to it. We are incredibly blessed that he is doing so well. They say he could be here until he would have been 38 weeks but I think 2 weeks is more likely. He's just such a chill, quiet little man and we are so blessed to have him as part of our family!

I will post a birth story and info later, but I am still in the hospital. My kidney function got very bad and my BP won't stabilize but hopefully that will improve and I can leave soon. For now I'm just trying to enjoy being close to little man!