Friday, June 24, 2011

The Gestation Accusation

Nothing says, "you look nice today" like someone assuming that your pregnant when you're not.

I've been accused of gestation twice in the past month.

The first time I was meeting with a client and he asked me when my baby was due. Luckily I didn't really follow what he was saying - I thought he was asking when I had my baby because I was pretty sure that he knew I was out on maternity leave.  But then when I said December he looked confused and got quiet and I realized that he was throwing out an accusation.

The second time was a couple weeks ago.  I was waddling walking to my car with my friend to go eat lunch at  Olive Garden.  Some lady who works in our building was sitting in her car and talking on her phone - I don't know her but I already hated her because she walks around the atrium of our building like it's her track and field and gives dirty looks should you dare need to access the elevator and interrupt her imaginary atrium half-marathon. 

So anyway, that apparent mutual disdain being the extent of our relationship, she felt it appropriate to hang her head out her car window, point her finger, and yell, "You're having another Bayyyyy-beeeee!!!" 

And then I ate 10 bowls of pasta and delivered a 9 pound pasta baby who doesn't like milk but only eats lard like her mother and we all lived fat and happily ever after the end kthxbai. 

No, really, I ignored the shit out of her and then ate soup and salad and had a great lunch with my BFF.  I'd love to say that I made her feel like a real asshole by spouting out some really clever bitchy comment.  I'd love that so much.  But really I just forced myself to not care and move on because there isn't any scenario that makes me feel better about how I look or about how I know other people think I look.  I have lost 9 pounds and I'll lose more but for right now this is as good as it gets and I'm not going to deny that I do, in fact, look pretty adorably pregnant for a nonpregnant person.

I was going to try to film a reenactment of the parking lot incident but it didn't work out.  Sorry about that.   I really think it could've been magical but some things just aren't meant to be and life is unfair, etc.

At least Olivia wasn't sick?

Tuesday night, we got a call at 1:30 from Ainsley's doctor because they felt that she was not stable. We think she aspirated at some point and her right lung was almost completely collapsed (or something...I may be off on the terminology) plus her pneumonia was still there. Her oxygen saturations were low and she was struggling even on 100% oxygen. She is normally at room air, which is 21%.

After a rough night (or two), she is stable. She is on antibiotics and we are waiting on lung cultures. She is a little more alert now.  Wednesday she was heavily sedated and on morphine but her respirations and heart rate are high so we knew she was in pain or stressed. Or both. Her vent settings are very high to give her as much support as possible. 

Yesterday she was a bit more alert and calm, and was only sedated before her trach tie change.  When she gets really upset she quits breathing and has a really hard time recovering.

Once she is pneumonia-free she will have a nissen so that the whole aspiration business will never happen again.  Probably the week after the 4th of July.

I don't even know what to say except OMG.  And that this is all really awful to watch, and stressful, and lonely. 

Thursday, June 16, 2011

You're going to think I'm making this up.

I started this post last week and never had a chance to publish.  So, here you go - a week later and I still feel like I have a stress hangover...

Tuesday night I was up sick all night.  Barfy sick.  I woke up just long enough to call off work and hand Olivia over to gramma and papa before I slept until 4 p.m.

Oh, yes.  And also?  I called and found out that Ainsley had pneumonia.

Thursday I felt decent enough to go back to work.  So I did.  And then after work I went to visit Ainsley.  While I was at the hospital, I got a text from Mark:

"Liv is having a seizure."

So then Olivia had a big ass febrile seizure and Mark called 911.  And instead of taking her to Children's, they insisted on taking her to the closest shit ass no idea how to deal with children ER despite our protests.

By the time I drove the 30 minutes from Children's to the ER to see Olivia, they were already arranging to have her transported.  To Children's.

AND THEN we spent two nights at the hospital for...a virus.  Olivia came home Saturday night happy and demanding to watch Toy Story.

BUT WAIT!  THERE'S MORE!  So then Mark went to visit Ainsley early this morning and while he was holding her he noticed that she was acting strange.  Her hand kept twitching and her thumb was clamped down and he couldn't move it.

Because...She was having a motherfucking seizure!

OH MY GOD YOU GUYS.  I'd love to write more but I am way busy hanging padding on every wall in my house so that I can commence necessary insane behavior.  I'd say send cookies, but I have 30 pounds to lose so send spanx I guess.

Tuesday, June 7, 2011

NICU: Now I Can Use-my-outside-voice!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am thoroughly amused by people who are loud in the NICU.  And by thoroughly amused I mean that I hate them.

I'm not sure if you knew this but in the NICU?  The Neonatal Intensive Care Unit?  The IC stands for Intensive Care.  As in, these babies are sick and shit so, ya know, be quiet you giant freaking idiot.

We get new neighbors all.the.time.  We've been NICU residents for 160 (!!!!) days which probably makes me the old crotchety librarian-type mom who gives you the evil eye over the frame of her horn rimmed glasses - or maybe I just wear a monocle, I don't know I haven't really thought it through.  It is also possible that I smell like mothballs.  AND, I used a new Essie nail polish that turned my nails yellow.  I'm not really sure if it helps this whole old/crotchety image but it can't hurt, right?

So anyway, as per usual, I am annoyed by the general public.

I sat and listened to the dad of a 1 pound preemie for a solid half an hour a few weeks ago.  "Open your eyes for daddy!  Come on, now, be a good girl and open your eyes!  You want to open your eyes for daddy, don't you?  Don't you?  Open em!  Come on!  Open your eyes pretty girl!  Hey!  Hey!  Open em!  Open those eyes for daddy!"  Etcetera for a million years until the baby is old enough to pierce her tongue and make out with a bad boy in rebellion and to properly tell her daddy to go fuck himself.

So anyway, I have my back to this guy and I'm just plotting his demise the entire time I'm holding my trying to sleep three month old (adjusted!) and then I finally turn around because I have got to see this guy.  I mean, I need a place to focus my aggression.  And all I see is four inches of boxer shorts bending down to talk to his one pound baby WHO IS WEARING GOGGLES.   Like this:

Ainsley, the day after she was born.
2lb 3oz.
You think she's opening her eyes under there?
You think she's rolling them in complete annoyance?

And for good measure...
Ainsley, 151 days after she was born.
8 pounds, 2 ounces.
Do you think she's plotting that guy's demise?  I bet she is.
I took pity on that guy, because I think that the NICU is very confusing.  As you're walking in the door, it just says NICU really big on the ceiling and so I guess you could get confused about what NICU means in relation to your sick ass baby who couldn't stay at a normal hospital and had to be transferred somewhere  Yes.  Fun.  Everyone knows that tiny premature babies grow so much better when surrounded by noise and fun!  Plus also I'm just a really nice person which is why you all should aspire to be just like me. 

So we're still in the NICU which is so!much!fun! and we're going to be there...for a while.  There's lots of talk of home lately because Ainsley is doing pretty well on her vent.  The problem is that she is way too small for a home vent.  Like, 12 pounds is the minimum and "they are usually much bigger."  The guesstimate is another 2-3 months until she is big enough to switch over to a home vent.

Or.  Or. Or.  Maybe, in the time she is taking to get big enough for a home vent, her lungs will be strong enough to be supported by something other than a vent.  Or maybe not? We tried a trach collar the other day, which just blew moisturized air into her trach, and it was a big failure.  It's hard to see her struggle on a lower setting, because it's a reminder of just how very sick she is...that a ventilator is keeping her alive.
Oh, but this baby.  She smiles all the time, and grabs at toys, and loves to be held and talked to.   She gets down on the floor and does itty bitty baby pinup modeling physical therapy:

8 pounds, 6 ounces of NOMable NOMNOMNOMness.
Ainsley finally has a primary nurse, Marianne, and she is so sweet and loves Ainsley to pieces.  Please see the following as proof of the spoiling received from Marianne:

A crown for the throne of Miss Diva Lungs Knepper, Duchess of Tracheotomy
Bow in respect, but also: Purell Thoroughly.
I'm exhausted.  We're exhausted.  This is all very exhausting.  Looking down the way at another 3+ months of this feels impossible but I also can't believe that it's been 5 months already and here we are - we're doing it.   It's all going to be fiiiiiine.

You think you've got it rough?
At least you can breathe!
It's not all about you, mom.
Mostly, I just need to get Ainsley home so that we can turn her into a total weirdo.
Like her daddy.
One Year Ago:  Feeling the FET Funk
Two Years Ago: This Post Is Brought To You By Obligation
Three Years Ago:  I'm Embryoated