Sunday, December 23, 2007

A Special Day

Today was Parker's original due date. Crazy to think that he shouldn't even be here until now!! Instead, we have got an extra 2 months with him to practice taking care of a newborn.

So today is a celebration of how far we have come I guess. No more IV's or feeding tubes. No more wondering if today is going to be a "good day" or a "bad day" and he may or may not be on oxygen or some type of medication to help him breath. No more having to "unplug" our baby when we want to hold him. I can still hear those beeping machines though I swear!

There are some things that the nurses and Dr.'s burned into our minds that we still hang on to.... we still count and celebrate every little ounce Parker gains. We still count each feeding by ml's not ounces. We have put hand sanitizer in each room and make sure we use it every time we touch our baby. We are completely scared of the RSV bug. I think we will always be a little worried about Parker's health and that's okay..I guess we have a right to be. Parker is a beautiful baby and I am just so proud of how hard he has worked. So maybe we will make December 23rd another day to celebrate in Parker's life! Why not?! He deserves it!

He is doing much better with getting his days and nights back on track. Now if only we can get him to sleep in his crib! He wants to be held at all times while he sleeps. So that's our new endeavor we are working on!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Good Dr.'s Appt.

Parker had a Dr. appt. today with Dr. Taylor. He weighed in at 6 pounds 12 oz. and is 19 1/2 inches! He gained 19 ounces in only 14 days! It's crazy to think that he has almost doubled his birth weight!

We are very happy with the progress he is making. His latest blood work showed that he is borderline anemic, so we are going to keep an eye on that. He will have his blood work redone in a few months to check his blood counts again. Dr. Taylor also gave us a couple of tips to try and turn Parker's days and nights around so we can get him back on track. Hopefully it works but it can take a few weeks.

Also, Dr. Taylor got the report from the eye Dr. in Spokane and agreed that everything looked normal. At his next appt. in January he will have his second series of shots :( I already told the nurse covering for me that I hope they don't expect me to do his shots!! She laughed and said she would do them and not to worry. Furthermore, at his 6 month check up, we will schedule Parker to have a developmental screening to see if he is lacking in any developmental areas. If so, they will give us exercises to do with him to try and catch him up. We all know Parker does things on his own time table though!!

Friday, December 14, 2007

Late Night with Dad!

Parker kept Daddy up all night last night! haha! Actually we think Parker has his days and nights mixed up. He seems to think it's play time at about 11pm and 3 am and then he sleeps all day!! We are trying to get him flipped around. We think it's our fault because we stay up pretty late. Looks like it will be early to bed for all of us from now on!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

We have "NICU-itis"!!!

I got this funny email about being a parent to a preemie. I thought it was really funny and would share it with everyone.

You Know You're The Parent of a Preemie When...

1.You use strange initials (C-PAP, CCs, NICU, NG) when discussing your child.

2.You actually remember how many CCs make up an ounce.

3.You count his weight in grams.

4. The skin on your hands is peeling from washing so often!

5.You hesitate when someone asks his/her age, but you know exactly how much he/she weighs!6. The answer to "How old is your baby?" is a story 30 minutes long!

7. When someone asks his birthday, you reply, "Which one?"

8. You start to understand some of the things they say on ER!

9. You turn into Kung-Fu Mom when someone tries to touch your baby.

10. You attempt to measure just how much spit-up he/she just had before you clean it up!

11. You know how much he weighs before putting him on the scale at the doctor's office

12. You cry at Maternity Ward and get mad at Baby Story.

13. You see a 7lb newborn and say "Wow! She's so BIG!"

14. Your baby is months old before he can even go to the mall.

15. You have never explained why your baby is on an apnea monitor.

16. When someone says how tiny your baby is, you argue that he is huge -- and to demonstrate, you whip out pictures of him in NICU.

17. You do a health check on people when they come to your house to visit.

18. You make people wash their hands before going near your child.

19. You want to scream when someone says that she just wants to have this baby now - at week 28, 32, or 34.

20. You are so amazed when someone actually tells you your baby is big for his age!

21. You tried to find a place to buy newborn size diapers in bulk.

22. You called half your relatives when the baby grew out of their first pair of pajamas!

23. You never take your child for granted.

24. You worry about RSV season and it is still weeks away . . .

25. You know what "RSV" stands for.

26. You donate his/her tiny clothes to the NICU and marvel that they seem so small - when they were too large!

27. Your son gets a simple cold and her doc sees her within the hour!

28. People say, "He CAN'T be __ old...he's too little!"

29. It has taken them 5 months to grow INTO newborn clothes!

30. You pick up 2 pounds of ground beef and think that your baby was born at the same weight.

31. You buy "Purell" in bulk

32. You can stare at your baby for hours when he sleeps

That fits us WAY too perfectly!! hahaha!!

Parker had an exciting week. He went to the lab on Monday to have some blood drawn to make sure he isn't anemic. It's just a normal precautionary thing Dr. Taylor ordered. He sure didn't like getting his little foot poked again!! He actually let out a pretty big cry but they gave him "sweeties" (sugar water) again which he remembered from the NICU days.

Last night Parker actually sat in his little bouncer seat that Grandma Teona gave him. He loved it and was even reaching for the little toys in front of him! That was really exciting for us. Then, he got a bath in the big tub instead of the kitchen sink! He used his bath seat that Uncle Chuck gave him and he loved soaking in the warm water. He especially loves getting his hair washed. It's pretty cute! He has mastered lifting his head off my shoulder this week too which is pretty awesome. He's getting so strong!! He's actually starting to wake up now so I better go!!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Welcome to our new Family Blog!

Parker on 12/8/07

We are excited to start a new family blog specifically to keep everyone updated about our little shining star, Parker. As you know he has already had an exciting start in life and I'm sure there will be more exciting stories to come.

At Parker's last Dr.'s appointment, which was on December 6th, he was 5 pounds, 9 ounces! Dr. Taylor decided we could try a couple weeks off Neosure (a supplement that adds calories and fat to breastmilk to help with weight gain) and see how he does! He has another appointment on December 17th to check his weight again so everyone think fat thoughts! Also, as of December 4th, Parker outgrew his preemie-sized diapers!! Yay!! We have a couple extra packs if anyone knows a family in need of them. We can't wait until he can fit into his newborn-sized clothes!! I think we own every preemie outfit in Kennewick!

Due to Parker being so early and being a certain weight, he needed to have an eye exam to check for ROP (retinopathy of prematurity which causes blindness). This happens because the blood vessels in the retina don't have time to mature and develop. There aren't any pediatric opthamologist in the Tri-Cities, so we went to Spokane. Poor little Parker got a lot of drops in his eyes and had to have little metal prongs hold his eyelids open! He threw a major fit, but luckily everything is completely normal and his retinas are already fully developed. Phew! They requested to see him back in a year for a normal check up and make sure he doesn't have decreased vision.

Also, we wanted to take a minute to let everyone know why exactly Parker has to be isolated from visitors and the "outside world". Due to being to being so premature and having spent so much time in the neonatal intensive care unit, he is at an extremely high risk to pick up any and every little germ out there. In these little guys, a simple common cold can be deadly. I know it may seem extreme, but we want to protect our little guy as much as possible. We know everyone wants Parker to be healthy so thanks for being so understanding. He is doing so good and we want to keep it that way!! This is why when Parker does have visitors, we will ask you to please wash your hands, and save visits for another time if you are having any signs of illness, like a runny nose or cough.

One more thing- The March of Dimes is an organization that helps with raising money and awareness to prevent prematurity. This year our family will be participating in the March of Dimes walk (used to be WalkAmerica- will now be March For Babies) that is held every year. We aren't sure of the dates yet but we will let you know. If you want to walk with us just let us know. We want to help celebrate the survival of all the preemies out there, and support those little ones that are fighting at this very moment.

Thanks to everyone and we hope you enjoy "The Parker Report"!