Monday, January 28, 2008

How Preemie Moms are Chosen

I got this article from a preemie support board I am a part of. It really brought a tear to my eye.
How Preemie Moms Are Chosen
(Adapted from Erma Bombeck)
Did you ever wonder how the mothers of premature babies are chosen? Somehow, I visualize God hovering over Earth, selecting his instruments for propagation with great care and deliberation. As he observes, he instructs his angels to take notes in a giant ledger. "Beth Armstrong, son. Patron Saint, Matthew. Marjorie Forrest, daughter. Patron Saint, Celia. Carrie Rutledge, twins. Patron Saint ... give her Gerard. He's used to profanity."
Finally, he passes a name to an angel and smiles. "Give her a preemie."
The angel is curious. "Why this one, God? She's so happy." "Exactly," smiles God. "Could I give a premature baby a mother who knows no laughter? That would be cruel."
"But does she have the patience?" asks the angel. "I don't want her to have too much patience, or she'll drown in a sea of self-pity and despair. Once the shock and resentment wear off, she'll handle it. I watched her today. She has that sense of self and independence so rare and so necessary in a mother. You see, the child I'm going to give her has a world of its own. She has to make it live in her world, and that's not going to be easy."
"But Lord, I don't think she even believes in you." God smiles. "No matter, I can fix that. This one is perfect. She has just the right amount of selfishness." The angel gasps, "Selfishness?! Is that a virtue?" God nods. "If she can't separate herself from the child occasionally, she will never survive.
Yes, here is a woman whom I will bless with a child less than perfect. She doesn't know it yet, but she is to be envied.
She will never take for granted a spoken word.
She will never consider a step ordinary.
When her child says 'mama' for the first time, she will be witness to a miracle and know it.
I will permit her to see clearly the things I see – ignorance, cruelty, prejudice – and allow her to rise above them.
She will never be alone. I will be at her side every minute of every day of her life because she is doing my work as surely as she is here by my side."
"And what about her Patron Saint?" asks the angel, his pen poised in the air.
God smiles. "A mirror will suffice."

Friday, January 18, 2008

Shots Today!

Parker had a check up today with Dr. Taylor and got some baby shots. :( He got his 2nd Hepatitis B, 1st HIB, 1st dTap, and 1st rotavirus. He actually did really well though! He has been zonked out since. I think he used so much energy crying that he's just pooped. Also, his thrush is back, which I don't think ever totally cleared up from when he was in the hospital. When he got discharged, he was still taking nystatin (the medication to clear it up), but they never gave us a prescription for it. I guess we were so focused on other things that day we forgot to ask. Anyway, he will be back on the medicine to help that. Parker has also been packin on the weight! He gained 32 ounces in 34 days! That puts him at 8 pounds 14 ounces and 21 1/2 inches long! Almost a 9 pounder!! He still isn't on the growth charts yet, which can start to be measured once he makes it into the 5th percentile. Dr. Taylor thinks he will probably get there somewhere between 10-12 months. By age 2, he will most likely be totally caught up. The Dr. is very pleased with Parker's progress and so are we! He goes back in another 2 months for more shots. Also around 6 months, he will have a developmental evaluation to see where he needs more work. That should be interesting!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Muddy waters

Ewww!! Parker did the most gross thing ever last night! He pooped in the tub during bath time!! It was so sick, I was gagging!!! I thought it was a pretty funny story though and just had to post it! It was a lot of fun scrubbing the tub at 10:00 last night! Boys are so gross! :)

Sunday, January 6, 2008

RSV Information

Here is some awesome information regarding RSV. I get a lot of questions about it and people wondering why Cory and I are so here ya go!

What is RSV?

RSV is the most common respiratory pathogen in infants and young children. It has infected nearly all infants by the age of two years. Seasonal outbreaks of acute respiratory illness occur each year, on a schedule that is somewhat predictable in each region. The season typically begins in the fall and runs into the spring.

RSV is spread easily by physical contact. Touching, kissing, and shaking hands with an infected person can spread RSV. Transmission is usually by contact with contaminated secretions, which may involve tiny droplets, or objects that droplets have touched. RSV can live for half an hour or more on hands. The virus can also live up to five hours on countertops and for several hours on used tissues. RSV often spreads very rapidly in crowded households and day care centers.

Each year up to 125,000 infants are hospitalized due to severe RSV disease, and about 1-2% of these infants die. Infants born prematurely, those with chronic lung disease, those who are immunocompromised, and those with certain forms of heart disease are at increased risk for severe RSV disease. Those who are exposed to tobacco smoke, who attend daycare, who live in crowded conditions, or who have school-age siblings are also at higher risk.


Breathing difficulty or labored breathing
Cough and a Croupy cough (often described as a "seal bark" cough)
Cyanosis (bluish discoloration of skin caused by lack of oxygen)
Nasal flaring
Rapid breathing (tachypnea)
Shortness of breath
Stuffy nose


A simple way to help prevent RSV infection is to wash your hands often, especially before touching your baby. It's important to make certain that other people, especially care givers, take precautions to avoid giving RSV to your baby. The following simple steps can help protect your baby:

Insist that others wash their hands with warm water and soap before touching your baby.

Have others avoid contact with the baby if they have a cold or fever. If necessary, it may be helpful to wear a mask.

Be aware that kissing the baby can spread RSV infection.

Try to keep young children away from your baby. RSV is very common among young children and easily spreads from child to child.

Do not smoke inside your house, car or anywhere near your baby. Exposure to tobacco smoke increases the risk of RSV illness.

Parents with high-risk young infants should avoid crowds during outbreaks of RSV. Moderate-to-large outbreaks are often reported in the local news and newspapers to provide parents with an opportunity to avoid exposure.

The drug Synagis (palivizumab) is approved for prevention of RSV disease in children younger than 24 months of age who are at high risk for serious RSV disease. Ask your doctor if your child is at high risk for RSV and whether this medicine should be given.

So that's it! Hope that helps. Luckily Parker does qualify for the synagis shot and is getting them this RSV season.

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Happy New Year!

As you can see Parker was in such a good mood this morning! Too bad he had to go get a shot :( He got his 2nd RSV shot in his litte thigh this afternoon and actually did really well...barely cried at all! I think he used to getting poked from his NICU days. I'm going to try and post a blog about RSV soon because I get a lot of questions about it and I think it's important for all parents to know about.
Anyway, he had to go to Option Care in Kennewick to get the injection and everyone was really nice there. They schedule the preemies to come in when no one is really around or with other preemies so they aren't exposed to other people in the waiting area. That is really nice. He will get a shot every month through April because this is when RSV season is in our area. The injection gives is not a vaccine, but it gives him the antibodies he will need to keep RSV away. Full term babies get these antibodies from their moms, but preemies come to early and they miss out on that.
The nurse weighed Parker and took measurements on his head and body. He is now 7 pounds 14.6 ounces and was 20.5 inches!! Can you believe he was 3 pounds 7 ounces and only 16 1/4 inches long only 10 weeks ago!? I can't!
Parker is scheduled to get his 2 month baby shots on the 18th and I'm sure he'll do fine with that as well...he's our little champ! He has his 3rd RSV shot on February 1st. Also, I found out I will be returning to work on February 18th which will be very hard. I hate leaving him but I'm sure all working moms go through that.
As for myself, I have an appointment on monday with a high-risk OB doctor to discuss future pregnancies and how we will manage differently next time to hopefully get the next baby further along. We aren't sure what the doctor will say, but we know we will probably have major decisions to make this year regarding our family planning. I will hopefully get more information on monday and will try to post something about that. We want to give Parker the gift of brothers and sisters, but we need to make sure this is something safe and smart to do.
We want to thank everyone for all the Christmas gifts Parker recieved this year. We are very thankful and Parker loves all of the gifts. I think Cory had fun playing with everything too!! Also thanks to our family for being so understanding that Parker had to stay home during the holidays this year for obvious reasons. We are so blessed to have such a wonderful family, that they all brought Christmas to our house this year!
We had such a blessed 2007, we hope 2008 brings us more joy! We hope the same for you as well! Cheers!!