Saturday, September 14, 2013

Updates From the NICU

The girls are doing great. They are 11 days old today and both still in the NICU.

I started tandem nursing on Wednesday. By Thursday night Lucy was struggling. She was going strong for about 5 minutes and then losing steam and falling asleep. W would help as much as possible by burping her, rubbing her feed, or trying to wake her up. This would often work to wake her up, but then getting her latched again was difficult. 

On Thursday night I tried to nurse the girls but had to swallow my pride and give Lucy a bottle as she wasn't having success with nursing. I had to do what was best for my girl, not what I wanted. Getting the bottle into her wasn't easy either, but with a lot of persistence I succeeded. 

 The LC Charlene was off on Thursday but luckily was there on Friday. We talked about little Lucy in the morning and made a strategy. She said it was best to alternative every other feeding between the breast and the bottle. This way Lucy wasn't getting so tired nursing and we were making sure she was still getting full feedings. On Friday she had fewer dirty diapers and was very low energy. She also looked more jaundiced. Over these few days she also had quite a few bradycardia episodes where her heart rate would slow down. Most were self corrected, but it was obvious she was tired and working too hard. 

I cried quite a bit over this setback. Things went so well on Wednesday but it all was a little much for her. I didn't want to push her too much and knew I had to back off and do what was best for her. 

At the same time her sister Clara really took off. For feedings she was going for 25 minutes on the breast without any problems. She practically didn't even need me to hold her head. We would pull her out of her isolette and W would hand her to me, gaping mouth, ready to nurse. She was our little champ. 

To my surprise the LC is also an RN and was also working today so she requested she be assigned to the girls. That way we could work more on feedings and she could observe the girls more closely. She is so amazing and experienced and I feel so lucky to have her there to help us and take care of the girls. We woke up for the 7:00 AM feeding this morning because we planned to go to the mom's of multiples consignment sale at 9:30. 

I was up to pump at 2:00 AM and 5:00 AM and then we got up at 6:20. The 45 minutes between the last pumping session and waking up was rough. I was so emotional today and Charlene pointed out that  the less sleep I got the more I'd be crying. She wasn't lying. 

We found out today that Clara is going to move into an open crib tomorrow and will likely be discharged 48 hours later. Lucy is not ready for an open crib yet. Finding this out broke my heart. I never thought the girls would be discharged at different times. 

This afternoon we came home to nap and W and I snuggled together while I cried. We decided we aren't going to say that Clara is "coming home" since we aren't going to be at our house. We will be bringing the girls home together when Lucy is ready as well. Until then we will continue to stay at my in-laws house. It makes me sad to think that I had matching outfits to bring them home in and that we are going to be leaving Lucy without her sister for the first time. 

I'm a little worried about how I'm going to manage one here and one in the NICU. I'm sure we'll figure it out, but it's not how I pictured things. None of this is how I pictured it though.

Hopefully Lucy won't be far behind. I can't wait for us all to be together in our own house for the first time.

I never thought this time period in the NICU would be so tough. I'm hanging in there and doing my best, but it's not easy. Just like infertility, I wouldn't wish this on anyone. 


  1. I haven't been in your shoes, but I can only imagine how difficult it all is. You seem like you are doing an awesome job taking care of your girls and also making sure you are healing and sleeping in preparation for their homecoming! What a sweet, sweet day it will be when your family of four is home together! Until then, thinking of you and wishing you and your girls all the best!

  2. Yup, it's up there with infertility :( I will pray that little Lucy gets stronger. I can imagine it will be hard to not have them discharged at the same time. Yes, girl, SLEEP when you can! Your body and mind and heart needs rest too right now so you can be strong for your little ones. And so happy you have a great LC! Mine was evil. Pretty much ruined it for me. But that's a story for another day :) Keep your head up! Soon you will look back on this and not believe that your chubby, happy, smiling babies were once in the NICU :)

  3. Liz, it is rough now and you are tired, but everything will be ok soon. Being a mother is the most difficult responsibility plus you are a first time mum to the twins. Lucy will be doing well soon but usually one of thetwins is always weaker ar the beginning. Later on things settle down.

    Sara -ff

  4. I can only imagine how hard it must be. I'm trying to prepare myself for that situation should it come up with my own two little ones. The one thing I know though, is Lucy will get stronger and you will have them both home with you eventually. It may not be how you envisioned it happening, but when the time comes, it will be perfect. I'm so thankful for your LC being so wonderful and helping you out. Your family is in my thoughts. Hugs to all of you!

  5. So hard, I can't even imagine. Continuing to pray for you all. Glad you're planning on coming HOME with everyone together.

  6. I don't have any wise words for you, but I'll continue to pray that Lucy gets stronger quickly and the 4 of you can go home together, as a family, soon...

  7. ((hugs)) Hayden spent only four days in the NICU and it was the longest four days ever! It's so hard, especially because there's nothing you can do to really speed things along.

    I had this image in my head of Alex meeting her little sister for the first time, all the pics I would get. I planned her coming home outfit.

    The reality ended up being that Alex had to wear scrubs into the NICU the first few times of meeting Hayden and could not really hold her (the pic I had been imagining). As for the coming home outfit-it ended up being a sleeper she was already wearing. Just seemed easier.

    So I completely understand about having an image in your head, and reality not being quite as picturesque.

    This will all be behind you soon!

  8. I am having the same issue with breast feeding. They will latch on and eat, but they get tired before they can eat enough so I have to give them the rest in a bottle. I have hope it will get better as they get stronger but it's certainly frustrating.