Thursday, July 30, 2009

Mr. Elephant isn't so BIG anymore!






4 Months today!!

Greyson is growing right along. I’m excited to announce he has slept in his crib for the past 2 nights (thank you Kristi for recommending the Angel Monitor.) Seriously, without this device I’d still be stumbling around in the night every 10 minutes. However, I do forget to turn off the alarm each time I remove him from the crib for a feeding, so Matthew gets a startling little wake-up several times throughout the night. The Angel Monitor will sound an alarm if there is no movement for 20 seconds. Moreover, there is a sensory pad that is placed under the mattress that monitors all movement. I tested it several times and it proves to work. We still take our early morning nap together. Greyson sleeps on my chest for about an hour. He loves to sleep on Matthew and me.

I was browsing through some pictures the other day and decided that we needed a growth update with Mr. Elephant. Wow, the difference in size is amazing!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Friday, July 24, 2009

Grey and Grandpa Stokes


Matthew's family came to visit Greyson last Saturday. We are keeping Greyson home as instructed for as long as possible so Matthew's family has to come to us. I can't wait to actually feel secure with taking Grey out of the house.

Matthew snapped a few shots and here is one with Grandpa. We think Grey has Grandpa's chin :) Not only does Greyson look just like Matthew but he looks like Grandpa too.

Weight Check



We had our 4 month check-up yesterday (a few days early). Greyson weighed 7 pounds 12 ounces and I wasn’t shocked. Gaining one pound in a week definitely seems possible when you are eating every 2 hours. Furthermore, he acts hungry constantly, which is a good thing at this point. I spoke with our pediatrician about my concern with fortifying my breast milk. This fortified formula is giving him horrible gas! Now, I can handle the gas but it is clearly uncomfortable for Greyson. He has a terrible look on his face and you can feel his gas pains- and gas pain is the worst. I’d like to stop the fortifying but I’ve been instructed that it is still important right now. So, I’ve tried gas drops and haven’t seen any improvements in his disposition. If anyone has further suggestions- I’ll take them. Sadly, we also had our 4 month shots yesterday. Ouch! Talk about heart wrenching that experience was awful. Matthew will be taking him for the 6 month shots.

Sorry but I had to post a few pics of our grumpy little pumpkin. These are the faces that I see at 2 and 3am!!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Slide Show

video

I made this slide show last month for my shower. I just realized that I never shared it on the blog! Turn up the volume, there is music about 20 seconds into the video. I need to make a new video soon to show our 7 pounder at home.

Friday, July 17, 2009

Bumble Bee



So Poppi has so accurately described Greyson as “a bumble bee in a tin can.” This little guy has no problem winding himself into a fit of furry.

We visited the pediatrician and eye doctor this week. The pediatrician was very happy with his progress but he’s lost some weight. Greyson weighed 7 pounds 1 ounce when we left the NICU on Saturday and he weighed 6 pounds 12 ounces on Wednesday at the doctor. So for now, I am back to fortifying every bottle, which means I add 24 extra calories to my breast milk. He’s pretty much the boss when it comes to eating; I’ve thrown out the schedule for now. I think he took 10 bottles yesterday. If he acts hungry then he gets fed. We have a follow-up visit next week and I’ll probably be scolded for the weight gain!

Our eye doctor visit went well. Greyson has no signs of retinopathy. This is a disease caused by immature vessels in the eye, which can lead to blindness. Babies born at 25 weeks are very likely to have some stage of retinopathy. However, Greyson has beat the odds again. We have a follow-up appointment in 4 months. Note to self, if you are a frantic germaphobe, bound to defeat bacteria, don’t wear your baby in one of those slings to the doctor’s office. Slings draw attention to every woman within eyesight. I could see their intrigued eyes from afar and seriously felt panic- I wanted to scream “Stop! Do not proceed with further closeness” I managed to show his face to one woman for like 3 seconds, five feet away, she clearly thought I was nuts. I avoided eye contact with everyone and ignored all whispers, which included “oh look, that must be a little baby” and “how cute, I think a baby is in there.” I never confirmed their suspension and surely won the unfriendly mother award.

Poor Matthew has probably been crawling on all fours this week at work. An intravenous drip of caffeine probably wouldn’t get him through the work day. Last night is the first night we didn’t sleep with the light on. I literally check Greyson every 10 minutes and if I happen to fall asleep for like 15 minutes then I jump with panic and run to wherever he is sleeping. I allowed him to sleep in the crib for almost an hour last night; this hour included about 10 breathing checks. He usually sleeps in a swing right next to our bed and don’t feel bad- this swing is amazing and surely more comfortable than any crib. I’m just wondering when the worrying ends. I know all moms do this but I haven’t been given any time frames. Am I going to be running around in the night for weeks or months?

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Home is where the Heart is







So we brought our sweet Greyson home on Saturday after 102 days in the NICU.

Matthew and I signed out of the NICU for the last time at 11:20am. This experience seems so unreal. I felt like I was running out of the NICU in fear of flooding the place with tears. I had one of those awful lumps in my throat the entire morning. I am truly going to miss our nurses, especially our primaries. Teri, Carlye, Jenny and Judith- I know Greyson misses you… well, we all miss you. Seriously, if it wasn’t for these nurses, I’d be in the asylum by now.

It is still strange having Grey home, just today I watched Gigi rocking him and thought “what’s he doing here?” Greyson spends the majority of his time being transferred from one person's arms to another. I wouldn’t say we are fighting over him but we are all eagerly awaiting our turn… and of course, I get first dibs. So far, he enjoys his swing and sleeps best on Matthew’s chest. And all of our conversations begin with ‘oh my gosh, please come look at Greyson!” I've fallen in love all over again. He is truly a gift and definitely worth the wait.

So this is where we truly begin our life with Greyson Matthew…

Monday, July 6, 2009

D-Day



Wow, so today was supposed to be D-Day! My due date was July 6th. It is absolutely mind boggling to think that Greyson has been here for 97 days. When I really ponder the thought, I experience an overwhelming emotion that I can’t really identify- fear mixed with immeasurable gratitude. I cried in the car on the way to work today. Sometimes I think the dam is going to break and I might just cry for days, even weeks. I have felt so many stages of grief- shock, denial, guilt, anger. However, I now feel acceptance and hope. Greyson is a miracle and that’s the reality of this situation. I’ve prayed and begged for the health of this baby and our prayers have been heard. Grey has touched the lives of so many people and we are beyond fortunate to have such wonderful families and friends.

Now for the really exciting news, as of today, we are on a 5 day count down. If Greyson can go 5 days without having a spell then we will go home this Friday. Yes, I said HOME!! By the way- a significant drop in heart rate or oxygen levels that requires stimulation constitutes a spell. Greyson is such a big boy now- 6 pounds 9 ounces- I am confident that he will thrive at home. Last night he was actually sticking out his lip and pouting. I thought Gigi was going to cry, she was actually squealing and begging me to make him stop. Not that I haven’t mentioned this before but he is absolutely adorable- he makes my heart melt.