Wednesday, December 19, 2012

2 Months Old

Updates from the past month:

Oh man do we love having these boys home! We call Connor "Connor Man" and Hayden "Mr. Hayden."

They are growing like weeds. I managed to pick both of them up and rock them while they were both fussy. I also tandem nursed them since they were screaming at me. It was not pretty, but it got the job done. I am definitely not built for tandem nursing so I'll be sticking with the nurse one/bottle feed the other routine that works best for me.

They love car rides, their jungle play mat, baths, and being in loud places (I think that stems from being in the NICU). C loves the swing and H loves the bouncer, which works out perfect because we only have one of each.

Connor smiled at me on December 7 for the first time (awake)! He makes the sweetest little faces and is so content (unless he's hungry). I take pictures of the boys all day long.

Mommy loves my face when daddy burps me. She takes a million pictures of it.

I love watching all the faces Hayden makes. He cracks me up! You can tell he's definitely the more vocal one.

We went on our first outing to Lupe Tortillas for dinner. So many people wanted to "oh and ah" over them. We were told congrats many times. The boys slept the entire time.

Lou is still not good at changing diapers, but he tries! Poor guy gets peed on just about every time.

I took the boys by myself to a doctor's appointment. That was a nightmare. I will not being going alone again.

We wore our "My Mom Rocks" shirts since she handled taking us to the doc all by herself!

I took them to HEB with me after their doctor's appointment. HA! I've still got pregnancy brain. My plan was to push the boys in their stroller and just shove a few items in the basket part. Well, when I went to check out and they had put everything in bags, I didn't have room or hands to take them to my car. A worker had to help me. Durrrrrrrrr

Izzy and Eva came home! The NICU doc recommended introducing the dogs slowly since the boys immune systems still weren't developed and we needed to be careful in case there were allergies. We brought Eva home after having them home for a month. Izzy came a week later. Connor had puffy eyes for a while but the doctor said it could go away once he gets used to it. The dogs really could have cared less. They just sniffed the boys and then ran all over the place like a crazy girls. Eva does like being around them though. Izzy just barks when they cry and looks at them like "Why are you still here?"

Took the boys to see Dr. O for my 6 week check-up. She loved them, of course. It was so good to see her and kind of rehash what happened. I've healed nicely but am still worried about the bleeding out incident I had. She reassured me that she'll keep an eye on me and I have to continue on iron for a while.

We went on our first little road trip to Brenham for Thanksgiving. H & C got to meet some more family and they loved it! They did great in the car too.

Our family!
4 Generations 
Uncle Ray

Uncle Glen

First family picture at the farm

Uncle Al and Aunt Fish

Sweet Aunt Fay
Our friends went with us to have pictures taken with Santa at Bass Pro Shops by our house. Their little girl was not having it, and it was hilarious. I know this sounds terrible, but I think pictures of true terror on little kids' faces is way better than them smiling and sitting on Santa's lap. Our boys just slept the whole time, as usual. We also went to PaPa Mark's company Christmas party and had pics taken with Santa there too.

We've had LOTS of visitors and these little boys have sure enjoyed the love. Thanks for loving on our boys! There will be a whole post of pictures from all the visitors.

Bryan's dad

Bryan's dad and Susan

Monday, November 19, 2012

Updates from Life with H & C (End of Month 1)

Bringing the boys home was exciting and overwhelming. I felt so unprepared but for once, I let it go and just loved on my babies. We spent the first couple days just the 4 of us so we could bond with our babies minus all the people and noises of the NICU. The first night was quite the adventure. Since they were circumcised right before we brought them home, we had to play nurse and do the post-op stuff that they usually do in the hospital. It was quite traumatic, but Lou assured me they wouldn't remember it and if we didn't get them circumcised they would be resentful of the fact later in life. I listened to him since after all he's the one with the same anatomy, not me. But, they were in so much pain. At one point I almost passed out from watching Lou remove the gauze from Hayden. It got stuck and Hayden squirmed causing Lou to rip the gauze. It started bleeding. I can handle grotesque things, but seeing my baby go through that just did me in. If I have another boy, I will NOT leave the dang hospital until that part has been taken care of. Needless to say, we didn't get much sleep. Also, every diaper we changed that night, the boys peed on us. Connor has a super powered aim and got the wall and curtains at one point. It didn't matter how quick we were, the minute their little wieners hit the air, it was pee pee all over the place time! Lou's solution was to scream and jump away. We changed our bedding and clothes several times that night.

They have stayed very consistent with the schedule they had while in the NICU. When it's time to eat, they want it right that minute. We don't say we're going to bed - it's "taking a nap" since they eat every 2-3 hours. They are on preemie formula and breast milk. Thankfully, the NICU nurses and our neighbor who had a preemie a while back stocked us up so we shouldn't have to buy any for a while. The Lord keeps blessing us in little and big ways!

The boys got their first real baths at home. Connor was pretty content the whole time. Hayden, well, see for yourselves what he thought about his first bath...

That was a real nice bath mom and dad!

That was the most terrible thing you've done to me since kicking me out of your womb.
My mom has been helping out a lot! I don't know what I would without her. She cooks, cleans, makes sure I'm getting rest, and of course loves on my boys. She went with me to have the boys newborn pics made with Aimee Fuller Photography. She is so wonderful. Here is her blog post on us:

We took the boys to their first pedi appointment the day after they came home. She was great and walked us through the charts and how she goes by their "adjusted age" and not their actual age since they are preemies and will probably be behind a little bit with their growth. She heard a murmur in Hayden's heart so he's going to a pedi cardiologist this week. Both boys looked ok with their heights and weights for their adjusted age. Connor is long and skinny. He is in the 75th percentile for length and 20th for his weight (adjusted age chart - for their actual age they're both between the 1-6 percentile). Hayden is average for both but shorter and heavier than Connor.

My sister took the day off to accompany me to the pedi cardiologist. She LOVES these babies and is so happy to get to hold them now that they are out of the NICU. I'm not surprised, ok maybe a little. Do you know my sister? :) Anyways, Hayden did so great at the doctor. He had to lay still for 45 minutes so they could do his echo. I laid on the bed with him and he held my hand and slept the entire time. I was impressed!! He is usually my dramatic, noisy little man. He sure showed off today! Connor man was just loved on by Aunt Fish so he was content. The doctor was young but really great. I felt like we were old friends or something. Weird. She explained that Hayden has a little hole in his heart that they will watch and hopefully it will close up in the next 6-12 months. I'm worried, of course, but I trust everything will be ok.

Ready for the doc!
Other than weekly doctor appointments for the next month, we don't plan on getting the boys out. I am a little paranoid about RSV after talking with the neonatologist. They were approved for the shots through insurance since they are preemies, but I still don't want to risk it. My mom took off a couple days this week to help us out. We've had a few other family members visit as well. Our friends got together and did another "meals on wheels" for us. I'm telling you, we would STARVE if it weren't for the food prepared/bought for us by family and friends. Thank you from the bottom of our hearts!!

Connor LOVES the swing
Tiny Texans fans!
Puffy momma.
Cuddling with daddy.
Hi brother, you look familiar.
These are the outfits we brought them home in.
This is how Hayden was always position in the womb.
Happy 1 month sweet boys! 
What's up ladies? I'm the big O-N-E month.
Life is good at home with my mommy and daddy.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Week 3 and Homecoming!

Over the weekend we got the house ready for the boys to come home. Since their early arrival was fairly unexpected and I had been on bed rest, we hadn't finished their room, put together their swing, bouncer, co-sleeper, etc. so we tackled all that. My mom came over to help get the house clean and Auntie A came by to drop off the bay window curtain rod for the boys room. She has been a huge help with the boys' nursery. We went up to see the boys and take our required CPR class.

For the past several days, Dr. H had been telling us that Connor would get to come home soon and Hayden would definitely be behind him. Well, today we got a call that Connor had fallen behind and Hayden had moved up a day on their feedings so he was writing up discharge orders for Hayden to come home. This man is trying to kill me over.

On Sunday, we went up to see the boys and were preparing ourselves to leave with only one baby. Both boys had done well on their night feedings and were happy little guys. Their nurses (who we really liked) had performed their car seat tests that morning (this is where they have to sit in their car seats for 3 hours with no episodes - like Bradys or desatting). Hayden failed his first test but passed when they tried again. They said it was because he needed some extra support since he's so small in the car seat. Connor passed his first round because they also gave him some extra support.

We spoke with Dr. H's associate, who also happened to be the doctor who did our NICU consult when they thought they were going to have to deliver the boys at 33 weeks. Apparently the nurses had lobbied big time for Connor to go home at the same time as Hayden. They felt Connor had always been the better eater, he just had one bad day. Dr. C said he valued their opinions and was going to write up orders for Connor to go home too!!!!!! We were so excited and relieved that we would not have to leave the hospital with happy and sad tears... just happy ones!

The boys got 2 shots each and watching that was hard. Then, we had to wait all day for the boys to be circumcised. There was an issue getting the doctor there who performs the circumcision, so Dr. C did it. It was really late though and we wouldn't be able to leave till the early morning since they would have to be monitored for bleeding. We weren't leaving there without babies!

The team came and got them to perform the circumcision and I almost had a breakdown. I felt so sad that they would have to feel so much pain. When they brought them back, I heard cries from both of them that I had never heard before. It was so incredibly heartbreaking. We just held them and loved on them even though nothing really helped. So very sad.

Then the time came! We were finally taking our baby boys home. We packed up all their stuff on a cart, said our goodbyes, and off we went. It was such an amazing moment - there were lots of happy tears!

The memories of everything we had endured up through that point all came flooding back - the treatments, the heartache, the little pictures of the 2 embryos, all the ultrasounds, the Hyperemesis, the pain, the excitement, finding out the genders, the bedrest, etc. - in that moment I realized just how truly blessed we are. It was all worth it. Every. Single. Bit. Cue the tears.

I get to go home today!!!!
NICU stays are hard work
About to leave through the NICU doors!
Oh how we will NOT miss you 4th floor!
No babies were harmed in the act of getting them in their carseats...
Cheese face! I was so excited! 

Home sweet home! 
Thanks for the signs Dee Dee!