May 18, 2011

Bedside Blogging

I'm sitting by Clara's bed and she's sleeping peacefully in my lap. Since I'm not sure when I'll be leaving here tonight (they're very short staffed and I don't really like leaving her when things are this busy) I thought I'd just update you from my phone.

Clara has made great progress the past couple of days on many fronts. She breastfed yesterday for 20 minutes in the morning and another 10 in the afternoon for an estimated total of about 2oz. We have also condensed feeds to one hour (instead of continuous). Yesterday we weaned her ativan dose; today we weaned the morphine dose and went to prn or "as needed" for her ativan instead of an automatic dose every 8 hours. She breastfed again twice today.  Her oxygen flow is down to 0.9 liters or 900cc.  The FiO2, or percent oxygen has been consistently below 30% and she's had a couple of runs at 21%.  So we've made good progress on all 3 fronts and are so proud of her and thankful for the physicians and staff and most of all our Lord.

On Monday we started to see a small amount of blood in her stool. She was not uncomfortable or unhappy so we just stopped her supplemental protein and decided to watch it.  Yesterday the blood increased in frequency and today it increased in quantity. The initial thought was (is?) that she might have developed a lactose intolerance.  We started a formula to see and I've stopped drinking/eating milk so that if that is it we can resume breastmilk in a little while.  The blood is continuing to get worse and she threw up almost half of the formula (this baby likes mama's milk).  They ordered an abdominal xray to see if there's anything else going on.  They're also going to do some labs to check for any infection. In the meantime they've stopped feeds completely overnight and are going to give her fluids which unfortunately means a new IV.

We are praying that the bloody stools resolve quickly and that the doctors are able to solve this puzzle. She doesn't act sick or uncomfortable or anything. As hard as it would be for me to stop all dairy I'll be willing to do it if it will make her better. But my gut feeling on this is that it isn't lactose. I'm not sure what it is but I just really hope she'll be okay and that this is a small setback and not a big one.

They just did a heel stick to get blood for labs and Clara really hated it. Lots of tears from her and a couple from mama too.  We gave her her morphine (*after* the heel stick... bad planning) so hopefully that will kick in a bit before we have to stick her again for IV access.

Robert is out of town tonight for work and I'm not leaving tonight until things are more stable around here.  They're short two nurses and even though Clara is a little sick for Clara right now she is one of the healthiest and most stable babies in ICU.  So that means Clara isn't getting much attention from the nursing staff (rightly so).  Good thing I've learned a lot about nursing the last eight weeks.  I'll just take care of her.

Thank you for praying for our baby. I'm still so thankful for how well she is doing,  even after a difficult afternoon.  I know that God has begun a great work in her and that He will see it to completion in His way.  Indeed we have much to be grateful for.


  1. Okay, perhaps a brief post, but one of my favorites. You just wrote that "Clara is one of the healthiest and most stable babies in ICU." I mean, seriously. AMEN. So awesome.

    I had to give up dairy for Beckett. It was SO HARD. I had no idea how much dairy I had been consuming. Ugh. But, I agree, being able to feed him my milk was worth it.

    I'll continue to pray that this is quickly resolved and that our sweet girl continues to make good progress.

    Love always,
    Her Devoted Fans: Kermit, Rebecca, Maddox and Beckett Smith

  2. Giving up dairy is hard, but if you need to - you can do it! Just look at what you've learned so far about caring for Clara; giving up dairy would be a piece of cake.

    I gave up dairy breastfeeding my little one and discovered there is soy milk, soy yogurt/ice cream, goat milk yogurt, goat milk bree, and cabot cheddar cheese is lactose free (just make sure it says so on the package). Some small things to look forward to if it comes that route.

    Praying things calm down tonight and the stool issue gets resolved soon.

  3. I will be praying for this latest issue to resolve itself asap!! Once again I have to say... She looks so great - she is one amazing little girl - with one amazing family!!

  4. Being a mommy is a 24/7 job, but one we gladly take on for the precious gift given to us by GOD. You know what is best for your baby so follow your heart and trust in HIM to direct you. Clara Mae is in good hands .... HIS and yours! GOD bless!

  5. I gave up dairy for 10 months and it certainly can be done. We can guide you if this is indeed the culprit. Praying for this issue to quickly be resolved.

  6. I'm with the Smith family. It's a wonderful problem that you have to stay at the hospital a little longer tonight because Clara is the healthiest and most stable baby in the NICU. I remember when you told her she was the sickest baby in the whole hospital! We rejoice in every step of success, and will be praying for the issue today. Pray it's just something minor. Hugs to you all!

  7. Like others said -- what a statement for you to say that Clara is one of the healthiest, most stable babies -- after what you have been through! I will definitely be praying specifically for Clara's new issue...Love and hugs from Elberton, Mary Ann

  8. Hey friend -- if she has to get stuck again, ask if they have "freezy spray" (that's what we call it at Vandy). Super fast acting and helps with the sting... also causes some vasoconstriction so they might not want to use it. Ice works great too. There's also EMLA cream but it takes 45 min to work and is usually for more substantial stuff (like a PICC). Since the heel stick/IV are topical procedures, morphine really won't help (it's systemic) but it does make momma feel better and baby settle down and rest... :-)

    Love you. So great talking to you today. You are such a strong woman. I can hear you roar all the way over here.

  9. Way to go baby Clara!!!!! To hear your mommy say "you are one of the healthiest.....", Praise the Lord and may he continue to do a great work inside your body! Praying for good news on the bleeding issue. You are awesome Clara and we are so proud of all you have accomplished in such a short time. God is indeed amazing through you!!!!!

  10. Praying this bleeding is just a bump in the road and not a pot hole. Go Clara. Be strong and fight like a girl.

  11. Oh Chrissy, something about this post is so sweet. (maybe it is the material at hand). Anyway, praying for you tonight as Robert is out of town, and of course Clara as well. Maybe the sweetness comes from the simplicity of the subject in a way; your little girl is sick and you are there to hold her and watch over her. Thanking God for keeping hold and watch over us.

  12. Praying for a healthy belly soon. So sorry about the IV but it will "do it's thing" and hopefully come out soon. I love the sweet way you are by her side tonight. And the fact that she knows it, is even sweeter. Just a few short weeks ago in the PICU~~my how far you have all come. You can look aroound now and count all your blessings.

    Thanks for always posting. And thank you for all the unsaid inspiration you bless your friends with.

    Love and Prayers,
    Nicole Jones

  13. So sad to hear Clara is having a problem. we are continuing our prayers.
    I will be leaving for MA tomorrow to see my grandchildren but Clare will still get prayers from me. I will be back on 5-26.
    Randy and Annette


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...