I have thought so many times of things I'd like to add to this blog - but finding the time to actually type is been tough! My days are filled with pumping and then feeding - and on and on goes the cycle. It's been hard! In fact just tonight my 11yo daughter was about in tears talking about how "different" things are - and the pumping seems to be what has hit her the hardest. I spend about 4 hours per day pumping and that much or more in feeding Eliana. It's a LOT of time - and it's hard work. I've received a lot of encouragment to keep it up - but also encouragment that if it gets to be too much for me or my family that it's alright to stop. It is just hard to know what is best.
Last Wed, we had a physical therapist here to do an evaluation of Eliana. She was pleased with what she saw and at the moment Eliana is not "behind" in any way. She is trying to lift her head when on her tummy and when being held upright. She gave me some ideas of a few things to do with Eliana, but didn't feel that we needed to start therapy immediately. She was positive and encouraging which was nice.
On Thur we visited with our pediatrician for 2 hours. She is very thorough and concerned not only for Eliana but also for the rest of our family. I feel blessed to have someone that cares for us in this way. Eliana had gained 4 ounces in the last week. We were glad to see that as she had lost weight from week 2 to 3. She weighed 7# 14 oz. That is just 2 ounces above her birth weight. We've been told that we need to fortify her food - both breastmilk and formula - with additional formula to boost the calorie count. So far, her heart is doing fine.
On Fri, we visited Duke for a renal ultrasound. During my prenatal u/s a problem showed up on the size of her kidneys and this was just a follow-up. Unfortunately, the lab tech was not allowed to give us any information and I could tell nothing from looking at the screen. We'll have to wait and get the information from our ped. Eliana slept through the u/s so it was a quick and easy procedure.
After finishing here, I met with the lactation consultant who was working at Duke that day. This is a wonderful gal that has helped me from day 3 with Eliana. She is a great encourager in so many ways! I'm thankful to have had her help. She helped me try a supplemental nursing system with Eliana. It's really the last different thing we can try. She did nurse some - both with and without it that day! It's this that keeps me going on the pumping. I really think that she CAN nurse - once we work past being sleepy and getting proper amounts of milk. Oh, they also tested my milk to see what the calorie content was for it. Normal is 20 calories/ounce and that is what formula is too. Mine tested at 21+!!! I was very encouraged by that. So while I don't have a lot of milk - at least what I do have is good.
Please keep praying for us - for our whole family. This is a big adjustment for all of us. Will type more later, but for now I need to go pump.