Tuesday, February 24, 2009
Early Bird - Day 17
Here we are at Day 17...sorry its been so long since I posted. Its been more of the same the last week or so. Early Bird has 8 feedings a day and its "doctor's orders" that she "nipple 8 out of 8" so that means...at the appropriate feeding time (every 3 hours) the nurse/parent gives her a bottle (almost all the time containing breastmilk - woo-hoo, my milk has come all the way in.) and then its a numbers game...Early Bird drinks as much of the bottle as she wants (or can possibly stay awake for) and then the rest goes into her tummy through her feeding tube. And until she gets 75% of her total daily calories from those bottle feedings (not what goes in the tube) she can't bust out of the joint.
Its hard for premature babies to get the hang of "suck, swallow, breath". And that's what drinking a bottle is all about. In the womb, babies are developing that reflex right around 35-36 wks, while floating in a bath of amniotic fluid...but with EB having entered the world around 34 wks...she has to learn this skill in a different way (every 3 hours with a latex nipple and breastmilk) and at a different time (NOW!).
But the good news is...
Day 14 - 64% of her feedings from the bottle/breast
Day 15 - 72% of her feedings from the bottle/breast
Day 16 - 82% of her feedings from the bottle/breast
The end is in sight...they pulled out her feeding tube yesterday at the 6pm feeding and she's been keeping her numbers up. They are going to keep watching her for another 24-48 hours and if all goes well...she's going to be pushed out of the NICU nest and ready to fly on her own (at home with us). :)