Saturday, August 9th – Out in the open…

Usual night for Riley, except that she finally got to spend it with her BFF nurse.  It’s been a long time since she’s had her, and I actually received a Facebook message with the sweetest picture this morning letting us know that Riley made it to 4 lbs, just in case we hadn’t made it back after dinner last night to discover the good news.  The message also said “She wasn’t really as mad at me as she seems here. We’re getting along just fine!”  What an amazing nurse:)

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My mom came in with me to the hospital this am, while my dad and Ian stayed back at the house to get some laundry and yard work done.  Riley had a new nurse again today.  During morning rounds, the docs discussed the plan to wean Riley to an open bed.  I asked what exactly this entails, and the nurse practitioner explained that “she’s basically already being weaned, given that the temperature on her incubator is so low.”  They’ve also been increasing the amount of time Riley spends on her back, as she cannot be on her tummy once she’s out of the incubator.  I expect this all to happen some time early this week, which was exciting.  The doctor reiterated that he is impressed with how well Riley is doing given that she was born at 28 weeks (and 2 days),  and reassured me that “I’m not concerned at all that she’s still on CPAP.  This is completely normal for her.”  I asked how they felt her lungs are doing given all the trauma early on, and they confirmed that her lungs are doing “really well”  and “in good shape” all things considered.   Riley Mae…such a little warrior…

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My aunt and uncle stopped by for a final visit this am to say goodbye to their new bundle of joy (and me, I think, but Riley is the new priority…lets face it, she is way cuter:) ).  Mom and I hung out with Riley for a good portion of the morning, and then took a break to go outside on this beautiful day.  We went out to the turtle pond, and lets just say there definitely appeared to be love in the air today at the turtle pond.  I’ll let the picture speak for itself…

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Mom and I came back to Riley’s pod, and as the nurse entered the room, she said “Well, the order is in to put Riley in an open bed, not just to wean her to an open bed, so we’re going to go ahead and do that.”  Really?? Ok!  YAY!!  I looked at my mom to make sure I heard the nurse correctly, and the look of pure joy on my mom’s face let me know I did in fact hear what I thought I heard.  The nurse explained that Riley now will need to be wearing more clothing (so she can finally wear her cute sleeper onesies) and will be swaddled in a blanket.  She also will have to wear a hat to help keep her body temperature at an appropriate level.  She explained that “this open bed will make it so much easier for you to take Riley in and out of bed.”   I wasn’t sure I heard her correctly, so I asked her just to clarify,”So what are the rules with this then??…because I’ve been holding her for about an hour a day up until now with permission and assistance from the nurse,” and she again said “You can get her out and hold her whenever you want.  It’s good for her to feel the warmth of your body.”  WAHHHOOOOOO!!  I finally get to be like a real mom who gets to pick up her child and hold her….without permission….without assistance…this is huge!

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sleeping in layers…2 onesies, 2 blankets, and a hat!

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showing off my long onesie from nanners that I can now finally wear!

Despite having all intentions of going home for lunch, there was no way I could leave Riley after all this excitement.  I held her for a little while, and then Ian and my dad came for a visit.  We grabbed a quick bite to eat, and spent the remainder of the day hanging out with our little girl…our little girl who was all bundled up, and is beginning to experience a little more of her big world.  The once constricting plastic box with holes in the side for entering was now an open plastic container.  We could now actually hear the cooing and fussing sounds coming from our daughter, as they were no longer muffled by the plastic walls.  We could see her clearly and up close, without having to bend down and peer through the few clean spots on the plastic walls.  Welcome to your new world little one…

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Riley had one bad d and b (which occurred at the same time) shortly before we left, which scared the heck out of both of us.  It was definitely the worst one she’s had, as her oxygen saturation level dropped down to 11 and her HR dropped to about 60-65.  Before the nurse was able to get into the room, we tried rubbing her back and picking her up, which helped slightly, but her coloring was pale and her lips appeared slightly blue.  The nurse came in after what felt like forever (but was probably about 30 seconds), and bumped her O2 and continued to rub her back, and we could see the color of her face slowly returning to pink as her monitor began showing more positive numbers.  Phew.  No more of that stuff Riley Mae.

Ian and I went home for dinner, and called in to check on Riley.  The nurse said she’s “been doing great,” as she hasn’t had any more d’s or b’s, and her temperature is right where it’s supposed to be.  She also mentioned she weighed Riley, and she’s up to 4 lb 1.9 ounces.  Another big day for Riley Mae…a new little lady in a new big world.  

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