Boys will be boys

Boys will be boys

Tuesday, May 31, 2011


Luca on the bottom, Anze on the top

Luca left, Anze right
Anze, Yurchik, Luca

Monday, May 30, 2011

2 months old

I cannot believe my baby boys will be 2 months old tomorrow! It seems like bedrest was just yesterday. I am so utterly grateful that they are both home and thriving, that Yurchik adores them and that they are just as sweet as he is (so far). It's definitely an adjustment to be up every 3 hours to feed someone (or someones) but we are surviving.

Jr loves to hold his brothers, give them kisses and try to feed, change and pacify them. It's incredible the instant love he had for them. However, he knows he is bigger and the boss. The first night Luca was home he pointed at both of them and talked their heads off as if telling them he was glad they were home and his but he is still the boss. I loved it. How did we get so blessed with such sweet boys. We are going to try and do weekly dates with him... mom and me, dad and me or mom and dad and me to ensure he still feels loved and all that. Today, he is going to the circus with mom. It should be interesting to see how he reacts to everything. It will be nice no matter what to be just the two of us for an hour or two.

The boys are doing great. They are both eating a lot, sleeping a lot and pooping a lot. All the things they should be doing. Anze loves tummy time and has already mastered rolling over! Luca doesn't enjoy tummy time as much but he does like the gentle movements we do every day from a class I took at the hospital. He is doing well on his oxygen and apnea monitor. He hasn't set off any of the alarms yet and we hope he never does. Pra-Baba (great gma) got to hold them both for the first time yesterday and didn't want to put them down. How blessed they are to have so many grandparents and great grandparents. Not many people have living great grandparents to meet! We are blessed by the huge extended family that calls them their own as well. They have such a large collection of honorary grandparents it's amazing. Blessed is the only way to truly describe it.

Overall, we are doing well. Dad is working a lot and mom is lacking sleep and the bank account is empty but we have each other- AT HOME and that's all that truly matters. God has given us 3 wonderful gifts and we thank Him for that every day!

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Excuses Excuses

Last week Thursday the dr in Luca's room wrote on his chart that he would be discharged Tuesday. On Friday, the oxygen equipment was ordered and delivered so we were ready to bring him home. His MRI was scheduled for Monday morning. The weekend went well- no feeding issues or anything else. Monday came and they gave him his sedatives to do his MRI. Well, he didn't become sedated at all!!! He was still a wiggle monster after 2 doses of medication so his MRI was rescheduled for Tuesday morning. His nurse said as long as he eats well he could still go home before shift change Tuesday night. Tuesday morning came and after readjusting the dosage he was able to fall asleep and get his MRI done. So you can only imagine the frustration when we called to see what time he would be discharged only to hear that he needed an apnea monitor that was just ordered so he wouldn't be able to go home until Wed. Frustrating for sure after Yuri took the day off of work- his last vacation day, to bring his son home. Soon thereafter the rep who was bringing the machine to the hospital called to see when we would be there that afternoon so she could show us how to use the machine. She was ready to bring it since he was being discharged that day. So excitedly I got ready to go to the hospital so he could come home. NOPE. The dr didn't want to send him home on sedation meds even though he was eating just fine. I convinced the nurse to call him and ask him again. I gave all the excuses I could; busy day, dad took the day off today, etc etc but the dr never answered the call. She decided to call the on-call dr to see if they would sign off....

Are you ready for this?!... He can't go home until he has had the formula supplement added to his breastmilk for 24hrs to ensure he tolerates it well. Now please tell me WHY NO ONE ADDED IT TO HIS DIET EARLIER SINCE HE'S BEEN SCHEDULED TO LEAVE SINCE THURSDAY!!!! Why wasn't the monitor added to his order?! I just don't understand what has happened to the wonderful NICU experience we had for 6 weeks? It seems that once the boys hit that 6 week mark everything started to go wrong. Anze's night nurse messed up his feedings and everything has been awry since...

Believe me, I am taking my kindly worded suggestions to the suggestion box and my middle son/oldest twin home today. There cannot be any more excuses to why he needs to stay. I wouldn't be as upset if someone said he wasn't ready to go home- that's fine. But don't tell me you're sending him home just to change your mind a million times because you forgot to do what you needed to do. It isn't fair to us as parents, to his family and friends that are praying for him, to his poor nurse yesterday that got the brunt of my frustration, to our pocket book for paying for another day of care or to him being away from his family. Here's to a happy blog about a complete family of 5 tonight or tomorrow morning!!!!

Sunday, May 22, 2011

First Week home

Anze has been home for a week already. I cannot believe it. He is doing well in our opinion! He is up every 3-4 hrs to eat. He enjoys tummy time and exercises with mommy that she learned at a special class offered by the NICU. He's spoiled by his oldest brother already. He's been given the remote, an XBox controller, fruit snacks, pacifiers, etc. Yurchik doesn't like anyone walking around with his baby brother. He wants to hold him all the time as well as all the other "chores"- feed, change, carry, etc. It's quite adorable. Hopefully he will be just as excited to play with Luca when Luca comes home on Tuesday.

Luca will be coming home with oxygen but the doctors all say he won't need it for long. We are only worried about Jr stepping on the tubing or tripping over it etc right now. Hopefully we will be able to find a solution that will allow us the mobility to move Luca around while not hindering Jr's playing. By the way- for some reason getting proper oxygen equipment is a PAIN! I'm not sure why but I've had to call multiple times and we just the system ordered Friday and Luca isn't even home to use it. Sigh...

All in all we are doing well. Dad's been working a lot and mom's been trying to keep up with the housework. Hopefully it will be easier without constant trips to the hospital; although there's plenty of dr appts in our near future! If only it were like the "olden days" when dr's came to you! At least that would save us in gas!

Well, here's to a great week! We will be sure to let you know how the transition from 2 to 3 boys goes! Love to all!!

Monday, May 16, 2011

Visitation Guidelines

Before I type all of these out please do not feel offended in any way. We are only outlining the expectations we want to have in order to maintain the health of our family; especially the premature ones who are still growing and maturing not only their bodies but their immunities. Thank you for your understanding.

These are guidelines Yuri and I agreed upon after discussion with NICU staff and other parents of preemies.

In order to visit the twins please:
  • no cold/flu symptoms or exposure for 3 days to any illness
  • no visitation if exposed or have had contagious disease such as chicken pox, mumps, measles, etc...
  • use hand sanitizer upon entry, between babies (even Yurchik) and between touching any toys or other objects that the kids may come in contact with (sanitizing between ensures that if one has a bug/germ it is less likely to be passed to the others). The outside laundry room has a sink with soap and towels if you'd like to "scrub in" as well.
  • 1 set of visitors per day (ie one set of grandparents per day... ). This helps to limit the germ exposure as well as to ensure the twins do not become overstimulated. They need rest to grow. Please call/txt/email in advance to ensure you can come on the date in question.
  • whooping cough vaccine- this is a must. Adults can be carriers and not even realize. Both boys were on ventilators for respiratory distress and Luca is still requiring oxygen. This illness could cause permanent damage to their lungs. The dTap vaccine is good for approx 10 years.
  • restrictions will be in place for at least 2 months from Luca's discharge date (unless pediatrician states otherwise). This includes but not limited to visitations as well as their leaving the house.
  • babysitters need infant CPR training as well as lessons on how to hold/feed/burp/give medication as these are all different for preemies than full term babies.
  • More than one person has suggestion asking for people to bring meals over when visiting. I'm not sure on the tactfulness of this but if you'd like to drop something off for us with or without a visit we would appreciate it. I'm sure once all the boys are home preparing meals will not be an easy task. We just ask that nothing need to be frozen as our freezer is being used to store breast milk and there is no extra room! If you have any questions about anything please do not hesitate to ask. Thank you for your understanding.

OOOOOOOOOOOO O We're half way therrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrre....

Anze came home last night. He did a great job in the car and has been a superb baby so far at home. We are tired but all are well. Yurchik absolutely adores his brother. He wants to hold him all the time. We let him sit on the couch and he puts his arms down by his legs like he's going to hold him and sits there with him on his lap. He pushes away any adult hands that are helping! He gives him kisses and laughs or smiles at all the cute baby noises he makes. It is one of the most precious things I've ever seen. I am very proud of all of my boys.

Luca will be home in the next week or 2 depending on how he does nippling these next few days. He is still going back and forth on oxygen so they've changed his settings to how they would be if he had to come home with oxygen. That will definitely make it interesting.... God doesn't give you more than you can handle so I have no doubt we will be alright.

I will be writing a blog with visitor rules that we have agreed upon with the recommendations from the hospital staff. Anze sees the pediatrician this week and she may have extra things to add. We ask that no one visits this week so that we can acclimate our family to this new schedule without constant disruption. We hope you understand. Thank you all so much for your continued prayers and support. We love you all!

Friday, May 13, 2011

Home Sweet Home....

Not quite yet. I'm quite annoyed with this fact as I believe it's due to laziness by Anze's night nurse last night as dad fed him 55 CCs at 6, mom fed him 60CCs at 9 both via a bottle and for some reason she fed him through a tube for his next feeding. Since he took a tube feed (gavage) he did not drink 8/8 from breast or bottle and cannot come home. A nurse he has had multiple times came in to say goodbye and was quite upset that he wasn't leaving. She actually told me to complain about this issue. I just might as it is really bugging me. Regardless, he had a MRI today to check out his brain which his standard weekly ultrasound showed decrease from last week's so that is great news. Not sure what the MRI results are yet. So... hopefully he will be home Sunday or early in the week.

This week's doctor also hinted that Luca could come home next weekend. He has been off his oxygen for 48hrs and is taking a bottle every other feed. I have noticed so much growth from him this week. He started out with oxygen. He would need to be supplemented when breastfeeding because he would tire out. He also had strict feeding guidelines and was usually gavaged the remainder of his feed after nippling. Today he drank a full feeding from the breast as well from a bottle for his other feeds without oxygen. He did have some drops in his pulse ox levels from time to time but he was able to pick it back up and recover on his own without supplemental oxygen. We are so proud of him! We are proud of all our kids actually!!!

So, we will keep you posted on their homecomings and all that that entails as it happens. Now I just have an extra day or two to clean!

Have a wonderful weekend everyone!!

PS- Anze is 6lbs and Luca is 5 lbs 12 oz!!!!

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Found this today...

I wanted to share a picture I found made by a former student of mine...

This totally made my day! Thank you John!

The boys both got to increase their bottle feeds today. If Anze does well tonight he will be completely fed via a bottle. When he masters this he comes home... this means he could come home on FRIDAY!!! I never thought the day would come. I am sooo excited!

Luca is now about 5 lbs 8oz and Anze 5 lbs 13oz. They are both doing well. Luca was off his oxygen for most of the day minus his evening bottle time with dad. He's still working out the kinks of eating and breathing simultaneously. We know he will figure it out and be home soon too!

Thanks for all the continued prayers- we really appreciate them and see them working every day that our boys get bigger and stronger.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

2 lbs!

Anze has gained over 2 lbs and Luca has gained an ounce shy of 2lbs in only 5 1/2 weeks! I am amazed at how full their cheeks are, how their little legs have meat on them and how their skin isn't loose and wrinkly anymore. I cannot believe how much they have grown. They amaze me every day. Both are eating from breast and bottle; Luca 2x a day and Anze 4x. Anze will be home by the 22nd assuming there aren't any further complications or issues that arise before then. We hope Luca continues to catch up. Since he was on a ventilator for so long it is common for those preemies to come home closer to their due date if not a bit after. We have no doubt he will be home by Father's Day.

The boys' room is painted and organized- ready to go minus a few decorations! I still need to put ties on the 2nd set of bumpers and finish cleaning and organizing in other parts of the house but it will be done.

We hope you all have a great week! Love you!

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Cannot believe it's been 5 weeks!

The boys are doing really well. Both have started practice latching on to mommy. Anze is doing a great job once he is on. Luca is taking his time; he's more interested in looking around at all the people observing him than actually eating!!! Such a character. Anze is at 3 feedings a day via bottle/ breast and Luca is at 1 (just breast). They are being reevaluated tomorrow to see if they can go up to more per day. Luca will also try the bottle again and see if his coordination (eating and breathing simo.) has improved. They both passed their first eye exams!! No signs of any issues yet but preemies are (as with everything else) more prone to things (such as lazy eyes like mom) so we shall see. Anze is receiving a shot 3x a week to boost his red blood cell count along with iron. Hopefully that will help. If they don't see an improvement they will transfuse him to see if that helps.

Anze is weighing in at 5lbs 5oz and Luca is 4 lbs 13oz. They are just growing leaps and bounds. In fact I had to swap out all of their preemie clothes for newborns. Many preemie outfits were too tight in general but they all were too short... I guess they got the tall jean that Jr missed out on!

Jr has had a good week. He is talking more and more every day! It is soo neat to hear him communicate. He doesn't have a lot of patience lately and does try to throw the "terrible 2" tantrums which we ignore. Hopefully he will get over it soon or he will learn quick that he has to be patient with 2 brothers around.

Mom and dad are well also. Dad's been working a lot still and mom has been over doing it (cleaning, errands, and a 3 mile walk for the March of Dimes with my mom)... but all is well. Thanks to everyone that has helped us this past week (Nina for cleaning, Gma Mary for babysitting and cleaning, Katie for food and errands). It has really helped me get things done. Hoping I get more done this weekend while Jr spends the night with Gma Pat. Mother's Day is up in the air still but I plan to spend a portion of it with my handsome boys in the NICU a portion with my boys at home and hopefully a portion with the moms and gmas that are local. We hope everyone has a wonderful weekend and a fantastic Mother's Day! Love to all

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

A month already

I cannot believe our boys were born a month (and 2 days) ago. It seems like only yesterday that I was complaining of bed rest and missing out on the precious little time I had left with just Yurchik. Now we spend hours a day at the hospital holding our baby boys anxiously awaiting dr reports, test results and more. We cheer on the minute milestones that we would have missed out on entirely if they were born full term. I don't remember being so excited for Jr to latch on to my breast or even breath on his own! What a completely different outlook on parenting having a preemie does to you. Friends and family were so excited when Yurchik cut a tooth, took his first step, said his first word. Now everyone is thrilled when Luca gets his oxygen off (even if he has to go back on it the next day) or when Anze latches on to mom to eat on his own and not from a feeding tube. Having a preemie definitely changes your outlook on everything. Cherish every moment you have in life- in the mundane, every day things we take for granted. Each moment is truly a blessing from God.

Luca is still on oxygen. They are giving him a variety of medications to help keep the fluid in his lungs clear and to help with reflux. He ate 17cc's from a bottle yesterday eagerly. Today he gets his first boob attempt. Fingers are crossed for success. The doctors and therapists all agree that breastfeeding may be easier for him in regards to breathing and eating at the same time. Our little Luca just has difficulty multi tasking...

Anze is up to 3 feedings a day via breast/bottle. He is doing really well with his feedings. His red blood cell count is low so he is getting iron supplements for a few days. He will be tested again on Thursday and the doctors will decide if he needs a shot to stimulate the marrow to produce more or if he needs a transfusion. It does explain why all he does is sleep (not that the nurses complain!). If anyone has the time to donate this week Anze (and Luca) would appreciate it. Remember to designate it for the Motruk twins.

Both boys had their eyes dilated and tested. The nurses were impressed that both weren't bothered by this procedure and were able to breast/bottle feed afterwards as most babies are too upset to handle the extra effort of eating. That made us proud.

Jr spent a lot of time with daddy this weekend. As a family we went to the Aquarium for a few hours which was a nice way of getting out of the house without spending money together. The boys also spent most of Monday hanging out together as mommy was treated to a "spa day" at the hospital courtesy of March of Dimes for all NICU moms. I am now the proud owner of a new and much needed haircut. Two months of bedrest and then a month of preemie visits makes haircuts on the bottom of the list so I am now feeling like a new mom- amazing how a hair cut can make you feel so much better!

Well, it's time to try and fall back asleep after getting up to pump and then being attacked by both cats (one was chasing a bug and jumped on me, the other wanted to be pet and fell of the bed using my arm as a stronghold on the way down- unsuccessfully as he ended up on the floor and ended up all scratched up! Ahh the joy of owning pets...).