Monday, April 29, 2013

One month, take two

Sarah suggested I take pictures of Lincoln with his teddy bear, Abraham, every month, to track his growth visually. My original thought was to just do this comparing him to the little animals on his quilt, but since Hannah and Jason made Abe, who Lincoln loves, I'm adding him to the monthly photo shoot.

Here are Lincoln and Abraham at one month. 


Monday, April 22, 2013

One month

Today Lincoln is one month old! I can't believe he's been here a whole month, but I also don't remember what life was like before him. It's funny how that works.

It's hard to write about his habits, likes, or dislikes since he seems so new and because he spent a fourth of his life so far in the NICU. But here goes anyway!


Lincoln is not a big fan of tummy time. Often he doesn't try to move his head much; during those times he lasts a lot longer than when he does try to hold up his head. During tummy time he really wants to move and sometimes ends up scooting around in circles or a little ways across the blanket when he can get good enough traction with his feet. He does love to hold his head up and look around when he's held upright (on a shoulder).

Lincoln is usually a happy little boy. He smiles and laughs at mommy, daddy, and especially Grandma Valerie. He loves singing "Head, Shoulders, Knees, and Toes" with the actions, as well as "Tony Chestnut" (Toe Knee Chest Nut), "If You're Happy and You Know it," and "My God is so Big!" - basically any song that has actions we can do together.


He sleeps well at night for a one-month-old, I think (I hate to write this because I'm sure I'll jinx it!), from about 9 p.m. to 8 a.m., waking up about three times to eat - with at least one four-hour stretch between feedings. He goes right back to sleep after eating. During the day though, he's started to fight naps, even when he is exhausted. Other than when he is fighting sleep, needs to eat, or has a dirty diaper, he is pretty content. He's awake quite a bit during the day and wants to be interacting with someone most of that time.

Lincoln loves to eat, and does that every 2-4 hours... he has settled into a pretty good routine. Feedings usually last about 40 minutes, except when he is cluster feeding in the evening (which actually happens every hour for a while) - those are about 20 minutes.


During his NICU stay, Lincoln graduated to size one disposable diapers. I decided to try on the cloth this morning for his photo shoot and 8:00 feeding, and they fit really well around his chubby belly (although I realize now that I didn't have them snapped correctly), but they seem just a little loose around the legs. It didn't leak, though, even with a pretty good pee, so I think it's about time to make the switch. He wears 0-3 month clothes. 


Lincoln loves to look at specific things - his bear, Abraham, the wall of frames above his changing pad, the wall hanging over the couch. He will stare and laugh at all of these. He also likes to watch people talk to him and tries to imitate their mouths with his.


 It's so much fun to watch Lincoln grow and learn. We love, love, love our little man!

Monday, April 15, 2013

The Long Story


This is the second story of Lincoln's short life that, had I been able to choose, would not be written in this way. Unfortunately, I don't get a choice other than to deal with it. And as I saw on Pinterest the other day (excuse the language)... "Shit could be worse."It made me smile.

On Wednesday, Lincoln had a normal feeding at 2:00 p.m. After that he napped for a while. When he woke up around :00I tried to feed him but he wasn't really interested. He started to cry - not his normal cry, but a weak, whiny cry. As long as I cuddled him on my chest, he was fine. But, any time I tried to change his position or set him down, he would cry again. His body, arms, and legs were very limp. He is always kicking his legs and never lets his arms hang at his sides; even when he is swaddled he fights to free them. We thought he was probably just extra tired and snuggled him for a couple of hours. About 6:00, I tried to feed him again. He's never gone more than four hours without eating. He wouldn't even open his mouth, let alone latch.



Brad rocked him a while longer. We took his temperature (99.8). Finally, I think around 7:30, we called the doctor's office to see what they wanted us to do. They told us to watch him for a couple more hours, then take him to the ER if he were the same.

I rocked our little man for about 30 more minutes, crying the whole time. I finally told Brad that I could not wait even one more hour, so we loaded Lincoln in his car seat and headed over to St. Joe (the same hospital where he was born).


When we got there, we listed his symptoms and sat down to wait, fully anticipating that it would be quite a while. We only waited about 10 minutes before they called us back. I think sick babies take priority.

His temperature was 100.8. They took us back for a chest x-ray and some lab work. The ER nurse was the first employee here that we did not care for. She was not very sympathetic to us or gentle with our sick baby; she was also kind of dramatic about taking care of him and sticking him for blood work.



When a doctor finally came in (probably about 9:30 or 10 p.m.) he told us that Lincoln would have to be admitted because of the fever. Thankfully, the NICU at St. Joe was able to take him since he's only three weeks old. (Otherwise he would have had to go to St. Francis for their pediatric ICU since St. Joe doesn't have one.) We called our parents and headed upstairs with our little man to the "isolation" room in the NICU. (Because we were in this room, I was able to room in with Lincoln - feeding him and taking care of him myself instead of having to leave him.)



Since by this time it had been over 8 hours since I fed Lincoln, I had to go pump. Thankfully they got me everything I needed. While I was gone, Brad signed all the paperwork. As soon as I returned to the room, the doctor explained to me that they were going to do a spinal tap and I would need to meet Brad in the waiting room. My parents came while we were waiting.

After the procedure was done, we walked back to see him. Because they had given him some fluid through an IV, he was looking much better and was wide awake. They also started some antibiotics after the spinal. My parents both got to see him. Then they headed home. Brad stayed for a while, but once it became clear that we would get absolutely no answers that night, he went home to sleep since he had meetings Thursday. He also needed to grab things for me because we had not brought anything other than Lincoln's diaper bag.


Lincoln woke up and ate around 2 a.m. It was wonderful to get to feed my little man. The next morning he started back on his normal 2-3 hour feeding schedule. Throughout the day he perked up and started to act more and more like himself.


It was about at this point that we learned he had some kind of infection, but we didn't know what. His CRP level went from 1.5 to 7 to 4 to 1.6 over the next couple of days. We had to wait on cultures to grow for 48 hours to see if we could figure out what the infection was. The doctor did tell us that we might get to go home on Saturday, depending on what the labs turned up. But, if there was a bacterial infection that showed up on the cultures, we would be here for a total of 10 days.

So, we waited. And waited. And waited.


On Saturday, we ended up with a compromise. The cultures were negative, which meant that we would not really find out what kind of infection it was - there are just too many to test for everything, so they just look for bacterial and the most serious viral. Even though we didn't know what type of infection it was, Lincoln had to finish the entire course of antibiotics, which is 21 doses. We would stay for a total of 7 days.

This was very tough for me. Lincoln looked great, like normal, but we had to stay in the hospital for about 5 more days before they would dismiss us. I know in my head that we need to do this to make sure our little man is all better. My heart, though, is sick for the day we will all be home together again.

So the countdown is on. Eight more doses. Just three more days. Three long days.


Saturday, April 13, 2013

Day 3

Morning update...

Lincoln's blood work showed that his CRP is down to 1.6. He has been taken off the antiviral meds and is only on an antibiotic. The doctor came in today to let us know that the blood cultures were negative for a bacterial infection; we may never actually know what it is that was making our little man so sick.

Even though he looks and acts great, Lincoln does need to complete an entire round of antibiotics (21 doses), so we will be in the hospital through Wednesday - probably dismissed Thursday as long as things continue to go well.

Please continue to keep us in your prayers, especially as Brad has to go back to work on Monday.

Friday, April 12, 2013

Day 2 Update

Lincoln's acting like his normal self. He is eating fairly well and sleeping quite a bit. When he's awake, he is wide-eyed and squirmy like usual.

Now the medical information... His CRP level is the lab result of concern right now - the only concerning lab he has. When we were admitted, it was 1.5. Normal levels should be less than 1, so this shows that he definitely has an infection of some sort. Yesterday afternoon it was 7. This morning's lab showed that it is now down to 4, which means his body and the antivirals he is on are fighting the infection - great news!

We are still waiting on some cultures to grow to tell us whether or not Lincoln has a bacterial or viral infection. This will then determine what meds we need to do and how long our stay will be. Brad and I appreciate all your prayers and messages of support.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Lincoln Update

Last night Lincoln was very lethargic, refusing to eat, whimpering, and had a fever so we took him to the ER. Because of the fever, he was admitted to the NICU at St. Joe's (standard procedure with babies under 2 months old). They have run lots of tests, but nothing of major concern has showed up. They will repeat the labs this afternoon. We are also waiting on some cultures to grow to determine whether he has an infection, so we will definitely be here until Saturday. If there is an infection, we will stay for a total of 10 days.

Lincoln is looking much, much better. He was put on IV fluids and a couple of antibiotics late last night. He has nursed three times this morning and is now off the fluids. He's moving around, not whimpering anymore, basically acting more like his normal self - at least as normal as he can be hooked up to all the machines. We are feeling much better now that he is starting to act like Lincoln again. I will update again soon-ish. Thanks for your thoughts and prayers.

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Lately

3:45 p.m., 5 p.m., 6 p.m., 7 p.m., 8 p.m., 9 p.m., 12:45 a.m., 3 a.m., 6 a.m., 8 a.m., 10 a.m., 12 p.m., 2 p.m.

These are the times I fed my son in the last 24 hours. Typically, he nurses on both sides, so we are in the glider for about 40-50 minutes for each feeding. And, yes, he cluster nurses in the evenings, so about an hour after the previous feeding starts, he is ready to go again...

Despite the fact that I sometimes feel like I spend my entire day doing it, I really love breastfeeding. (Maybe another day I'll post my thoughts/feelings on that.) So I sit and enjoy the view.


For some reason, I thought I would post more after Lincoln was born. I know, it was a silly thought. Regardless, here's what we've been up to lately.

We went on a walk, all four of us - just a few blocks, but it was so nice to get out. Now it's raining ice.

Lincoln loves to stare at his teddy bear, Abraham, that Aunt Hannah and Uncle Jason made him.

He was very popular at the polls.

At his two-week check up he was 9 lbs. and 21.5 inches long.

He also likes to look at his animal cards from Abbey and Pete.

We absolutely love our little man and are having so much fun watching him grow up (although I already feel like we're going a little bit too fast...).

Friday, April 5, 2013

Daddy

In the past two weeks, I have come to realize that one of the very best things about becoming a parent is watching your partner become a parent. Since day one, Brad has been completely involved in everything. He changes diapers, helps me with feedings as much as he can, gives baths, plays, cuddles, talks to Lincoln... there are days when I have to ask if I want to hold the little guy outside of feedings!


Brad has also taken on more than his fair share of things around the house, since I've been recovering from the c-section. He does laundry, cleans, cooks... It's really amazing. I'm incredibly blessed to have him as my partner. I don't know how moms do it when dads go back to work right away - and luckily I don't have to find out.


Brad loves our little man so, so much.

Cuddling

Listening to (and learning all about) the Royals

Nap time!

Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Easter

On Easter Sunday we went to the farm to have dinner with my mom's side of the family and Grandpa Melvin. Once again, Lincoln was the most popular person around.

Great Grandpa Melvin

Family picture

 Genet
 Klaassen family

How big is Lincoln? Sooo big!

 Great Grandma Lu and cousin Mia


My new favorite picture!

Great Grandpa Varden (Jesse)

Loganbill cousins with our grandparents

My grandparents with their kids


The entire Loganbill family

Monday, April 1, 2013

Meeting Lincoln, Part 2

We had a busy weekend. Lincoln got to meet all of his aunts and one last uncle, plus some great-grandparents, great aunts and uncles, and one side of mommy's cousins.

It started Friday night when we took his first trip to the farm to watch the KU game with my family. Sarah, Hannah, Jamie, and Jason all got to come down for the Easter weekend.




Hannah and Jason made this teddy bear, Abraham, for Lincoln. And apparently Sarah is really excited about sneaking into the background of this picture with her snack.
 

On Saturday, Aunt Leah got to see Lincoln for the first time.


Saturday afternoon my mom and siblings came over and spent hours working - getting garden beds ready and planting some veggies and herbs, cleaning, hauling recycling and compost away, installing our new microwave... It was absolutely amazing to have their help.


Of course they also took a little time to help Lincoln learn about twin power...

...and proper napping form.

We're so grateful to have families who love to love Lincoln (and us, but I'm pretty sure he's the big deal around here now, which is just fine with me).