Thursday, March 12, 2009

Daily Peep: Banded Baby

We did Peeper's pre-op testing, paperwork, and such today. This is her blood-bank band. She must have this band on when she goes in for sugery, so they can match up the info that the lab provides from the typing and cross-matching with the right little person.

In addition to having her blood drawn, they took a history and looked in all her facial orafices and listened to her chestal area a couple of different times. The snot is still contained in her nasal region, and she's had no fever, so assuming all that holds, she's good to go.

She also had a chest x-ray, which went much more smoothly than I'd been warned. She was asleep when we got there, but woke up when we put her down on the table.

As luck would having it, though, she woke up in a good mood and even smiled pretty for the camera.

We were both allowed to stay in the room during the x-ray; Shrike was across the room (unshielded) by the chairs where she'd plopped down all our crap that we were carrying around (diaper bag, her purse, two coats - sometimes we also had a baby blanket and a stuffed monkey, but they were in the diaper bag at the moment) and I was at the table, wearing the ever-so-stylish lead apron, helping the tech to spot her and hold her still.

She was just fine - and was very happy about them turning on a bright light over her head. She got a little annoyed when we rolled her on her side (although she always sleep on that side), but probably just because she was trying to look at the light.

We changed her diaper while the radiologist checked to make sure they got good images, she cooed and smiled at the tech, who cooed and smiled right back at her, and we were on our way.

Our last stop was a meeting with the surgeon, and then a tour of the PICU and Intermediate Care Unit, where she'll be staying. (Probably two days in each?)

We also saw the waiting area and family room, where we'll be while she's in surgery, and where we can sleep, shower, get on the internet, etc.

Peeper definitely did not like having her blood drawn, and she also cried during the first look-see and later when we were waiting for the surgeon, but I think those times were mostly diaper / hungry related, and after some flopping around and such, she settled down and nursed to sleep.

I cried all those times too.

One thing I was very glad to hear is that Peeper will be allowed to nurse up until four hours before surgery.

We won't have an exact time until tomorrow, but they said that they will probably ask us to be there around 6:30 am, and will take her back to the operating room around 7:30 am.

They will sedate her pretty quickly, once we've handed her over (If you had a screaming baby and the means to sedate it, wouldn't you do so rather quickly?) and the anesthesia is the real issue with the empty stomach, not the cutting-open stuff, so my guess is that she'll have to finish up her goody by around 3:30 am.

Which is soooo much better than midnight!

She also will not get her "bedtime" (1 am) doses of her medications, which means that we'll be able to go to bed at a "reasonable" hour and I'll just set the clock for 3-ish to wake up and nurse her.

She is, technically, allowed (other) clear liquids, such as water, juice or pedialyte, until three hours after surgery, but given that a> she's never tasted any of those things and b> she's been refusing bottles, we're going to blow that off, because we are pretty sure that if we woke her again at 4 am and tried to get her to take a bottle of something she's never seen, we'd end up with and awake, pissed off and not-allowed-to-nurse baby.

Which would be a bad, bad thing.

So, on Sunday, we will have dinner here in town with Shrike's family and then head up to Surgery-Town.

Shrike's mom, sister and possibly grandparents will also go up and spend the night there.

Monday morning, we'll sleep to the last possible minute, then get dressed very quietly and try to keep Peeper asleep as long as possible before going to the hospital.

Shrike's family will come up around 8:30 or 9:00, after we've had some time alone to get her into surgery, break down, pull ourselves together, get breakfast and pump.

Oh, about the pumping - I'm not sure how willing Peep is going to be to take the one or two bottles that they want her to have before nursing for real (but they said they'll work around it if she won't - If she can't be picked up yet, I'll just crawl in the crib with her - or, at least, my goodies will) and I really doubt she's going to take much, if any, more than that, even after we're home.

So, I'm going to be pumping a good bit more than she's likely to take, either in the hospital or later, and I'm rather annoyed that it's likely to go to waste.

At every step along the way today, I asked about milk donation, hoping that I could give those first two days worth to some NICU babies whose mommies haven't gotten enough milk in for them yet, but at the last stop, we finally got the answer and it was no.

I don't know if they don't do that at all (I understand that most NICUs do accept donations) or if there's not time to screen me or what, but I was bummed, because if I'm going to be making it and going to all the trouble of pumping it (have to pump, for my comfort/safety and to keep up my supply) and if Peeper's not going to drink it, I would certainly like some baby to have it.

Would it be wrong to change my Facebook status to "Whozat has breastmilk to give away. Leave a note on my wall if you'd like some?" :-)

As I said, there are a couple of computers in the family room, and Shrike will have our laptop at the hotel (no wireless in the hospital) and we'll have the phones, so I plan to update as often as I can.

I've also set up a Carepage for her, and will be posting essentially the same updates there, plus her real name and minus the four-letter words, for our "real life" friends and family who don't have access to the blog.

So, we still hate the idea that this is going to happen, but we're now into "get it done and over with" mode, and are looking forward to being past it.


  1. sending lots of luck and love to you girls xxxx

  2. Back at you two and little Bonus Ball!

  3. Oh, sweet little peeper foot.

    Hang in there, Mamas. I'm thinking of you. Keep us posted.

  4. Out of curiosty, what is her blood type?
    Peeper is on the church and Sunday School prayer lists and the prayer chain will take up her cause Sunday night. Plus several friends and her grandma (every few minutes). She should be well protected!

  5. Yep, we've got multiple prayer chains going too.

    I was wondering about her blood type too. :D

  6. Your family is in my prayers. Your daughter is too cute! I hope everything goes well.

  7. Thanks, all!

    Peep got an A+ on her blood test. We're so proud ;-)

    (Shrike is O+ and Popeye is A+. I'm O+ too, not that it matters.)

    Blacktating - Welcome! I've just discovered your blog and I'm enjoying it.


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