Here is the latest on our family...

Saturday, December 27, 2008

Post Christmas

We had a wonderful Christmas.


We started at home opening the presents under our own tree.



Then we took Henry to watch his cousins open their presents.  They are a bit more aggressive with the unwrapping than Henry is.  When DC opened the Hot Wheels set pictured below, he exclaimed, "Cool, I saw this on TV, and I wanted it!"  




Henry is getting over a cold right now, so we have become expert at removing mucus from infant nostrils.  Send me a note if you want some pointers.  The two necessary components are moisture and suction.  

Hank is continuing to enjoy a stream of visitors and frequent, long naps.  Except for his weekly pediatric visit, we have no medical appointments in the upcoming week.  Although we want him to meet with a speech pathologist as soon as possible, this seems unlikely to occur before our currently-scheduled appointment on January 5. 

Enjoy some pictures of a few of Henry's adorable holiday outfits:


Tuesday, December 23, 2008

First weekend

We had a great weekend.  Henry continues to enjoy being at home, and Meade and I continue to get better at being parents.  At this rate, we should have parenting perfected in a matter of decades. 

Henry had two appointments today: one with the opthamologist and one with the pediatrician.  The opthamologist appointment was disheartening in that the spot on his left fovea remains dark.  This means that it is healing slowly, indicating that scarring is likely.  Depending upon the degree of scarring, the center of his vision in the left eye may be affected in a way that could not be helped with corrective lenses.  Once again, this is not something that can be fixed with medical intervention.  We simply have to let Henry's body do its work.  We have a followup appointment in three weeks to monitor this situation.

I am cautiously offering forth this next bit of good news.  The pediatrician used a tongue depressor to cause what appeared to all of us to be a strong gag reflex followed by a healthy cough.  Keep in mind that our pediatrician is not trained to delve into Henry's throat with her finger to verify that the full reflex is operational.  However, she identified his reaction as a gag, and Meade and I agreed that it was strongest response to such stimuli that we have observed.  Suddenly, the January 5 visit from a speech pathologist seems too far away.  We will scour Chicago for a therapist working on Christmas Eve.  

OK, time for photos.

How could the Steelers lose with such a cute fan?





Cookie party


Looking cute


Family pictures











Saturday, December 20, 2008

First days at home

We are settling into a routine at home with Henry.  We barely notice the leads for his sleep monitor as we change and swaddle him.  

We are learning plenty about Henry.  His favorite time to poop is immediately after a diaper change, and his favorite time of day (for both being awake and sporadic pooping) is from 2 -3 AM.  Perhaps we're being optimistic, but we think that we occasionally see the first traces of a smile.  Today, his aunt Jenny was able to get him to follow a toy with his eyes as she moved it back and forth in front of him.  We believe that this is the first time that he has focused on something other than a face.  Noisy faces are still his favorite.  

Tomorrow, Henry will take his first trip to Gramma's house for a cookie party.  

Sleeping soundly




When Henry isn't asleep, he enjoys Sweatin' to the Oldies





More than anything, Hank loves to be held





December 20, '08

Hi all, Meade here.  This will be quick, Sean will post pictures later.  Sorry we have been neglecting the blog the last couple days.  Turns out we're on call 24/7 now that we're home.

We are all so glad to be home!  We are figuring out our routines - and Sean & I are trying to sneak in sleep when we can.  It feels great to be in our own house.

Hank had his first pediatrician appointment yesterday, so he got to experience his first true Chicago snowstorm, also.  He is already 9lb 15oz!  Guess milk really does do the body good.  His doctor gave him a good report; we will go back to see her next Tuesday & then every week for a few weeks so she can get to know him well.

My aunt Jenny is here to help out and hang out for a few days, which is really nice.  She is doing laundry & learning about feeding tubes & cloth diapers - and keeping us company.

I'm sure there is more to report - look for Sean's post later on today.  Just didn't want to ignore our readers too much longer!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Day 22

Henry is home!  


We spent the morning at the hospital meeting with the neurologist, finalizing the details of Henry's discharge, and saying goodbye to many friends at Evanston Hospital.  During our three weeks in the Infant Special Care Unit, we came to put our trust in more than two dozen nurses in addition to the doctors, therapists, counselors, and concierges.  As happy as we were to bring Hank home, we had a few teary goodbyes.  Meade and I would like to send good luck to the wonderful residents from Children's Memorial Hospital as they finish their rotation with the ISCU, and we would like to thank the nursing staff for their care and compassion.  We were sent away with a few lovely gifts that will remind us of the wonderful people at Evanston Hospital.  

Some of our friends from Evanston Hospital:




We arrived at home around 2 PM and immediately began our routine.  We switched Henry to cloth diapers (with a few hijinks), and, thanks to help from Gramma Judy, we have sorted and stored all of Henry's medical supplies.  We have a feeding area, a changing area, and a sleeping area.  Normalcy, here we come.  

Tomorrow, we are meeting with a coordinator from Child and Family Connections.  A home nurse will also be stopping by to make sure that things are going OK for us.  Both of these appointments will be at our home, so we intend to revel in the luxury of not driving.  

Since Hank is now safe and sound at home with us, we may not be updating the blog on a daily basis.  If you click "follow this blog" at the bottom of this page, you can follow the instructions to be notified anytime that we post a new update.  I most likely will post again tomorrow.  
From our last day at the hospital


Ready to go


Finally home