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Saturday, March 8, 2008

Nana and Grampa visit

My mom was nice enough to bring my dad (see Abuelo's visit). With all that has gone on in the last two weeks, she has really help out a lot. For all of you that are not aware it is good 35-45 mins between the house and the hospital.... So multiple trips is hard.

Anyways Nana and Grampa had some time to visit with Brin today and I am grateful....because all the friendly voices she can hear helps her in so many ways.

Abuelo's first visit

My dad was really scared for me when I told him about Brinson. Now after he visited with her....he is not as scared and thinks she is really cute. My dad spoke to her mostly in the Spanish something I really hope he practices with her.

Look at the machines...not so scary anymore!

I thought this picture might help you see what it takes for a preemie to be in this world.

The first time I saw this I was I totally get it and the beeps and lights don't even bother me.

Brinson getting prepped for surgery

It was like a fire drill in there. Everyone swoopes in and then at the last minute the doctor comes in to talk to us about the surgery.....gets consent and shoos us out the door.

Here they are prepping the area for the surgery. The PDA surgery is done threw her left side....

After the area is cleared, this stirs her up a bit so Lisa and I hold her in place. Take a look at her feet on my hand. You really can get a sense out how small she is.

Brinson sucking her finger

This happens a lot inutero, so we should not be so surprised. But we are and I quickly capture the moment before she quickly changes her mind about which finger to suck on.

Temperature 98.6

Lisa got to take Brin's temperature this evening. Turns out she is doing much better with her temperature. Well see if that hold true after the surgery. Here is a quick shot of Lisa with Brin.

This is her second time doing it. What a she a good mommie or what?

The temp is taken under the arm and unlike adults where you add 1 degree....with preemies you don't.


Brin has PDA and they did the surgery. Everything is fine. we are eating and waiting for shift change.

Should get to see her soon. will add lots of pictures this evening.

Grandfather and Grammy visit Brin

Today Elliot and Marion visit Brin....the report is she is doing fine and still very feisty.

I spoke with Dr. Gee one the Neonatologists taking care of her and he said she was doing fine and we are waiting on the echo results to come. Likely the surgery is going to happen in the next 6 hours or so if the results come back.

We will visit this afternoon after shift change....we need to a disposable camera for NICU nurse's to use while we are not there.

More milk

Lisa is now producing more and more milk. This make her very happy because it is something she can do as a mother. We both feel helpless and anything we can do makes a difference with our sanity.

Anyways it is kinda weird, but very cool how it all works. A few times nothing and now every time is getting more and more. Just now, she got 18cc.

Morning after

We called this am about Brin .... she is now on dopamine for a her blood pressure and has received a blood transfusion. Very normal....remember she only has 45cc of blood and they are taking blood from her pretty regularly to ensure everything is ok.

She is done with photo therapy for now and the hood will probably come off. Her temperature is within the range but still low at 97.6.

The good news is she is still on room air with the respirator. So she is holding her own.

Today is another big day, she gets an echo to find out if she has PDA (patent ductus arteriosus). This is very normal to have and the surgery though scary is really quick. It is done right there in NICU and has been done as fast as 7 minutes.

At home at last

We got home last night after a visit with Brin. She is doing well, but will probably need more blood pressure medicine. She seems to hover around 22 or 23 as a avg. They really want her no lower than 24 but more better would be about 25-30.

Arriving at home last night was definitely hard because we went home without Brin. This was not in our plan....Both of us really struggled with leaving.

She is in the best place she can be.....but we are not 5 minutes away. So that is very hard.

Friday, March 7, 2008

Nana and Grampa visit Brin

Nothing is more amazing than seeing grandparents...ooh and ahh. Now this was Mom's second visit. She got to see Brin briefly on Birthday.

But this was Bert's first visit and he was sure funny. He had to get caught up on the blog before going, so he would not be in shock and overwhelmed. He was just amazed at her size..,..and definitely a proud Grampa

There are no shots of this moment....but take it from me it was neat to see them whispering to my daughter (introducing themselves and talking about her chicken legs....I assume)

BTW if you were keeping up, you probably wondering how Bert could be allowed. Well it seems they make exceptions if we have more grandparents than 4......which means Marion and Bert are now on the list and allowed to visit. We are really sad Mike and KD are not allowed to visit.

We learned with all the excitement this afternoon with the X-rays, that her temperature dropped a bit and they had to go up to 26% on her oxygen. Melinda (nurse) and Dr. Gee was not at all we will not worry. Very common for preemies.

Lisa has first milk!

I know not very exciting for most folks. But being able to provide for her child just makes this process that much easier and more bonding. She is very excited and bounced out of here straight down to her.

BTW She produced 2cc....woowoo!!!!

And then she rests.....

With all that has past Lisa has been like a little energizer bunny. Pumping every 3 hours and seeing Brin as much she has really zapped her.

Remember she delivered 2 babies in 2 days only 2 and 4 days ago. She is really tired and finally just collapsed.

I know she is supposed to be pumping right now, but I am going to let her sleep. It will be good to go home tonight. The hospital is convenient....but definitely not a place where you can get rest.

Thanks again for all the beautiful flowers.....the room smells like spring....kinda strange with 50 degree weather outside today.

Another look at Brin

I got some peeks at little Brin. Here are a few shots. I know they look scary, but we love her and she is doing well. BTW the big gold heart on her chest is measuring her temperature. Normally this is placed over her liver. But because she is so feisty, it often gets moved.

Mom's turn to change a diaper

The staff in NICU know how hard it is and anything little thing we can do they offer to let us help. This time Lisa gets to change Baby Brin's diaper. BTW it was another 10cc of pee!!!! yeah!

Brinson gets an Xray

Everyday, at least once, Brinson gets an Xray. Right now it is making sure lines are where they are supposed to be and how her lungs are developing.

This process can usually pretty traumatic for a preemie, but she did really well and her 0xygen saturation stayed up there.

Nothing substitutes Mama's touch

Here is mama getting to touch Brinson. What a beautiful moment. Don't you agree?

First family photo

While we were visiting this morning, Melinda really was very nice and gave us some bonding time with her. We were able to take a bunch of photos and touch her, so she knows we are here.

She offered to take a photo of us with Brinson and we jumped on it. So above is our first family photo. Many Many more to come.

This people at Woman's are really wonderful and make this easier for us.

First diaper change

More pee....13cc. They know this by weighing the diaper....pretty cool. And the reason I know this is I changed my first diaper (assisted).

Her dopamine is down to .1 almost no Blood pressure medicine is needed. Excellent.

She is on room air and 34 bpm.....which is very good.

Her temp was 98.0 degrees....she has been quite low and she is in the range they are looking for of 97.6 to 99.0.

We got to see her a lot of her this morning. She appears to have my forehead (and hairline...hehe), nose, chin and thin upper lip..... she is just beautiful. You can see from the photos she is quite small in both weight and size. All stretched out she is about the length of a standard notebook paper, but her head and body would fit in the palm of my hand.

Look at the gap on my wedding ring around her arm. Just amazing.....

She is on room air.

I called early this morning and too my surprise, Brinson is on room air....that means 21% o2. So her lungs must be developing. Good news.

We just a visit from the social workers and we have information on a parent group of NICU children that we will most definitely check out.

More later after we see her.

Thursday, March 6, 2008

We have pee!!!

Brinson is 1 day old. Wow!

We have pee...yeah!
Dopamine has been reduced from .8 to .3 (they tried .2 and had to go back to .4 and then work down again)

O2 is down to 26%
Respirator rate is down to 30bpm

Good stuff, that means she can saturate her blood with less of the machine doing work,

Photo therapy has been started today. This is done to help prevent jaundice and because her liver is premature. Very normal.
Her skin is translucent and very very very thin and appears red.....because you see her blood. Scary.

Heather came in from Mexico today. She learned about what was going on and flew next day to see us and be supportive. Heather is temporarily working in Toluca. She is speaking, reading and writing Spanish. Awesome friend.....and it was a good distraction. You can read about her blog here if you are interested.

Lisa begins breast pumping today. It is very hard and I would not want to do it. It is very important because of all the benefits of milk. Brinson will be able to get her milk sometime in the near future.

What a trooper Lisa has been. With bed rest multiple times throughout the pregnancy, bleeding and ambulance and several times to the emergency room in the middle of night and through the loss of Cooper and now the transition from baby machine to mother. I think you have to be superwoman. She never gives up, I don't know how....but she keeps going. I love her very much and I know I could not do this transition without her by my side.

I just want to leave you with one last thought,
it amazing how you can love so unconditionally instantly! (quote from Lisa)


Hey Folks,

What a wonderful day! After beginning the process of grieving for Cooper (her twin) we are surprised by the early arrival of

Brinson Elizabeth Katherine Zaldivar

She is born on 3/5/2008 at 724am.
She weighs 1lb 2.9oz and is 11 1/2 inches long.

Cooper really gave her 1 more week of development. He truly was a strong fellow. We will love him forever.

I am delighted and scared sh**less all at the same time.

My tour of the NICU (by myself) begins less than an 1 hour after delivery. All I saw was my daughter struggling and all these people poking and proding her. And a half a dozen machines helping her. Not really what I envisioned. Really scared me.

I learned she is on a respirator for 5-7 days The machine is breathing for her at 40bpm. The 02 given to her is at 35%. I learned about blood pressure like that 22/6 (11) is not good. The mean avg should be around her age in weeks (which is 24). So dopamine is given. She is starts at .8. The side effect is retaining fluids which means her sodium goes up.... So it is a balance. Also her body temp was very low at first something else they will be working....getting her warm....warm air and warm light.

I also learned about some future milestones. At day 3, she gets an echo of her chest to determine if a valve above her heart is closed. She will have to have surgery if it is not closed. (not heart, but still major because of her size, weight and proximity to lots of vital stuff) (surgery is usually pretty less than 20 mins) Another milestone is getting off the respirator and moving to CPAP (positive pressure air through the nose). Another milestone is an ultrasound of her brain. This tells us if she has any bleeds.

Lisa and I see her about 6 times today. She is so feisty.....she takes the leads off every few mins and pushes against her bubble (provides humidity and allows her body temperature to rise)

Oh yeah....after parading Mike, Kit, Elliot and Marion in front of her, they tell us....we are limited to 4 people until she leaves. And they have to be the same people. So only Kit, Juan, Elliot and Mary will be able to see Brinson until after she comes home.