Our First Week - Quinn

Our little beauty, Quinn

Our beautiful little Quinn arrived at 6:56pm on Thursday, June 3rd. Because the babies were considered high-risk, I wasn't even able to see them once they were born. Usually they lift them up over that screen and are able to give you a brief glimpse. But my babies were immediately whisked away to the waiting arms of the team of specialists that had gathered for their arrival. Luckily, the nurses had prepped me for this so it wasn't totally unexpected, thank God. They also had warned me that I may not get to see them even after the team did their initial work up - just in case they had to rush them down the hallway to Texas Children's. They told me if they were stable, they would try to bring them in their little incubators for me to see.

However, they did let Matt go outside and take pictures while they worked on our babies. He left just minutes after they were born to go take a peek. I have to say that was probably the worst time in the whole c-section. I had no knowledge of what was happening outside and because the babies were delivered via c-section, I didn't even get to hear them give a reassuring cry, as it takes most c-sections babies a little while to get their lungs and airways clear to give a good shriek. As much as I would have loved to have Matt with me, I was so grateful he was out there with our babies during their first minutes in this world.
Honestly, I have no clue how much time passed before Matt came back in with pictures --- right after he left, I politely asked the anesthiologist (ie my new best friend) to go ahead and give me a shot of Valium so I didn't have a freak out, full on panic attic laying there. It did it's job because I certainly felt nothing but peace :)

And then Matt came back with the reports on our kiddos and their little pictures. It was such a sweet moment to share, even in my slightly drugged out state. And then, they whisked in my little Quinn, all settled in her incubator. Tears sprung to my eyes because I knew that meant for the moment she was stable enough to say hello to momma. I saw her for that brief moment and then out the door she went again. Ryno came in next to say hello and then again, he was out the door all too quickly. Matt then followed them to the NICU and I was once again alone getting sewn up.

However, once I got to recovery, I had the best nurses ever who took amazing care of me while Matt and my mother were over at Texas Children's. Almost every 5-10 minutes I had someone else coming to give me a report on the babies and how they were doing, especially providing updates on sweet Quinn.

That night, she did not require any extra intervention except I believe just oxygen for a short time. That evening and into the next day, they began doing a full work up of her heart situation to see how much the defects would affect her in the coming days. It was determined that she could avoid the medication intervention, as well as the stint or shunt. Her 3 little defects actually seem to be working together for her at this moment. Eventually that won't be the case. The defect was determined to be just as we expected and will require surgery at a later date, they are still estimating 4-6 months. However, every child is different so she will be watched very, very closely for signs that the right side of her heart is beginning to fail. Scary words, huh :(

Yet, we have much to be grateful for. Besides the heart condition, she is virtually healthy. She was a lot smaller than even the doctor anticipated -- it really was a shock to all especially since we were expecting almost a 5lb baby like Ryan. Currently, her main goal is just to gain weight. They had to place a feeding tube about 5 days after birth. She was doing ok with her feedings but was getting very sleepy towards in the end of each feeding. Plus, she was exhausting all of her energy to feed so she was almost taking in negative calories by the time she finished her bottles. Now, they have upped her bottle feeds to 6 per day and only 2 tube feedings a day -- and she's been doing great with her bottle feeds. She currently weighs almost 4lbs so she has regained all of the weight she lost after birth.
We still don't have a date for her to come home - they approximated perhaps another 10-14 days once she was moved to Level 2 care, which was this past Thursday. But it will all depend on her weight gain, as well as getting rid of her sleep apnea (basically where she forgets to breathe while she sleeps --- completely unrelated to her heart & typical of preemies her age).
So now Matt and I are switching off dates of when we visit Quinn. I wish I could go every single day, but it's almost impossible with another newborn at home. They do allow twins to visit the NICU so I can bring Ryan, but it's stressful for us all to get him up there so going every day would be difficult. We just can't wait until we get her home and have our little family of four under one roof.
Yesterday I did bring Ry up there and got my first experience of holding both of my babies in my arms. Whoa - talk about a wave of emotion... I was just bawling when they handed them over to me. Joy just filled my heart. It's really amazing how much they look like each other -- Quinn is just a skinnier version of him - but I am sure she will catch up soon.

Momma's 1st time to hold both Ryan & Quinn

We love our little girl soooo much and can't wait until we can spend every waking moment with her. I just want to grab those monitors off of her and just run out of the door with her. And mny heart breaks a little everytime I have to leave her bedside. But I know she is getting the care she needs in the best pediatric care unit in the country. And we fully trust that God is watching over her even when we can't be there to hold her hand or watch her breathe.

More to come on our little blonde beauty later... she's a fiesty one!

Thank you for all of the prayers for her heart. They are being heard.


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