She practices rolling over and sitting with our help
She loves her activity mat and butterfly toy
Virginia was able to meet her cousins Shane and Kyle for the first time this weekend! Everyone was so excited to finally get to meet each other!
Virginia had a great session with her Physical Therapist last week!! It was clear that she had made a lot of progress with her head control and tummy time in the 2 weeks since her previous appointment. We also had a long cardiology appointment on Friday. Her EKG and echocardiogram confirmed that she still had the small fistula between her arteries (not related to her prematurity) and mild pulmonary hypertension (related to her prematurity and having chronic lung disease). The cardiologist was not alarmed by either of these findings but we will see them every 6 months until the conditions resolve. We could use your good thoughts and prayers that these 2 issues remain mild or resolve all together.
I've learned that as a parent there is always something to worry about and as the parent of an ill child I've learned that the worry is very subjective. The things we worried about in October and November were much more serious and scary. Today we are reminded that we still have many worries related to her prematurity, but at the same time we have so many blessings and victories.
At the beginning of March we had a local photographer (Monin Photography for those of you in the CT area) come take "newborn" photos of Virginia. We treasure these photographs and are so glad that we finally have a few more photos of us as a family. I will share some more of the photos in a post soon, but in the meantime take a look at some of these then and now photos.
This is Virginia in late November 2011 with her lambie. These beanie baby lambs are given to each baby in the NICU by a nurse from the Maternal Special Care Unit. We were told that the company that makes beanie babies tried to retire this particular beanie baby several years ago, but put it back into production after hearing the story of the special lambs at Yale New Haven Hospital. Lambie kept Virginia company in her isolette and was often used to help prop her tubing, keep her paci in, and support her little legs.
Virginia in March 2012 with her lambie
Virginia at 4 days old in my hands. Several people told me that I had my whole world in my hand. They were so right.
Virginia at 5 months in my hands.
Our wedding rings on Virginia's foot at 4 days old. This picture was the only one I could bear to show people initially. Her precious foot was just about the only thing that was free from IV's, bandages, tubes, and monitoring lines.
One last March for Babies post. Our team, Go Ginny Go, has raised almost $2500 for the March of Dimes! Many many thanks to each of you that have donated!
We are walking (as well as some of our family and friends) in 3 weeks at the March for Babies. Heath and I will be donating $5 for every donation that is received by Saturday. If you would like to donate please follow this link http://www.marchforbabies.org/virginiakkent
can you donate $1 for each healthy child you have in your family?
can you donate $4 in honor of Virginia's 4 months at Yale New Haven Hospital?
can you donate $11 in honor of Ginny's special 11:11am birth time?
can you donate $23 in honor of Virginia's 23 ounce birthweight?
can you donate $45 in honor of the other 45 babies that on average were in the Newborn Special Care Unit with Virginia on any given day?
can you donate $73 in honor of the 73 days that Virginia will have spent at home between discharge and the March for Babies walk?
can you donate $82 in honor of the 82 ounces that Virginia gained before her discharge?
can you donate $124 in honor of the 124 days that Virginia spent in the Newborn Special Care Unit?
No matter how large or small your donation is appreciated and makes a difference.
25 weeks in and now 25 weeks out. Virginia has now been here with us for as long as she was inside me. These 25 weeks sure seem alot longer than the 25 weeks that I was pregnant.
The human body is an amazing thing. It is amazing to me that in a short 25 weeks a few cells can grow into a 1lb 7oz miracle that can survive and thrive with the help of alot of modern medicine.
Even more amazing to me is that in another 25 weeks that 1lb 7oz miracle can grow to be a 9lb 11.5oz smiling, happy baby.
Virginia went to the pediatrician this week for another well baby checkup and to get some immunizations. She is now in the 10th-15th percentile for height (21.5 in) and weight (9lb 11.5oz) and in the 30th percentile for her head circumference based on her adjusted age. This is wonderful news since she was once barely hovering on the 3rd percentile a few months ago. Her doctor was very pleased with how she is doing and doesn't need to see her again until July. In the meantime we will continue to see her Physical Therapist, she has a cardiology appointment, and at least one more eye exam. He also encouraged us to cautiously get out and enjoy life together. He emphasized that as cold and flu season is coming to an end that practicing good hand washing and sanitizing practices and avoiding people that we know are ill is the best way to keep Virginia safe while introducing her to life outside of the house. We are very excited to start introducing her to more family and friends. We are also excited to get out of the house more often. I took Virginia with me on a few errands this week and wore her in a sling, which helped keep random baby admirers at a safe distance.
A few other photos from the past week and a half:
First Easter, First fancy dress and Easter Dinner with Sadie, her first baby friend outside of the hospital. :)
I was on hospital bedrest for 3 weeks before Virginia made her grand (albeit way too early) appearance and in hindsight it was a really good preparation for life at home with Virginia.
Bedrest taught me that showers are a privilege and should not last more than 2 minutes.
Bedrest taught me that lunch consists of anything that is remotely appetizing on the menu (or now in the fridge). Back then the lunch of choice was tomato soup and a pita with hummus, now it is whatever leftovers can be heated and eaten quickly or with one hand.
Bedrest taught me that daytime tv is really bad.
Bedrest taught me to sleep in adverse conditions and at strange times. Thankfully I am now getting much more sleep than I ever did in the hospital.
Bedrest taught me to stay very calm and that getting worked up or tense would only make things worse.
Bedrest taught me that not leaving the hospital room (or now the house) for days really isn't as bad as it sounds.
Bedrest taught me that being thankful, hopeful and happy was (is) the best way to make it through the day. How could I not be thankful, hopeful and happy?
On bedrest I used to look at this ultrasound picture all day hoping that we could make it another shift together, another day together, another week together.
Now I'm lucky enough to look at this beautiful face all day.