Sunday, 2 May 2010

7 weeks old and Sophie has moved house - twice!

Young Sophie is now 7 weeks old (or 34 weeks). When Alan took her milk in to her usual room on Monday morning, he was told she had moved into a new little nursery with just two cots! The nurse told him that Salisbury, the intensive care nursery where she was from when she was born, is just for very young and/or very sick babies, and that Sophie is neither of those :) She had also been weighed and was 3lb 10.

Sophie's grandad and I visited her in the afternoon and the nurse asked if I would like her out for cuddles - I wasn't expecting more cuddles, as she had just been out on Saturday!

Sophie is good at the worried look!

After grandad had left, I was told it was time for a nappy change. I had just filled the bowl with water, when the nurse came back in saying the nappy change would have to wait, as Sophie was being moved through to the high dependency nursery, Braids! She did make me promise that the nappy change would be the very first thing I did when we got through there, as little Miss Baxter was a little bit whiffy!

They unplugged all her tubes when they were happy that she was stable enough, gave her a little whiff of oxygen, and said they would "wheech her through so fast she wouldn't even notice!" The nurses loaded me up like a packhorse with Sophie's belongings - her nappy bowl, cotton wool, several bottles of milk, her file with her notes in it etc and off we went, with me trotting dutifully behind the incubator and all the intensive care nurses laughing at us!

Tired out after all that moving!

As soon as Sophie was settled, I did the dreaded nappy change and gave her a feed and then the poor lamb was tired so she went off to sleep. I texted Alan to tell him we were off to Braids, and got a "What, NOW?!" text back! We knew she would probably be going there within the next few days but hadn't expected it to be the same day that she was moved to the small nursery!

On Tuesday I went up to see Sophie with her Granny and Grandpa, and they saw her off the CPAP for the first time. That was the first time they had ever seen her without her hat and mask, and they finally got to see her beautiful little face :) They hadn't seen her for just over a week and couldn't believe the difference in her size.

She has not been coming off the CPAP so much this week even though they had started to cycle her off it in intensive care the previous week. I had started thinking she was taking a step back, but later found out that they just like to see for themselves what she can do when she moved to HDU, as they hadn't worked with her before. The nurse who was looking after her on Tuesday started teaching me everything from scratch, eg nappy changes which I have been doing for weeks! However on Thursday she completely left me to do everything unsupervised - including turning Sophie over, which she had only shown me for the first time on Tuesday. It was a little bit scary turning her over without any help and without anyone even watching - I was scared in case I hurt her - but I managed ok.

Aunty Gail visited on Thursday and brought her two gorgeous little pink outfits. Last week she brought her a lovely Jemima Puddleduck which will be perfect in the nursery, which we have decided to decorate with a Beatrix Potter theme - that means that last week's picture of the border we were planning to get is now out of date!

Jemima Puddleduck

We have finally picked a colour for the nursery walls - a very pale pink (called Nursery, funnily enough!), and chosen our curtain material - pink background with Benjamin Bunny, Tom Kitten and Mrs Tiggywinkle. Stella next door is going to make the curtains for us, and Alan's dad is going to paint the room. Aunty Gail is on the case trying to find a Beatrix Potter border, as she is the queen of sourcing items on the internet! My dad is brilliant at drawing and painting and is going to do us some pictures of Beatrix Potter characters for the it's hopefully all coming together!

We visited Sophie again on Saturday and asked if we could get her out for cuddles, as all the other babies in the nursery were out! The nurse said she was happy for Sophie to come out for a whole hour, because she is always stable when she is out for cuddles :) She ended up out for over an hour and she had no dips at all when she was out...she just lay cuddled into me and slept!

She seems to be used to all the noise that's constantly going on around her - I've been told that premature babies end up sleeping through anything! It's certainly a very different atmosphere in HDU - alarms going all the time with nobody rushing to switch them off because the babies are expected to sort themselves out eventually, babies crying, and many more babies in the room than there were in ICU. We were even told yesterday that if Sophie's alarm is going and we can see she is ok, then we are allowed to silence it ourselves! We have been used to a nurse rushing in to check if she is ok and switching the alarm off so it's going to take a bit of getting used to. It's definitely good progress though. We will miss our favourite ICU nurses but will hopefully get some new favourites through in HDU!

Tucked back in her nest after cuddles

Sophie was weighed again at the end of last week and is now 3lb 13 - woo hoo! That's a whole two pounds heavier than her birth weight! Four pounds here we come! She is now onto two hourly feeds as of today, and tolerating it well - she is now getting 25ml per feed.

She has also been starting to suck her feeding tube and sucking her fingers and the nurse said that's a really good sign! We also talked to the nurse yesterday about clothes - she said if we have any clothes that we want Sophie to start wearing while she is in there, if we name them we can take them in for her and she might soon get to wear something. She will start with little vests and progress from there. She's not quite there yet but hopefully she will be soon. She has some teeny bodysuits and the tiniest pair of pink trousers we have ever seen, so they will all be going in! I can't wait to see her in the tiny trousers - they are just sooo cute :)

Hopefully by next week's update, Sophie will have reached the 4lb mark and we might have some nursery (work in progress!) pictures to put up!

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