I just wanted to update everyone quickly.
Our little princess was born on 7/19 as planned. She was 6 pounds, 11.66 ounces and 18 inches long. My BP during surgery was insane, as was my heart rate. I honestly felt like I was having a heart attack because I had the worst pressure and tightness in my chest and head. I couldn't stop shaking from the epidural, either. Baby Mia's blood sugar was a bit low, but they gave her formula in the operating room and took it again using a more sensitive test, and it came back okay. They started Mag during recovery.. and the next 24 hours were a huge blur. My vision was very, very blurry.. so if I was holding her, I couldn't even focus on her face. It was terrible, and I was so incredibly weak. They stopped the mag after 24 hours and I finally started feeling a bit more normal as the day went on. Unfortunately, that's when the "real fun" began.
There were two instances when Mia turned blue and stopped breathing during/after eating. So they took her to the nursery for observation overnight that Sunday, and her Sats dropped into the 70's once. Her ped. (who we love) came in the morning and wanted to do some blood work. Labs came back fine, but I guess she was thinking of her throughout the day and called me and told me that she had consulted with a Ped. Pulmonologist and a Ped. Cardiologist and wanted to do some more tests. Did I mention that we love her? So they ran an EKG and did a chest x-ray, but everything was clear with her heart - which she thought it would be, but wanted to be sure. She wanted to do a Neumogram.. which is like continuous oximetry monitoring (every breath, pause, etc.) and also a pH tube to check for reflux. She was admitted to the NICU for that. The pH tube showed that she was refluxing badly all night. They put her on Zantac 3x/day. The Neumogram showed a lot of desats. Her weight dropped to 6 pounds, 0 ounces by Wednesday. Needless to say, we didn't leave the NICU. I was discharged on Wednesday, but moved to the NICU to stay in a bonding room with her. OT/PT started to work with us because she kept choking during feedings. She has a strong suck, but it's a leaky one.. and she gulps and chokes. So we started working with them on positioning, pacing, etc. The Ped. Pulmononologist came to see her and basically (because it's complicated), she feeds more like she was born 4-6 weeks earlier than she was. She can't coordinate breathing/sucking/swallowing well. She is very sleepy and halfway through a feeding, forgets what she's doing. She has Apneic episodes. She gulps and chokes and he thought she was aspirating. He wanted to do an Upper GI and Swallow Study. Upper GI was normal. Swallow Study showed that she wasn't completely aspirating, but was constantly ALMOST aspirating. So the liquid would go to the flap at the top of her windpipe and would almost go down, but she would then choke and continue choking/not breathing/turning blue until she got it over to her esophagus. So for now, she's okay to bottle-feed and does not need a feeding tube.. unless it gets worse or they repeat it and see that she is beginning to aspirate completely. She is also Jaundice, but it's not too badly. Her Bilirubin was 10.7 on Day 6. So we stayed in the NICU until last night, working with OT/PT on how to feed her safely, learning CPR, getting comfortable with pacing her and handling the choking, etc. They really left when we went home up to me, since I'm the one who needs to feel safe with her outside of the hospital. The Pulmonologist/Neo agreed that she needs 24/7 monitoring w/ a home Cardio Apnea monitor, so we left with that. She still chokes, even when I'm doing everything right.. but we haven't had any severe episodes that the monitor picked up on since getting home. Her discharge weight was 6 pounds, 2.2 ounces.. so that still concerns me, but she has a Ped. appt. tomorrow, so we'll see where she is. I also worry about delays in other areas, but I guess only time will tell. I just didn't expect any of this with a 37-weeker :O(. We'll be working with the Pulmonologist and will continue with OT/PT, so hopefully things will improve over the next few months.
As far as I'm concerned, my BP was still really high upon discharge.. but the on-call OB said that they don't medicate until the bottom number is over 100. Mine had been running in the 140's-160's/80's-90's. My OB seemed to agree the one time that she popped in to see me (ya, not a fan of hers anymore). I really have no idea how it's running now. I must have gotten through last week in the NICU completely on Adrenaline, because I wasn't really in pain and didn't feel the complete exhaustion until we got home.. and now I've just totally crashed.
It's been a really long few weeks. I can't believe how quickly things evolved from Antepartum to L&D to the NICU. If you could spare some good thoughts, I would really appreciate it. If you have had similar experiences w/ a baby with feeding delays/issues, I would love to hear from you :O).