Sunday, November 27, 2011

Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving has always been my most favorite holiday.
It's always been a time for family and reflection.
A time to be thankful for all of our blessings.
This year it has become even more so.
To have our baby home for the holiday, was the greatest blessing of all.
We are so lucky.
We were sad to not see all of our family over the holiday and kept sweet Stella in our hearts - sending thanksgiving prayers to Conway every day.
Since Eli can only handle a short time in the car seat we decided against the five hour drive to Arkansas. But we were so lucky to have my parents here helping us with everything. It made for a lovely holiday and mom managed to create a true Thanksgiving feast.
Eli has been doing well. He has been nursing frequently. We were instructed to nurse Eli on demand, which can make for a crazy schedule. But we are just thrilled that he wants to eat. Not all of it stays in, of course. He spits up a lot and he gets the hiccups all the time - numerous times a day, really. They say hiccups don't really bother a baby but I disagree. They make him spit up more, gurgle and choke - all things that just add to the craziness.
It has become apparent that we were spoiled by Jackson. Eli is not always an easy going baby. He has his fussy spells and particularly in the wee hours before dawn he just doesn't seem to know what he wants - sleep, eat, cramp, etc.
But it is my job to help him figure it out. It is exhausting, but a privilege considering there were so many nights I couldn't be there for him.
He still has episodes of what is called periodic breathing. He will have fairly lengthy spells where he starts to breathe very fast as if he is trying to catch his breath. It scares me every time and I can't stop staring at his belly moving up and down until the spell passes. The doctors explained that because of his rough start into the world he doesn't have any reserve in his lungs and that it will take time for him to rebuild his lung capacity.
We have been using a breathing/motion monitor that rests on Eli's diaper when he sleeps. If his movements stop for more than 20 seconds, it gives him a tiny vibration and if he doesn't respond to that it goes off.
It helps me sleep, too. Or at least helps me stare at him less.
I may make him wear it until he is 18.
We celebrated Eli's two week birthday on Wednesday. His belly button is healed. He is starting to stay awake a bit more and have moments where he is very alert. SoonerStart is to begin next week. I'm interested in learning how I can help Eli with some of his developmental issues - particularly a few of his reflexes.
I am planning on taking a picture of Eli on November 30 - his original due date. I'm interested to see what he would have looked like had things gone a little closer to the plan.
He seems to enjoy having so many birthday milestones. He gets that from his mother.
Besides if you came into the world with such difficulty I think you deserve a birthday cookie every Wednesday.
He coos and complains.
And we love to hear it all.
He is our thanksgiving.

2 comments:

Sylvie said...

Truly a Thanksgiving when our hearts were full to overflowing with gratitude! One day Eli will love to hear the story of his first Thanksgiving! I doubt if the Pilgrims themselves were any happier than this! :) Love and hugs to all.

Sara Gibbs said...

I'm so happy that Eli is home with mom and dad now. What a scary time you've been through!! Our Jeffrey had periodic breathing too, and an irregular heart beat and I finally pulled him in bed next to me and we both slept great after that. Of course he's still there a year later, but I figure we'll tackle that when he's a little older. You are all lucky to have each other, and every day he'll get stronger with your good breast milk and all of that love!! Congratulations on his homecoming.