Our little Hugo is going so well today he really is undeserving of his current bed in the NICU and is due to move to the Special Care Nursery when a space becomes available there.
Hugo’s feeds started at 10ml every 3 hours today with gradual increases he has finished the day at 22ml per feed. Yeah for good eating but I was feeling the pressure to produce. The staff have had to top up feed volumes with formula which is a bit sad but it’s all about him eating and growing. Hopefully I will catch up to him with production soon.
Hugo was weighed for the first time since birth today and was 2270g which is just an 85g loss which isn’t much at all. It’s nice not to feel obsessed with weight gain when he starts over 2kg.
Hugo has had the all clear from the blood cultures taken on his birth day. Meaning he has no signs of bugs growing thus his IV antibiotics have ceased. As his feed volumes increase the volume of IV fluid given to him each hour to assist with hydration can reduce. At the end of the day he was just on 2.4 ml/hour and this will cease overnight. That means he no longer needs the IV line in his hand.
This morning Hugo moved from a temperature controlled humidicrib to an open cot as he is able to maintain his temperature. To be in the cot he has clothes and a hat on, is wrapped up like a burrito and has a big blanket on. As time goes on he will get better at keeping his own warmth but for now we swaddle him lots so he can concentrate on growing.
The highlight of today of course was Eva meeting Hugo for the first time. Eva travelled with me on the wheelchair and we had to wait outside for Daddy to check that all was calm in NICU. We were wondering what effect walking into a NICU would have on her. Would she remember the alarms, the smells? The nurse last night said that most toddlers just take it all in their stride and just think that this is where all babies are after birth! Eva didn’t seem to be bothered by the surrounds at all which is great.
Daddy pushed us straight down to Hugo’s bed which luckily is in the corner and quite spacious. Eva sat with me as we looked into Hugo’s cot and saw the baby. She was quickly giggling at the baby as his did little moves and soon wanted to stand up and explore further with some pokes and gentle touches.
Eva gave Hugo the present that she and Daddy had picked out this morning at the shops (some clothes). Hugo had a present waiting for Eva which consisted of a new bath toy and some playdough. He was clever to know that she loves playdough!
Hugo was due for a feed so he came out into my arms to have some breast contact while the feed was put down his tube. Eva giggled at the milk coming out and was happy to touch Hugo at a closer distance than the cot.
Overall I think that the first meeting went beautifully although I don’t think that Hugo being in hospital for a while is quite making Eva realise that he is her brother and he’s here to stay!
We spent some time this afternoon reading through the lovely messages in response to Hugo’s arrival. We are so grateful to everyone for their love and support. It means so much to us to know that Hugo is being uplifted by your prayers and thoughts.
I was becoming concerned during the day about my lack of milk production especially as Hugo’s consumption has increased. Of course, as Andrew was trying to reassure me, by 7pm tonight I could feel my milk coming in and have begun to relax. I had a fantastic midwife this afternoon who did the hand expressing for me and rejoiced with me as the volumes increased.
Tonight I am sharing a room with an antenatal patient in for overnight assessment which means that there is no baby to wake up and be fed. I am looking forward to a peaceful sleep. As she was having her baby’s heartbeat checked by doppler this afternoon I did have a fleeting thought that no one had checked my baby today. Oops I guess I forgot that my baby is safely on the outside already!
Apparently Hugo is looking very similar to his Daddy as a newborn when photos were compared at the Hodges household last night. Andrew was also born at 33 weeks gestation and had the same honey brown hair (there may be a very slight trace of red).
Tonight, while I was visiting Hugo, the nurse suggested that we could ask for Hugo to be transferred to hospital closer to us which has the appropriate level of care. This is an exciting thought for us as it would make it a 5 minute commute as opposed to 20-30 minute commute for visiting. The nurse reassured me that the level of care is great and we should consider it. Of course a lot depends on the availability of a bed at the other hospital so it could take up to a week for any transfer. Something to find out about tomorrow.