Boy is that an understatement. Simply having a Preemie after a completely healthy baby is as well. They are so small and tiny. In some cases, she is the size of Big JaMonkey’s dolls. I feel like I’m going to break her. I’m glad she is my second child because I would be a hot mess as a brand new mom right now. I’m still a hot mess but I’ve accepted that the NICU is the safest place for her right now and she is doing so well in there.
I didn’t get to hold Lil’ JaMonkey for four whole days. They took her out of me and passed her by my face to weight her and then rushed her to the NICU. When they took her, her heart was beating at 290 beats a minute. A very unsafe rate. A normal resting heart rate should be around 100-150 beats per minute. When the cardiologist came to see us in the recovery room he tried to explain to us what they were planning on doing for her. I honestly couldn’t tell you everything they said because the terminology and medications they were naming were just swirling through my head like a foreign language.
They had to give her a few doses of meds to try and slow down her heart. The way they described it was that there was an extra nerve firing on her heart, so it was causing it to beat uncontrollable. The medication would work but for only short amounts of time before it would spike back up. By the time they rolled me to my postpartum room, they had gotten it down to a steady 170. They started to name all the other things that were wrong with her along with the things I should expect due to her gestational age.
Along with the SVT (Supraventricular tachycardia) she also had CHF (Congestive Heart Failure). The CHF was caused by her SVT being so high. It wasn’t circulating her system the way that it was supposed to. She also had some fluid near her abdomen that they saw on the ultrasound before she came out. Her lungs were very premature so they would have to breath for her along with pumping Synthetic Surfactants them because she had not developed them yet. One of her kidneys are larger than the other. She had a little Jaundice as well so they put her under the Bili Lights.
Once they found the right dosage of meds that kept her heart from spiking (Tachycardia), she started having drops in heart rate (Bradycardia) that are common in Preemies, and they normally bring it back up on their own. So far they have been giving her SVT Medications through an IV. They don’t want to switch her to the oral medications until they know she is taking all of her meals well and digesting properly.
As of today, she is still going back and forth with her heart rate. Sometimes it drops, and sometimes it spikes, so they just monitor her closely. They have taken out her arterial lines, ventilator tubes, and the oxygen lines to her nose. She is breathing completely on her own now!
The Picture above is after the ventilator came out but she still has the oxygen tubes in her nose. The picture below is one of the most recent. She still has a few wires and tubes but not as many as she started with.