Well, for all you wonderful people who still read Miss Maggie's blog, I would love to update y'all.
Maggie is now 6 almost 7 weeks old and she is doing wonderfully. When we left the NICU we were told to treat her like a normal baby and that is what we have been doing as best we know how. Each day it got easier as we got further away from the scariness. I still check on her constantly when she is sleeping to make sure she is still breathing. I may be a bit more obsessive with her than I was with Porter but with due reasons.
When we left the NICU the doctors there were referring us to a Neuro Pediatrician for follow-up and also to an Early Intervention program. We were also to follow-up as normal with our own pediatrician. So Maggie has seen our ped doctor twice and all is well with them. She has gained weight, poops and pees just like a normal baby. She nurses and eats and burps, all things we are happy she has taken to very easily. I was a little worried since she was not instantly given the boob after her birth or for the first four days of her life, but she took to it very naturally and has not had any issues since. I did pump for the first 4 days and have continued to pump one time a day and my milk supply has not been an issue at all. If anything, I may have oversupply but I am fine with that as I go back to work in a week.
About a week after we were home from the NICU, the NeuroPeds doctor called to set up an appointment. Apparently, it is a 3 hour appointment and they only have office hours on Friday and they wanted to do it when she was 4 months old. So we will see them in May and see the doctor and two other teams for testing and evaluation, one of them being hearing. She passed her hospital test just fine so they are not worried about it. My opinion being is she is a baby, they can't test her speech or play yet so a developmental thing is her hearing so they want to double check it. I am all for that since we have hearing issues on my side of the family. Test away. AJ and I will take the afternoon off to head up to Dornbecker's for this appointment and I will post more after we go in May I am sure.
And then I also got a call shortly after arriving home from Marion County Health Services from a nurse with the Cocoon program which is like Early Intervention. They come to your home every couple of months to monitor you baby and report back to the pediatrician if needed. They also are the ones that evaluate her milestones and if she needed therapy of some sort, could get us set up with what she needs. They generally take you through 15-18 months old and if she continues to need further assistance, they could also set us up with the Early Intervention then with the school district. So she is in the "system" and is being watched as we honestly have no idea how this all may have affected her.
Maggie is showing no signs of lag at this point. She is growing, gaining weight and doing the reflexes and milestones a baby of her age would be doing. When the nurse for Cocoon came, she weighed 9 pounds 12 ounces at 5 weeks and was born at 7 pounds 4 ounces. She was 75% percentile in weight and height and 50% for her head. So very normal and healthy. The nurse did a variety of reflex tests and she responded to all of them very well. At this point the nurse was happy with her and will be back some time in May to visit us again. One thing she did mention, I did not know this but others around me did, was that one of the things Maggie was diagnosed with was called HIE. I can't remember what it stands for and it is impossible to say, thus the acronym. Basically, what it means is that she had an insult or injury to her brain. The range of what the outcome would be from that injury is so vast and thus why no one can really tell us what life will be like because no one really knows.
Maggie's brain was without oxygen which in turn causes swelling and is an injury to her brain. She has had no seizures since we have gotten home and has been progressing as a normal baby. The amazing things that I know and cling to are:
1. Babies are super resilient. If brain injury is going to occur in one's life, it is best at the baby stage as they are still developing and have the ability to rewire things to make it work and function. As adults we are developed and more so have to relearn things to adapt to an injury. So very cool and remind myself of this often.
2. We serve and love an amazing God. He allows everything in our lives to happen for a reason and knows EVERYTHING. He knew this was going to happen and could have protected Maggie's brain the entire time and she will never have anything go wrong. Or something could pop up for her and us and we will take that as what he has given us and Maggie to embrace. Either way, no reason to worry myself over this. I just have to relinquish my fears and my need to control and let her grow and be a normal baby.
So yes, how is Maggie doing? She is amazing. She sleeps, smiles, snuggles and is just starting to find her voice and babble. So much fun. Porter loves his sister and is always wanting to hold her and share his toys with her. She is a second child and I am learning to accept that and be the best mom I can be to her and to Porter at the same time. Being a family of four has been an adventure for all of us and soon when my maternity leave ends, we will be on a new adventure. Grammie will be watching 3 kids 2 and under and I will be a part time working mom of 2. Somehow I can't fathom getting ready 3 days a week in the morning with both of them, but I know I can as I have done it a few times. :)
It just all goes so fast and I am trying to enjoy each moment as much as possible and love my kids and my husband in whatever stage we may be in.