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the eric update - day 73: no nasal cannula! all bottle feeds! nursing! infant cpr. loads of postcards!

woohoo! in the morning, eric's nurse decided to see how well he'd do without any supplemental oxygen, so she removed his nasal cannula. he did fantastic and spent the entire day without free of any breathing support.

he's breathing on his own and apparently racing for the exit door to the nicu!

an added bonus of being free of the nasal cannula is that he also doesn't have any tape on his face, which means we can got an unobstructed view of face all day long. it's crazy to thing that this is the first time in 73 days that we've seen his entire face for the whole day.

he seemed to do even better off the nasal cannula than on and didn't have a single alarm all day long. he's still desatting and threatens a brady or two during feeding times, which is related to his ongoing reflux issues, but otherwise, he showed no signs of needing any oxygen thoughout the day, which is all the more impressive because he was working extra hard today.

in addition to breathing on his own, eric has been taking all of his feeds by bottle for the past 36 hours. yes, you read that right - no tube feeding! i'm not sure i can find the words to adequately describe just how remarkable it is that he didn't need any supplemental oxygen while taking bottle feeding after botttle feeding, considering all the extra energy that is required to bottle feed versus feeding via a tube. and even better - he's really starting to get the hang of "regular" nursing. i know, it might be too much to absorb all at once, but he's also nursing at least two times a day!

it can sometimes be difficult to understand why micropreemies start on bottles and then transition to nursing, but there really are valid reasons why the staff insist that eric is able get his nutrition from a bottle before attempting to nurse. but even while working to ensure that eric is able to bottle feed, the staff have been working hard with kris and eric find ways to start nursing on a regular basis as he gets stronger. kris has begun to use a nipple shield to great effect. in a week, eric has gone from latching for very short periods of time, to nursing for 20-25 minutes before being given a "comp" bottle to ensure that he's getting enough milk to keep him gaining weight. it's not abnormal for micropreemies to not fully get the hang of nursing before they reach 40 weeks, so it's great news that he's already avidly nursing at 36 weeks. it still takes a lot of energy on his part to nurse, which is why he's limited to doing it twice a day, but i don't see any issues that would prevent him from quickly moving to nursing much more often in the very near future.

since eric is breathing on his own, taking all of his feedings by a bottle ( and nursing ) and maintaining his body temperature, he's very close to meeting all the "exit criteria" for busting out of the nicu! that means we need to make sure we learn infant cpr, since it's not uncommon for micropreemies to stop breathing after they get home.

there were several sets of parents taking the infant cpr class today and they brought a bunch of replacement faces for the infant cpr dolls so that we could remove the face and hand the doll to the next family after we practiced cpr.

i'm not sure why you couldn't just reuse a face after wiping it with an antiseptic wipe, but what do i know.

and yes, the postcards are still coming in! we're still trying to figure out a way to put all the postcards in eric's nursery; we're open to suggestions. maybe tack them all on a corkboard?.

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9/15/2004 11:50:00 PM 27 comments


Woo hoo! All day without a nasal cannula! And feeding so well.

It's been a long haul, but I'm so glad Eric's getting a chance to see what life will be like on the outside!

By Blogger Da Goddess, at 4:23 AM  

Wowie wow wow! It is hard to process so much great news in one setting. I bet that there are lots of mixed feelings about the anticipation of bringing him home! I know I would be going through the full spectrum of emotions.. between utter joy and giddyness to nervousness to complete panic.
It is so great to see his whole face!! He's looking quite chubby these days - so cute!

Glad nursing is going well. It's a good sign that he is doing that regularly - twice a day is a great start for such a tiny baby!!! Some babies take weeks to even get the latching thing down. Here is some more info about nipple sheilds. I cannot stress enough how important it is to sterilize them after every use - just because yeast love those things!!

Just keep practicing getting him to open wide however he is taking his feed - this will be a good skill to learn for later and it will help avoid latching problems or nipple confusion. But interestingly, I've read "studies comparing premature infants during bottle-feedings and during breastfeedings have shown that breastfeeding is actually less stressful. "
It doesn't mean that it is necessarily "easier" though - and the valid reasons you mentioned are indeed valid.

Oh, and those CPR babies creep me out! I would think the same as you - why would you have to completely change faces? LOL.


By Anonymous Anonymous, at 9:33 AM  

Yippeeeee!!!! Everyone is waiting anxiously to see when Eric IV will break out of the NICU. And, it looks like he is progressing ahead of schedule. Will the occasional bradycardia issues during feeding hold him up or does this normally happen and home and respond to the medication? Words can't describe how exciting it is to see his whole face after all this time. He's a handsome guy.....How is the nursery coming along? Can't help but sit on pins and needles waiting to hear about his release date. Perhaps he will come home close to Grandma Sherry's birthday? That would be the best present evah! Love, Mom

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 10:23 AM  

Can I just say how utterly gorgeous he looks without the tape and the nasal cannula! Not that he wasn't beautiful already :-), but it does make a difference to a face.

And TWO breastfeeding sessions a day! Amazing! Well done, Odin. May you soon be heading home...


By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:09 AM  

( the following comment is probably going to be misinterpreted as me ranting at my sister. i'm most definately not, she's been unfailing supportive and we love her very much :-) but i am using her comment as a way to highlight some of the specific issues that 24-26 weeker parents face when trying to get useful information on nursing. if you ( and i mean the royal "you" not just candy specifically ) disagree, don't be afraid to leave a comment. differences in opinions are good and i'm sure more than one nursing advocate will cringe and privately ( or publically ) accuse me spreading disinformation. f'eh! hopefully some of the micropreemie parents who have contacted me privately in the past about his issue will leave a comment so we can get their perspective, but if they don't that's o.k. since it's a sensitive subject. )

eric's doing great with nursing and not showing any signs of nipple confusion and doesn't have any issues with opening wide, so we're incredibly fortunate. we've certainly seen all sorts of information on nursing and preterm infants. our nicu is very, very "pro" nursing and has a knowlegeable lactation consultant on staff at all times and everyone is very diligent about getting babies to nurse in age appropriate ways.

i must stress over and over again, that the rules are different for babies born at 26 weeks and less and their progress can't be compared to other babies even when they reach similar gestational ages. even though eric is reaching 36 weeks age, he won't nurse like a baby born at 36 weeks. 36 weekers will come into the nicu and will often move quickly to getting all feeds via nursing. 24 and 25 weekers are doing great if they are getting occasionally nursed and finished with comp bottles.

it's funny that you linked to the dr. sears article because kris and i were just talking with the staff about how difficult it is to find useful information for mothers of 23-26 weekers who are trying to nurse. there are books, even in the nicu, from the la leche league and dr. sears that have chapters with big titles such as "NEVER GIVE YOUR BABY AN ARTIFICIAL NIPPLE!" and explicitely stating that you're lazy if you're using them; i think it's probably impossible to stress how hurtful it is to read such things for moms ( not just kris, we've received emails for other parents who don't feel comfortable commenting in public ) who are pumping 6 to 8 times a day and doing everything they can to get their babies out of the nicu as fast as possible. the nurses just shake their heads, sigh, apologize and state that the information is meant for the 30-32+ weeker parents who come into the nicu.

the reality of the situation is that artificial nipples are a fact of life for micropreemie parents. they are helping eric to get the amount of milk that he needs, in the time that he needs while expending a minimum amount of energy. i know this is heresy in some circles, but it's the reality and it's terrible that micropreemie parents feel that they need to contact me privately to tell me that they understand and support the decision because they don't want to cause a brouhaha in the comments.

a week ago 5 minutes of nursing would wipe him out for hours and affect how much energy he had for his following feeding. and now, a week later, he's nursing twice a day for 20-25 minutes a day. it might not be a popular thing to say, but that progress is made possible because he's able to practice his sucking throughout the day while quickly getting his food via an artificial nipple ( can you see me ducking as i lob that bomb :-) ). i know. i know. i can hear the true believers yelling, "heretic! heretic!". but it's the reality for a micropreemie parent.

we have discussed all of the alternatives with the staff from supplemental nursers to cup feeding to finger feeding to what-have-you and we're confident that, right now, we're happy to have him primarily getting fed via a bottle with occasional nursing with a nipple shield. if he starts to show nipple confusion then we'll move to another tool in the bag of tricks and when he gets stronger we might start trying supplemental nursers.

all in good time.

By Blogger e3, at 11:17 AM  

Little Odin is gorgeous and doing so great!!! I am so happy for you 3 and know you're floating on cloud nine. You've got a strong little fella. =)

Brittany from Florida

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:55 AM  

I can understand the fear of a mob lynching after THAT comment! :) I must say, (and i say it not as a mother, but as a nurses aide who sees these lactation consultants every day)that breastfeeding is great....if it works for you. It is a personal decision. While I'm sure that there are highly qualified lactation consultants out there somewhere there surely aren't any where I work. No one should feel guilty if their baby doesn't take to breastfeeding. No one should feel guilty that they use a pacifier or pump and use an artificial nipple to feed the baby. Breastmilk is in the best interest of the child, via tube, artificial nipple, real nipple, cup feeding, syringe feeding, finger feeding....whatever your choice don't let anyone ever make you feel like a bad parent. It is your baby. It is your choice.
Any true believer in Freud's work will tell you that these babies are in their 'oral fixation' stage. Most every baby feels the need to suckle but are not necessarily hungry at that time. I say hurray for binkies!!! :)
(Now I'll run and hide--I can almost hear the mob forming)

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:57 AM  

I can understand the fear of a mob lynching after THAT comment! :) I must say, (and i say it not as a mother, but as a nurses aide who sees these lactation consultants every day)that breastfeeding is great....if it works for you. It is a personal decision. While I'm sure that there are highly qualified lactation consultants out there somewhere there surely aren't any where I work. No one should feel guilty if their baby doesn't take to breastfeeding. No one should feel guilty that they use a pacifier or pump and use an artificial nipple to feed the baby. Breastmilk is in the best interest of the child, via tube, artificial nipple, real nipple, cup feeding, syringe feeding, finger feeding....whatever your choice don't let anyone ever make you feel like a bad parent. It is your baby. It is your choice.
Any true believer in Freud's work will tell you that these babies are in their 'oral fixation' stage. Most every baby feels the need to suckle but are not necessarily hungry at that time. I say hurray for binkies!!! :)
(Now I'll run and hide--I can almost hear the mob forming)

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:58 AM  

oops....I tried to stop that post before it got posted. I forgot to sign my name....and also:

I meant to comment on the postcard situation. What if you got a really nice picture album?T he kind with just clear plastic holders so that you can read it and see the front at the same time.

(Signed it this time so i don't have to post twice. :) Sorry!)

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:03 PM  

Oh my soul, what yummy baby boy! You and Kris must be in seventh heaven!

May I also say what a trooper Kris is to be pumping 6-8 times a day! It's sad that too few of us understand just how important it is for babes, esp preemie babes, to get breast milk. It's awesome that she's also able to nurse him! YAY ODIN! YAY KRIS!

I'm the last person who's gonna give you grief about bottle they make dome shaped preemie nipples tho? They might help combat any looming nipple confusion...but then again, who really knows?

Ultimately breast nursing w/o bottles, shields etc is the easiest and most convenient way to feed a kiddo (in my humble opinion) so, with that in mind, I'll continue to hope and pray that Kris and Eric will ultimately be able to enjoy BF this way. That said I can't adequately express how amazing it is that this kid is still getting breastmilk and that he's nursing twice a day!!! Many people w/ NONE of the struggles you folks have don't even ATTEMPT to nurse their babies.

You all are amazing.

P.S. My little man LOVED his sous sous (french for suck suck) and I BF'd him w/o problems or nipple confusion until he was 13 mos old. Shhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh!!!! :D


By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:07 PM  

YEA! I am soo happy for all of you. I have been following you guys the whole time! I am overjoyed, and hope you continue the story when Odin gets home. I so look forward to your daliy news. hugs... Annie from pasadena

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 1:48 PM  

i wanted to post a clarifying comment because i think, even though i tried to put a clear disclaimer in the original comment, it might be easy to misinterpret my previous statements at being directed at my sister and miss the real point.

candy raised a great, valid point about "nipple confusion" which is a very real concern whenever you bottle feed. but there's a very big difference between sending helpful articles about being vigilent about "nipple confusion" ( which she did ) and making extreme statements about the evilness of artificial nipples and the purported laziness of micropreemie moms who need to use them ( candy obviously didn't make these statements and never intended to and hopefully that's clear in the inital comment); we're bombarded by the latter information every day - even(!) in the nicu - and my frustration is with the fact that it doesn't reflect reality for micropreemie moms ( and dads ).

that said, if there's a parent of a 24 or 25 weeker or a nurse or lacatation consultant who has advice on the blend of techniques that's specific to the needs of a micropreemie, i'd be happy to hear it. as i've said in the past, you couldn't find bigger supporters of breastmilk and nursing; but i've conversed with many, many micropreemie parents and without fail they all say that maybe, if you're really lucky, you might be able to nurse on a somewhat regular basis after 40 weeks and that getting used to bottles, possibly a bit of nipple confusion and even "drying up" before the baby really gets used to nursing are all part of how things are different for the micropreemie mom and baby.

so, once again, don't go harassing my sister because of my possibly unclear comment; she's great and has been one of the most helpful and supportive people throughout this entire ordeal.

By Blogger e3, at 1:53 PM  

I am so happy to see how well Odin is doing. The whole thing is amazing and frightening and beyond words. I've followed your story from a link on from the beginning. I am very happy that Candy posted it and you've allowed people a chance to see the inner workings of NICU and the lives of a micropreemie and parents. You've created a valuable resource for many.

As for suggestions on how to put up the postcards, run wire or a line taut high across the walls and put the cards up with brightly painted clothespins.

Congratulations on the recent progress, and hang in there.


By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:11 PM  

[b]so, once again, don't go harassing my sister because of my possibly unclear comment; she's great and has been one of the most helpful and supportive people throughout this entire ordeal.[/b]

I'm a bit confused, and I hope my comments weren't misconstrued as harassing. You're sister seems like an absolute doll! It's always good to have another viewpoint from a well meaning person. It's good to THINK about this kinda stuff, even if it only serves to solidfy your thoughts and descisions in your own mind! Know thyself and all that jazz :)

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 2:52 PM  

P.S. the previous comment was mine (Emily) and I just wanted to appologize if anything in my post was misinterpreted as a jibe at Candy! I assure you, that wasn't my intent in ANY WAY! The p.s. about the sous thing was just to point out that not every baby get's nipple confusion. That said, nipple confusion is a very real and valid concern and I wasn't trying to make light of that in the slightest!

I'm not the parent of a micro preemie. I don't have any experience in this area or micro preemie advice to offer. It was only my way of trying to offer encouragement. I appologize if this was taken in any other way.

Artificial nipples + breast feeding most often spell out trouble. But in your case they're a necessary evil, and I'm sure every one of us reading this understand and respect this unconditionally. IT's very apparent from her comment that Candy, understands this and is only offering helpful suggestions re: nipple confusion, and rightly so. Again, if it seemed like I was suggesting otherwise, this was a misinterpretation and a failing on my part. It's very hard to convey intent and emotion in this sort of venue, esp when emotions are running high. Again, I appologize for any confusion!

With respect,


By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:03 PM  

I have to come to E3’s defense, but don’t have a lot of time to do it. As a fellow preemie parent (Andy - 26 weeks, 1lb, 4oz – now 26 months) feeding is a medical issue, and while I and E3 support breastfeeding and breast milk, I would urge anyone who hasn’t been a preemie parent, especially of one so young and small to, well, be quiet. There is enough pressure just worrying about your child living from day to day, than to go all “La Leche” on this family. In a perfect world, everyone would agree with you that breast milk, and especially breastfeeding are the best for baby. This is not a normal baby, and the rules have changed. The most important thing for E3 and Kris to do is to get this baby home. There will be many challenges in the future, most importantly weight gain. There will probably be a need to continue to supplement E4’s feedings. E4 has had many drugs and stresses put on his tiny little body, and other things are needed as preemies tend to have a problem gaining weight like full term babies (although, I must say E4 is pretty damn amazing – Go E4!!). Trust that the family and the doctors and nurses know what they are doing. The goal again is to get this kid home. Then, it will be keeping him healthy for the first two years. Past that, I see no reason that E4 won’t be anything but perfect. Sorry if I offended, but preemies are special – in more ways than one.


By Blogger Robb, at 3:04 PM  

arrrggggh. how do i stop this snowballing confusion! :-)

oh my gosh, emily. no, i was not implying that yours or anyone else's comments were taken by either of us as harassing. i was just making a comment about people who *might* be wanting to harass her due the vagueness in my comment. not that anyone in these comments has done so, or that anyone has contacted me privately.

i knew exactly what you meant, honest!


By Blogger e3, at 3:14 PM  

Phew :)

BTW, YAY again! Your son is pretty amazing! Does he get all of this tenacity from you or your wife or both?


By Anonymous Anonymous, at 3:26 PM  

ahhh. there's one micropreemie parent and i know there are others visiting who don't feel comfortable commenting on their thoughts about the rather extreme views of some in the breastfeeding/community.

again, i'm not saying that i think my sister is one of the extrememists ( she's most definately not ) or that any of the regular commenters are insensitive. but robb's brusqueness is a great indicator of just how emotionally charged this issue can be and i thought that now was a good time to bring up the issue after months of reading crappy, irrelevant "educational" material. i'm sure there are many, many people lurking who could tell their stories but won't because it's still too emotionally charged an issue.

By Blogger e3, at 3:31 PM  

I would urge anyone who hasn’t been a preemie parent, especially of one so young and small to, well, be quiet. |

i'm going off the the nicu for awhile but i wanted to make sure i didn't leave this hanging out there for awhile.

i'm glad that robb posted his comment because he voiced the opinion of others who have contacted me privately bu t who chose not to discuss the very sensitive issue in public. although i understand where the sentiment comes from, i wish more people would discuss it and don't encourage non-preemie parents to be quiet :-)

again, i do thank robb for commenting because he does a good of giving a voice to many moms ( and dads ) who choose to bottle up their frustration with otherwise well meaning organizations and "support".

By Blogger e3, at 4:03 PM  

That's such great news, I'm really pleased for you all, I luckily was only in for 2 1/2 weeks after Katie was born because she wasn't very premature, but it was such a great feeling when we could see the "going home" signs falling in to place.

On the subject of the postcards, it would be nice to preservbe them so that both sides can be read when E4 is older, but for now to put them up so that the fronts can be seen, maybe as a collage in a couple of big frames, or if you have enough you could put them along one wall as a border? How many are there now? You could maybe make a mobile out of them and hang them above the cot.

Also one last - tentative! - comment about the nipple confusion issue, I know a lot of people with full term babies who feed very successfully from breast and bottle with no confusion, and so feel it is not a subject that needs to be worried about too much before it happens, and if it does you'll cope with it and find ways around it like everything else. I know from Katie that she was a little perplexed by bottles (as she was breastfed first) but soon adapted to feeding from both.

And thanks for sharing Eric with us!

By Blogger Kirsty, at 6:43 PM  

Not going to weigh-in on the nipple discussion :) but just wanted to say that the little guy's got a really cute tape-free face!

~ laura

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:08 PM  

this is the person you don't know frm a hole in the ground.
just a reader who noticed for what i think is the first time you using words like "this ordeal."
it must be because he's doing so well.
but know this, parent to parent, human to human.
what i have admired so & what brings me back to follow your lovely family's progress is that from the very beginning you & yours have been so utterly & completely rock solid in the sense that this blog is a chronicle of your life with your son.
not the chronicle of a recovery.
not the chronicle of a touch & go situation.
but of life.
your life with your son.
it moved me so.
i could hear in your words the thrill of your son's presence in this world;
and feel the concussion of arrival that registers at the celluar level.
and best of all i heard this deep and respectful acceptance of him on his (and on his body's) terms.
geeza louisa!
how often does a guy get to hear that brand of good news?
it's the sound of love, man.
plus, you know how he thrills you?
well, that sound thrills him.
and it informs him.
and it informs me.
which makes it an ordeal i will cherish.
blessings on all your good heads.

By Anonymous Anonymous, at 7:30 PM  

Let me first say how overjoyed I was to hop onto the site today, and read all the wonderful news!!! BTW - What a little mister cutie pants :)

As for the breastfeeding... Well, as a mom of a 23.6/24.0 weeker - I did EVERYTHING I could to get to the point where I could breastfeed my son. However, it's not all about "YOU", in that sense. First of, I dealt with a child that didn't take milk of any sort for his first two months of life (on hyperal/TPN & Lipids only), due a preforated bowl. In addition, for the first 7 weeks - he was entirely too fragile to even be held. I know many women who lost their supply before ever getting a moment with their child in the arms (something that greatly assists with letdown).

In addition, let's discuss supply, or lack there of for many women of micro-preemies. My glands were underdeveloped - and I was heavily drugged between the loss of my first son, and the birth the of my second 4.5 days later. I was not permitted to pump, until 24 hours AFTER Kyle was born - due to issues going on in my own body. At it's peak (while on domperidone), I only produced 25oz/day (both breasts combined). Unassisted, at my peak - I only produced 18oz/day. And what did I do to get that you may ask? Well, for the first 2 weeks, I pumped every 2 hours, dropping to every 3 hours for the next month (around the clock). Finally, I dropped back to pumping from 6AM-12AM daily.

Now, let's discuss stress... Yes, many parents have to deal with having their babies in the NICU - but try having your child there for 3, 4, 5 - or in my case - 6.5 months! Then let's see how that affects your supply. And I took the following to help mine stay afloat: 2 (10day) rounds of Reglan, 1 round of Domperidone, Fennugreek, mothers milk tea, and oatmeal daily - Daily FOR 7 MONTHS.

Then let's discuss fortifying and concentrating breastmilk... Yes, imagine being told that your breastmilk just isn't good enough for your little baby. The ONE thing that was from you - and you alone, now had to be "messed" with by medical staff... It was the ONE SACRED GIFT that I could give - and it wasn't good enough. No, first it had to be fortified - until my son developed Rickets because he was expending too many vital nutrients and calories just trying to breath! When it was discovered that he had rickets (at 4.5 months old) - we had to stop the fortifier, and start concentrating his breastmilk... How do you concentrate breastmilk you may ask??? BY PUTTING FORMULA IN IT! My heart sank to the floor - I was so upset the day that they told me, that I only got 8 oz of breastmilk the entire day, and I pumped every 2-3 hours! I was in tears for days over this, and it took 2 weeks to get my supply back to what it was before they told me about the change. Now, not only did they add formula - they added MCT Oil... My son needed 30/cal/oz! And he was on this from May 17, through the end of July. At which point, we dropped to 27 calories (eliminating the oil) - and now we are at 24 cal/oz.

Finally - imagine making it 6.5months pumping - only to FINALLY get your son home, and then see your supply mysteriously dry up on you! That's right, in the end I was pumping every 2-3 hours around the clock, and only getting 2oz of semi clear milk - in a 24 hour period! That was it, having reached the finish line - my body gave out!

I have tried twice, unsuccessfully to attempt relacting. Upon further consultation with my doctor and a lactation consultant - given the circumstances, they/we agreed that I had done all I could. I managed to pump for 7 months, and store an addition 1.5 months of milk for my son... So much more than was ever expected of me - but still so much less than I ever expected of myself.

I will add, that not long ago it was suggested that I was "poisoning" my son by feeding him formula - and that maybe I should have tried harder... Well, if someone can tell me where to buy powdered breastmilk to get the calories up... Well, I'll be the first in line - until then... (Insert 4-letter explitive here).

No, this isn't the perfect breastfeeding situation I wanted... But if this was the "Perfect" situation - I would have been tandom feeding my twins... But that's just not what life had in store for us.

And for those that haven't been there - I don't think they should ever judge (not that this is what's really happening)... But I should add this one final piece (as if my post wasn't long enough - ha ha)... My son has only EVER finished 2 bottles in his life - leaving him fed by tube (NG)! In addition, he started to refuse the bottle in late June all together... 2 days ago - he decided that he wanted his bottle again. He still isn't "strong" enough to finish - and fell asleep sitting completely upright today - with still an ounce to go (4oz in a full feeding).

I couldn't be more thankful that my son is taking a bottle.

By Blogger Katra, at 1:17 AM  

to "you don't know frm a hole in the ground":

thank you for your very perceptive and insightful comment. indeed, i have tried very hard to tell a story about acceptance of little odin "on his (and on his body's) terms". and i don't think anyone has yet commented on whether or not i've reached that goal.

i think your comment and kati's blog entry come very close to describing how i hope people feel when they follow along to the ever-unfolding story.

By Blogger e3, at 11:23 AM  

katra. thank you very much for posting your story. you seem to effortlessly tell what is obviously a painful and intensely personal story. i know for a fact that there are micropreemie parents who visit but never comment who are glad to know they are not alone as they try to come to grips with the fact that the "one sacred gift" may not be enough. it's can be very traumatizing to realize this just at a point when you feel that it's the only thing you can do.

again, i thank both you and robb for giving everyone a glimpse into what life is like for the moms ( and dads ) of many, many 23-26 weekers. i think it's hard for people to understand how hard it can be to find "never give your baby formula" and "never give your baby an artifical nipple" even in the nicu, when you're trying to find information to help you prepare yourself for the types of things you've had to prepare yourself for. and then there's the constant "so how's the nursing going" questions that we get, even from nicu in-laws and parents of 32+ weeker preemies who have no idea what life is like for parents of micropreemies.

as you know, a mom who is contemplating "drying up" after months and months of pumping 10 or 12 times a day and is only nursing a few times a day - if at all - hears what sound like relatively benign questions a lot differently than the asker might intend ( i should add that i'm not specifically referring to kris as she's been lucky enough to not see her production drop off ( yet ), the "mom" i'm referring to is an "aggregate" mom based not only on my interpretation of kris' experiences but also emails and comments i've received ).

and yes, beyond the subtle insensitivities that must be endured each day, there are the much more explicitly mean comments about poisoning your baby with formula or that you won't bond properly unless you nurse exclusively or that your not trying hard enough if you have to resort to using a bottle.

it's hard to believe, but as you've indicated, those people do exist and they do actually make those horrific comments.

By Blogger e3, at 12:19 PM  

hi, i just came across your site and i have a daughter who just came out of NICU to Continuing Care Nursery(CCN). We are 4 mths old and have been through alot. Bayleigh has just started feeding from a bottle about 2 weeks ago and they have told us we are close to going home. She is struggling with the bottle and we are getting depressed knowing that this is all thats keeping us in the hospital. We are on nasal cannulas and will come home with them because she just recently came off the ventilator on Dec. 21. I know what you are going through and i was wondering if you have any advice to feeding through the bottle. Any tricks or anything? please please email me back at and i appreciate it alot. have a great day, and be blessed you have such a great and strong child. Many of us know how it is and we will pray for you all. Thanks

By Blogger zoe, at 11:50 AM  

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"it is hard to be brave," said piglet, sniffing slightly, "when you're only a Very Small Animal." rabbit, who had begun to write very busily, looked up and said: "it is because you are a very small animal that you will be Useful in the adventure before us."

the complete tales & poems of winnie the pooh

[ about ]

this site chronicles the continuing adventures of my son, odin, who was unexpectedly born on the fourth of july at 25 weeks gestation, weighing 1 pound 7 ounces.

he's quite a fighter and you can always send him a postcard to the most current address listed here if you're inspired by his adventures. see the postcard project/google maps mashup to see a map of the postcards.

if you're new, you can browse the archives to catch up. and don't forget to watch a few movies that i made while we were in the neonatal intensive care unit. or if you want the abridged version and you can find a copy, you can read about his adventures in the november 2005 issue of parents magazine.

[ search ]

[ outbound ]

daddytypes / blogging baby /

rebeldad / thingamababy / The Continuing Adventures of Super-Preemie / dooce /

[ schwag ]

look snazzy and support the site at the same time by buying some snowdeal schwag!

[ et cetera ]

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Eric C. Snowdeal III .
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