Monday, 30 November 2009

Beds and burps and bumps

Unlike her mum/mom, Alice likes shopping. Or, at least, she liked the new atmosphere and bright lights of the shopping mall food court - on Friday and again today when Paul, Alice and I went into town for a bit more shopping. Turns out our decision to go with an up to 3 months snowsuit wasn't taking into account that although Alice seems proper big to us now, what with being nearly two months old, she's actually still proper little and measuring closer to two weeks old. It was funny to see her swamped in the huge snowsuit though, before we spared her further indignity and got a newborn jacket. It's proving a bit of a nightmare to find clothes for the girls that aren't garishly, over the top pink but as Alice has already been 'he'd' (mistaken for a boy) a few times now, I want her to have a flash of girl about her.

So I got over the big bed issue for Maggie, helped along by being able to pop Alice in and have them be together. It's still heartbreaking to see the difference between the two of them, and to know the even bigger difference to come, but I was trying not to think about it too much because it does become overwhelmingly sad. They were so cute bumping up against each other, touching, sleeping through each other's crying - and when I had Maggie out for a cuddle, Alice gradually sprawled herself out across her side and into Maggie's.

All of which made it disappointing to go into the hospital on Sunday and find the big bed gone and Maggie back in a small cot, albeit a slightly bigger one than before. I knew there was a chance the children's unit would need their bed back at some point but it turns out that wasn't the case - our nurse had heard that I was upset a few days prior by the big bed and found a smaller one, thinking I would prefer that. The nice thoughts and intentions were there but it also shows how the chain of communication so easily gets twisted round when there are so many different people involved. Unfortunately, the children's unit has now reclaimed the bed and we're back to trying to cajole another one out of them, and convince the neonatal nurse manager (who wasn't aware of the big bed the first time around) that our need for the big bed outweighs any small print health and safety issues.

The other disappointment was that Maggie has been put back to two-hourly feeds because she was vomiting too often and wasn't really handling the three-hourly volume. The plan is to try again soon, which we're pushing for, because the two-hourly feed just doesn't give her much time awake, which doesn't give her much time to take things in and develop.

Alice has wind issues - no matter how many burps and pumps we get out of her, she still ends up grunting and straining in a most unladylike fashion, even in her sleep. And it's beginning to take its toll on our sleep, Paul's particularly. (I pretty much crash out until she cries, but he wakes up at every grunt - and there are a lot of them.) It could be due to her prematurity and something she'll soon outgrow, or she could have what some people have dubbed the grunting baby syndrome - this will just be her thing, to be noisy and moaning all the time. I told Paul that it was probably her trying to mimic him!

Poor Alice was on the receiving end of my general clumsiness today at the hospital - I was lifting her out of her cot, decided to lift her a little higher and smell to see if she'd done a poo and - BONK! - banged her head on the shelf above. She went bright red and I could feel her building her cry up and she shrieked for about 10 seconds and then was fine. I wasn't - I felt so bad. And then I felt even worse when the nurse told me that even though it was just a bump and all she had was a little red mark, not even a bruise, it would need to be reported as an accident incident for health and safety and Alice would need to be seen by a doctor. No doctor in NICU could do it so I had to take Alice down to A&E (ER for us Americans). She was completely fine, of course, but I still feel awful and I know I'll never live this down, not in this house!

Click the picture below for a gallery of recent photographs:


  1. Cute cute photos.

    And loving the pink jacket..Its not tooo pink :) Hope you are all doing well. Sorry been out of the loop but full of cold, some would call it man flu!! I would hate to pass it on so I will stay well clear until I am free of germs.

    Lots of love Lou xx

  2. I've got the cutest nieces in the world!

    Don't feel too bad, Sis....I can attest (as a professional) you've done nothing abusive to lil Miss may be her first bump but certainly won't be her last....especially if she is anything like her mum! She won't even remember Paul, that's a whole different story..:P

    I envision Paul walking around the shops wearing Alice in a baby bjorn you guys need a couple??

    With love from afar from your lil Schwester

  3. Don't feel bad! I've done this at least 5 times already, even when she had a really bad fever and didn't need the extra "bump" in the road. They are very resillient when it comes to bumping en falling. Analou still falls like a plank to the cold hard floor when she's tired and out of balance, but her cries are much worse than the actual bruise (which usually is non-existent!). People said "he" was a really firm and cute boy for about 8 months, even though I put her in floral shirts all the time. So don't worry about that either ;-)
    I used to wake up with every sound too as I always thought she was in distress. But when you realise how little their body is and how small all those intestines are, you quickly see why they have difficulty with digestion. Fenneldrops are really good for that, but I'm sure you know this already.
    I'll root for 3-hour feeds for Maggie again. Poor girl.
    Take care xxx Wini

  4. Utterly adorable pics and the best so far - the girls look beautiful and Alice looks made-up sat in her pram for her first visit into town.

    Looking forward to seeing them both, let's arrange a visit this week if possible.

    Thoughts and best wishes - Darren.

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