Mirrors don’t lie.

August 7th, 2010

Neither do baby scales!

Those scales keep telling us that Verity isn’t taking in even half of what she needs, in spite of how well she seemed to be breastfeeding.  Her nurse today is also (providentially!) a lactation consultant.  She explained that Verity is still using some of her available energy to heal, and that it is not uncommon for babies to go home from heart surgery with an NG tube.  So the little rosebud is actually doing very, very well to be breastfeeding at all.  ‘Specially considering how long it had been since she had nursed, and how very little of it she did before her heart repair!

Now I can understand how a breastfed baby could fail to thrive without anyone noticing for a while.  For most of her nursing sessions, she was rooting, latching, working hard at swallowing, and signaling “done.”  To all outward appearances, she was getting what she needed.  But baby scales tell the truth, and no getting around it!

What it has come down to, is that before she is approved for discharge, Verity must show that she is well on her way to getting enough by mouth that she will not be dependent on the tube feedings.  For the past day, she has been alternating bottlefeedings and breastfeedings.  She hasn’t gotten much from breastfeeding, but the amount she’s getting from the bottle, with a slow-flow nipple, is gradually increasing.

Dr. Chowdhury is on duty today, which pleases us very much.  She is the cardiologist who will be seeing Verity over the long term at the Clinic for Special Children.  She said Verity’s number one goal is to get all her milk by mouth, so she can be rid of the feeding tube.  She should reach that goal quickly with the bottle.  Then we can work from bottlefeeding to the ultimate goal of breastfeeding.  One thing at a time!

But she knows that we are experienced in giving the tube feedings at home, so she is not requiring Verity to reach her first goal before she is discharged.  So, in order to get home this evening, we are feeding Verity whatever she will take by bottle, and putting the remainder through the tube.

We think it may be more profitable to work toward breastfeeding at home, anyway, where there are no wires and leads and monitors and shift changes and blood draws and assessments.  (Beep, beep, beep, beep, where’s the BB gun, beep, beep…)

It’s hard to believe that tonight our family may be all together at home again!  We can hardly wait to show this new baby girl to her big brothers and sisters!

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13 Responses to “Mirrors don’t lie.”

  1. Liz says:

    Just a thought, but it takes food to heal as well as gain weight.  Take heart.  What amazing progress!

  2. stephanie says:

    i still cannot believe how well she has done. Jesus has held her in His hands the whole way.

  3. Joy Horton says:

    Oh, what a happy reunion for you all! Praying that it gets to be tonight!!!

    I am in awe at what God has done and is doing through little Verity’s life – reaching SO many people through this blog, and such an encouragement to so many!!

    And this is just the beginning!

  4. Becky says:

    Yeah!  Praying that your family will be reunited soon!

  5. Lara Font says:

    pray you are at home when you read this!  Go Verity!!

  6. Zoey's mom says:

    Blessings to you all as you snuggle in tonight,complete as a family of 12!
    Our little Zoey was basically born into congestive heart failure.3 months in the NICU and 2 1/2 months at home g-tube fed,nothing by mouth,for that entire time.I pumped those entire 6 months.I knew my baby was going to nurse as soon as that heart was fixed and,in the parking lot of the Ronald McDonald house,the day we headed home after surgery,I attempted to nurse her and she did it.Just as I knew she would.You and Verity will find your way.Promise.

  7. Marilyn Osborn says:

    Awww!  What a SWEET picture!!!!!!  I cannot believe you might get to go home this evening!  WOW!!!!!!!!!!  I’m so thrilled she is doing so well!!!!  Praising God with you!!!!!!  Sometimes my spirit just can’t find adequate words to express my praise to Him for His tender mercies.  Keep those pictures coming!!!!!!  Love you, dear friend!

  8. mimi says:

    Oh my goodness I can not believe how fast she has healed! I am so praying she is able to come home tonight I know you must be more than sick of being in the hospital!

  9. Denise says:

    Seriously– is this normal to be home so soon!?!?  I REALLY BELIEVE this is a MIRACLE!!!  Really–   A little more than a week and SHE is HOME!!!  Only God!!  Only God!!!!

    I cannot wait to tell my church family (who has been praying) the good news tomorrow– and I HOPE you are HOME right now (8:46pm) with your WHOLE FAMILY!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! 

  10. Carrie says:

    Hooray!!  What a fabulous news!  I hope you are all home now!

    With Miss B, we had similar feeding issues before and after her OHS…it took her a couple of months to figure out breastfeeding (she preferred the bottle–but I was determined!) and it finally worked out for us.  I just had to be really patient!  I hope she transitions easily for you and that her recovery continues to go well!

  11. Are you home yet?

  12. Denise says:

    Just checking in before bed— to see too– if you are HOME yet!!!!  OH I hope—

    I know life will be busier at home– but I do look forward to seeing more pics– and I’d love to come visit again sometime and see sweet Verity!!  (and bring a meal–) 

    God Bless you!

  13. RebeccaJ says:

    goofy grins back at you!  You are doing great.  She is so beautiful!

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