March 13, 2013

preparing for a preemie...

I've read that nothing can prepare you for what it is like to see your tiny baby, that should still be inside your body, laying in an isolette hooked up to tubes and monitors.  I can not imagine.

Because I have Percreta and Complete Placenta Previa, my doctors will schedule a c-section/hysterectomy by 34 weeks.  So, this baby will at least be 6 weeks premature.  There is a very high likelihood that I will hemorrhage before then and they will deliver earlier than planned.  It is very likely that this little guy will be pretty tiny when he is born and that he will spend quite some time in the NICU.  I'm grateful for amazing advances in medicine that make it so preemies survive and thrive... but I do not want to experience them first hand if I don't have to.

As I lay here on bed rest, my mind is constantly thinking about the little fella growing in my womb.  He's pretty active.  So far, he is perfect and growing right on schedule.  Oh how I want to bask in the excitement of having a new little boy WITHOUT feeling the shadow of fear that accompanies this birth.  I try to spend some time each day writing out possible name lists and wondering if he will have light or dark hair, blue or brown eyes, Todd's nose or mine.  I try to tell him how excited I am to be his mother and how grateful we are that he is coming to our family.  When he is active and kicking I try to stop and FEEL him.  To enjoy this VERY LAST time of creating a baby inside of me.  I LOVE being pregnant.

I feel so anxious at times and have to do something.  Usually, I like to clean, or paint, or make things.  Bed rest limits much of these activities... but not all.  I still want to make this little guy some fun things.  I'm currently reading all I can about how I can prepare for a preemie.  It's a compulsion... I just need to know what I'm in for so that when I'm there in the NICU I understand the terms they are using and I'm prepared for the worst.  It may seem morbid of me, but I like to prepare for the worst and hope for the best.

When all else fails and I just HAVE to do something... I turn to SHOPPING THERAPY.  (I had a good friend that used to joke about her monthly visit to Dr. Ross.  She said that retail therapy was cheaper than a psychiatrist.)  I really don't believe babies need that much stuff.  BUT, I do love a few well-planned new things for each baby.  Online shopping does alleviate some of my anxiety-- as unhealthy as this might sound.  There is peace in feeling just a little more prepared.  There is also something therapeutic about having a blanket or an outfit to physically touch as I hope for a healthy delivery.

I have asked myself- what IF my baby is born big and never fits into these things?  First, I thought they would make darling doll clothes for my girls to play with.  Even if my little guy doesn't wear them for long, it will be fun to keep them and remember how tiny he was.  I also thought it would be healing for me to walk to the NICU and give them to another little guy who was going to be there longer.  Either way, I'm not worried about not using them.

Some preemie moms recommended
I found most of my things from there or Amazon or Etsy.
Ebay had some groupings of preemie clothes that I thought about.
I've also heard that Fred Meyer, Wal-Mart and Carters all sell Preemie clothes.

Most preemie moms say they don't need tons of preemie clothes, because the babies usually stay in the hospital until they are around 5 lbs, but that it takes a long time for their preemies to grow out of Newborn.   I've heard you'll need a few preemie outfits and should plan on about 3 months of Newborn sized outfits.

-For the NICU...
I've read that preemies can't wear many clothes inside the NICU, but they can wear cute hats and socks.  They often put socks on their hands also.  I tried to find some sweet preemie socks.
NICU Blue Snuggle Preemie Bodysuit 3-5 lbs- I got this because the nurses said they liked the velcro t-shirts for easy access.
Preemie Yums Blue Striped Preemie Shirt 3-5 lbs- sweet baby boy.
And, I had to get the "I love my nurse hat" for the times when I have to leave my little guy.
Oh, I do love those nurses already.
Kushies 2 Pack Tiny Blue SocksNICU Blue Snuggle Preemie Bodysuit - fits 3-5 lbs Preemie Yums Blue Stripe Preemie Shirt - fits up to 3-5 lbsItty Bitty Baby Blue I love My Nurse Hat - fits 2-5 lbs

And, I almost forgot one of my favorites... red striped legwarmers.
I don't know why I think these will be cute on my little white t-shirt clad boy.
Preemie Yums Red Stripe Preemie Leg Warmers - fits up to 6 lbsPreemie Yums Preemie Red Hand Mitts - fits up to 6 lbs

-For Coming Home-
(For some reason I am loving brown for this baby.)
I think he'll be coming home around 5 lbs and although gowns are my favorite for newborns (both boys and girls), they need pants for the carseat.
The striped outfit is Kumquat Organic, 3-5lbs Preemie.  I picked out a cute hat and some striped socks to match.  Still need to find a cute brown blanket and an insert to make sure my car seat is safe for a wee one.
Kumquat Organic Preemie Brown Stripe Short Sleeve Shirt and Brown PantsKushies 2 Pack Tiny Mocha Brown Socks

- For Reading Up...
I've heard these books are good...  Preemies- The Essential Guide for Parents of Premature Babies  or The Premature Book by Dr. Sears.  (I'm going to try and check them out at the library.)

And love these cute outfits from Offspring

I want this from Etsy...  cute, huh?!  Wouldn't that cute hat and blanket be darling with the two outfits from offspring?  Yeah... I know.
I'm loving the pilot caps!
Chevron Infant Swaddling Wrap and Pilot Cap, Baby Hospital Hat and Blanket, swaddler and pilot hat

-For Pumping...
Honestly, I had decided NOT to pump and nurse because I know how hard this recovery is going to be on my body.  I've pumped twice before for full-term NICU babies and I'm not a good pumper.  (I've never been able to get much milk out.)  BUT... I've already read so much about how good breastmilk is for preemies that I've decided to try again.

Experienced preemie moms say I MUST get a hand's free pumping bra.
These pictures crack me up.  Don't worry friends, with this bra I can pump while I blog and make dinner!
Simple Wishes Hands Free Breast Pump Bra

That's all for now...
Hope you're having a great day!


Evaly said...

That last pic has me cracking up! I love the things you picked out and how you are making his birth special. He will know how much he was loved and anticipated.

Steph said...

The hands-free pump is hilarious. I'm going to try my hardest not to picture that every time I think about you.

valerie in TX said...

Ok, that lady is cracking me up with how happy she is about her hands-free pump. And...that woman just had a baby?! Uh-huh.

valerie in TX said...

I now have visions of you scooting around the kitchen, making dinner, holding a newborn, with 7 children scurrying around you...all with the hands-free pump attached. HAHAHA!!

Jennie Plastow said...

I totally need one of those bras! My nurse actually recommended that I get one. Now I know where to get it. Lol. Retail therapy totally saved my sanity on bed rest. I even bought diapers online, just so I could feel like I was able to nest somehow. That Dr Ross is a miracle worker, I tell you what!

Cheryl said...

You might want to check out Gymboree they have some adorable hats for preemies on clearance. :)

Also, a handicap permit might be worth asking for. You can get a form from one of your doctor. Sometimes those little things mean so much when you are already struggling. :)

Christa aka The BabbyMama said...

I wish I'd had a hands free pump! Instead, I just figured out a hands free way to hold my preemie while I was pumping!

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JK said...

I wanted to let you know that I am a preemie mom and launched Teenie Preemie this past January. In addition to lots of preemie (and NICU friendly) clothing, you can find some great milestone accessories like a preemie calendar and hand print molds. You can look here: Also, I have a list of helpful preemie parent resources and suggestions that might help you prepare for your preemie. I hope you get to 34 weeks!

Quigley Family said...

Seriously, the pumping bra is a life saver if you want/need to pump. GET ONE, you will not regret it.

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