Sunday, January 17, 2010

Weeks 2 and 3: It's All a Big Blur

I apologize in advance for the long post. I love blogging about everything fun and exciting going on in our life but the best thing about a blog is to actually document the specific details about events you do not want to forget. Jill's first three weeks have been the most emotional, sleep deprived, and simply put, the biggest blur that I have been through in a very long time. I want to write about everything that Jeff and I have been dealing with because I know as the weeks of Jill's life turn into months, I will slowly forget all of the details that have happened in between.

We are half way through week 3 with Jillian and I seriously don't know where the time has gone. It's been another crazy week with her, I do not think we have had a week that can be considered uneventful so far in her young life. In a rare moment of sleep Saturday night, I was suddenly awoken to Jillian choking in her pack in play. I jumped out of bed and grabbed her and started to pat her on the back. She continued to make choking noises so Jeff ran over and tried to help me. Jillian was choking on a lot of phlegm and couldn't see to get it up. Jeff eventually was able to pull it out of her mouth with his fingers and she finally settled down. It was horribly scary and we both kept trying to figure out what had caused this to happen. Throughout the night, you could still hear the phelm rattling around in her chest so we called our pediatrician first thing in the morning. We also noticed that Jill started to sneeze a lot more and was sneezing out some mucus. Our little girl had officially caught her first cold. We were scared to death, the poor thing was barely three weeks old and was having trouble breathing. We decided to turn on the shower in her bathroom in hopes that the steam would clear up some of her congestion. Jeff and I have been taking turns every day since giving her these steam treatments. They seem to be providing her some short term relief. The three of us were locked up in our bedroom all day on Sunday with a cool mist humidifier in an effort to comfort and calm a cranky, sick baby. Needless to say, we have had rough day after rough day with her as we try to wait out this cold. The poor thing is so congested and she hasn't slept well at all. Neither have we.
On Monday, we had our dermatologist appointment to hopefully shed some light on Jillian's head sore and hopefully get a definite diagnosis. The last thing we wanted to do was bring a sick baby out in a blizzard but it was an appointment that we had to keep. I have never felt so out of it or disheveled in my life. I have dealt with sleep deprivation before but nothing like this. I always was given the advice when I was pregnant to "sleep when the baby sleeps" but how can I sleep when my sleep opportunities are being spent going to doctor's appointments? I am seriously starting to wonder if I will ever look or feel normal again. I am just so tired and have no energy or motivation to even take the time to do my hair or put make up on. Jill's fussy time so far has been from 10:30pm - 2:30am at night, then she sleeps great from 2:30am - 6:30am, and then again from 7:30am - 10:30am. With all of our doctor's appointments scheduled in the morning, I miss my 7:30am - 10:30am nap with her and it completely wipes me out and sends me into a total sleep deprivation zombie state. I had been so focused lately on Jill's cold, that by the time we arrived at the dermatologist, I then started to worry again about the sore on her head. I remained hopeful as we sat in the waiting room hoping that we would finally get a final diagnosis on whether or not the sore was actually Cutis Aplaysia or trauma from the vacuum delivery. The dermatologist did not put our mind at ease, if anything, we left with even more worries and concerns then when we arrived. First, she looked at Jill's head and first said it was probably the Aplaysia, it wasn't a true Aplaysia, a superficial one she said, but most likely that was what it was. We asked about any underlying damage to her skull, brain tissue, or even the possibility of brain damage and she said that she was 99.9% sure that there was none judging on how alert and active Jill was. She appeared to be a normal baby to her with just an unfortunate sore on her head that would eventually clear up. We mentioned to the her that our pediatrician had taken actual pictures of the sore from the L&D room and that our pediatrician wanted her to take a look at the pictures as well. She reviewed the pictures and all of a sudden started to change her opinion. She noted that Jill's hair pattern near the sore showed a marker for possible underlying brain tissue and skull damage and that we would need an ultra sound as soon as possible to determine if any underlying brain damage had existed. She also wanted us to have an MRI done in 6 months to confirm. The dermatologist then confused us even more after that statement and said that even though it appeared to be the Aplaysia, the sore still showed characteristics that she couldn't rule out the possibility of the sore being strictly from the vacuum. Basically, she was just all over the place in her diagnosis, from one extreme to the next. We left her office not feeling any better about the situation and with a lot more questions then answers. We scheduled Jill's ultra sound for first thing the next morning and were just sick at the possibility that our little girl could possibly have suffered damage to her brain. Jeff and I spent another very sleepless night due to Jill's cold, the worry over Jill's ultra sound the next day, and your basic late night feedings. Jeff's Mom had come over after our doctor's appointment to watch Jill so we could both sleep but I don't think either of us got any kind of quality sleep since we were so worried about our ultra sound appointment the following day.
Jeff and I got up early again the following morning and drove to the hospital for Jill's ultra sound. Thank God our appointment was first thing in the morning, as tired as we were, we were happy to get it out of the way so we could get some answers. The ultra sound tech was wonderful in explaining everything that she was going to do. Jill was able to stay in her car seat since the ultra sound probe was going to be placed directly on her head. The poor thing had tons of blue ultra sound goop all over head. Luckily the probe did not have to be placed directly on her sore, just the front of her head. During the procedure, the tech said even though she wasn't allowed to say much, everything looked good to her. She printed off the pictures that she had taken and took them to a back room for a pediatric radiologist to review. After several minutes, an older looking doctor came into the room and immediately said, every thing looks great, I wouldn't give it a second thought. He didn't even feel a follow up MRI was necessary. Jeff and I both cried and kissed Jill as she slept peacefully in her carseat. We were so relieved, I had never felt so happy!!! All I want for Jill is to have a normal and happy life.

And just because I hate posts without pictures, here is our beautiful girl without a hat! We have so many pictures of her wearing hats to protect her sore that her beautiful head needs to be shown off!


  1. Karen, I know we dont know each other in real life but I want you to know something. When my daughter Ellie was born I went through the SAME feelings (wont ever get better, feeling like a zombie, looking like crap). Everyone told me it would get better but I didnt believe them. It seemed like my life was over! One night I even sat in my closet floor and cried while family came over to see the baby. If you only hear one thing I see in this ridiculously long paragraph hear this. It WILL get better. You guys are in the worst part right now but just think, in 2-3 weeks little Jill is going to be smiling at you! That is the moment that made it all worth it to me. I'm so glad her u/s results came back normal. I will be praying for you and your husband to have strength through all the sleepless nights and for Jillian's head to heal flawlessly. If you need to vent or have questions please email me at It will get better!

  2. glad to hear that she doesn't have brain damage

  3. Oh sweetie I am so happy that everything turned out okay!! God Bless her little heart!! And I understand the sleep deprivation!! Emerson didn't grow out of it until 4 months and she still isn't a great sleeper!! I will pray for your sanity because even though you don't want to wish her life away you just want it to get easier:)

  4. Anonymous9:34 PM

    I wanted to say that I am so happy to hear that she is ok!!!!:). And I promise I was right where you are with 2!! It gets better as they days go by......and I know that may not seem possiable right now, but they truly do!! I never thought I would get sleep or look or feel normal again espeacially the first month. It DOES get easier and better!! I hope you can get some sleep, and again so glad to know she is ok!!

  5. Oh my goodness!!! I remember those days! First, she is beautiful!!!

    I remember thinking I was crazy. I remember thinking I would never feel normal again! Let me tell you, I promise you will. Give it 3 months! It just takes time.

    Avery is now almost 8 months & I finally feel like I have been a mom my whole life. My hormones are feeling normal again, my weight is going down finally- and I feel ME!

    Praying for you!

  6. Karen,

    I don't think I have commented before. BUT this post made me comment. I read it and in hopes for a great turn out at the end of the post and there was!!! AND IM CRYING!!!!!!! She is soooo beautiful and it's okay to feel not normal yet, she is only 3weeks!!!!!!! Give it time girl. Your beautiful!! :)

  7. It will get better, I promise! :o) You will feel human again one day, so for now enjoy the blur!!

    "Sleep when the baby sleeps" is the WORST advice ever given to new mothers!! WORST. UNTRUE!

  8. Oh Karen, I relate to so much of what you wrote. It's just HARD. But I can't even imagine all the added stress of doctors appointments and the unknown on top of that!

    Praying for you girl!

  9. Hi, I just found your blog....Your Jillian is precious! I was reading some of your blog and your story sounds really similar to mine! My hubby and I struggled with infertility for 2 1/2 years and 2 miscarriages later we have are precious Kelcee who just turned 3!

    Girly trust me it will get better, I remember the first couple of weeks was just a takes time to adjust and figure out your babies schedule and then it will all come into place, oh and once that happens they become toddlers LOL....that's a whole different ballgame :0)

    Look forward to reading more about you
    Summer :0)

  10. Prayers answered! Many continued blessings!


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