Not a member yet? Register now and get started.

lock and key

Sign in to your account.

Account Login

Forgot your password?


02 Sep Posted by in Blog | Comments Off on Squish

Again, we ride the insane wave. Dovy and I were talking earlier this week.  We both knew that having twins would be super hard.  We were both willing to ride it out and do our best.  We both agree that having twins isn’t supposed to be THIS hard.  Boo.  We’re ready to have the regular hard stuff, and not all this extra hospital mumbo-jumbo.  The nurses/docs/staff have all been stupendous, but I’m just ready to raise my babies and do it at home.  Here’s hoping to less drama from here on out, eh?

So, we got to bring both babies home, two days apart from each other.  Graham came home the day before his three-week birthday, on August 19th.  Cal came home two days later on the 21st, my original due date.  (Ha. Ha.) <—Read sarcastically, please.  It was SO HARD to leave Cal at the hospital by himself.  It was, however, so sweet to have Graham with us for a few days.  Every night I went to visit Calvin in “Baby Jail” I felt like I was abandoning him.  Biggest slice of Mommy Guilt I have ever eaten, I tell you what.  It was so sweet to bring both boys home together.  Life was great, until…

Friday night.  Graham started acting screwy and we were both getting nervous.  After a long Saturday night and hardly any sleep, especially for Dovy, who bravely held G through the night and let me rest, we woke up on Sunday morning thinking we needed to rule out any and all infections.  We suspected allergies, as we’ve seen it before on two other kids, but we wanted to make sure.  After all we had been through, we didn’t want to chance it.  We called the pediatrician on call who told us to go straight to the E.R.  We did.  Dr. Cox and the nurses there were fantastic.  We did a bunch of panels and were given a clean bill of health.  We did, however, put Graham on Alimentum formula on Sunday night because we thought we were for sure dealing with allergies and wanted to start ruling them out. He started out doing okay on it.

Phew.  Right?  WRONG.  On Monday evening, we received a phone call from the E.R. saying that Graham’s blood culture had returned with “gram positive cocci in chains.”  My warning bells went off – this was GBS (Group B Strep) all over again.  We talked to the lab tech there and he said that it was probably just a contaminant and to just follow up with our actual pediatrician in the morning (who we were supposed to meet with for circumcisions).  He suggested we watch him closely and make sure he didn’t have a temperature.  He didn’t, so we tried to rest at ease.

On Tuesday morning, we strolled (literally, we had a stroller) into Alpine Pediatrics.  *Side note – I had the beginnings of laryngitis.  I had sustained a nasty cold during the weekend and it was only getting worse. Poo.*  We talked with our doc about the results and he was surprised.  He should have received the results and hadn’t so he left right away to investigate.  He came back dejectedly and told us that Graham was indeed positive for GBS and that we had to re-admit him at the Utah Valley Pediatric Ward right away. I will admit, I swore.  (Not bad, okay – don’t judge.)  The doc told me that I was welcome to all the swearing that I wanted.  He said it was probably warranted after all that we had been through.  (He said that everyone knows our twins as the “GBS Twins.”  We’re so famous they don’t even have names.)  They put away the circumcision equipment and sent us out on our way immediately.

I was pretty bummed about this situation.  We both were.  We had JUST gotten the boys home.  We were ready to just be home and stay there.  We also knew that this had to be taken care of.  Again, we had an underlying peace.  We went home first and took a little photo shoot of the boys. We hadn’t had the chance to do it yet and the doc said we could be in the pediatric ward for up to a month if things didn’t pan out well.

Again, the staff/docs/nurses at UVRMC were fabulous.  The doc began “collecting evidence” (as he put it) and they took more cultures (to see if they could repeat the results) and administered antibiotics through yet another IV.  The infectious diseases doctor had been contacted, as well, and he asked if we would be willing to test Calvin, too, just in case.  (We had wanted that all along so they did him, as well.)  The nurses eased our discomfort and told us we could leave Graham at night with them, even though that isn’t how it’s usually done in the pediatric wing.  Our plan was to take off, but we got antsy when I changed Graham’s diaper on Tuesday night before we left the hospital and found blood in it.  I was not happy at all.  This same phenomenon (colitis) had happened with Anjali when she was a baby.  I had continued breastfeeding at the time.  If I even ate anything made in a dairy facility, she would have blood in her diaper.  It was a long and hard six months trying to figure out a diet that worked for her, and even then, she started to lose weight as my milk was just not fattening enough.  Eventually, the doc had us put her on Alimentum (what we had Graham try) to help her gain weight.  She stopped having blood in her stool once she was on it, but she had had six months to build up an immunity to the whey protein and didn’t have the same problem that Graham did.  We weren’t sure what else to have Graham eat at that time, so we continued with the Alimentum as it was the only formula at the store that was hypoallergenic enough for him to even try to drink. At this point, Graham’s results had come back negative for GBS, but had come back positive for an entirely different strain of bacteria.  We bought ourselves 48 more hours in the hospital to see what would happen with the second blood culture.

By Wednesday night, though, things were atrocious.  Graham could not even swallow because he was in so much pain.  He would swallow and scream, swallow and scream.  I tried for a few hours in the evening to get him to eat.  Finally, a dietician suggested that we try Neocate, a VERY hypoallergenic formula that has the whey protein broken down to the amino acid level so that babies with severe sensitivities can digest it.  (It is $49 per can, which feeds Graham for just under three days.)  He couldn’t eat that, either, at the time, because he was in so much pain.  The doc ordered “gut rest” so that he could recover.  They upped his IV fluids and Dovy held him all night while he cried and screamed.  I’m so grateful that Dovy was willing because I think that would have made me go over the edge.

On Friday, we tentatively offered watered-down Neocate with Pedialyte and waited for Graham’s reaction.  Things went well.  Now, he is on Neocate entirely and doing very well.  We are hoping that he continues to do so.  Our little happy boy is back.  He had been so miserable but is now happy and sleeping very well.  He still loves to eat and doesn’t give us more than about 3 or 3.5 hours between any of his feedings, but right now we’re just grateful he’s doing so well.  We’re trying to push our insurance to see if we can get a six-month prescription for the Neocate formula.  Graham’s next cultures came back negative for GBS and the other strain, but came back positive for yet another entirely different and third strain of bacteria.  The doctors were puzzled, as all of Calvin’s culture had come back clean.  They told me that because Graham showed no other signs of an infection that we could go home, but that we should continue to watch him and meet with the infectious diseases doctor this next week as a follow-up.

Calvin, on the other hand, was doing perfectly fine until he decided to get constipated.  The day that Graham went in to the hospital, Calvin gave us one big explosive poo and then didn’t poo again on his own until Friday with a suppository.  Again, he was getting very grumpy this evening, and after we bought Alimentum formula for him, too (to try and rule out allergies again) we gave him a suppository that helped him fill two diapers worth of poo.  I’ve never had a baby get constipated before, so this is new.  It makes him very uncomfortable.  We’re still trying the Alimentum to see if it helps his grumpy little mood these last two days.  He is usually SO incredibly chill that to have him upset is very unsettling.  We’ll keep you updated.  Meanwhile, I am still pumping and hoping that one day I’ll be able to feed my babies.  It will more than likely consist of a massive diet shift, but we will see.

We are hanging in there!  We love our little (uh, big?) family and are so happy to have the twins home.  It is such a blessing to have them here with us.  We hope to figure out all their little quirks soon so we can have a little less stress.  Thank you again for all of your prayers, support, and love.  We couldn’t do it without you!