11/29/07




Wow...it has been a few days since we've been able to update our blog. Where do we begin...Well, the short version is that we brought Isabella home and she had a rough night the first night home. The next day she was getting her vitamins which she REALLY doesn't like and decided to stop breathing. SCARY! Finally, after what seemed like 5 minutes of watching a blue baby trying to breathe, she struggled to take some small breaths. However, Stan and I were not so quick to recover. We rushed her to the ER because she was still dusky/blue. They ran a million tests to find that her hematocrit and hemoglobin were quite low. A blood transfusion was needed and she was re-admitted to the NICU that evening. Everything went well and we were able to take her home the next day. They assume that her slow recovery from her non-breathing spell was due to the low blood levels. Anyway, Isabella and Peyton are both doing well and we were glad to be together for Thanksgiving. It's truly AMAZING how many diapers you can go through in one day!!
For those of you that are wondering what a day in the life in the Johnson's home is like...here is the short version:

6:00 am-Wake up to a heart-jolting alarm to find that it is just a bad reading and Isabella really does still have a heart beat.
6:15 am - Put Phoenix back to bed and reassure him that he can play with his transformers when it's light outside. Feed the babies, hop into bed before the older boys wake up!
7:30 am - Wow! We never knew 5 minutes of sleep could feel so good...
8:00 am - Try to catch the mouse thats stalking our home...Oh well, might as well throw the poor thing some left over Ramen noodles from dinner last night - it's probably hungry
9:05 am - Send Carson to preschool 5 minutes late - it is preschool today right?
9:15 am - Feed the babies again, change the diapers, and their clothes.
11:00 am - Pick up Carson from preschool and finally give them breakfast...Looks like Ramen Noodles will do the job...
12:00 pm Yep, you guessed it, time for feeding the babies, changing diapers, and pumping
1:00 pm - Lunch time - Left over Ramen Noodles. Babies aren't quite satisfied with just a feeding, burping and put into the swing (what do they think this is?). Guess we should hold them once in a while...
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Oops, sorry about that...I fell alseep typing. I guess we better get dinner ready before I fall into a deep sleep...Ramen noodles anyone?

11/20/07







We're all together now! Isabella's home!!!! She came home last night on oxygen and a monitor...so, needless to say it was a bit of a sleepless night, but nonetheless it is nice to be together. Isabella had a rough night adjusting to a different place. It was a little like when she moved from McKay Dee hospital to Logan Regional. She de-saturated all night, not very low, but enough to set the alarm off. Before she came home she desaturated a couple times a day. Last night, the alarm went off about every 3 minutes after feeding, some was a true reading and others may not have been so true. Peyton was a little off last night as well. I could see that he knew there was a change and was up a lot more. They will adjust, we just need to give them lots of quiet time and peace. They are currently snuggled up together and Isabella is oxygen percent is 100%...I guess she loves her big brother! Carson and Phoenix are happy they are home and I think they must have thought we were playing them lullabies with all the alarms last night!

11/19/07

If you'd like to see Peytons hospital photo you can go to www.loganhospital.com the password #1 is 3088026827. We think it turned out pretty cute, but we have even better pictures of him!
Isabella is coming home today!!! This is, of course, as long as her hematocrit and hemoglobin are high enough...they will consider a blood transfusion on her if the levels are low. She has made great improvements by changing her oxygen levels. Instead of keeping her on a low flow of oxygen and then turning her up during feedings they have decided to keep her at a high and constant rate all the time...that has made the difference. She is gaining weight like crazy! Last time I saw her weight it was up to 6 lbs 5 oz. and that was a couple of days ago. She will be sent home on oxygen and monitors so we can be sure she will be safe. Peyton is adjusting very well to life at home. Hopefully Peyton is gaining weight as well. I would expect that the change in environment may take a small toll on him and he may not gain much for a few days. He is eating well and has been very pleasant. I'm SO excited to wrap both babies together again...last time they were together was the day they were transported back to Logan so it will be a nice reunion for them. Studies have shown that both babies thrive SO much more when they are kept next to each other...pretty cool huh?!

11/18/07

It is SO wonderful having Peyton home. He is a delight...He pretty much, eats and sleeps and eats and sleeps and burps once in a while! It looks like Isabella is coming home tomorrow! They are going to do her carseat test tonight and check her blood labs in the morning. Her hematocrit and hemoglobin have been low so a transfusion may be necessary, but we will know for sure tomorrow.

11/14/07






Peyton's home!! We are so excited to bring the little guy home and he's doing great. Isabella shouldn't be too far behind, but it's just too soon. She only had one decel today (I happen to be breastfeeding her at the time...what a disappointment I am...just kidding) since 10 o' clock last night...REALLY GOOD!! Peyton is eating like a charm and the older boys are pretty fascinated by him.

11/11/07

videoWell, last night I got the chance to sleep in the NICU next to the babies so I could do their "cares" through the night. It took on average about one and a half hours to do all their stuff. We do all their "stuff" every 3 hours...hmm, that should be interesting when they come home. They tried to take Isabella off of her Zantac and leave her on just Prevacid, but that proved to be unsuccessful (she de-saturated all day) so she was back on it by the next day. Peyton started some fortifier (Alimentum) yesterday. They only gave him one dose and he was EXTREMELY upset about it. The pediatrician was there to witness Peyton's disgust. He said we will just try once a day for now. Both babies were approved to receive Synagis. That is a vaccine given once a month starting now and given through April. It has to be approved by the insurance because it is EXTREMELY expensive. The cost is nothing compared to the cost of the hospitalization and complications that can arise if they don't receive it. It is given to help reduce the poor outcomes caused by RSV. I guess it doesn't prevent RSV, only lessen the problems if they get it. The cost is $1,000 for EACH baby EVERY month!!! So basically it will be $2,000 every month from now until April. The cost goes up when their weight goes up because it is titrated to their size. It wouldn't be uncommon to go up to $4,000 per month when they reach that weight. It is given through April because that is about the time that RSV slows down. Crazy! Peyton passed his car seat test...that's when they test to see whether the child can stay oxygenated while being in their own car seat for 1 hour. Phoenix had to do the same test (it is done on low birth weight babies). Isabella will have hers done when social work gets a portable oxygen tank available for her to have at home. They are looking t sending the babies home in a couple of days...SCARY! Isabella will be on oxygen and monitors, just to be safe.

11/9/07



11/8/07

WOW! Peyton LOVES to eat. He is on bottle feedings completely! He is a wild man...When I barely even touch the bottle to his lips he opens right up and attacks! And when I take the bottle out he keeps sucking like he's getting something. Isabella is quite the little lady when it comes to meals. She gets anxious when it is time to eat, but she takes it slower. She loves to put her little hands right up on her cheeks when she eats. She has long fingers and her little middle fingers bend a little backwards at the top joint making it look like she's a little double jointed. Her face has really rounded out. She weighs 5 and a half pounds as of last night. Peyton is 5 pounds 3 ounces! Ever since they were born everyone says that Peyton looks like he towers over her. She was a little longer at birth so maybe it makes her look thinner, but she has always out weighed him.
Just a little memory...I was thinking about the 3 days surrounding the time when Peyton got really sick with NEC and Isabella started to get sick. I get a little teary eyed because I have a really special memory of Stan talking to the babies...We really only got to touch the babies every 3 hours and not in between and that was when they were doing well. When they got sick it was even more important that they were left alone to try and fight NEC. This made it especially hard when they got sick because we had to stand by their isolette and just watch them sleep. Stan would open the little door to their isolette and tell each of them that he loves them. He would tell them to grow big and stay strong. He gave them each a priesthood blessing and they did what he said...

11/6/07

Great news...Peyton is feeding by bottle more often now then by tube feedings! They both lost a little weight last night as expected, but doing great. Dr. Visick has even started to talk about when they might be coming home. We may be looking at the last week in November...We were just hoping by my due date at least (Dec 5th).

11/5/07

Peyton is now in an open crib and seems to be holding is temperature. Dr. Visick said it won't be surprising if he loses some weight these next few days because of the change. All the nurses are in love with his hair. They spike it up like Ty Penington (the host on Extreme Home Make Over). Peyton seems to be mellow, but wants to be snuggled often. I will hear him in his isolette whimpering and I wonder whats wrong...So I pick him up to see if he's positioned wrong or has a wet diaper and he goes right to sleep. He loves to be held. Isabella is doing good. She is still working on the holding-her-breath thing, but having many more good days then bad. She is known to be the spicy one. She knows right when I enter the room and tends to get upset when I'm holding Peyton before her. She knows when it is feeding time and wants it with no delay. She eats out of a bottle/breast feeds very well.

I'm amazed when I look back at the last few weeks at how much can occur in such a short time. The birth of a child is always amazing, but I believe that everything that has happened since will make strong impressions on us for the rest of our lives...
When I was pregnant I was pretty positive that I would make it to 36 weeks with no problem. I imagined that if I did deliver early, I would have a boy and a girl who would be small, but would grow and come home. I guess this is what did/will happen, but I see it from a different side now. Now, I see two little babies with individual personalities, who have no ability to change what happens to them. They are completely reliant upon good nurses and doctors to meet their necessities. I won't forget standing next to Peyton's isolette praying as hard as I could that he would be ok...I never thought that I would be in that position. We have every reason to count our blessings...

11/3/07




Here are their cute pictures from Halloween. Isabella was a banana and Peyton was Shrek. Yesterday was a great day for Peyton and Isabella. They are calming back down and able to keep their oxygen levels up. The pediatrician called me yesterday and said that Peyton will be coming out of his isolette and into an open crib on Sunday. They will start him on some Alimentum fortifier VERY slowly next week. Isabella is growing steadily enough that she may be able to avoid the fortifier all together. Peyton was weighing 4 pounds 13 ounces and Isabella is up to 5 pounds 3 ounces! It was nice to sit with them yesterday and not have the alarms going off every 5 minutes (not an exaggeration). They have kept the nurses right by their bedside since they have been here...The nurses have been too afraid to leave because Isabella desaturates down to 24 (should be above 90). They started her on Prevacid and Reglan a few days ago for reflux which they believe is the cause of her desaturations, but it takes some time to kick in. It looks like it has started to work and we're all a little more at ease. Overall, the doctors believe they are healthy and doing well. They would just like to see them continue to grow and see how everything goes with the fortifier and the breathing stuff.

11/1/07



Hmm...how do we begin?




Well, hopefully this will be an easier way to update everyone. We're excited to share lots of photos with everyone. Peyton and Isabella are doing good today. The night before last the NICU had a parent support group bring the families little costumes for the preemies to have their pictures taken for Halloween. Although it was a very short and simple process, Peyton and Isabella seemed to py the price for it. They had a harder time keeping their oxygen up and were pretty worn out. Today was much better and we learned a good lesson.

Dumb and Dumber

The yard...