Because I’ve been so studious about posting regularly and consistently to this blog, most (hopefully) know that our Lucille Ann was born on February 2nd (well, at least there’s Facebook). She arrived two weeks early, which was a bit of a surprise. I went into labor sometime during the weekend and by Sunday afternoon (just hours from Superbowl start), I was pretty sure I’d be delivering a baby. She was born Monday morning at 12:41 a.m., weighing 7lbs 4oz and 20″ long. Artie and I got to spend a quiet hour with her before the nurses noticed that her breathing was somewhat labored and fast and then, within a couple more hours she was transferred to the NICU at Eastern Maine Medical Center in Bangor for further testing. Artie and I left Maine Coast Memorial to pick up Amelia, stop by the house and take care of the animals and then head to Bangor to be with her as soon as we could (I had to wait 6 hours after giving birth before I could be discharged).
By the time we got to EMMC late in the morning, the breathing issue wasn’t much of a concern…her breathing tubes had been removed and she was doing well. They wanted to keep her for observation (to make sure that she didn’t have an infection) and it was the next day when she presented with jaundice (caused by an ABO Incompatibility). They put her under the blue lights to help her breakdown the bilirubin in her blood, which meant that except for quick feedings, we couldn’t hold her (which sucked). And, to make a long story short, there she remained for almost 2 weeks!
My body created antibodies against the proteins in her A-positive blood (I have blood type O-positive) and passed them to her, so after she was born, the antibodies started killing off her red blood cells causing a build up of bilirubin that her young liver couldn’t handle. The antibodies take weeks to weaken (which is usually a good thing, so the infant is protected after birth), so she’s still, even now, dealing with excess bilirubin. But she’s doing well at home, where she’s been for a few weeks now, and it looks like those levels are finally starting to drop.
Now, for the fun stuff – From the beginning, Lucy has been feisty and determined. We were surprised at the initial breathing diagnosis because she was strong and vocal after birth. And, oh how she fought the technicians who prepared her for her journey to Bangor…she wriggled and struggled while screaming the whole time. I took a video of her in the transport isolette just before they took her and let’s just say that she wasn’t happy about the situation (and neither was I).
Her first name comes from her Nanny, her maternal great-grandmother and my only living grandparent. She shares her middle name (Ann) with Artie’s mother. Now that we have her home and have been able to get to know her, I can say that she’s a fairly calm, easy baby who loves to eat and LOVES to be held. She doesn’t mind whose arms she’s in, but she certainly prefers to be in someone’s grasp and so far, we haven’t run out of volunteers.
Amelia is thrilled and so proud to finally be a big sister. She’s attentive and helpful and loves to hold, touch and kiss Lucy. The highlight of her day is when Lucy goes into Amelia’s room while she’s getting ready for school or at night when we kiss her good night.
It’s been such a joy to have them together. While in the hospital, Artie and Amelia stayed home to attend work and school and it was so hard for all of us to be separated for that time. We’re all settling into a new routine and enjoying our new family dynamic. Welcome to the world, little Lucy!