11/17/08 - Getting Closer!!!

With CPR complete, we are just one more step closer to coming home. We really hope we are not going to have to use CPR on Kayleigh because with her recent surgery, her breast plate/sternum has already been cracked open. I know we will do what we have to do, but there is a huge risk of breaking that breast plate/sternum when giving compressions, even if it were in perfect shape. That is a scary thing to think about.

Speaking of her recent surgery, Kayleigh's sutures and her final tummy tube have been removed. There are no more lines that are inserted in Kayleigh except for her nasal cannula, which is fine by us!!! Actually, her liters of flow have been dropped to .1 and she will be going home with her oxygen on that setting. I am not sure what will need to happen for her to be taken off of the oxygen completely, but I am sure her lung pressures will have to come down to a very safe level.

They have increased Kayleigh's caloric intake from 24 to 27, so they can try and put a little more weight on her before she goes home. Tonight, she actually lost a little weight which is odd. She has been gaining a lot lately, so we will see what tomorrow nights weight is before we worry too much. When we get home, we will have to supplement a couple feedings a day with fortified bottles along with Aimee breast feeding her at other times. This will not only allow Kayleigh to grow, but deliver a good amount of nutrients to her bones and organs. Kayleigh may always be small in stature, but we hope for her to be completely healthy otherwise. We are trying our best to NOT give up on giving her some kind of breast milk though because that is what God intended her to have. Aimee has been through the ringer anyhow, so we don't want her efforts to be a waste.

Our plan is to be home this week sometime. I wish I could pin point an exact day so we can all anticipate and celebrate, but since all her tubes/sutures have been removed and her recent blood tests came back normal, she is actually good to go NOW. They are doing another echocardiogram in the morning, so hopefully that checks out good and her pressures have come down even more. Please say a prayer that her pressures have come down even more. I am hoping they will release her early, but I don't want to get my hopes up. I guess I will just surprise everyone if that happens :)

Here are two more of Kayleigh's friends, Amanda and Reagan with signs they made. I wish I could write that good when I was their age :) We are so blessed to receive these photos. We finally got the bracelets in and they are being shipped out to all of you who bought one tomorrow. Sorry for the delay, but I can't wait to see more photos of ALL of you wearing them. If you didn't know, all the photos will be put in a scrap book that Aimee is making for Kayleigh, so she will remember every single one of you forever.

Aimee is in need of some advice and quick help from all the Mommies. Poor girl is in some serious pain and we don't want to lose the ability to breast feed Kayleigh. For those of you who had cracking/splitting issues with pumping, Aimee wants to know what did you do to take care of it. Did you stop pumping, so you could let it heal or did you use a fast acting medication to help it heal, and what was that medication. Please email Aimee directly: Aimee@TeamFreemanProperties.com THANKS A TON!!!

God Bless!!!

The Freemans :)


Jennifer said...

It sounds like you guys are really, really close!! Yay!! Can't wait for our bracelets. We've got the camera ready:)

zzzzzbaby from bbc said...

I don't have much experience with pumping, so I don't know how that affects things, but I did have cracking going on when nursing a couple of my babies and Lansinoh ointment was really helpful. They sold it at Target back when I used to use it, and also at our local grocery store as well. It comes in a purple box.

Anonymous said...

The lansinoh ointment works really well, but what works even better is breast milk itself. When it would get bad I would use a nipple shield (all stores have them) and then after baby was done nursing there would still be milk in the nipple part and I would let it sit there. It has a lot of natural healing properties to it. Maybe Aimee could just pour some of her pumped milk into the nipple shield and stick it on.

Nichole said...

This is not a medication and it may sound odd, but there's a cream that was originally developed as a moisturizing cream for dairy cows in cold environments who got chapped udders from commercial pumping. Now they sell it in stores for human use and many breast cancer patients and mom's like yourself swear by it. It's called Udderly Smooth Udder Cream. Most Walmarts carry it. It might be good for use in addition to a medication.

Breanna and Dave said...

Im so glad Kayleigh is doing so good! and i hope aimee is feeling better. I second the udder cream! total life saver!

Still Praying!

Theresa said...

I second the Lansinol Lanolin cream. It is safe for the baby and you can put it on after pumping, or before and after nursing. Some women lube up the pump shield thingies w/ water (I've also heard of olive oil but I have never done that) so that the breast/nipple move easier w/ the suction. Additionally, she may need bigger shields for the pump. Pumping shouldn't hurt if the shields fit. If the pump is a medela she can contact them and they can tell her if the shields are too small. I've been pumping for 7.5 months now and nothing like that has ever happened to me, so I assume that is her problem. New shields are also available at Babies R Us, and some Targets. Just make sure that any ointments or lotions/creams are safe for the infant to ingest. Props to Aimee for keeping it up. We had a ton of trouble getting our daughter to eat anything (and she was full term 8.5 lbs). She couldn't latch to the breast and wouldn't take any bottles so we fed her for the first 4 weeks w/ a tube taped to our fingers that was connected to a syringe that I would fill w/ my pumped milk. I wanted to give up so many times, but I kept on and it was worth it when she finally learned to breast feed. I know you guys have already seen the amazing qualities of breast milk so you know that the effort is worth it too. Congrats on Kayleigh coming home soon!

Theresa said...

Oh yeah, check out www.kellymom.com for a TON of helpful information on breastfeeding and pumping. You can post to their message boards and their moderators respond very quickly (and I think to every post, too). They are a wonderful resource.

Erin said...

So sorry to hear that you are still having pumping problems. I had the bad cracking with my breast infection too and I used the lanolin a LOT. With time and after my infection went away the cracking healed too. I would have to agree about the shields possibly being to small. I had to try several kinds before I found one that fit right.

Now on to happy news! So glad Kayleigh is doing well! I have to get on here and check on her first thing every morning. I can't handle it when my DD even gets a cold, I don't know how you guys can be so strong except by the grace of God!

Victoria said...

I'm so sorry Aimee is having difficulties. I was there once too, so I know what it's like. I agree with those who mentioned trying new sheilds, that would be a good step to take. Also, the Lansinoh cream, and the udder cream are great. I used a moderate layer of pure petroleum jelly (hospital grade, not Vaseline) on breast pads after pumping for my twins (also preemies, and they just love little Kayleigh!). That was a good relief for me. Also, if she's using an electric pump, it may be too harsh for her. That was a problem for me, and controlling the pressure of a manual pump made a big difference. I hope she feels better soon!

Congrats to you all, and to Kayleigh for doing so well! I check on her every day, and my boys (they're 2 now) and I can't wait for the day she gets to go home! You are all in my prayers!!

Anonymous said...

What great news! No more tubes! Soon enough she won't even have the nasal cannula. I am so excited for your whole family! Allyson and Brandon must be just estatic!
With love from Southern NH!

Jennifer said...

When I was pumping for Jonah in the hospital the Lactation RN told me to make sure the no parts of the nipple were rubbing on the pump (make sure it was centered) because I was starting to get sore. I hadn't noticed it was rubbing but when I started to notice and made the adjustments it quickly (within a day or so) started to heal. I hope that she is feeling better soon. Just a thought but is there some sort of topical numbing cream to help with the pain. I would definitely check with lactation to make sure it is safe but it is just a thought.

Anonymous said...

Keep pumping! It is hard through the pain but you need to keep pumping to keep up the supply. I swear by Dr. Newman's All Purpose Nipple Ointment. Talk to your dr about a prescription. It's awesome. I used it when I had thrush and since there was more left I've also used it through all kinds of nipple pain and I can't say enough good things about it. I hope you heal soon!! Good luck and you're doing a fantastic job.

Hope M.

Anonymous said...

Keep pumping! It is hard through the pain but you need to keep pumping to keep up the supply. I swear by Dr. Newman's All Purpose Nipple Ointment. Talk to your dr about a prescription. It's awesome. I used it when I had thrush and since there was more left I've also used it through all kinds of nipple pain and I can't say enough good things about it. I hope you heal soon!! Good luck and you're doing a fantastic job.

Hope M.

Jennie said...

Aimee, I understand your pain so well. I had cracked nipples too, and then 3 weeks after my first baby was born I got mastitis. I used Lansinoh religiously. I put it on after she ate and then once in between feedings. I know you probably can't, but going braless as much as possible and not having that constant contact helped me. You can do this! It hurts terribly, but just remember the fact that YOUR milk was the one thing that Kayleigh could digest there for a while, so you kept Kayleigh alive and healthy and you're giving her the best nutrients for her developing brain! You have done an AMAZING job! You have overcome so many hurdles, this is just a mild one compared to everything else! It will heal. Be diligent! You can do this!!!

Anonymous said...

I haven't had any issues with cracked nipples, but one thing I did use (for other reasons) were Medela Therashells (they also have SoftShells). They seem like they would be really helpful in the healing process - basically it's a little rounded sort of cup and it has a back that sits on the breast around the nipple, but there is a big hold in the back so that there isn't that bra contact and it allows air flow. They sell them at Babies R' Us.

Trish said...

Put lanolin on the nipples prior to beginning pumping, so the friction is reduced. I also agree that gently rubbing breastmilk onto the cracked nipples is beneficial.

When you are showering, DON'T wash the nipples/breasts with soaps or shower gel. Merely rinse off with warm water. This keeps the body's natural oils which helps moisturize and prevent further damage.

I would also recommend asking one of Kayleigh's nurses to look into setting up an appointment for Aimee and Kayleigh prior to her discharge with a lactation consultant in the hospital. They are Registered Nurses with specialized training in breastfeeding issues. That would be the best option if that could be arranged.
Labor & Delivery RN, BSN