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REAL FOOD [Mar. 22nd, 2007|10:59 am]
[Current Location |Ithaca]
[Current Mood |in pain]

Yup. I'm eating solid food. Since the 17th, Mom and Dad(mostly Mom) have been feeding me baby barley cereal with mother's milk. Um, that's barley cereal for babies, not cereal made from baby barley.

This whole spoon thing is still kinda confusing, but I think I'm starting to the the hang of it. I'm up to two tablespoons in the morning and at dinner. Starting very soon (maybe today, I'll be trying rice).

The bad side is I'm teething. Things were pretty bad yesterday and last night. Today is shaping up to be down right terrible. Mom has instituted a colour code for the day, along the lines of the US Terrify the Public alert system. Dad added names, based on a book on colours Mom has been reading and his personal tastes:

Green Frog: I'm perfect.
Lemon-lime Sprite: I'm a normal child.
Yellow Bird: Fussy.
Orange Tiger: Mom is flustered and needs some candy. Dad may get phone calls.
Red: Full blown devil child.

As of 11am today, the household was in a state of Orange Tiger and it may move to Red soon. Dad's calling the doctor to find out dosage/frequency they can give me baby tylenol.

Another new development is that Gram (Dad's mom aka Far-Mor) came to visit and she fixed a walker she'd previously sent. Once fixed, I'm mobile! I can pretty much only move backward, but I'm on the move. Dad has begun the slow (and impossible) task of babyproofing the house. Really, he's focusing on some rooms and just writing some rooms off as incompatible with babies.

I might change my photo soon. Maybe now.
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Happy baby [Mar. 2nd, 2007|08:46 am]
[Current Location |Ithaca]
[Current Mood |hungryhungry]
[Current Music |Anything by Elvis]

Horray! Looks like I'm on my way to being a healthy, happy baby. The antibiotic the doctor's gave me for the skin infection worked wonderfully. It not only got rid of the infection, but it gave my skin a chance to heal. Now I get covered with Eucerin cream only once a day. Dad is still bringing home gallons of water from work for use in the humidifiers (we're going through ~2gallons a day). The important thing is my skin looks great.

I have some new pictures of myself thanks to Frances Holt. She came to stay with Mom and Dad while scouting out Cornell. They are the first ones that show me smiling. http://picasaweb.google.com/SophusAlexander/February

Mom and Dad actually have more images of me, but the pictures are trapped on their celphones, so it will be a while before those get on the interweb.

A lot is going on with me: it's pretty clear I'm teething, I'm very talkative (Dad is going to try and get some audio of me on the web some time soon), I'm standing (with help) and am showing interest in things. If Mom or Dad holds me, I will root through my toy box, looking for certain toys. Dad recently bought two larger two boxes--one for stuffed animals and one for toys. I became furiously angry when going through the new toy box and was only satisfied when shown where the stuffed animals were. While I'm still ineffable, Dad supposes I was looking for either Mr. Goldwater(a stuffed blue bear) or Mudmuncher (a stuffed moose).

I'm also showing clear interest in solid food. I watch Mom and Dad with great interest when they eat and often try and grab food from them. I'm not allowed to eat solid food until March 17th, though. Mom and Dad want to minimize the risks for food allergies, so they are waiting until after my (developmental) 6 month birthday.

My vocabulary continues to grow: Daddy, Baby, Kelly, Fuzzy and Naked(pronounced nek-ed). The only words I have used in context are "fuzzy" (while holding Mr. Fuzzy Bear) and "naked" (while having my diper changed). The later is probably because Mom and Dad often exclaim, "What the hell?! Sophus, you're naked!"

Then again, who can say what I'm thinking and why I do anything?
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The hits keep on coming [Jan. 24th, 2007|12:27 pm]
[Current Mood |distresseddistressed]

Seems like I just can't be a normal baby. Pretty much immediately after recovering from thrush, I have developed infant atopic eczema. Mom is going nuts. Some days I can be fine (moderately fussy) and other days I am terrible (devil child). The dryness is very irritating, so I itch and hurt and don't know why.

Right now Mom and Dad are treating it with Eucerin lard. They seem to be making headway against it, but the fear it it will be around for a while. I haven't seen a doctor for it yet, but if things don't get better, or if I get an infection, I'll be heading to the doctor before my next scheduled visit.

The doctor, if they perscribe anything, would probably prescribe some lotion that contains a steroid or anti-histamine to help with the itch.

Please let me be a normal baby soon, thanks.
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holy cow! an update?! [Dec. 15th, 2006|12:44 pm]
[Current Location |Dryden, NY]
[Current Mood |talky]

Well, a lot has happened. I'v adjusted to home life, no longer am hooked up to any machines, went through BRUTAL caffine withdrawl, had a cold, attended a Halloween party, and am recovering from thrush.

The important things are I'm over 11 pounds, babbling like a fool and I have an image site up.


Dad and Aunt Kerstin have more images of me that'll be uploaded when Dad remembers. Maybe even some audio of me 'talking', too.

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...by popular demand [Aug. 28th, 2006|10:45 am]
[Current Location |Home, Ithaca, NY.]
[Current Mood |hungryhungry]

Well, since my adoring public wants it, who am I to deprive them of updates?

As of Thursday the 24th, I am a homebody. That's right! I am living at home with Mom and Dad now. I am on a heart and respiration monitor, but everything is going well.

There was one glitch with the monitor. It is not a fancy-smancy monitor like at the hospital. instead, it simply has a series of green or led LEDs. It also runs on battery when not plugged in. Well, when something is wrong, say I have a brady, it makes a remarkably loud electronic scream. I guess it is to make sure sleep deprived parents wake up. Well, Mom and Dad had me in the livingroom after a feeding one day (after certain feeding+medicines I tend to have reflux more, so Mom and Dad sit me up for 30min to an hour to make sure I'm doing ok). When they moved the device back into my temporary bedroom, they forgot to plug it back it correctly. It ran off battery until it was 80% gone and, at 4am, it began to scream in a not-so-friendly way, letting people know the battery was low.

Mom shot out of bed. In her sleepy state she saw red lights on it and thought I was dying. As she went to me, Dad saw the device was simply complaining about the battery and shakily plugged it in.

I guarantee that they check for that, now.

The only problem that has popped up is with one of my medications. I am still getting caffine to help with my lungs, but I have started puking that feeding up. After talking with the doctor Mom and Dad have made some changes and yesterday I held _that_ feeding down, but I puked the feeding after that one up. Mom, Dad and the doctor think it is some combination of the caffine and a metabolic enhancer I take. Hopefully today I will hold everything down.

I continue to gain weight and am eating more and more on average. While Mom and Dad recognize the need for me to eat as much as I can, they have chosen to let me define my feeding schedule. I range from eating every hour to every three hours. If I don't wake up for food after three hours Mom and Dad wake me up for it.

I am undergoing the transition from fetal blood to adult blood, so I am pretty tired at times.

My Father is evidentially nuts. Mom wants to start tape recording the things he says to me while he is changing me or feeding me or whatever. She thinks compiling them into a bokk called something like "Fairy Tales for Children as told by Sleepy Fathers" wuld be a good idea. One example is his explaining how "Burpintime" is a compound made by pine trees and is transported in the xylem vs the phloem.

Dad maintains he is unaware of what, exactly, he says to me.

More as it happins.
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How time flies [Aug. 22nd, 2006|09:44 pm]
[Current Location |Ithaca, NY]
[Current Mood |accomplished]

Well, it seems I will be ending my journal entries soon. Today a doctor told Mom that I might be home as early as Thursday(Aug 24th). It's not a definite, but still.

So, if people have questions or whatever, now might be a good time to ask.
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In Ithaca! [Aug. 19th, 2006|10:06 am]
[Current Location |Ithaca, NY]
[Current Mood |happyhappy]

Well, the move happened on Thursday. They shuffled me into an Ambulance and took me to Ithaca. I'm currently in the nursery at Cayuga Medical Center, Ithaca, NY.

I will have more to say n a few days. Just wanted to let people know.
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BREAKING NEWS [Aug. 16th, 2006|10:23 am]
[Current Location |Elmira]
[Current Mood |hopefulhopeful]
[Current Music |Movin' Right Along, Fozzy Bear and Kermit the Frog]

A short notice about some important developments:

Over the past few days the nurses have moved me from my terrarium and into an open crib. My weight has surpassed 1600grams(I'm closer to 1700) and today I am 1 month old.

Mom just called Dad and explained that the nurse practicioner in Elmira felt I have been doing well enough over the past few days that I could be transfered to the hospital in Ithaca was early as today!

You see, Ithaca is equiped to deal with premees that are 32 weeks or older. As I was (they think) 29 weeks and 6 days, Ithaca was unable to give me the care I would have needed, so Mom was transfered to Elmira and I was born here.

A move to Ithaca would make Mom and Dad's lives so much better. Right now it is a 1hr+ drive from Dryden to Elmira and Mom visits me every day. She leaves home ~9am and gets back home ~4 or 5pm.

If I get moved to Ithaca, that makes it more like a 20 minute drive to visit me.

I will post something as I learn more.
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Things are looking up [Aug. 13th, 2006|05:04 pm]
[Current Location |Elmira, NY]
[Current Mood |excitedexcited]
[Current Music |War, U2]

It's been an interesting and very good few days.

First, some of my adoring fans have been asking for photographs. For those that just need to see:


My two photographers, Adam and Andrea have done a decent job of capturing my essence, I think. Be warned, some of the images are kinda large. Dad was going to take some new images of me today but the camera's battery was too low. gonna have to wait until he goes down next, I guess.

Ok. On with the update.

Over the past week or so the doctors and nurses have been trying to ween me away from my nasal canula. After graduating from the CPAP, I've been strictly on the nasal canula with a constant 2L/min going up my nose. Both the canula and CPAP have the down side of irritating my little nose, though, which necessitates having large bloody boogers sucked out of my nose.

Well, starting at the beginning of last week the rate of flow was decreased from 2L/min to 1.5L/min. The next day it was down to 1.4L/min and shortly there after it dropped to 1L/min. Not everything was ideal, however. As the rate of flow dropped, I would have more bradycardias. Nothing critical, but still not a good sign.

By Thursday (July 10) I had been at 1L/min, but Mom and the nurses were noticing something: I spent a lot of my time without the canula in my nose at all! As a friend of Mom and Dad had noticed, I am unusually dexterous and was constantly pulling the canula out of my nose. The discussion on Thursday was that, if i was able to do so well without the canula ina de facto state, why not do away with it all together?

When Mom and Dad arrived on Friday, I was canula free and had been without for nearly 24hrs. What's more, the number of bradycardia and apnia episodes had dropped a great deal, I was much more active(wiggling and flailing are my two favorite things right now), and I was much more vocal.

You might not be able to tell from my journal, but I've been a bit quite in the hospital. I mean, I cried when born and fussed when blood was taken early one, but lately i've been pretty stoic. No more! I am a complaining, cooing, grunting little man now. The nurses have suggested that removing the canula has had a synergistic efect on my progress. Yea!

As of today (July 13), I am 28 days old and the only support device still attached to me is my food tube. It used to run down my throat, but in order to help me adjust to breast feeding, they have snaked it down my nose into my belly. dad keeps saying something about some guy named Mr. Cotter, some guy saving, "Up your nose with a rubber hose", and then warning me against Scientology saying, "Look what happened to Chef. Flunk! Flunk!"

I am getting the hang of breast feeding. The instinct to suck is definitely there now, but I'm still having problems with the whole suck-swallow-breath coordination. I have new inspiration, however; one of my favorite nurses, Mona, was telling Mom and Dad that before discharge I need to be taking all my feedings orally (by boob or bottle) and need to have got five days without a bradycardia. The nurses are so pleased with my progress that they have given Mom and Dad some videos we need to watch before I am allowed to come home with them, have suggested they get a car seat for me within the next week, and to get a pediatrician in Ithaca...also within the next week.

Now, I don't want anyone to get too excited about this. It will still be some weeks before I can come home, for sure. Still things are looking up.

Speaking of looking up, Dad saw me do something that struck him as unusual today. I was in my isolete (which Dad calls my terrarium) and was unhappy with where my head was. So, I picked it up and moved it.

I guess the significance was that I picked my head up entirely off the bed and moved it. He and Mom had seen me lift my head while resting against them, but I was at an angle at those times. Mom and Dad suspected even that was odd, but laying down and picking my head up evidentially was very, very striking.

That's all for now.
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Stormy Weather [Aug. 7th, 2006|12:48 pm]
[Current Location |Elmira, NY]
[Current Mood |scaredscared]
[Current Music |Lightning Crashes, Live]

Last Thursday was a terrible day.

The weather had been threatening all day long, and with the increasingly bad weather I had more and more problems. By the time Mom was visiting me, the storm was upon us in Elmira. Despite being deep inside the hospital, the thunder and lightening outside sounded like a racoon in a tin can.

As the storm grew worse, so did my problems. I was having bradycardia and apnia one after another. Still the storm raged (http://www.stargazette.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20060804/NEWS01/608040333/1001)

The electrical storm grew so bad that the hospital lost power. The hospitals generators came on immediately and the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) didn't miss a beat, but nurses were rushing around shutting down non-essential equipment.

At the peak of the storm, Mom was a wreck, what with me having heart problems so often. A nurse came over to and explained to me that I shouldn't be afraid because the the lighteneing couldn't get me in the NICU. That's when the ceiling started to leak from the massive amount of rainwater.

At one point Mom was crying and a doctor came over and told her she should be thankful that the only problem with her baby was that he was early. What a fucking douchbag. Yeah, be thankful your baby has to stay in a hospital while a storm rages outside and his heart slows.

I hope I don't have to live in a place without electrical storms when I leave here.

After the storm passed, so did my problems. By the next day I was active and doing well.

On Sunday I was 21 days old. Dad suggested he take me out to a toppless bar and go drinking. I had to explain I only drink milk straight up and saw all the tits I wanted to for now.

My current weight has now surpasses my birth weight. It's normal for newborns to lose weight after birth, and it appears I have moved beyond that point. I was born at 2 lbs, 15.8oz. As of Sunday I was 3 lbs, 2.3oz.

As an asside, why does the medical community use terms like pounds and ounces. Dad has no clue how many ounces are in a pound and had to ask a nurse. After she explained, she pointed out a place on my charts where my weight is listed in kilograms (1.450, in case you are wondering). If the medical community is gonna be so retarded about units, maybe they could list my weight in stones or hogsheads or something equally useless as pounds and ounces.

Then again, what can you expect from a profession whose symbol (two snakes twined about a staff--the Caduceus) is the symbol of Mercury, the messenger of the Gods, champion of merchants and thieves(no commentary added by myself here) and keeper of magical formulae. Note that the rest of the world uses the symbol of a single snake coiled about a staff (The Staff of Asclepius) as the accepted symbol of medicine and the healing arts.
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