We have already been home for over a WEEK! Things still feel so new mostly because we are figuring out how this whole parenting thing works a little more with each passing day. When I think about how far we’ve come as parents in just one week it amazes me. Our first night home was exciting but also a little terrifying at the same time. We really didn’t know if what we were doing was right and I think we were both afraid to fall asleep. Luckily for us Gracie is a very calm natured baby. She rarely cries and when she does it’s because she needs a diaper change, is hungry and/or has gas. The biggest challenge we have been faced with so far has been her gassiness, poor baby. Because of Gracie’s cleft lip more air gets into her tummy during feedings than the average newborn. This means that we have to use a special nipple, feed her while she is practically sitting up and we usually need to burp her mid-meal and a few more times once she is finished. Even though we take these preventative measures she still spits up quite a bit and struggles with gas. Our pediatrician introduced us to this stuff called gripe water a few days ago and it has been a lifesaver. It just breaks my heart to see her in pain so we are so relived that the gripe water has helped!
For our first full day at home we really wanted to have bonding time with just our little family of three. This meant no visitors, no cell phones, computers or anything else that would distract us from our little lovey. I am so glad that we decided to do this because it gave us the chance to slowly settle in and introduce baby girl to her new nest. When we got home we spent some time in her room relaxing in the rocking chair while she checked everything out. We did lots of cuddling and tested out her new swing, which she really seems to enjoy. When nighttime came we basically sat around waiting to feed her, lol. We both got up and did the diaper changes and feedings together and didn’t really get much sleep. We were still functioning on the NICU schedule, which had us up every 2 hours for the previous 4 days so we were used to it. I am happy to report that since our first night we have begun to take shifts throughout the night so we are much more rested during the day. Hallelujah! One thing that I will always remember about that first night is how I felt when I woke up. I actually missed my little baby while I was asleep and couldn’t wait to hold her and give her kisses. That may sound silly but it’s true. Once the sun came up she joined us in our bed for some snuggle time. :)
My sister (aka auntie Missy) flew in all the way from Vancouver B.C. the day Grace was born which meant the world to us! She arrived right after we settled Gracie into the NICU and she came baring gifts – Golden Pride burritos. God bless her! We didn’t get much time to visit that first night but she joined us at home on day two and spent most of the following days with baby. Sunday we had a family day at the house to introduce Rudy, Devin and Mia to Gracie. Everyone came over early in the afternoon and we spent the day cooking, eating, laughing and playing the Wii.
This was the first of many family Sunday’s and it was pretty great! My brother and Ang were shocked at how much bigger Mia is compared to Grace. They are only 5 months apart but Mia looks like a giant next to baby girl. When the girls were introduced they studied each other and quickly went back to what they were doing. Rudy is my little sweetheart and took his time to hold Grace and cuddle with her. He is the oldest of the cousins and is going to be such a wonderful big cousin to Grace. My mom (Nani) and auntie Missy were busy in the kitchen grilling up prawns, veggies and other yummy stuff for dinner. Before eating, as is custom we all took turns saying what we were thankful for. Everyone gave thanks for our new addition to the family and when it got around to us we just cried. I think our hearts were too full to pray and give thanks so we just smiled and burst into tears.
Gracie has also been doing great with her tummy time since day 2! She is already beginning to hold up her head like a strong little gal! :)