Eliza Grace was born on March 15, 2006, at 26 weeks, 4 days, weighing 1 pound 4 ounces and measuring just 11.5 inches long. She is the light of my soul and this is the story of our life in the big city.

Monday, January 21, 2008

A Not So Pretty Week

I figure we were about due for a week from hell, things had been just a little too quiet lately. The beginning of the week started out quietly enough, then the nanny left at about 7 pm on Tuesday and by, oh say, 7:03 pm Eliza projectile vomited all over the living room (thankfully missing the area rug, but nicely filling in the little gaps in the floorboards). This continued non-stop (and I really do pretty well mean non-stop) for about four hours. My solution, since it is darn near impossible to clean the floor and hold Eliza at the same time, was to cover the entire exposed floor area with towels ... with every towel I own (the poor planning here revealed itself in the morning when it was time to shower for work). The towel method worked fairly well and by 1 am or so, having gotten about 4 ounces of pedialyte to stay in Eliza, she managed to pass out, so to speak, and slept until 4 am for a bottle. This being Manhattan, a washer/dryer is unheard of in an apartment so the laundry man got an extra good tip this week, bless his heart.

So after a night of non-stop vomiting, puking, refluxing, whatever you would like to call it, Eliza ate close to nothing for two days. Not a surprising development, pretty much her M.O. after a bad night like we had.

The hunger strike came to an end Friday, but Friday was not the happy day I was hoping for. Once again the nanny left at about 7 pm and at about 7:03 pm Eliza decided to climb on the chair, then on the table, then attempt to slide off the table, landing flat on her back with the table cracking her right across her forehead. Having had an average of three hours sleep at a stretch all week, I decided this was the time to become a blithering idiot.

So Eliza is screaming, bleeding a bit and has an egg on her forehead that would make Faberge himself proud and I can't figure out what to do. Then it dawns on me, call the NCCU! Now for those of you who think it is strange that I would call the NCCU 18 months after Eliza's discharge, I would point out that (a) Eliza's pedi works there (b) we visit them each month because the nurses like their Starbucks and cookies and (c) they really are the best folks going. Nurse Janice answers and after a tearful description of the incident and hearing Eliza screeching in the background, she suggests the ER. So I start to pack a bag, get my shoes, etc. while trying to hold Eliza. This is not working so I put Eliza in the living room and put a Backyardigans DVD on. I go to the bedroom to get my shoes and realize I no longer hear screaming from the living room. Of course I assume Eliza has keeled over from the blow to her head. But no! She is doing her ballerina twirl (with her arms in a nice third position for you ballet folks) to the theme song. So I say, huh, maybe I don't need to go to the ER? For good measure I call my sister-in-law (well former SIL, but who's counting) who is a pediatric ER nurse. She assures me that if Eliza can do her ballerina twirl then there is no closed head injury. To confirm this diagnosis I call the NCCU again and speak to Nurse Monica who confirms that ballerina twirling is in fact a known diagnostic test to rule out head injuries. The night ends with a much needed glass of wine for me and a bottle of Resource JFK for Eliza.

Saturday brings us to my parent's where I spend an inordinate amount of time explaining the Faberge egg on Eliza's head to my mother, who thankfully was not judgmental. We visited with my Dad who thought I was his sister June, but we a nice conversation about my husband "Bob" (June's husband) and my (their) farm. Dad is happy that all is well on the farm.

On Sunday I was inspired by my 20% off coupon for potty chairs to end this week from hell with the purchase of a potty chair for Eliza's future use. I mean really how hard can this potty training be? So I purchased not one, but three potty chairs. One for my mom's, one for the apartment and one for the house on Saba.

Eliza was very enthusiastic about the potty chair.

As you can see below Eliza is so very excited to be using her new potty chair ... as a giant cup from which to drink while in the tub. Oye. This week has got to be better.


Judith and Jason said...

Oh I know I shouldn't be, but I am cracking up as I write this b/c of the pic with her drinking out of the seat! Oh my goodness!
I really hope for your sake and Eliza's that this hunger strike stops tomorrow!

Cora said...

Yuck what a week! I'm glad that I'm not the only one who has been on her hands and knees trying to clean puke out from between the hard wood floor boards. Really, those wood floor people should have thought of something to help with that!

And if it makes you feel any better, Amelia has a HUGE goose egg on her head too. She decided to collide with the corner of the kitchen table. The table won. Hope this next week is better!

Anne, Eliza Grace's mom said...


You are more than welcome to get a good laugh! :)

I figure the toilet seat holds at least a 1/2 liter of water so Eliza is well hydrated if nothing else!

abby said...

Wow. What a week. I was hoping that silence indicated quiet. Indeed, silence indicated anything but... The floorboard vomit thing is funny. Well, not that funny. But familiar: we have old pine boards in our house (the original 1830 or so floors) and they have pretty big gaps in them. Hallie has been steadily filling them. And then she also adds a nice gloss and sheen to the floor by splattering it not only with simply thick (it dries to the texture of glue, by the way) but also purees that are enriched with Karo Syrup. I try to scrub them regularly but you can only do so much.

The egg on Eliza's head: very scary. We're waiting for this to happen with considerable dread. But I agree that ballerina twirling is a definite indicator of no concussion.

May this week be better!

Sarah Furlough said...

Sorry, Anne- but I had to laugh at this post (after I knew both you and Eliza were alright)!

BTW, Cooper thinks his potty is a toy to scoop water with in the bathtub too!

Here's hoping that this week is MUCH better. If not, stock up on some good wine and starting counting down the days to Saba!

Trisha said...

Our kids must have decided that this was the week for head injuries! Caleb's gash, courtsey of the dining room chair, has finally stopped oozing and the bump looks like it's going down a little. They never want us to have a dull moment. If I wasn't pregnant, I might have drank a bottle of wine after that night! Hope things are going better.....

Proud preemie mom said...

Oh Anne. I know you had a terrible week, but wow do you handle it with grace & humor! I am very happy to know that if in doubt of Luke's well being neurologically I can have him do a little Angelina Ballerina! And as a nurse, I can tell you how amazing you are to STILL take the NCCU staff Starbucks (my favorite thing) and cookies (next to favorite thing)!! They must wait by the door for you!

That picture of Eliza in the tub with her potty is priceless.

Bless your heart (we say that a lot in the south). Hope this weekend is vomit free, goose egg free, and full of wine.


Casey's trio said...

Oddly enough, drinking from the potty chair is one my girls haven't tried but I'm sure we'll get there. Did Faberge fet theri egg back or is Eliza still sporting it? Gotta love those NICU nurses for still being there when you need them!