7 april 2008:
hi, everyone. i just got back from the consultatiebureau with gracie and wanted to give you an update. sorry, but it's a long one!
let me start off by first bragging about how awesome she is. she's totally awesome. she has slept through the night TWO NIGHTS IN A ROW and always wakes up in a happy, playful, jolly mood. (i do too when she sleeps that long!) she's incredible. today adam and i woke up at about 6:15 to get ourselves ready before mary grace woke up, since we both had busy mornings ahead of us. by the time i was done showering and getting dressed it was almost 7:00 and mg was just starting to wake up. adam changed her, i fed her, and by 7:45 she was downstairs playing in her bouncy chair. this gave both of us time to eat and check email while she sat and played happily. at 9:00 i fed her again, because i knew if i didn't feed her then, then she wouldn't get another chance to eat until after 11:00, and that was going to be too long for her. she ate really well and started to drift off, which was convenient because i wanted her to take a little snooze before we got to the consultatiebureau anyway.
adam has an all-day meeting today, so he wasn't able to come with us. but he was nice enough and supportive enough to hang out with mg and me and walk with us to the bus at about 9:45 before he had to head in to work. since his meetings didn't start until 10:00 he wasn't too terribly late. (thank you for your help this morning, addy!)
caught the bus at 10:00 so that we'd be on time for our 10:30 appt. when we got there, i undressed her just like last time and had the assistant (who was the same nice lady as last time) weigh and measure her. gracie now weighs 6.5 kilos (14.3 pounds) !!! even the assistant was all like, "WOW!" she was 4.8 kilos last time we brought her in, in early march. seriously. how is it possible that mg grew nearly 4 pounds in a month? what a healthy girl she is! she is now 62 cm (nearly 24.5 inches), so she's gotten longer too. she also measured her head, which has also grown an additional 2 cm. on the charts she is surpassing the 100th percentile -- not that that matters, because steady growth is more important than how big she is compared with other babies. but we sure are happy with her progress! what a strong, healthy, happy baby girl she is!
this time we met with the nurse, and not the doctor. last time we were there, the doctor saw us and basically gave mg a physical exam, but this time we saw the nurse. she is the same nurse who came to the house shortly after gracie was born and asked me a bunch of questions about my pregnancy and delivery, and how gracie is eating, and if we are breastfeeding, etc. at that time she made a chart up and brought it with her. i didn't know that she was also the same nurse at the consultatiebureau, because i thought maybe that was her ONLY job, to just take the charts. but she works at the consultatiebureau, and it was nice to see her again because i think she's a really nice lady, and i like the continuity of care.
so the nurse (i forget her name, how ironic...) took us into a different room and examined gracie. (PS, mom: the nurse remembered you and asked how you are, and said that she's sure you must miss mary grace a lot because when she met you at the house she could tell that you were so sad that you had to be leaving so soon. anyway, she sends you all the best and thinks that the songs you sing to gracie over voice mail are a GREAT idea!)
she checked her developmental progress by testing the strength of her head and neck, she watched gracie track her movements, she would get gracie to interact with her by having her smile, talk, giggle, etc. she said she is right on track with all of that stuff, and was impressed by how strong she is already. then i asked a bunch of questions and she was soooo sweet and patient with me while she answered them all thoroughly.
and then... it was time for her shots.
gracie got her first round of immunizations today. she got her DPT (diptheria, pertussis, and tetanus) and for something called Hib (i think it's for meningitis), and also another shot for "pneumococcus" (something to do with pneuomococcal infections like meningitis, pneumonia, and other things that i don't know about which i'm sure are quite bad). she was so brave, and i think i cried more than she did. the nurse held her leg very strongly so that gracie wouldn't kick, and she said that THAT'S why she was crying, because she didn't want to be held so tightly. but i could tell that when she stuck gracie with the needle, she did flinch and startle, and would start to cry. but she was sooo brave! i held her afterwards and walked around the room to calm her down. she was sweating because she was crying so hard! poor thing! when i set her down, i noticed her face was wet -- from her tears or mine, i don't know -- and that her chest was red too. at first i freaked out because i thought she was having a bad reaction to the shots, but then i remembered that adam also gets a red chest when he's upset or stressed out too. and gracie was having the same redness in the same area! isn't that neat, that she has inherited that from her daddy? we hung out for a few more minutes with the nurse, just to make sure that gracie's body was okay with these shots, and she seemed to be just fine. in fact, by the time i was putting her clothes back on her, she was already smiling and laughing again. what a trooper!
it's possible that she might get a slight fever this evening, and she may be cranky or sleepy for the rest of the day. right now she is napping downstairs (i want to keep an eye on her today so she's sleeping on the couch next to me) and just by looking at her, you'd never know that she was minorly traumatized this morning. the nurse recommended a nice warm bath before bed to help the muscles in her legs relax a bit, and possibly some children's paracetamol (it comes in a suppository form! yikes!) if she is fussy and uncomfortable. but i think a little breastmilk and snuggling will probably do the trick too. (but still, just in case, i think adam might pick that up from the pharmacy around the corner on his way home.)
we caught the next bus at 11:15 and i stopped by the bakery on our way home since she was asleep in her stroller. i fed her when we got back, she finally made a poo which i changed, and put her in some lighter clothes since the sun is out and things have warmed up considerably since we left the house this morning. she finally fell asleep around 12:45 and is still sleeping now.
so, that's the scoop. she's healthy, and even healthier now that she's got her shots! our next appt is may 19 (the anniversary of our engagement! awwwww....) so i will be sure to send out another update then. hope your day is beautiful!
love,amber and mary grace