Wednesday, September 28, 2005

And the days keep rolling by...

Hi all,

This is Liz's brother again. Mom and I have switched roles, so Mom's now staying with Liz in the hospital. I've returned home, so this update is based on spending Sunday/Monday with sis before I left, and several phone conversations since then. Apologies in advance for any lapses in my memory or if I get things wrong.

First and foremost, Liz told me like 4 times to make sure I thanked everyone for their warm emails, prayers, thoughts, and warm wishes. Unfortunately, the hospital labor/delivery rooms don't have wifi (guess they don't expect people to spend more than a couple of days there, goes to show what they know!). She reads most of her email on her cellphone, or she can log in via her laptop but only by dialup. I downloaded her email at one point onto her laptop via dialup, and it took over an hour, so she probably won't be able to answer a ton of emails and she sends her apologies. But she does read every one of them and said they never fail to raise her spirits, so thank you.

Second, today's another celebration, 26 weeks today!

On Sunday, the magnesium started working and the contractions slowed down. After about 12 hours of the higher dose, though, her body started having some serious reactions to the mag(beyond the nausea, dizziness, etc that was happening the whole time). After some difficulty breathing and being on supplemental oxygen off and on most of the night, they decided to take her off it and try something else. While loathe to do so because it was helping stop the contractions, not breathing can't be good for the little ones so she agreed. After some hours (from memory 6 hrs after coming off it?), she finally started feeling better and didn't have the heavy weight on her chest any longer (I'm sure she'd be making some reference to her increased breast size here, but I can't do that since I'm her brother). They did put her on another oral anti-contraction drug, unfortunately I can't remember the name (memory says ephedra, but I don't think that's right). The contractions increased for a while, and they upped her dosage on this new stuff, and they then settled down at about 2-4 per hour by Mon afternoon when I left. She could walk to the bathroom totally unaided and was cheerful and laughing, unlike when she was in the heavy mag-induced stupor.

Today they're even less than yesterday, and Liz was in good spirits. Apparently she's gotten a nice little heat rash going over her belly where all of the monitors are always being maneuvered around. A secret one of the nurses told her: They need a lubricant on her belly for the monitors, but the stuff they use can cause problems over time, and she said that normal lotion works just as well. This way she not only keeps the monitors working, she gets the positive side effects of the lotion keeping her skin smooth and stretch-free, and the whole room smells like grapefruit. One can only guess that the rash would have been much worse if she'd stayed on the hospital stuff.

A new doctor this morning said that she dealt with PROMs a lot and even a fair number of long-term PROMs. When she asked Liz how long ago she had PROMed and Liz said 9 weeks, the doctor's jaw apparently fell to the floor.

The hospital food can get pretty dreary. It's actually pretty decent for hospital food, but imagine ordering from the same restaurant menu every meal of every day and you get the feeling. Mom the other night went out and got some chinese food for Liz, Brian, and herself as a change. Why does it not shock me that my sister is throwing dinner parties in her hospital room??

So for now, everything continues onward day by day, and strangely enough, no news is good news. She remains in good spirts most days (particularly since she's off the mag), and she's got some pictures and flowers decorating her room there. As she puts it, she's going to be there for a while, so might as well make it feel like home. She's going to try to log on herself in the next day or two now that she's feeling somewhat human again.

Liz (as remembered by Gary)

PS- Brian says Buddy is doing fine and starting to grow his tail back, but Buddy misses his mom Liz and hopes she's doing ok.


Anonymous said...

Ahhh Congratulations to the WHOLE Family! for Liz making to 26 weeks! I have been checking for the last 24 hours for an update. So glad to hear you are well and not funked out anymore!
Everywhere I read about PROM, you are doing something uniquely awesome in that you are still 'hanging in there' after 9 weeks!! You are amazing and these little ones, your children, Gary's nieces, your parents' grandchildren; they will be nothing short of amazing with you as their mom and what you are doing.
I went crazy on bed rest at 3 1/2 weeks so you are a total SuperStar in my eyes!
Sounds like you are at CPMC and so you must have access to some great food even at late hours! The city is good to the bed resting moms! My hubby would bring Japanese from Japan Town for me every Thurs..I think was my saving!
PS Ask the hospital for a menu of the vegetarian'll find there are all kinds of Indian and other meals you can order to mix things up a bit! (I was at Kaiser and learnt this near the end!)
You are doing great Liz!
Lots of love!
Lisa Haugen

Julie DeRuvo said...

First off... CONGRATULATIONS on 26 weeks! I have been checking the site daily (often times several times a day ;) )for an update!

I read what Lisa wrote, and she has it so right... these little girls are nothing short of blessed to have you as their mom & Brian as their dad! It is very apparent that they are very lucky girls!

You have given EVERYTHING within you to keep them safe and provide them with a healthy place to continue to grow. I have NO DOUBT that they are the PROM miracles because of the great care you have given them! I pray that we will continue to mark the next few Wednesdays as great milestones for these little angels!

You continue to be in our prayers! * I thought that I would share with you that my 2 1/2 year old twins have been praying for you & the babies each night since Saturday! They say "God Bless mommy's friend Liz and her babies". It is just the sweetest thing... it just warms my heart. You and the babies have already touched SO many lives, and their journey has only just begun! Imagine what they will do with their lives! ;)

Continued Blessings,
Julie DeRuvo
(Isabella & Elizabeth 1/15/2003)

** P.S. If you need anything.. a ear to listen to or just someone to chat with when you are bored... I am here... (415) 884-2770. Hang in there!

Michelle Flannagan said...

Liz- I'm very happy to see a new update. You guys have been in my thoughts and prayers every day. It seems like you're in good spirits and adjusting to life in the hospital, despite the food!
Let me know if there is a telephone # where I can reach you, just to touch base.
Hang in there, and know that what you're doing is absolutely amazing, and the girls are already very lucky to have such a great Mom!
Take Care,
Michelle from Sidelines

Janna Charlton said...

Liz, Terry and I are thinking about you every day!!! You're so strong, I admire you so much!! You and Brian are going to be such great parents and I just can't wait to meet the entire happy family!!!

Kim Hiatt said...

Hang in there, girl. I'm sending you lots of thoughts and prayers to you and your support system. I love you tons!
Kim Hiatt

Anonymous said...

Wow! What a week it has been! And not a fun one. Lizo....we are so proud of you for your courage & patience throughout this bed rest ordeal. Congratulations on making it to 26 weeks and one day......we're praying those little ones stay nice and comfy and behave for as long as possible.

We read that you may not want visitors.....but we would love to come and give you head massages...back cards...whatever suits your fancy while lying down. Please let us know if you feel up to it. Know we are praying for all of you and can't wait to meet your beautiful girls......(well....we would prefer to wait at least a month...)

Keep your chin up Lizo! We love you.
Ash, Mark, Derek & Whit

Laurie Abbey said...

Hi Liz
I am glad you are hanging in there and your contractions are slowing down. I am sending you wishes for a long and boring hospital stay and good health for you and your babies. Thanks for keeping us updated - it sounds like you have a wonderful support system.
Your prom list friend,
Laurie Abbey
PS Long proms are very possible- I was ruptured for somewhere between 11-17 weeks before Kyle was born, so far so good - now 11 weeks old.

Deb Schwarz said...

What a relief! I've been waiting for an update and hoping that no news was good news...(thanks Brian for a well written account).

I was in Pacific Union this evening (doing volunteer telephone work for the local school Measure) and told your collegues (boy they work late!) how well you were doing. They all send their love. We all agreed what a trooper you have been (and continue to be). After Mag, it's a piece of cake!

Let us know when you want visitors...or a massage, or whatever will help you through another week. Waiters on Wheels - and Mel's Diner around the corner were my mainstays while I was there. There is nothing like a chocolate malt to celebrate another day.

BTW - I think you are going to be the queen of the PROM Queens. 9 weeks is amazing!

(former PROM queen)

Inkan said...

Congratulations to 26 weeks!

The girsl at the PROM list are wondering about you hoping everyting is OK, and we follow your blog.

Hang in there!!!

The PROM List

Barbara H. said...

Hi Liz and family,
Waiting eagerly for an update, hang in there. Love Barbara H.

Julie DeRuvo said...

Just wanted you to know that I was thinking of you! We continue to pray daily for you, Brian and the girls! Let me know if the Multiples Club can do anything to help. We can arrange for catered meal deliveries to the hospital or anything else you need. Just hollar and we will be there!

I'm praying the next update is good news!

Hugs and Blessings,

Alyssa Hall & David Morris said...

Liz & Brian -

Congratulations on reaching 26 weeks!! Your strength and courage continues to amaze us. We're anxiously awaiting more positive updates and continue to think of you all the time.

Alyssa & David