The rest of the story…
We have a healthy baby boy that fed like a champ for the first time. Boy can the child scream! Much louder than L.L. at that age. Then I broke a fever. When I was admitted into labor and delivery I had a low grade fever of 99˚, no one seemed to even sneeze over that. However, after birth it spiked up to 101˚. I felt like a radiating heater and I was shaking like a leaf. I couldn’t keep my teeth from rattling or my hands and legs from shaking. This is a normal occurrence when you have an epidural, not usually this bad. My doctor kept telling the nurse to get me medicine because I wouldn’t stop shaking until the fever went down. It was kinda funny because she seemed annoyed with the nurse doing everything but that. (Have I mentioned how much I love my doctor?) So, after I get medicine and start to get control of my limbs we all went to the NICU, but this hospital doesn’t call it that, it’s the Special Care Nursery. Not sure why, but ok. Maybe it’s another kind of “Political Correctness” to make all of us new parents feel better…?
We ended up being there for 6 days. It’s a 3 day minimum, upon admittance. Then they noticed he had rapid breath, so they took an x-ray. With that they saw liquid in his lungs, so they started him on an antibiotic regiment for three to five days. They do this because it can develop into pneumonia, which can be fatal to a newborn. One of the nurses told us that she isn’t in favor of antibiotics, but in this case she agrees with the course of action. Because before it was standard operating procedure they used to lose babies from waiting just to see if it turned into a problem. Don’t know about you, but I wouldn’t argue with that.
The cool part in this whole ordeal is that I got an extra day in the hospital where they brought me food! (YAY – Gil was happy with that since he remarked I would have ate us out of house and home the way my appetite grew, overnight!) The night nurse, also, put us on a list to get a sleep room, so I didn’t have to leave the hospital when I was discharged. You see, Scripps Mercy Hospital has these rooms that they allow you to stay in, so you are close by to nurse your baby. No staff to help you out, just a room. (I felt a little bit like I was staying at a hotel.) They say that if they are going to promote breastfeeding they need to make it easier on the mother. Which I completely agree with and was so grateful to get the ONE AND ONLY single room they offer. Those rooms are hard to come by and even harder to get the single. If I had to share a room Gil and L.L. couldn’t have come to see me unless we were in the waiting room. We were beyond lucky with that one!
So, after I was discharged they moved me to the sleep room and I waited until his little lungs cleared out. That didn’t happen until the 6th day. Since he was both in the middle of the night and his meds were twice a day the pediatrician for the Special Care Unit let us go a day early. He figured we were only missing one round of the antibiotics and his x-ray was clean so we could do with going home that afternoon. We were elated! It came as a shock since we were planning on going home the next day, but it was a welcomed surprise since the next day was July 4th! It’s funny how things work in the ‘NICU’, they keep you informed, but seem to like the surprise of telling you at the last minute you can go home. We saw this happen to many other babies during our stay.
I have to say that the nurses/staff there were outstanding. They gave L.L. a big sister voucher for the cafeteria and a few to Gil and I. Plus, a parking pass! Just in that alone we saved a fortune. As stressful as it was, I felt taken care of and respected by the staff. They made the long stay much more bearable. Mom and baby hospitals are all the rage here in San Diego, but I have to say that I highly recommend Scripps Mercy. I gave birth two times there and was very happy.