(POST 8) Melting Milestones

Day 6, Saturday, July 31, was mine and Robin’s first full day at home and it had already become clear that we were going to need to establish some sort of pattern in our lives that was different from the one that we had prior to July 26. Of course, everyone’s life pattern changes when they have children-feedings, baths, changing of diapers, dropping off at day care, etc. But since our baby girls were still in NICU our pattern would be different. For at least the foreseeable future my day would no longer be broken down by work or meals, dog walks or t.v. shows but rather by trips to the hospital. And when I was home I would then try to find time to do everything else.   Again, I am thankful that my mother-in-law had decided to stay back to help us for our first few days.

Saturday morning began with breakfast and then a trip to the hospital. When we arrived the news from both rooms was pretty much the same as it had been the day before, mostly uneventful, and the girls had only needed one blood transfusion each. Now, I realize how strange it sounds to say that they only needed one blood transfusion each, but for these tiny ninja warriors (shout out to their Uncle Joaquin) who had been requiring three to four blood transfusions each day a drop to one was awesome news.  One milestone down.

Saturday night brought on a few more issues but again nothing major. Sunday however, would bring the news that Sienna would be receiving a P.D.A. ligation in the following week but that the same surgery for Avery was being delayed due to the need for fluids to drain from her neck and head. What in the world is that? “It stands for patent ductus arteriosus and is an extra valve in the heart that usually closes in term babies. For preemies, though, a surgery is almost always required to close the valve,” the doctor explained. It was further explained that the surgery was necessary, not optional. So, let me get this straight, you’re going to open up the baby’s chest and seal off this valve? Yep, that’s what the doctor was telling us. And they do this with such frequency that there was little concern on the face of the doctor. I doubt that my face was as relaxed.

Maybe it’s silly but we were grasping any positive news and trying to set our sights on little milestones to help us get through this hard time. Sunday was August 1, we were now out of the month of July, another milestone down. Monday marked one week of life outside the womb for the kids, another milestone down. Many more to go.

Time for me had been melting since the girls were born. Minutes and hours and days meant very little. I was really only concerned with two one hour spans, 6:30 am-7:30 am and 6:30 pm-7:30 pm. NICU shifts change at those times so visitation and phone update restrictions are in place.  We left the hospital one day and drove the twenty minutes back home, exhausted and determined to take a nap, only to realize as we arrived that it was 4:45 pm. By the time that I awoke from my nap it was 7:30, just in time to head back to the hospital. On my way I noticed that the Nissan was in need of an oil change. Had the bills been getting paid? Had we even been getting the bills from the mailbox? Sometimes I felt like I had been living one really long day at other times it felt like a year since the girls had been born. It seems that this whirlwind of a life was taking a toll on me. What day was it again? Oh yeah, it was the end of week one. Many more to go.

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12 Responses to (POST 8) Melting Milestones

  1. Angel Roggenkamp says:

    I am just encouraged every day by reading the blog that your girls (my nieces) are doing well. I brag about them all the time. I could be standing in line to be checked out and spark up conversations with complete strangers. All of them from this church felt community that simply say they will pray for them. They are on multiple prayer lists at many churches. I love you and those sweet little Angels

  2. Sarah and Joaquin says:

    We love your tiny ninjas so much! Joaquin said they looked like little warriors as they left the operating room that first night, because they were throwing karate chops and kicks like crazy! We are so happy and relieved that the heart surgeries went well yesterday. Please tell the girls to keep training hard- no slack!

  3. Our prayers remain with you all. I know too well what it is like to create a new “normal” daily routine that encompasses life in the NICU. I am so glad you have family helping you. Rely on those around you to take care of everything else so that you can remain strong and focused on your 2 darling girls.

  4. Jenny Jones says:

    Thank you so much for your updates. I am so glad the girls are still holding their own. You have a lot of people praying for them and you. God bless.

  5. Sam Horn says:

    Hello Robin and Family:

    Please know we are sending prayers and strength and love and best wishes . . . I know you have LOTS of karma credit upstairs so we’re calling some in . .

    Thinking of you . .

    Sam, Andrew and Tom Horn

  6. Susan Mcmurray says:

    Hugs from us!!

  7. Karla Fears says:

    Hi, Robin. I know this is going to sound unreal but you have been in my thoughts, although we have not communicated in a while. I’m thrilled at the birth of your two little miracles, for that is what they are. After reading this, I immediately called my prayer chain at my church and put your girls names on our prayer list so prayers will be said continuously for them and for you and your husband. I also asked my mom to put them on her church’s prayer list and this is significant because my mother is a prayer warrior and her church has powerful mojo. Rest assured, we know God is listening and watching over your sweet babies. I know you’re still healing so when you get the go-ahead from your doctor, I’d be happy to give you relaxing massages on the house By then, your babies should be home and keeping mom and dad up all night. Bright blessings and love from

    Karla Fears and Don Snover (my husband)

  8. Amanda and Joel says:

    Robin and Quin,

    We don’t know you very well but we are thinking about you both and your ninja warriers each and every day. One of our twins was whisked away to the nicu and it is a terrifying experience, made even more so I’m sure by the tender age of your little girls. You are in the best place– those nurses are amazing sources of knowlege, strength, wisdom, and love. Reach out to the fairfax county moms of multiples group (or they will reach out to you soon if they haven’t already). It is an amazing resource of strong amazing women, some of whom have been just where you are. Lean on them as you are able. Take care of yourselves and each other. Remember to breathe, to eat, to hug, to smile, to love and to believe. Those little girls are defying the odds each day and we are praying as they continue their courageous battle.

    Amanda, Joel, Charlie and Joshua Butson
    (Carseats and stroller)

  9. Katelyn says:

    Wishing all four of you all the best. I am thinking of you guys.

  10. Traci Boykin says:


    Thank you for including me in your e-mail. You, Quintin, and your precious daughters are in my prayers. My son Noah was born in February, and he was in NICU at Inova Alexandria after he was born. I still appreciate the bracelet you gave me when I was pregnant that says “Bless This Woman” and I return that sentiment to you.


  11. Sharon Slayton says:

    My thoughts and prayers are with you all. Positive energy flowing your way.

  12. Amanda Blackmon Meiners says:

    That kind of stress must be excruciating. I know you gladly do it for the girls, but it is hard. My son was only hospitalized for ten days and it felt like forever. May God give you and the babies strength.

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