Sunday, November 23, 2008

RSV Season








Dear Family and Friends,

We’re writing regarding a very important matter: RSV. For those of you who
plan to visit us over the next few months, and even if you are not, please take
a few minutes to read this letter.
We want to start by saying thank you for the outpouring of support we have
received from everyone. So many people have done so much for us, and
every bit of help we have received truly is appreciated. We are experiencing
the biggest challenge of our lives, and we’re lucky to be surrounded by so
many family members and friends who have shown us so much love and support.
We’d also like to share an important topic that we recently discussed with our babies’ pediatrician. If you are not aware of RSV, respiratory syncytial virus, you are among the majority. Most people have not heard of RSV, even though nearly every child has had the virus by age two. For full-term babies, RSV typically is not any worse than a common cold, but for preemies, the virus can be quite different. Babies born earlier than 36 weeks are at the
highest risk for serious complications like pneumonia, bronchiolitis, and other sometimes fatal complications. Our babies were born premature at 29 weeks, are multiples, and had low birth weights; these are among the highest risk factors for contracting RSV and developing serious complications. This website offers a great visual comparison of a preemie’s lungs compared to the lungs of a full-term baby: http://www.preemiecare.org/LungsTrees03-4.pdf
Preventing the spread of RSV is very difficult. Thus, we must be vigilant about keeping our children safe during RSV season (October through April). The virus is spread through physical contact, in the air via a cough or sneeze, or by touching an infected object. The virus can live as long as six hours on hands and up to twelve hours on objects, and it spreads very easily, especially from child to child. Studies have also shown that infants pose an even higher risk of spreading RSV to others.

You may ask, “Can’t they fight it off and build up their immune system? Kids need to get sick, right?” The simple answer is NO. Since our babies were pre-term, they did not acquire the necessary immunities to fight off infection. If they contract RSV, they could be hospitalized and develop serious complications. We’ll be asking our visitors to follow a few guidelines to help prevent the babies from contracting RSV or any other illness.

We ask that all visitors do the following:
1. When you arrive, please wash your hands and use hand-sanitizer as needed before touching the babies.
2. Please, if it is possible, get a flu shot.
3. Please refrain from coming over if you are currently sick and have not been symptom-free for at least 5 days, if you live with someone who is sick, or have been in close contact with someone who is sick.
4. If you smoke, we ask that you change your clothing and refrain from smoking prior to visiting, as a preemie’s lungs are very sensitive to smoke. Most RSV sites recommend against passive smoke exposure.
5. If you are parents to a baby or toddler, please refrain from bringing them to our house during RSV season.

Unfortunately we will not be attending many events during RSV season. Our goal is to make it through this and the next RSV seasons without the babies contracting RSV or any other serious illness. Their lungs are still very fragile until they are 2-years-old.

Please understand that this letter is not meant to offend anyone, just simply to provide an explanation. We hope you understand, and we appreciate your help keeping our babies safe.

We are also providing several resources with additional information about RSV below.
http://www.preemiecare.org/rsv_resourceshtm.htm
http://www.preemiecare.org/rsvfaq.htm
http://www.preemiecare.org/rsv2.htm
http://www.mostonline.org/preemieBB/viewforum.php?f=82
Love and best wishes to all!
Paul and Kristin
Here are a few final words from Brooklyn...

video

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Monster Aidan








Saturday, November 8, 2008
The babies turned 7 months old on Saturday! Their adjusted age is four and half months. We started rice cereal on Thursday. None of the babies were big fans. Calahan is starting to come around and yesterday there was much improvement from all three babies.

Aidan has a few things he would like to say...

video

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Favorites












November 5, 2008
A post of some of our very favorite things...

Favorite November moment so far:
Babies and Mommy- being able to go to the park with no coats (Thank you Grandma! We had a great time with you!)

Favorite Toys:
Calahan-einstein star that lights up and plays music
Brooklyn- spinning wheel on einstein exersaucer
Aidan- blue exersaucer with way too much going on

Favorite Thing to Do:
Calahan-smile and flirt with the ladies
Brooklyn-suck on her bottom lip
Aidan- chew on his fingers

Favorite Features:
Calahan- long beautiful eyelashes and perfectly shaped lips
Brooklyn- chubby cheeks and innocent smile
Aidan- smooth skin and big blue eyes

Who am I kidding? I can't just list one or two things. Everything about each and every one of these babies is my favorite!!

Favorite Smell:
Mommy- Aidan, Brooklyn and Calahan's sweet skin

Favorite Sight:
Babies- bottles
Mommy- BABIES!
Favorite Time of the Day:
Babies-EATING!
Mommy-walking into the nursery after a peaceful night's sleep to smiling babies

Speaking of sleep...
As the book goes (They're All My Favorites)...BUT...at night...there is a clear winner. A numero uno. A child after my heart. This angel sleeps not 10, not 11, but 12-13 hours a night. Straight. Not a peep. THANK YOU CALAHAN! You ARE my favorite at night!!

This week I have been a little bit short on sleep because Aidan and Brooklyn have stuffy noses. I think they may also be teething. We ended up taking Aidan to the doctor yesterday and it turns out he has an ear infection in his right ear. He is on antibiotics and seems to be fine. I think we did pretty well. The babies are just shy of their 7 month birthday and getting their first colds. We also went for our first synagis shot today. Synagis is to help protect the babies from RSV. They will get a shot in each leg for the remainder of the RSV season (ending in March).

A little backpedaling...Halloween was great fun and we were all HAP-PEA! We only went to a couple of houses in our pea pod costumes. Then it was feeding time just as the trick-or-treaters started coming around. The weather was so nice that we fed the babies outside while passing out candy. Thanks to Nana for helping make our first Halloween such fun! We love spending time with our Nana!

We hope all of you are well! Enjoy the pics.