Sunday, October 19, 2008

Activity Time with Benjamin

Erica and I are working to setup the same system for Benjamin that we did for Jasper. We want to have a cycle of E.A.S.Y which stands for Eat Activity Sleep and time for Yourself. To accomplish this, I had some activity time with Benjamin, and I want to share the video I shot during that session.

Jasper's First Trip to the ER

I arrived home on Friday afternoon looking forward to picking up Erica's sister Brittany at the airport later that evening. When I turned toward the house, I saw Jasper in the driveway to greet me. I knew something was amiss when Diane asked me from the door, "Does he feel warm to you?" I responded that he felt fine, and Jasper and I proceeded into the house together. Upon entering, Erica began to explain to me the situation. It was highly likely that Jasper had eaten from one to a few peanuts. Erica didn't see him eat them, but there was evidence that this occurred at around 4 PM. By 6 PM, Jasper had thrown up his dinner, and he had a wheezing cough. Erica had made a call to our health insurance company to talk with a nurse. Originally she recommended that we go to the ER, but not very strongly. That nurse called us back shortly after my arrival. She more strongly recommended that we head into the ER.

We had Jasper's pediatrician paged, and upon hearing Jasper's wheezing cough over the phone, she confirmed that Jasper needed to be seen quickly. Some of you may be suspecting that our pediatrician is ultra concervative, but I'm confident that she isn't. In the end, I trust her judgement. She added for emphasis, "Some of my colleagues will look down on me for not forcing you to call an ambulance." She requested that we give Jasper some Benadryl before we rush out the door.

We loaded up in the Passat, and I made that drive that no father wants to make. We arrived at the hospital within 10 minutes of leaving our home, and we checked in at the desk. Our pediatrician requested that we let the ER know that he is likely having an allergic reaction, and that she wanted him to be seen ASAP. They got a pulse oxygen reading on him right away, and we sat down to wait for triage. Contray to all the concerns of overunning ER's across the country, this ER was nearly empty. We waited...and waited...until I went back up to the desk. I reiterated the request of Jasper's pediatrician, and they showed us back to triage.

Meanwhile, the Benadryl had continued to work, and Jasper's condition continued to improve. Once we met with the triage nurse, she asked us about Jasper. When we explained the situation:

Eating a peanut was suspected but not confirmed
Vomitting up dinner
Wheezing cough (which Jasper demonstrated for the nurse)
Calls to nurse and pediatrician

...the nurse looked at us like we were crazy for being there. Her look was rude as she appeared annoyed to be dealing with us. We hadn't abused the system. We had gone through a system of checks, and she was annoyed that that system produced us in her triage. Erica and I both felt very uncomfortable as she appeared annoyed to be helping us. The annoyed attitude continued through all of the staff of the ER upon which we came in contact. The ER doctor asked us some questions, and he started talking to us about how respiratory infections can cause the same symptoms. No empathy from anyone. At one point in the evening, Erica and I more fullly realized why my father spends so much time working with the ED to improve patient satisfaction.

On our way out of the hospital, the registration desk told us our bill, and we paid a portion of it. After talking with our insurance company the next morning, they stated that would negotiate with the hospital before we see the final bill.
In the end, the ER did nothing but look at Jasper and get annoyed that we were there. I walked away very disappointed in the way that we were treated, and I'll do my best to never darken the door of that facility again. Fortunately, this is not the same hospital at which Jasper and Benjamin were born, but it is the closest by a couple of minutes. If I'm afforded the luxury next time, we will be driving an extra couple of minutes to a different hospital.

More Bejamin Photos

As you might have guessed, our lives have been very full this week. Benjamin continues to do very well. He is feeding very well, but he continues to be a little more fussy at night. We have multiple theories about why this occurs. I realize that nobody is looking for a text heavy post right now, so here are some of our favorite photos of the past few days.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Benjamin is 1 week old

It's already hard to imagine that Benjamin has only been with us 1 week. While nothing is running "smoothly" (and by smoothly I mean as if he were already 1 month old and on a regular schedule) and I am getting precious little sleep each night, it's just hard to think about what things were like one week ago when he was inside and we didn't have to balance our time between two kids.

Here are some shots from the past week.

Sunday, October 12, 2008


Jasper still doesn't quite know what to make of his little brother, but for the most part he does not look at him as a negative intrusion. Yippee!

Here are the boys enjoying a book with Nana.

Jasper found the bouncy seat in the corner of the room and pulled it out, sat down and said "rocking chair." It was pretty funny. The good thing about a baby brother is that it means more toys - of course they are toys that are no longer age appropriate, but the fact that they're "new" is what seems cool to him.

Jasper wanted us to lay Benjamin next to him on the couch, and he thought it was hysterical. He laughed the whole time, tried to give Benjamin kisses, ...

and held Benjamin's hand.

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Benjamin Comes Home

After a long day of waiting for doctors, we were discharged on Wednesday around 5:30pm. Jasper was very excited to see us when we got home - more so mommy and daddy than his baby brother, but still excited. Here are the boys posing together.

Jasper was a huge fan of Ben's outfit - a cute onesie from his cousins that featured a dump truck! He's talking with daddy about the outfit here.
Ben had fallen asleep on the ride home - well, to be exact, I think he was asleep before we left the hospital room and stayed asleep through the ride home. Here, he's just hanging out waiting for someone to pay attention to him.
Here we are, the Gant family.

Jasper doesn't quite know what to make of his little brother. We're trying to be relaxed about their interaction and not get all over hyped about how Jasper might be around his brother, but jumping on the couch near his brother is absolutely out of the question, and Jasper's not too happy about that.

We've had some feeding issues since Ben's been home. I don't think he's prepared for my already present milk supply, so feedings are going slowly. He's also a sleepy boy during the day and is usually asleep by the end of the feeding, even right on top of the nursing pillow.

Baby Benjamin

At my 40-wk appt this Monday, my water broke in the exam room of my OB's office. It was not a very lovely experience, but oh well. At that point in time I was just 4cm dilated. I headed across the street to the hospital and was admitted into labor and delivery. Drew left work to meet me at the hospital. We let nature run its course for almost 3 hours but I made almost no progress. So we started a pitocin drip. Just over 2 hours later pitocin had done its work, and we had this BIG baby boy.

Benjamin was 9 lbs, 9.6 oz and 22 in long. He had his cord wrapped around his neck twice which made for a very tense delivery. In the middle of much chaos and great desire to push, I was put on hold and orders were barked by the OB to change my position and keep me from pushing. Drew said he could see Benjamin, but I couldn't hear anything. I asked him, "why isn't he saying anything?" Then I was told I could push again, just once more. And he was out! After some time and some instigating by the nurses, he started to cry. What a relief!

Benjamin was not the sound nightime sleeper that Jasper was, so Drew and I got to refresh ourselves on head jiggling and swaddling. We didn't get much sleep either night in the hospital. Tonight, we'll see if anything is different.

Yesterday afternoon, Jasper came up to the hospital for a visit. He immediately was able to say baby Benjamin, but he was way more interested in the bed than spending time with his baby brother.

You can see similarities between the boys. Benjamin looks a lot like Jasper did as an infant. Except ... he has dark hair. His mouth is bigger, too. He also had a tongue tie like his brother, too! (But we got that taken care of today.) We stumbled upon the Backyardigans while Jasper was at the hospital, so he enjoyed sitting in the bed with me watching the show.

Nana, who has been taking care of Jasper while we've been in the hospital, was happy to meet her new grandson and spend about 1.5hrs holding him while they were there.

Benjamin had his hearing tested yesterday, and he passed. He looks funny here, doesn't he?

We went through multiple outfit changes today.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Benjamin is Born

Benjamin Bailey Gant was born at 9:08 PM on October 6th. Erica and baby are doing well, and here are some photos. I'll share more of his arrival at another time.

Saturday, October 04, 2008

Texas Parks and Recreation Expo

Jasper and I went to the Texas Parks and Recreation Expo today while Erica had a manicure and pedicure. No activity from baby #2, and he is due on Tuesday. We look forward to his arrival.

At the Expo, we saw hawks, lizards, fish, and snakes. Those were cool, but the machinery was the highlight

Jasper loved the Caterpillar exhibit.

The Texas Wildlife helicopter was AWESOME!

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

How many rolls does it take... did this happen?