Finally! After 2 months of NICU, Chloe Luna Aurora Lowe is home. Well, actually, she’s at Mama’s for a couple of weeks so the new parents can have some help, which they may very likely need.
She is gaining weight. Right now, she’s tipping out at 13 lbs, BUT she must be fed through a tube directly into her stomach because her epiglottis isn’t functioning properly and she is in great danger of aspirating her food into her lungs if she tries to nurse conventionally. Several hours a day, Danielle hooks her up to what looks to me like a big IV with a bag of cereal and rice in place of glucose or meds.
She has to be tube feed, at least at the moment because, for reasons no one, including the doctors and specialists, can fully explain Chloe vomits during and after every meal. Now when I say vomit, I mean VOMIT, not any little “spit up”; she projectile vomits like a sorority girl on Friday night during Rush Week. It is very painful to watch because it makes us feel so helpless. Hopefully, this will improve as she gets older, but no one can really say at this point.
One other problem she is coping with is a currently useless left arm. During her delivery, the doctor at Laurens County Hospital twisted her arm nearly all the way around in his hurry to get her out of the birth canal and get the cord from around her neck. While I understand his reasons, I think the whole awful situation could have been easily avoided. Travis overheard two doctors discussing Chloe in NICU at Greenville Memorial Hospital and both agreed that nothing short of sheer negligence on the part of the delivery team could have been responsible for many of her injuries.
Just as a warning to you all, if you are ever in Laurens County, SC and you are injured or sick, hold it off and make the ambulance driver take you to Mary Black in Spartanburg, Memorial in Greenville, St. Francis in Greenville, or Self Regional in Greenwood. I’ve lived in Laurens County nearly all my life and that place has the WORST reputation and record of any hospital I’ve ever heard of. Sixty two years ago, a doctor in the delivery room killed my baby aunt by crushing her head with forceps during Granny Wham’s delivery. They haven’t gotten much better in the intervening years. Suffice it to say that if Budge were with child and in hard labor, I would take her to my veterinarian for the delivery before I’d take her to Laurens County Hospital and that is NO JOKE. Dr. Melanie would stand a much better chance of delivering her child successfully than any of the two-bit butchers at LCHS. Just remember, the bottom 1% of the graduating class in med school still get called “Doctor.”
On a positive note, though, Chloe is hitting all her cognitive benchmarks for her age and weight. She tracks and recognizes different people very well. She is a wonderful baby and seldom cries except when she is having the site of her feeding tube cleaned. That procedure involves washing and anointing some very tender and chapped skin around her navel with an alcohol based cleaner. It is apparently very painful.
So, thank you to everyone who has asked about her and kept her in your hearts and prayers. You are greatly appreciated!