Let's start with the funny story of the day. One of the Senior nurses from the Xian Children's Hospital came to visit yesterday and she brought her daughter with her who is seven years old. Half way through the visit the daughter asked her mom how it is possible for me to have birthed 15 babies.
Yes, you read that right: We have 15 babies again. Yesterday, the two girls with spina bifida (SB) arrived. This is part of Nina's legacy. She was our little pioneer and because of her, we have taken on another two babies with SB. I asked the Britton family to name them and right now I am waiting on their choices later this afternoon. Currently they are known as number 11 and 13. We had quite a lot of fun in with the first baths. It has been an amazing experience and it brought back memories of the first time I held Nina and the fear I felt of not being careful enough. I know I will be come used to taking care of them again. The eyes of the nannies and the volunteers that were here, they were wide with disbelief. They are really nervous about touching the new babies right now.
The oldest is 10 months and has a huge sack (meningocele) near her neck which has a skin infection right now. You are never sure how to hold her and how to change diapers. She cannot lay on her back at all so we have resorted to putting the diaper on backwards. The spinal fluid sack is about twice as big as Nina's was and it is about two inches lower down on the spine than Nina's too. We had to clean it all off yesterday and disinfect it and that was not fun for her. The sack hampers her movement much more than it did Nina's. There is some limited movement in her right hand and I am not sure if that will go away after the surgery. Her head is really large in proportion to her body. She is drinking well and during the night she had 13 oz of milk at one time. She cries some yesterday and appears to be scared of strangers. This morning she only stopped crying when I held her, but later she let Mrs Liu hold her too.
The second baby has a really small sack. She is only four months old and there has hardly been a peep out of her. She has just been watching everybody really carefully. She is also drinking well. I can see that she is going to be easy to take care of. Anyone can hold her and she does not show any fear of strangers.
The one amazing thing: They have both slept really well. They each woke up during the night for a bottle and they have now been sleeping for 14 hours. I kept going into the room to go and see if they are both okay. I think the others could take lessons from the two of them. I hope this lasts more than one night.
I am hoping to have Dr Lazareff operate on all four children when he comes in April. (There are two in the Yu Ling Orphanage who are older). I am waiting to hear some information from the organization who is arranging the operating schedules for the children. Apparently there are already 40 kids on the list and he is partnering with a Chinese doctor in Shanghai.
Later...some names and pictures.
Love and laughter,