Jessica’s Journey Home – Week 3 Jessica | My Life 06 DEC 2010

The third week of Jessica’s fight back has now come and gone, and our little Martian dribble monster came through with flying colours!

Jessica examining her new enclosed confines

Taking in exclusively Mommy’s Steri and Stumpie breast milk at last, little Jessica has already been taken off the drip and is now receiving her feeding in timed intervals, in order to simulate real life conditions as well as to exercise her hunger reflexes. As it is, my little girl is packing on the weight, averaging a good 40 to 50 grams extra each day, meaning that she is now over the 1.8 kg mark and well on her way to that magic 2.2 kg number.

The extra weight does of course mean that our cutie pie is starting to fill out now as well, and you can see with each and every visit how her little cheeks are getting more and more full, while her body slowly expands in size in order to catch up to her long scrawny limbs.

All the pipes and associated plasters and taping have now been removed, save the feeding tube which has now shifted to through the nose in order to open up Jessica’s mouth for the upcoming breast feeding training. As it is, our little milk hungry tyke has already made her first grab at the boob, making an unexpected attempt to tickle some milk out of Chantelle when she wasn’t looking. Although Chantelle’s boob is still bigger than Jessie, never mind the fact that the nipple is twice the size of Jessie’s mouth, official breast suckling training begins this week coming – in other words making for one heck of an excited Mommy!

(Oh, and did I mention they even got Jessie to drink out of a cup for the very first time?)

Another big first - Jessica's first attempt at drinking out of a cup!

Jessica is also starting to be shifted about now, first making the journey from her nice and comfy open incubator to the enclosed classic incubator (which believe it or not was deemed an upgrade seeing as they needed the open air incubators for some new arrivals in the NICU). But it wasn’t more than two days before she was shifted once again, this time to a plain and simple little crib, indicating that our little one is now well on her way to eventually moving out of the NICU and into the actual nursery!

The other big thing coming out of Week 3 was that it marked the first week that I didn’t see my daughter each and every day, with me missing out at least 2 nights of the week. Chantelle on the other hand is now living in Bellville with her folks for the time being, meaning that she caught up the slack and so apart from the last weekend when the two of us were both so sick, we haven’t missed a day with our daughter just yet! And this is important because Chantelle has now become an integral part of the process, washing Jessie down, changing her nappies, and generally just fussing over her every single minute of every single day! ;)

Needless to say, a very proud mommy

Finally (or at least, the final thing I can remember that is worth mentioning), the biggest news to come out of week 3 is that I finally sat down with little Jessie in my arms – twice! And I didn’t break her, which was a huge relief! :)

A very proud dad holding his daughter for the very first time (and without breaking her to boot!)

As per usual, there are loads of pictures to go with Week 3, and if you are so inclined, you can reach them here. Enjoy!

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About Craig Lotter

South African software architect and developer at Touchwork. Husband to a cupcake baker and father to two little girls. I don't have time for myself any more.