Catherine is currently enjoying what should be her last night at Brigham and Women’s. She is scheduled to make the trip back to Beverly tomorrow morning. Though she has come a long way since last Friday, she still has a ways to go recovery-wise. She’ll stay in the hospital until she can eat on her own. Hopefully that won’t be too long!
We had a great visit with her today and were able to hold her the whole time we were there. The change in her in the last few days has been so wonderful to see. Every day she is so much more improved. Take a look at the pictures from today and see for yourself!
We had a great day at the hospital today! Grandma and Grandpa Wood and Aunt Kirsten and Uncle Mark came in to say their farewells before heading back to Ohio. Catherine rose to the occasion and was without the breathing tube in her lungs. She now only has a little help from a tube in her nose. What an improvement!
She is also off the sedation medication, so she was moving around a little more like a newborn; waving her arms and legs and sticking her tongue out. Because she was no longer using the breathing tube we were finally able to hold her! What a great feeling. She and I settled into the rocking chair and were quite content for a while. By the time Peter got his hands on her she was a little frustrated with the tubes and decided she’d rather be back in her little isolette.
Mother and Daughter
Father and Daughter
More Pics are here.
Here’s the update on Catherine, after 66 hours:
* She is still at [Brigham and Women’s Hospital](http://www.brighamandwomens.org/) in Boston.
* She is currently on a ventilator to assist in her breathing. She was on a higher-grade ventilator, but they were able to take her off of that late on Saturday night. This is good. It means she is able to breathe more on her own, though she does still need some assistance.
* She is still receiving a high concentration of oxygen, as well as various drugs to help keep her comfortable, fight infections, etc.
* We haven’t been able to hold her, and we can’t touch her a whole lot, but we have certainly been able to look at her.
* We don’t know when she will be able to come home. The doctors say that she is doing well, and that she is making good progress, but they really can’t say how long she will need to be down there. They have to take things slowly to minimize the risk of setbacks, so they can’t just put her on a schedule of “change X every Y hours for Z days” and calculate when she will come home. After each change they make in their therapy, they must carefully evaluate her response and keep her stable so that she can regain strength and continue to heal. It is frustrating to be a new parent and to be unable to take her home or even to hold her. But we know that she is in capable hands and we don’t want her to come home one minute earlier than she needs in order to fully recover.
* Finally, we have some [more photos from our visit to the hospital on Saturday](http://prwdot.org/gallery2/v/baby/catherine_day_2/).
Thanks to everyone for their continued prayers, thoughts, support, and concern. As Becky mentioned, you are always welcome to call or email us if you have any questions or just want to chat.
As many of you have probably guessed, our lack of posting this week was directly related to the birth of BabyWood.
So here she is!
Our First Family Pic
Catherine Elinor Wood
(More pics [here](http://prwdot.org/gallery2/v/baby/catherine_day_1/).)
* Born: May 26, 2006 at 4:32 a.m. at Beverly Hospital
* Weight: 7 pounds, 2 ounces
* Length: 20 inches
Labor and delivery went totally fine. We got down towards the end and the doctor broke my water and discovered that the baby had passed her meconium (first bowel movement) in utero. After she was delivered she was taken right up to the Special Care Nursery where they found that she had aspirated much of it into her lungs. They evaluated her and decided that she should be transferred to Brigham and Women’s hospital in Boston. She’s there now receiving oxygen and some medications to clean out her lungs.
Peter and I are doing well now that we’ve had a bit of sleep. The grandparents, aunt and uncles will be in and out this weekend and although I wish Catherine could be with me here, I know she’s in the best place for her now.
Feel free to call or email and I promise we’ll be in touch. Thanks for all of your love and prayers!
Welcome to Due Date Plus One! No, I’m not planning on doing this for every day past the due date… 🙂 Tonight we ate at [Taco Bell](http://www.tacobell.com/) – yes, two people can eat a filling dinner for $4.99. 🙂 Then we did some grocery shopping at Market Basket. I brought along the BeckyCam to [document our outing](http://prwdot.org/gallery2/v/baby/due_date_plus_one/). Check out the photos to see what Market Basket deems as appropriate punishment for evil chickens…
Today is Becky’s ‘official’ due date! As of 2:30 p.m., there’s no baby. Most babies aren’t born on their due dates, and most first time mothers give birth after their due dates, so we weren’t really expecting BabyWood to come today. So, what did we do for fun on the due date? We headed over to Lynch Park for a picnic!
It was very sunny and warm out early on, but then it started to get cold and overcast. We had lunch, looked at the newspaper, and played a game of cribbage. Now we’re at home just hanging out. Doing a bit of cleaning and organizing and preparation, but generally just trying to rest and relax.
As of Becky’s last prenatal appointment (last Tuesday), she was 1 centimeter dilated. That means she was roughly one third of the way through early labor. It’s quite possible that she is currently going through early labor without even being aware of it – she hasn’t reported having any of the typical noticeable symptoms of early labor. Her next prenatal appointment is on Tuesday, so we’ll either have the baby before then, or we’ll at least find out how things are going. 🙂
Becky and I met [Jenny](http://raingirl3179.livejournal.com/) today to see [The Da Vinci Code](http://www.sodarktheconofman.com/).
Becky and Jenny
We had lunch at [Panera](http://www.panera.com/) and then went over to Loews AMC to see the movie. All three of us had already read the book, and enjoyed it. For me, the movie was a bit of a yawner. The action was pretty sparse, the suspense was muted, and there were a lot of eye-rolling scenes. It was a decent bit of Saturday afternoon entertainment (we saw it matinee, so we saved a few bucks), but definitely not as good as the book. I’m not sure what I would have thought of it had I not read the book… it might have been a bit more interesting and surprising.
In any case, we had fun hanging out with Jenny. 🙂 It is kind of bizarre to me that tomorrow is Becky’s due date, and we’re just having a fairly normal weekend. Other than a bit of tiredness, Becky is feeling just fine and there are no overt signs that the baby will be coming within the next few days. So we might as well enjoy ourselves, huh? 🙂
Here are a [few more photos](http://prwdot.org/gallery2/v/events/2006/da_vinci_code/) from the afternoon.
This morning, we finally got around to test-installing the car seat in both of our cars. It is very easy to install in my car, because the Corolla has the [LATCH](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/LATCH) system. No need to use the seat belt, you just use the LATCH belt built into the car seat and hook it to the anchors built into the car. Becky’s car was a little bit trickier. It doesn’t have LATCH, and so we had to use the traditional seat belt method to attach the seat. The hardest part was that we had to install a locking clip on the seat belt so that the lap belt wouldn’t retract. Keep in mind, its important to make sure the car seat is installed correctly, if not, you put your baby at risk of injury, Motor vehicle injuries are a leading cause of death among children in the United States. But many of these deaths can be prevented. Buckling children in age- and size-appropriate car seats, booster seats, and seat belts reduces serious and fatal injuries by more than half. According to the Munley Law Philadelphia Review, car seats are supposed to protect infants from injury during a traffic accident, but they can increase the risk for injury when used inappropriately outside of the car, such as in the home or in a shopping cart, according to a new study. An incorrectly installed car seat by its manufacture sent a friend of mine to Bill Hurst due to a personal Injury.
Now we can legally take our baby home from the hospital… when the baby arrives, that is! (Sorry, no news on that front yet!) In the meantime, here’s some photos of the [car seat installation](http://prwdot.org/gallery2/v/baby/car_seat_installation/).
P.S. — We have consolidated all of the baby-related photos into a new top-level album: [Baby](http://prwdot.org/gallery2/v/baby/). Hopefully we will be filling it up with lots more photos very soon. 🙂 Learn more about the author here.
So tonight, Becky and I are watching [Bee Season](http://us.imdb.com/title/tt0387059/), a drama about a father who tries to avoid his failing marriage by immersing himself in his daughter’s spelling bees. In the opening scene of the movie, a helicopter is carrying a large letter ‘A’ across San Francisco Bay. It’s hanging from what appears to be a very thin cable. The scene cuts back and forth between this helicopter and our family riding in a car across one of the Bay bridges, with the daughter looking up out of the window. Eventually, we find that the helicopter safely delivers the letter to a large sign being assembled to read “Port Of Oakland”. In any case, as we are watching this scene, the following interchange transpires between Becky and me:
* Peter: I bet that “A” is going to drop on their car.
* Becky: I don’t think it’s that kind of movie.
I guess it’s sort of like a [Jeremyism](http://thebiggspicture.org/category/jeremyisms/). 🙂
Please don’t hate me for this: I am thoroughly enjoying the week of rain we’ve had here in Massachusetts. Yup. I love the sound of the rain, the cool air, the quiet atmosphere… Of course, I haven’t had to deal with the problems that most of New England has. We haven’t been flooded, there are no rising rivers nearby, our cars haven’t stalled out in the middle of a puddle… I also haven’t really had to leave the house. We’ve been lucky.
That luck allows me to enjoy the dark, rainy days at home. The coolness and the pitter patter of the rain makes it easy for me to curl up and actually get some decent sleep. I’ve been sleeping better this week than I have in months.
My heart goes out to everyone who has had their lives upended due to the unending rain. Under normal circumstances I might complain about the weather with them. This time around however, I just like it.
On Friday Peter and I went to see Akeelah and the Bee. It was a fantastic movie. Cute, upbeat, serious at times, and overall; entertaining. I even cried at the end. You should go and see it.
Last, but not least, we’ve entered week 40. I was at the doctor today and she said that everything is looking good. That’s what she’s said at every appointment so far 🙂 There’s really nothing too exciting to report on the baby front. Try not to be too disappointed!