Tuesday, April 7, 2009

A Day In The Life...

Jimmie has gained a few grams today, but yesterday he gained a whole ounce so we are happy he didn't lose.

I thought it would be cool for me to kind of give you an idea of a day in the life of Supermom- Rachael.

I didn't think to ask Rachael the details on Justin's schedule. I know he is up there at some point every day that he's not at the fire department. And sometimes(once a week?) he spends the majority of the day in the NICU and gives Rach a break.

So- first of all Rachael pumps her breast milk every 3 hours around the clock.

She arrives at that hospital most mornings around 8:30am. She then holds Jimmie for about 3 hours until noon.

During that time she and Jimmie have a nursing session and the Doctor usually comes by during his rounds and does his daily exam of Jimmie. The Doctor looks at his charts of the last 24 hours and Rachael discusses everything with the Doctor. Then she eats lunch which she has usually packed from home.

After lunch she goes back into Jimmie's room. Then she usually holds him for another 3 hours from 3pm to 6pm. During that time they have their 2nd nursing session. The Nurse Practitioner usually makes rounds in the afternoon, stops in to look at Jimmie and his charts and again Rachael discusses all things medical and developmental.

Rachael likes to stay through shift change at 6:30pm so she can be there for the nurses giving each other the evening report. This way she can meet Jimmie's night nurse and discuss anything or share any desires or concerns about his care for the night.

She usually leaves the hospital around 7:30pm goes home and eats dinner and goes straight to bed. However if it's a night where Jimmie is going to receive a bath she stays and gives him his bath. On those nights she gets home around 9:30pm. She usually calls that NICU around 1:30am when she pumps to talk to the night nurse and check on how Jimmie is doing. Things they might discuss are his bowel movements, temperature, oxygen setting, whether he's having desats or bradys etc.. Sometimes she calls again later with her 2nd middle of the night pumping.

She rarely deviates from this schedule maybe once a week she'll come teach an hour at the studio. She comes straight from the hospital and goes straight back. And I think she's attending a service at their church once a week.

There is no eating or drinking allowed in Jimmie's room. There is a parent's room in the NICU where you can get a snack and a drink. There are no bathroom facilities in the NICU. You have to leave the NICU to go to the bathroom and every time you re-enter you have to wash your hands. This is true for all of the NICU staff, Doctors and Nurses as well.

So she holds Jimmie 6 hours a day and is in the NICU at least 12 hours a day.

And she does this with a happy and grateful heart. She has moments of sadness, annoyance and exhaustion to be sure, but I am just in complete awe of what she is doing right now. She is an amazing person and an amazing mommy to Jimmie.

Thank you for your prayers for Justin, Rachael and Jimmie!



  1. Now we know the true definition of a "Superwoman"!

  2. Rachael,

    I think you're amazing. I wish that all babies could have a mommy like you. No doubt part of the reason that Jimmie's doing so well is that he has so much time with his mama and daddy there holding him, loving him, and making sure the medical staff do what's best for him. He's such a blessed little guy.


    You're just as amazing. I know it's got to be hard going to work for 24-hour shifts, not being able to see Jimmie or Rachael all day. And having to juggle work, living at somebody else's house, and days in the NICU. I can't imagine how exhausted you both must be.

    We love you all so much. You're in our thoughts and prayers all day long.

    Adrian and Janelle

  3. Wow, Rachael is truly a Supermom! I love the pictures! Jimmie looks like he's doing really well. We're praying for all three of you guys!
    -Mary Gates & Family

  4. Prayers this morning for Rachel - from another nursing/preemie mom in California. Our preemie is a full time nurser now...and 12 pounds too!

  5. Amber:

    Rachel is truly blessed to have a sister like you! You definitely know how to use words to build her up and encourage her. I think you are truly amazing.


  6. Awesome job Rachael!!!!! You're a great mommy and doing a spectacular job!