Meet my new granddaughter - Zarriah (Zar-re-ah) Gabrielle Clark. Her due date was early November, but she decided to make an early appearance on August 28, 2011. Zarriah arrived 2 months premature, and has caused Mama to lose quite a bit of sleep the past few weeks. Zarriah only weighted 2lbs. 10 oz., but thankfully she is gaining weight gradually and is doing well.
I was preparing to host my daughter's baby shower the week-end she arrived. It was the strangest week. We had experienced an earthquake, which is quite unusual in my part of the world. The earthquake was followed a week later with Hurricane Irene. Needless to say, I've nicknamed her Storm. The past 2 weeks have been filled with fear, joy, exhaustion, hope, prayer and the list goes on. We're now focused on getting her nursery together and Zarriah gaining weight. She's past the 3 lb. mark now, so hopefully it won't be long before we have her safe at home.
I love the concept of Kangarooing the Baby. It was a new concept for me, my daughter weighted 7 lbs. 13 ozs. when she was born, so premature babies was an area that I was totally unfamiliar with. I still haven't been able to hold my granddaughter, my daughter and SIL are the only 2 people are allowed to handle her besides the nursing staff, but I'm there for support. For those who are unfamiliar as well, it is a concept where the baby is placed on mommy or daddy's bare chest and their head turned so they can hear the parent's heart beat. It also allows for easy nursing and allows the baby to fall into a deep sleep so they conserve energy. I think it has really helped with Zarriah. She wasn't receptive to anyone holding or touching her at birth, but now she loves for mommy to hold and sing to her. I must say that my SIL is doing a great job kangarooing as well. The first time that I saw him remove his shirt and hold her it was hilarious. More fathers should be involved, he is the only man that I've seen holding their baby in the NICU nursery since we've been there. Is it too emotional for men or are they just not involved?
We're working on the nursery now. We think it's important to have a bright, cheery environment to bring Zarriah home to. Our initial plan was to paint the nursery yellow with teddy bears. We now decided on a Beautiful Butterfly theme. We're doing lavender walls with teal, pink and purple butterflies. I'm going to stencil the words "Beautiful Butterfly" around the room. We purchased the crib and changing table and decided to use the rocker we used in Xavier's nursery. Stay tuned for the post on the nursery.