This past week has been full of doctor's visits. I am worn out. On Monday we traveled to Tampa General Hospital to get sweat tests done. The sweat test was to confirm whether or not the girls had cystic fibrosis. I'm not sure that I mentioned this to a few people other than immediate family and a couple of close friends, but when Hannah was in the NICU the neonatologists thought she may have had cystic fibrosis due to her meconium plug. That was a devestating blow to a new mom, but I didn't say much publicly because I didn't want to cause needless worry. They did a genetics test on both girls to see if they had it, but it turns out they are only carriers, which means that at least me or George is a carrier. After a blood test, it turns out that I am a carrier and we aren't sure which side of my family it comes from. It was a huge surprise to us to know that we carried that gene. George hasn't been tested yet so we're not sure if he is also a carrier. Basically to put it simply, both parents must be carriers of the gene in order to have a baby with cystic fibrosis. Even with both being carriers, there is only a 25% chance that the child will have the disease. If only one parent has the gene then there is no possible way the child can get CF. Apparently there are millions (minus this informed carrier) of people walking around as carriers and they do not know it. That shouldn't cause alarm; it's just a fact. Even though the girls' original genetics test came up negative for CF, they still could have it because it doesn't test for every single possibility. The sweat test is the only way to completely rule it out. All they do is induce sweat on the arm and then collect it for 1/2 hour. It doesn't hurt whatsoever. I think the most painful part of the entire experience was having to take care of two tired babies by myself. We survived though. We didn't really think they had CF, but the pediatrician wanted us to be completely sure so we indulged her. The results were negative. Again not a huge shock, but still a reason to get down on our knees and thank God.
We also had our last pulmonary specialist visit today. After today, no more synagis shots. Poor Kate (15 lbs. 1 oz.) had reached the point of needing two shots because her weight was too much. They can only inject so much into one thigh. Hannah (12 lbs. 11 oz.) was thanking Jesus that she was the little one. RSV season officially ends in April so we will be putting the girls in the nursery at church starting at the beginning of April. We are done with all of our NICU followup and are regular babies now. Their next scheduled doctor's visit is with the pediatrician for their 9 month well baby visit.
I was sorting through all of the clothes they have outgrown and came across their preemie clothes. I sat there and stared for a couple of minutes because I couldn't believe they ever fit into those clothes, much less that they were too big on them. I just feel so amazingly blessed by God choosing to give them life everyday.
Here are some recent pictures that we've taken.
Daddy & Kate-sleepyheads Kate Hannah-first time in the Exersaucer