30, Pregnant and Diagnosed with Breast Cancer

Welcome to the Oesch Family Blog. This blog will allow you to follow along as our family grows, we tackle my breast cancer and live life to its fullest.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Dear Emma

We have had a busy week! Yesterday you turned 11 weeks old (only 4 weeks gestational). You continue to amaze us each and every day and we are reminded of what a true miracle you are to us. You go to the doctor in the next couple of weeks, however mommy and daddy guess that you have surpassed 9 lbs.

Mommy started chemotherapy again this week and although it is only a 30 minute drip she hates being away from you but knows that you and daddy are having a good time together. Chemo was in the morning and then I had to return to the hospital that afternoon as I had to have some fluid removed from my breast. Daddy had to go back to work so you came with me! You had so much fun! First of all, you are really beginning to enjoy your car seat. We went to introduce you to mommy's chemo nurses in the Cancer Center and then we headed to my appointment in the Breast Health Center. While I was having my procedure (ultrasound guided needle removal of 5 oz of fluid that had filled the cavity where the lumpectomy was performed) done you played with the nurses. They wheeled you around the office and took you out of your car seat to have a better look and pass you around!

Then we were off to visit your nurses in the NICU. You saw Cathy, Amelia and Susie! You were so at peace, so comfortable with all of them. I believe you recognized their voices and gentle touch as they each cared for you for the 2.5 weeks that you were in the hospital. They loved seeing you and can't believe how big you have gotten, that you are eating 4 oz at each feeding and how pink your color is! You are our rock star!

We had fabulous weather this week in St. Louis and were able to go to the park for some exercise and fresh air. We met your cousins and Aunt Kristen there. While Cora played on the swings and jungle gym, Avery was very interested in playing with you. Therefore, Kristen and I set up a play date for later in the week. Cora "loves Baby Emma" and continued to give you kisses on your forehead.

Cora holding you.

Cora "loves Baby Emma"

Aunt Kristen and all the girls
Mommy hasn't been cleared by her doctors to begin exercising again after her surgery so we also went to the mall to shop for your Easter basket items as well as let mom get some more exercise. We spent 2.5 hours at the mall! You are such a laid back baby that you didn't mind at all and event cooperated with eating in the Family Lounge.

As the week continued, the weather began to get colder and eventually led to a Spring snow storm on Saturday. We were going to go furniture shopping however because of the snow and cold, we stayed in and had the best family day!
Poor flowers.

The snow looks beautiful on the trees!
Over the past week, you have definitely been more alert between feedings and we are able to get in about three 30-45 minutes of playtime. You have begun to sleep 6+ hours at night too and this is further helping you establish night from day and we are starting to see a nap schedule develop. This is great as mommy returns to work in about three weeks and you will go to school.

You are really vocal and will have a "conversation" with us when you are playing. You are beginning to distinguish the inflections in our voices and will coo in return. Mommy will have to get some videos to share. Here are some things that we do during playtime:
  • Play on playmat and grab the rings hanging from above
  • Play on blanket with rattles and listen to music and watch the flashing lights on your favorite toy
  • Pushing up on tummy to build strong arm muscles
  • Practicing rolling over from back to tummy (with help from mommy)
  • Read books- you really like The Peace Book and Ferdinand the Bull right now
  • You have discovered the phone! It is a rattle too and you like to grasp onto it and shake it

    Hello? This is Emma.
  • Sing songs and dance with mommy. You like a variety of music from lullabies to Kids songs to Lady Antebellum to Garth Brooks to Eminem (I know, a bit much for a baby, but you love the beat of his songs)
  • Look at photos of animals and hear the sounds they make. This love of animals started with the black and white book of the different animals and this week we downloaded an app for the iPad that displays many kinds of animals and plays their sounds; your favorites are the owl and baby chicks.
You really like your binky and it is all you want when you get fussy at night (because you are sleepy) so mommy was working with you to teach you how to grab onto your binky and place it back in your mouth. This is obviously an advanced task, but you did do it once! Here is the photo after you got it back in your mouth. We will continue to work on this.
All your favorite things: Binky, Baby Einstein music and lights, and crinkly blue Elephant.
Aunt Aubree and Uncle Taylor went to Baltimore this weekend to visit her parents and I wanted to show you the ocean, so they sent us a picture from the boat. You were fascinated by it. You are a water baby for sure- it shows in the bathtub! I can't wait for this summer to play in the pool, go on boat rides at the Lake and get you to the beach soon! Maybe we can go with Mumsy this Fall to California so you can play in the sand and see the Pacific Ocean!
Atlantic Ocean!
This next week is going to be another big week too! Mommy starts Physical Therapy and Occupational Therapy for her left arm, has a follow-up appointment with the surgeon to be released for radiation and meets with the Radiation Oncologist for a re-consult (as I haven't seen him since my diagnosis) and a CAT-scan to receive my radiation markings. It is like a small tattoo. The only tattoo that mommy will ever receive!!

But more fun, we are going to celebrate Aunt Angela's birthday and you will meet your cousin, Will. All of the cousins will be together for the first time- you, Will, Cora and Avery! I can't wait to take photos!

We love you, Emma!
Mommy and Daddy

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