Andrea’s first night at the hospital was spent under bili lights, because a blood test confirmed that she had ABO incompatibility, which causes jaundice. (Kelley has O blood, and Andrea has either A or B blood.) It was very sad to watch her in her sunglasses under the lights. We couldn’t really hold her or anything — she could only come out of the lights to eat. The jaundice made her too sleepy to nurse, so starting Monday morning, I had to pump and feed her breastmilk via a syringe.
Her bili levels started around 9.8 Sunday night, then went up to 10.2 by Monday night, but the doctor considered that stable, so the nurse was able to take half of the bili lights away Monday night. But we had to supplement with a little formula overnight because the pediatrician was worried about dehydration from the UV lights. Overnight, Paul and I noticed a burning smell all of a sudden – turns out it was coming from the bili light blanket that she had to lay on! That was scary. But it did provide some time for us to hold Andrea and take pictures of her outside of the bili lights, while the nurse got us a new bili blanket.
Tuesday morning, the pediatrician came back to check on Andrea, and she turned off the lights so that we could see if we had gotten Andrea’s jaundice under control. Once the lights were off, we were able to stop supplementing with the formula. Tuesday afternoon when they rechecked her bili levels and they had gone up to 11, but the pediatrician said as long as they were under 12, we could go home. The nurse ran in and told us the good news as soon as she found out the results. She was so happy for us, and we were thrilled that we could go home with our baby.