Straight out of the womb Ruby had to battle with the foe of most newborns, bilirubin. Excessive bilirubin levels in newborns is the cause of jaundice, or the yellowing of the skin. First of all, Ruby was not yellow when she was first born. She was actually a beautifully appropriate shade of fuschia*. The nurses joked that is how we named her Ruby, because she was bright red. When the red started to fade away, she took on a hue of yellow. We joked that maybe her name really should have been Marigold. But it was determined (through a series of daily heal pricks to draw blood) that Ruby was jaundiced and needed phototherapy. So into the space age phototherapy bed she went. And she HATED it. And her bilirubin levels went up. And the pediatrician told us we needed to do better.
So when the light bed didn't work we ordered a special blanket that would wrap around her middle and deliver the necessary light while we could still hold her, nurse her and snuggle her. Once the blanket arrived, we got a little creative with our light therapy. For instance...
Proper eye protection is a must when battling bilirubin.
You can see the light blanket wrapped around her here. Before our third appointment with the pediatrician, Joe and I sat down with little Ruby to have a pep talk. A "let's beat this bilirubin" pep talk. And then POW, Ruby kicked bilirubin to the curb.
And now she is back to being Ruby, and not Marigold.
*One theory of why she is so red is because she had a rather big umbilical cord. She could have gotten too much/a lot of blood into her, and therefore had more bilirubin to break down. Her large umbilical cord might also result in Ruby having an outie belly button.