T continues to improve in leaps and bounds. Yesterday his feeding tube came out and today I got to breastfeed him again! He latched on immediately and sucked away like a champ. I’m only supposed to feed him 1-2x per day at the bre.ast though for now because we will need to fortify my milk with powdered formula for awhile to make sure he gains enough weight. Alas, it appears I cannot get rid of the pump that easily.
As long as he gains weight by tomorrow morning’s weigh in he will be home by tomorrow night.
I don’t know how many times I’ve said this over the past three weeks but this doesn’t feel real. Could I really have my baby at home by this time tomorrow? Really?
Paul and I went out to dinner at a wine bar tonight since it could be our last night out for awhile. We joked about how we need to take advantage of the most expensive babysitters we’ll ever have. He asked me if I was nervous at all about bringing the baby home and honestly, I’m not. I was starting to feel so terrified in the weeks before he was born, wondering what would it be like having a baby? Could we handle it? Would we suck at it? Would I resent him for how big of a change it was to our lives?
But after everything we’ve been through, all those fears? Completely melted away. I’m simply overjoyed that we’ll have him here at home with us, happy, healthy and very much alive.
I’ve been wanting to write about how much I wish I could have made it just a few weeks longer into my pregnancy. Not just to give T more time to grow, growth-wise I think he was actually pretty ready to come out (lungs mature, keeping himself warm, eating well, etc.), but because I really loved being pregnant. I loved my baby growing inside me, feeling him move…I loved being his whole world. I was lucky, I had a good pregnancy (up until the end that is), and who knows maybe I would have hated those last few weeks, but I find myself in quiet moments longing to have experienced them. Sometimes I even find myself staring jealously at the heavily pregnant bellies that are abundant in the hospital hallways.
I know that the c-section was the right thing to do under the circumstances. Anything else would have been an unnecessary risk to T that neither Paul nor I was willing to take. But still, I find myself wishing I had had a chance at “normal,” to have gone through labor, to have had my baby with me in the hospital room instead of having to struggle into a wheelchair each time I wanted to see him in those first few days. I wish that we didn’t have to learn what it’s like to be NICU parents, I wish we didn’t have to see our baby so sick or sign so many consent forms so that they could run all those tests on him. I wish things had gone differently.
But I’m so thankful for the people who took care of him, who took care of all of us really, my doctors, his doctors, the whole nursing staff. Yesterday he had a nurse who had never seen him before, she commented about how he had a fan club, that other nurses kept stopping by to visit him and exclaim over how good he looked. Every day that we’re there, nurses and doctors come by and tell us how happy they are to see how far he’s come. The staff at this hospital is so amazing and our family will be forever grateful to them.
And as much as I wish things had gone differently, when I look at this face….
None of that seems to matter at all.