A year ago today was one of the happiest days of our lives. A year ago today, we thought we were prepared. A year go today, our world really turned on its head. A year ago today, the babies came home from the NICU.
Saying goodbye to our favorite nurse, Jeannie
I don’t know how people expect parents to actually come home from the hospital with a 4 day old baby after a C-section, much less, a 2 day old baby after a natural delivery. The thought astounds me. I thought we got a pretty good head start, getting 5 weeks of tips and tricks, and I actually missed the busyness of the NICU and its awesome, all knowing nurses. But we quickly learned that everything is different when you get home, and we didn’t know if we were coming or going. We had to keep telling ourselves that our babies were still technically negative 4 weeks old (36 weeks gestation) when they came home, and we couldn’t treat them like or expect the same things of them as term babies. So here we were.
Oh my God I’m exhausted.
For 3 days we set up camp in our bedroom, leaving only to go to the bathroom, shower, and make a quick sandwich in the kitchen. The days ran in 3 hour increments: Change, nurse, bottle feed, pump, rest. Change, nurse, bottle feed, pump, rest. And the resting was minimal, because the first four activities took so long. It seemed like as soon as one feeding cycle was over, it was almost time for he next to begin. But in between those necessary tasks, we got brief peeks of their beautiful little eyes and relished at how sweet they looked sleeping side by side.
Starting to think it’s all worth it…
When you’re admitted to the NICU, the doctors tell you to prepare to be there until your actual 40 week due date, although preemies, especially twins, often go home earlier. We were born on March 24th, and our due date was May 26th, 9 whole weeks later. One night when I was visiting the NICU, the girls and I made a deal. During kangaroo care with each girl, I made a pact with them that they needed to try their hardest to be home by the end of April. We were discharged on April 30th. I guess they listened.
Definitely. Definitely worth it.