The morning the boys were to be born we found ourselves in my hospital room with a knock on the door. Enter in the neonatologist, I can’t remember her name. She was bright, bubbly, blonde and informative.
Her outlook was bright for our boys. She gave us expectations, they should come out crying. Dad will be able to take pictures, and I’ll be able to see them for a quick second. Dad will be able to go with the boys, I’ll be able to go see them after I’m out of recovery. It was a lot of information, but she made it so clear that the NICU was exactly where they needed to be. She even gave us an expectation of how short or long our visit may be. I wouldn’t have ever guessed that this woman dealt with sick babies every single day.
I found myself in recovery after wondering what the boys were doing, how they were doing, what I was missing. Luckily, the same bright, bubbly doctor returned to me and gave me updates. Twin A, Dax was on a machine to help him breathe. It’s called a CPAP, but I shouldn’t worry, it’s fairly common for 32 weekers. Twin B, was much smaller and most likely needed a PICC line to receive fluids. She had consents for all the just in case moments. I signed away.
Post recovery, the nurses wheeled me to NICU. I couldn’t touch them. I couldn’t hold them. I couldn’t help them. It was heartbreaking. But, I stood strong. It was for the best. The next day I felt good enough to walk to the nicu, by myself. It was a relief to see them, to know everything was “okay”. But, as the days moved on…the harder it got.
I was released just two days after the c-section. I went home…without my babies. We stopped by the NICU on the way out. And, while I was determined to have a strong mindset…leaving just hurt. I had a few tears but it worked out. I even went home to our Baby Q, where friends and family came to support us. That night was the first night I truly cried.
⚠️Fun fact, you can call and check on your babies 24/7! Use it, ask questions, bond with your nurses, do whatever you can to make this moment in your life work for you. ⚠️
It’s been only a few more days but, I’m gonna be honest. It’s not getting any easier. Just yesterday, I ran errands and was almost unable to see the boys for a whole day. The guilt set in, the tears overwhelmed me. I cried all the way to Zoram’s work. I cried all the way to my work to pick up paperwork. I cried all the way to my appointment. I held back tears through my appointment, and when I finally got out in time to be able to see my boys (for less than an hour), I cried then too. If there were less people in the NICU when I was in with the boys I would have cried right there too.
It’s so hard to be pulled in multiple directions. I have to be able to be there for boys, but be home for my girls. I have to be able to get them whatever they need, but also be able to afford gas to drive 45 minutes one way to see them. I have to be able to spend time with my girls, but also be able to spend time with my husband to visit the boys.
I’ve tried creating a schedule, but if you can imagine that’s a bit difficult. I’m a bit hard headed to ask for help, it’s harder than you think. We’re juggling a seven person household, with others who want to visit and see the boys. So we’re sorry if we have to say, “no”. We’re sorry that we’re emotionally unavailable right now, and physically. We’re not sorry for giving our all for our boys. The NICU makes you, it breaks you, and we’re only 5 days into our journey.
I’ve written this to be honest with myself, and with every one who keeps asking how I’m doing. I’m not depressed. I don’t have the baby blues. A piece of me is away from home, and until they come home the stress, exhaustion and utter craziness will keep my emotions on edge. This NICU thing isn’t for the faint of heart.