It's been one year since Robby came 6 weeks early and had to be in the NICU for 23 days. To honor and reflect upon that time, I started sifting through my "journal entries" from that time that became therapeutic emails. So here's to all you who have had children for a few days, weeks and months in the NICU. I especially dedicate this to my Aunt Carrie. We seemed to experience quite the same path, including the milk production of a larger grass eating animal those first few months.
Ahhhh....the NICU. There are several ways (depending on the moment)
that I (Amy) like to describe the NICU:
A bad carnival for helpless children with silly little lights, sounds and bells.
A parenting fishbowl.
A well-staffed, brilliant place where children who would otherwise not survive are miraculously able to make it.
The Seiffert living room for the past 2 weeks and maybe 2 more to go.
Note: When I say "living room" think sad, suffocating screens they put up for me to nurse in a "better, private" environment, 19 other helpless, sweet-faced babies crying as the nurses do their vitals, various flourescent lights (just like my own home...oh, wait.....), other weeping moms trying to cope....you know, that super home-y feel you have going on right now in your living room.
I waffle between loving the NICU and the excellent nurses to wanting to unhook my little turkey and stick him in my purse and just get outta dodge....like some kind of frantic, foaming lunatic.
I am sure my hormones are helping here.
Sandy asked me where God was in it all of it for me. I am ravenously hungry for the Psalms. I skipped church the other morning and Pastor King David shepherded me well. I feel like small, poignant phrases run through my head from the Psalms like: Preserve me, O God....the helpless find comfort in Him...recount the mighty deeds the Lord has done....
Reminders that God is in control, is bigger than the NICU and knew all of this was coming.
All to say...Robby is doing well. He is super sweet and adorable and "fiesty and strong...with a good set of lungs" as the nurses say. He is strong and doing better each day. The doctor says he just needs more time to learn one last thing that Sandy mentioned: the suck, swallow, breathe part of life related to eating that 34-weekers have a hard time with. So, it could be 2 days or 2 weeks. Please pray for the shorter.
We would like to be home. Like a "normal" family. I would like to stop getting taxied up to the NICU, to stop eating 60 cent mashed potatoes in the cafeteria (which are not bad, really) and to be free. On another note, my parents have rocked. They have fed us every night, done our laundry, run errands, taken me to the hospital so I can nurse him...it's pretty incredible being just 5 miles from the hospital from here.
I will be trying to answer my phone more...and I really appreciate the "amy, i love you, don't call me back, really." messages. Those are great and even more motivating to call back, actually.
Thank you for all the cards, gifts, visits, plant watering, house cleaning, messages, facebooks and emails. I feel overwhelmed with your love.
I cannot wait for you to all meet him and hold him...after you wash your hands....visitors are welcome....call first.... :)
much love and affection,