Wednesday, October 31, 2012

A year ago: October 31st, 2011

Of course everyone knows today is Halloween. The best Halloween of my life was spent without costumes, without crazy makeup, without scary movies, without black and orange, and without candy (oh never mind that, there was candy, Mike made sure of it!). It was spent with beeping monitors, scrub ins, pumping, and most importantly being with my baby boy. And even though Marcellus's first (and only) Halloween was last year, this year would have been the first Halloween at home. The first Halloween we could have dressed him up. I wonder what costume we would have gotten for him. We probably would have dressed him up like a little pumpkin and look back at his time in the NICU wearing his pumpkin hat. We probably would have even taken him up there to show him off to the nurses we had.

A year ago today: Monday, October 31, 2011
Marcellus was 3 days old and that night he finally got to meet his grandma and his auntie. They literally drove straight from MN to the hospital without stopping. 

I have previously written some of these memories out. Here's what I wrote to Marcellus when he would have been about 5 months old.

Dear Marcellus,
Happy Halloween! Daddy brought an orange bucket and put candy in it for the nurses. He actually gave it to them over the weekend, but made sure they had enough for Halloween. He got one for both my nurses and your nurses.  Paul made you a jack-o-lantern that I put in your “room”. Tawny brought it to you when she visited the day before.

I don’t remember when Daddy got back to the hospital, but it was sometime in the morning. I was still working on getting milk from my right breast. It was really engorged and hurt, but I was determined to get that milk flowing for you. 

We spent the whole morning with you. I k-cared you. Love it. Always loved k-caring with you. My favorite thing to do. I wasn’t wearing the best shirt for it. It smushed you.  You cried some I think because you were uncomfortable. I’m sorry you were uncomfortable, but it was kind of nice to hear you cry. You rarely cried and to mommy it was a beautiful sound. Daddy was being silly that day and embarrassing the both of us. You have such a very silly Daddy. We had fun being in the NICU with you though. We were able to laugh and joke and just enjoy being with you. 

You kind of looked like a goober this day. I don’t know why, but you had your mouth hung open and drooling most of the day. We were kind of making fun of and mocking you. But don’t worry baby boy, it was all in love. You were still on the billi lights this day, but I made sure to take your shades off when I held you. Even though your eyes weren’t open yet, I had to see as much of your little (gooberish) face that I could. 

Holding you must have been great for my milk, because right after I held you the milk was flowing! I fixed that annoying right boob. It was a milk maker now (but still not as good as the left one, that was my best one). 

Daddy and I both spent the afternoon with you as well. Grandma, Auntie Katie, and Cousin Nolan were on their way. This was one of the last days for awhile it was just going to be just Daddy and me there.  I don’t remember all the details of being there that afternoon with you. I just know we would sit and stare at you. There’s a video of me just sitting next to your isolette, not even really doing much of anything. But looking at you. You had the hiccups that day. Daddy got them on video. You had the hiccups a lot. I would feel bad for you. Did they bother you? The last couple of weeks in utero you had the hiccups a lot too. I wonder why.

Later that evening is when Grandma, Auntie Kate, and Nolan arrived! They drove straight through from MN to come see you. They came to my room first. I think they may have gotten there during shift change. It was good to see them and I was getting excited to show you off to them. 

Around 8pm I took Grandma to meet you. She was really excited and nervous to see you. She was nervous to see you hooked up to everything. I got it on video. I was so excited to introduce her to you and show you off. I wanted her to walk around your corner and just exclaim “oh he’s so beautiful!” but she was actually really quiet. She was just taking you in and in awe of you. 

I'm pretty sure this is Grandma's hand you're holding. It's hard to tell though because Mommy has hands just like Grandma's. Just like your hands are just like Daddy's. You were under the billi lights here for jaundice, that's why you're rocking the shades. You also have what we called the "goober" look going on. Mouth hung open and drooling all over the place. Don't worry baby boy, we think you're just as beautiful as always even if you were looking like a goob! 
I must have taken Auntie Katie in next to meet you. I don’t remember so much of that though if I did. I should get them to write down how they felt seeing you for the first time. I know they both love you so so very much and are so very thankful to have gotten to meet you. They didn’t stay too long that night because they had literally driven for almost 24 hours. They needed to sleep. So they got a hotel room just down the road. This was the last night I was in the hospital so they wanted to have a place close by that we could all go to. 

After they left, Daddy and I went back to spend time with you. They had talked to us about putting in a PICC line. They told us there was little risk to doing it and that they do the process all the time. I was nervous about signing the paper for it. I didn’t know if it was what was best for you. Daddy and I talked about it, but we ultimately decided to. There would have been risks if you didn’t do it because they would have had to move your IV around all the time. Plus you had a low lying line in your umbilical cord. It wasn’t in there very well, so they had to move it. Did we make the best decision? It was our first big decision for you as your parents (well after the c-section). 

After Grandma, Auntie, and Nolan left they were going to try to do it. They had us sign two forms. Just in case it didn’t work the first time (which is apparently common).  Daddy was trying to stay at the hospital with me until we could go see you and tell you goodnight and sing to you. We didn’t think your PICC line was going to take that long. Neither did they.  I told them to call my room when we could come back down. Forever seemed to go by and they didn’t. I called them multiple times to check on how you were doing. They tried to put it in your arm first. Maybe even in both arms, but for some reason it didn’t work. Eventually they put it in your left leg. It took a really long time though and Daddy just couldn’t stay awake. He had to go home to let Perk out and went there to sleep. 

I was checking out the next day. I stayed extra long in the hospital just so I could be close to you. So I could come visit you in the middle of the night (which I did…shh, Daddy wanted me to be resting and sleeping but most of the nights I came to see you in the middle of the night). That night I was so impatient waiting for them to put your PICC line in. It was the last night I was going to be able to just mosey on down the hall and come see you. 

I don’t remember the exact time I got there, but it was late. After 1am for sure. Maybe 1:30am or so. I got to kangaroo care with you. Daddy was going to, but since he had to go home I got to twice in one day. I was excited about that! Tammy was your nurse that night. It was the first time she was. She has a son that died, he had Potter's syndrome. I never thought I would have that in common with her. 

It was so quiet in the NICU that late at night. It was dark and we were cozy all snuggled up. I talked to you a lot that night. I told you about how I had to leave the hospital the next day and I just started crying. I couldn’t imagine being away from you like that. Not being able to just go down the hall to see you. Having to spend the whole night away from you. Tammy heard me crying and asked if I was okay. I told her about that and she comforted me. It was going to be okay. 

I treasure those moments with you. Just you and me my sweet baby boy. Mommy and Marcellus.  I love you! xoxox

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