For those of you whom have had a baby in NICU, will understand how tiring it is. We drove to and from the hospital everyday to be there for every feeding, to try and stimulate my breasts by Hudson’s sucking. You’ve all probably heard the question “has your milk come in yet?” Almost sounds as if you put in an order from the milkman and you are now awaiting on your order. I felt so much pressure from everyone who constantly asked this question. My milk finally arrived around the 6th day of taking Eglonyl .
I remember telling my husband when we drove to the hospital that these two syringes were very important. If it was up to me I would have probably bubble wrapped it. Everyday we left home at around 9, to be there for the 10:00 feeding, then stayed there for the 12:00; 14:00;16:00; 18:00; 20:00 feeding. In between the times I breastfed Hudson, I also had to pump. It was so exhausting and draining, both emotionally and physically. At one of the 14:00 sessions, one of the nurses said that we should skip the next sessions and that I should go home and rest, because I was not looking too good. It was very difficult to make the decision of not going to the hospital the evening, but I knew if I didn’t rest, it would have an effect on my milk supply. Each night one of the nurses would send me a photo update, and I will forever be thankful to them for doing that. It put my mind at ease, knowing that Hudson was in good hands.
We were also taught by one of the nurses on how to give Hudson a bath. She showed us the one evening and I remember recording it and taking mental notes on every step. Even though we covered this topic in prenatal classes bathing a doll and an actual human are two different things. My husband studied the video the night we got home and the next evening just before feeding time, he gave Hudson his second bath.
This has now become their Daddy and Son time, and my husband gives him a bath every night that he comes home. After about a week and a half his Pediatrician arranged for me to sleep in and to see how I would cope with Hudson on my own. It all felt like a test, and if you know me, I like to be well prepared always. I forgot to mention that my husband and I also had to take a mandatory CPR class at the hospital for babies that were in the NICU Unit and that I would be tested on this while I spent the night with Hudson in hospital.
Hudson and I had our own room, but my husband could only stay until 20:00 and then had to go home. Honestly I was scared and excited, but most importantly I missed my mom. I wouldn’t be able to text or call her to ask what to do if he starts crying uncontrollably. I just closed my eyes and said a prayer and prayed for her presence to encapsulate me and to keep me calm. The nurses came to check up on Hudson and I every two hours and they were very happy. I also aced my CPR test!
I did not sleep a wink that night, I just stalked Hudson’s crib in wonder, knowing that the bundle right there was brought into this world with so much love. The next morning the Pediatrician came to check up on us and she was very happy with his weight gain and said that we could go HOME!!!! Elated with joy I jumped up and down and gave her a big hug. My husband got Hudson dressed and in his pram.
But before we could leave, we had to make one more turn at NICU . All the nurses have come to love Little Hudson and all of them wanted to say goodbye and have one last look at the baby with all the hair. I will forever be thankful at the staff at Panorama. I will always be thankful for all the prayers and well wishes, but most importantly, I will always be thankful for my husband. His support, his encouragement and the endless love he has for Hudson and I is indescribable.
My birth story ended on a happy note. I was able to take my baby home after a week and a half of being in NICU. But there are Mommies out there whose babies had to stay in NICU for so much longer. There are Mommies, that due to complications left the hospital empty handed and it is to these Mommies that I would like to give tribute to in the conclusion of Hudson’s Birth Story. Being able to give life is not easy for all, and for some, its something that they will never be able to experience. My wish and hope is that even in your darkest hour, infertility, miscarriage; premature baby in NICU, applying for adoption, busy with fertility treatments that you never lose hope. That you never give up. That you will be carried through this journey with support from loved ones and your faith. Most importantly that you will know that you are not alone.