Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Foster's Birth Story Part 3

I was just about to sit down and write that I knew a time would eventually come where I would be able to sit down and write, but then Foster started crying. So now I'm nursing and writing. And I think most of the time my drive to write is all in my own head and not about the circumstances. I've written posts with children at my feet or laundry piled high, but there has to be a certain level of consciousness for me to even feel like writing. And that's why writing with small children and a newborn can be difficult. Andrew told me while I was talking to him today that I was very "looky outty" today. I laughed. He said he was glad I laughed. Because that's what he tries to do when he knows I'm tired and in my own head. I always people watch when out and about, but today I guess I kept looking out and not really returning as quickly. I actually completely zoned out watching a girl at lunch that I completely missed Andrew saying a prayer for our food. I'm probably just tired. Actually I have been tired for quite awhile now.

Looking at these pictures my first thought is how I wish I could be one of those girls who really looks pretty much like herself after having a baby, with maybe just a bit of weight added to her. I'm always puffy. Actually really puffy with Blanche and this time with Foster. Which is a sign of preeclampsia. My hands and arms were swelling, and my doctor was always worried about my face. I told one doctor when I was being put on bedrest that every time I looked in the mirror I thought my nose looked funny. So when I looked at pictures of myself in the hospital I did not want to post them. I don't see myself as much. I can see my swollen hands in all the pictures. But, in the end, it is an honest part of the story, and part of the beauty of the sacrifice it takes for me to bring life into this world. And really, I've come to really like the first couple of pictures Andrew took of me nursing Foster.

Trying to think back to our time in the hospital feels like work a little bit. The other night I was trying to remember even the day after we got out from the hospital. I kept thinking in my head that I knew I was drinking coffee, but I honestly couldn't recall enough about my day to remember where I had bought the coffee. When did I get that coffee? I just remember carrying it around the ER waiting room while they checked Foster's bilirubin count. Then I remembered all of the sudden. We had been at Target between grabbing lunch with all three kids and then heading across the city to the children's ER to check his numbers. Because it was Labor Day and other offices were closed. We were buying a bottle for Foster. Because in the chaos of it all no one could find any bottles that had been saved from the girls. We had all these little bottles of formula from the hospital, which while there we had little plastic nipples that went on. But then once we were home, where were those plastic bottle nipples? Where were the old bottles? We were told we needed to supplement for a bit longer to really push fluids and help his number come down. So basically, my first day "home" from a week at the hospital was spent running around the city with three kids. And now I know why no one really remembers these days that well. Because by the time the day is over, I just want to go to bed. I don't have a lot of time to rethink the day. Or maybe I don't even want to.

Our week long stay in the hospital and NICU felt similar. The days went by fast and slow. Anytime I would try and nap two or three people would end up needing to come in and talk to me. Our time there really was not long at all, and now that it is all over it feels almost anticlimactic to even really go into too much detail. There were lots of talks with doctors and nurses and just wishing to go home. There was just always so much unknown. I never knew really if I'd be leaving Foster or staying with him. I wanted all of us to be together. The girls and all of us.

I could never be too ungrateful though. Because Foster's bed was at the end of the NICU. In his own little light room. So that meant after scrubbing down we would walk through all the tiny little babies in their incubators and hear all the beeping of monitors. Each baby had their own nurse. Life felt so very fragile. It made me very thankful to turn the corner and see my baby at over six pounds, even a month early. And to see him sucking away on that little orange paci. Healthy and alert. Well, besides getting a few things under control. And now with him on my lap and becoming more alert each day, I know that these newborn days will feel very similar to the hospital. I will remember I was tired, and there were so many things to do, but I'll be thankful... and I'm sure it won't even really feel all that bad.

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