Rosie's Birth Story - NICU
As I was saying... Dane was with baby girl while she was recovering and I was in the recovery room being woken from the most glorious nap I have ever taken, to 10-13 nurses and doctors standing around me, one woman beating the crud out of my chest and another yelling my name and asking if I knew where I was… I knew exactly where. I just had my baby and I tried to tell them but I couldn’t keep my eyes open, and I couldn’t seem to talk to them. I kept trying to open my eyes and just talk to them but I literally couldn't do anything so I just nodded. then I heard it, I heard Dane's voice, "Ali, it's Dane you alright babe?" I started to come to a little more and I felt his hand on mine. I could now see the room swarming with doctors and nurses who all started to look less and less concerned and some filtered out. I could feel my arms now but they were still so heavy, then I had this relentless itch on my bicep. With my eyes still closed I reached for the hand nearest that bicep and asked them to itch my bicep. Whoever it was they obliged and I head the room erupt in laughter. It wasn't until later that I was informed I had asked the HEAD DOCTOR to itch my bicep. (face in palm) So, What had happened? Apparently when the nurse came back in from getting my water, I had passed out and was unresponsive, My blood pressure had dropped incredibly low and they had to do quite a bit of work to bring me back. How did Dane know to come up? Well he was with Rosie girl and as he was watching them take care of her he heard over the speaker "rapid response in Triage 1" one of the nurses said, "um...that's your wife. You better go." Dane said when he came in he knew immediately what happened, (he's an EMT) but he said I was an awful green-grey color. I came back slowly but I was pretty out of it for a while. But man... it was a really good nap, even if it was only 30 seconds. I don't know many details about what happened with Rosie at this point but I know she was put on oxygen (preventative because she was breathing fine) and CPAP. Everything was looking good but she was hooked up to the normal IV's. I don't remember much of the first day but I know I saw Rosie and she was PERFECT. I spent four days in the hospital becoming best friends with Rosie's and my nurses. While I was there it wasn't that hard to have her in the NICU. and honestly it was nice that the nurses had her all the time because I was able to come and go and know she was in good hands. The first day I was allowed to breastfeed her was such a great day! I was so excited. The first time went ok, but it was so great to just hold her and do skin to skin. You should know that Rosie was only allowed to be help for around an hour for her feeding then she needed to rest and be alone so she could grow, I was understanding of this but it was hard putting her down. SO when I got ready to go see her and feed her for the second time I came into the NICU excited out of my mind. As I walked up to Rosie I looked up at her chart and saw that she had already been fed, from a bottle. I could feel the red hot fire behind my eyes and the lump in my throat..... I asked the nurse calmly what happened and she said, "oh, she got hungry so I fed her." No sympathy, no explanation. She was so matter of fact and didn't apologize at all. I didn't feel like I was in a place to fight back or to say anything so as soon as I got out I sat on the floor for a minute a bawling disaster... then I walked to my room sobbing. My nurse came in and held me and helped me justify all my emotions and then brought in the charge nurse who when "fired" that nurse from Rosie's service. I share that story so that if anyone has to go through this, you have rights and you don't have to let a nurse work on you or your baby if you don't feel right about it or even if you don't mesh. This is such a tender time so you need to know that you have rights! I will write a whole other blog post about post baby body but I just love mine. I left the hospital and left Rosie in the care of the amazing nurses. It was awful leaving and I spent way too much time crying over it but I knew she was in good hands. I just wished they were my hands. I will sum up the NICU experience as the hardest time of my life and Dane's and my marriage so far. I will try to keep this short because the details here aren't as interesting but there are a few emotions of the NICU that are so difficult to deal with and SO many tears were shed.
- Going back and forth as often as you can between your home and the hospital take a serious toll on you physically and emotionally. Not only was I recovering from a C-Section but I was trying to make back and forth to the hospital to feed Rosie from a bottle just to spend a few precious minutes with her.
- Mom Guilt is so real. I felt guilty wanting to be with Rosie and not Monty, I felt guilty for making Dane do everything, I felt guilty for not being the mom Monty needed. I felt guilty if I was too tired to make it to a feeding with Rosie or if the timing didn't work out. It wasn't till the last week that I learned it's ok to ask for help and to just be ok with not being able to return the favor immediately.
- The NICU is a roller coaster. Some days are so up and some days are so low, you feel like you make progress but then you get stuck in the loop the loop for a few days. She would make progress and then fall backward. She would need 8 successful feedings and she would get all 7 then fail the last one setting us back again.
- While she was in there people would constantly say as words of comfort "she's in the best place she could be", I know that. I know the NICU is the best place for her. That does not make it any easier for me to be away from my baby. I want her home with me and healthy.
- NICU nurses are angels on this earth. I will never be able to repay the NICU nurses for treating Rosie as if she was their own baby. They made me feel like Rosie was being taken care of by her very own family. And they took care of and my many emotions. they laughed with me, and cried with me and I will always remember the bond that we created over my sweet Rosie girl.