Monday, November 22, 2010

Transitioned to Stress

Now that we have made the transition, Lj, Lj's dad and I are trying to make it home. It's cold and wintery outside and we didn't even have time to prepare for the baby's arrival. Thank goodness we received some of the things we needed at our baby shower. I felt weird having the shower while not being pregnant. We did get clothes, a car seat, a playpen/bassinette which we were so grateful for, but we didn't get the essentials like diapers and bottles. Unfortunately the clothes could not fit our little bundle of sunshine so we needed clothes too. Besides leaving for the baby shower, I never left Lj. Everyone had to convince me to leave him. The only reason why I did decide to go was because one of my favorite nurses was there and I knew she would call me if something happened and I knew she would give him the extra love and care that I would give him. Thank you Mrs. Wendy. NICU nurses have a huge impact with parents in the NICU. They carry on great responsibilities with a preemie and their families. Knowing that Lj's dad and I needed to leave the hospital to go and get things for the baby to go home in was so hard for me. I had a gut feeling that something was going to go wrong. My favorite nurses would not be returning for a whole week and I felt like since the baby might be going home soon, we need to go get the things that he needed. I cried on the way to the store. I felt wrong for leaving because I still felt that it was my fault why he came so early. It was not a good idea. I remember counting the minutes until we pulled back into the parking garage of the hospital. It was exactly 2 hours and 50 minutes. I had a bad feeling going up the elevator. I opened the doors to the unit and could hear my baby screaming to the top of his itty bitty lungs. I was furious. On top of that I found out that he had 2 heart rate drops while I was gone. No one called. When I went to touch him to let him know that I was there, he had milk in his nose and running down his cheek. I went from being furious to being enraged. I called for his nurse and she did not respond. I picture his little body fighting for air because the milk had come up into his nose. I pictured his face grimacing in pain and fear from not being able to take a breath in. I felt so angry at myself for leaving. With that experience I never left him alone again. I didn’t want anything else like this to happen to him. During my stay in the unit I learned that I would have to take classes leading up to the baby's discharge. At first I didn't want to take them because I would have to go to another floor for them. I would wait until Wendy or Barb was there to schedule these few classes. I had to take a CPR course even though I was already CPR certified, a bathing and preemie care course about SIDS. When those two nurses were caring for Lj I felt comfortable. I participated in just about every feed, every diaper change, every test and every doctor's round. I didn't care if I didn't get sleep because the baby wasn't sleep. I was up. Lj's dad would participate when he was there, but I tried to take the load off of him because he worked a lot still. He would come and to the hospital after work and sleep in the unit with the baby and I. With me not having income, Lj's dad sacrificed his time to go to work. I felt guilty because I knew taking care of my oldest son who was 8 at the time, now a sick baby and me was a lot to carry. I appreciated him for that. Even though he worked a lot his job did not pay enough to care for two families. Lj's dad is a caregiver and provider for his mom, grandmother, who at the time was very ill and suffering from side effects from a severe stroke and dementia. His mom was very sick and in the hospital with an illness that could take her life. Because of that my bills at home were months and months behind.  He couldn’t pay for everything between two houses. This added to my stress. I was loosing my mind. All I had time to do was think. I would think of the fact that I could be bringing my son home to an eviction notice. I was thinking about the care of my little baby. I thought about how I still needed to finish school and that I was going to have to leave him to finish. I knew that Lj's would not hurt him but he didn't know Lj's care plan as well as I did. What was I to do beside be stressed? Finally Lj did not have to be on a nasal canula. He could breathe on room air. He was still taking the caffeine and other medications, but he was making baby steps to recovery and going home. To Be Continued........

1 comment:

  1. Your story sounds so similar to my daughter's in so many ways, right down to the hematoma. We never heard it called that, just big ol blood clot. My daughter only mad it 10 26.5 weeks when she started hemorraging severely. There were problems since about 12 weeks like you. Glad he is doing well now, he's a cutie. Hopefully you will find work soon. Thies economy is draing on top of everything else.