Part of being a good mother is learning how to be apart.. or at least that’s what I’m trying to tell myself. Every instinct you have draws you to your babies.. to hold them .. hug them.. feed them. Every part of being a NICU mom fights that.. you need to learn separation.. you use a machine to get your milk .. you touch them for only seconds or minutes through a hole in a box. Your motherly instinct turns into a very mechanical thought out process.. questioning every moment. I remember finding such peace watching my newborn baby girls sleep … it was just heavenly .. now watching my boys sleep.. it’s a new world.. checking the monitors with their breaths making sure they are breathing and their heart is beating. I’m praying to find that peace with them soon.
This weekend we were finally having great reports on the boys. They are tolerating feeds and growing. Saturday during the day we went to a party together as a family. It was incredible to be together.. and we went to see the boys at night. They told us they would likely have their IVs out and no longer need TPN on Monday. My 5 calls a day were answered with “they had a good day mom” and “there are no issues.” No blood work pending .. no renal or heart issues.. it feels like a dream. James and I were with our sons all night Saturday. We helped with their nighttime routine .. which I love.. tucked them in.. and bonded. I cherish the time my husband and I are able to be with them together. I feels like a family.
Sunday morning we were again planning to go in the evening. We spent the day with our girls.. laughing ..in the pool swimming.. they were so happy. Juliet would turn around , look at me and say “mama” holding my leg tight again and again. They too have had to adjust to this new life. I am not able to hold them because of my c-section and prior to that because of TTTS. We spent too much time apart with endless drs visits and now with visits to the NICU. They miss me and I miss them.
After a long day of playing… my sister who lives across the street was surprising us with a firework show. I yearned for my boys but I knew our girls needed us too. A dear friend of mine who is on the same path told me in the beginning .. “your older children will remember” .. they will remember you not being there.. the babies will not and sometimes you have to choose. I’m so grateful for Devan and her support. I called the hospital for the forth time and gave my numbers. They identify mom and dad by numbers you wear on a bracelet and match it with the babies.. I finally memorized them.. both nurses told me our boys were doing amazing. They start with “hi mom there were no issues”… and I can breathe again. I think of them as friends. I told them I may not come .. she told me they were ok and encouraged us to spend this time with our older daughters.
I did.. my husband and I on the lawn .. friends and nephews .. watching the fireworks and eating ice pops.. life for the first time in a long time felt so simple.. so beautiful.. I needed it more than anyone and will never forget it.
I called again one more time before bed and had the same report. I cried a little before bed.. not sure if they were happy or sad tears .. they were somewhere in between .. I held my girls a little tighter and prayed a lighter stronger for my boys. I am so blessed and so grateful for this day.