oh god, where did i leave off? i had just had Charlie and they immediately took him away up to the NICU. i kept begging them to let me go see him, but i couldn't even get up without fainting so they wouldn't let me go. finally later that night they found a wheelchair and jay took me up.
seeing my baby in his pod...i didn't know what to do. i didn't know what to feel. i always had heard that you instantly are connected to your baby and instantly love them more than anything. honestly, i didn't feel like that. i felt weird. i looked at him and i didn't feel like his mom. i couldn't hold him, i could barely touch him. he didn't open his eyes for me so we couldn't look at each other. i was heartbroken. all this time i wanted so badly to be a mom, and now i was one, but i just didn't feel it. i was failing. i was looking at this little person, and i felt like i was completely failing him.
i'd never seen a NICU before...shit, i'd never even heard of the NICU until about 24 hours ago. there were so many monitors and alarms going off. it was so loud. my poor son was on a type of ventilator that did something like 100 little breaths per minute, so it was extremely loud. he had tubes and wires everywhere. he was so tiny.
the doctor came and talked to us. honestly, i don't even remember what she said. everything was such a blur. they were throwing all this information at us and using words and terminology i'd never heard before. it was like i wasn't processing anything they were telling me.
once we got back out into the hall ready to take the elevators i felt suddenly dizzy. jay said that i passed out again. he ran back into the NICU to get someone to help me. they actually just said, "oh, we don't do anything with adults, you better just take her back down to the maternity ward. i don't remember waking up until we were already back down there.
i got into bed and just went to sleep. i was exhausted...34 hours of labor, forceps delivery, 4th degree lacerations and my son in the NICU. i just prayed that when i woke up in the morning things would be different. my son would be totally fine and would be in the room with me and i would get to hold him.
the next day, my dreams from the night before didn't come true. i woke up to a cold, empty room. i called up to the NICU to check on Charlie, they told me more stuff i didn't comprehend. jay got to the hospital and knew that something was wrong with me. i wasn't very coherent...just kind of laid there, too exhausted to pick my head up. he said that i'd never looked so pale. a while later the doctor came in and said that my blood counts were very low and that they wanted to give me a transfusion. so...two units of blood later i started to perk up a little. theeeeeeennnnn the headache came. anyone who has had the epidural headache knows exactly what i'm talking about. uuugh, that awful, horrible headache that comes from the place where you had the epidural leaking cerebral spinal fluid (i think that's what happens with this headache). it wasn't too bad if i was laying flat, but as soon as i sat up i thought my head was exploding. the anethesiologist came in and talked to me about it. he said that they could put a patch in to seal the hole, but this procedure sounded worse than the epidural itself, so i opted to just load up on motrin. i was extremely worried about taking any drugs because i was worried about it getting into the breast milk i was trying to pump. what an idiot...i should have just taken the damn pain killers.
they wanted to send me home the next day, but i was still extremely unsteady on my feet, so i said i wasn't comfortable leaving. they let me stay an extra day...thank you insurance, how generous. i'm positive that whoever makes up these insurance policies has never had a baby. same thing with whatever jackass decided that speed bumps in a hospital parking lot were a good idea. try going over those after you've just had a baby.
i was released on friday. i was scared. i didn't know what to do. we lived over an hour away from the hospital and Charlie was still in the NICU. no one knew at that time just how serious his condition was. they thought we were only going to be there a few days. the nurses were nice enough to get me the phone number for the local ronald mcdonald house. i called them and luckily they had an open room. jay drove me home to pack some things, and then we drove back up to the hospital, checked into the ronald mcdonald house, took a nap, and then went back over to see Charlie.
i was starting to feel more like a mom. it wasn't the start to motherhood that i wanted, but i was starting to feel more and more attached to Charlie. he had opened his eyes a few times and i was able to smile at him. i still hadn't been able to hold him yet though. i was desperate to, but i knew that i just couldn't...he was too unstable. but i was starting to see where this little baby could become the love of my life...my reason for waking up.