The hours following my delivery of our two boys were a blur. They wheeled me back to my labor and delivery room and I waved to my dad, my mom, and our pastor on the way past. All were very proud of me and excited to hear how the boys cried loudly after their birth.
My legs were still numb and I couldn’t feel much of anything below my chest. Immediately I felt so tired and worn out. The first hours post partum are critical to establishing a milk supply. With our first son, Rowan, I exclusively pumped for 8 months due to difficulty with Rowan’s latch. I was very familiar with the pump and how things worked. They set it up for me and I nearly fell asleep as the whir of a pump filled my ears. Gavin came back and reported on the boys for me. They were stable and doing well. They needed respiratory assistance and would be intubated soon. I nodded and laid my head against the pillow, begging for something to wet my mouth. Ice chips were enough for me as my stomach revolted at the thought of food.
Soon my time in labor and delivery was up and they wheeled me to the NICU to see my precious little boys. I was able to hold Beckett for a brief time but all I wanted to do was hold both my babies and go to sleep. Apparently thats not recommended to fall asleep holding premature little babies. They wheeled me over to Foster and I looked from a distance at my teeny little boy. Most of what they said to me went right over my head. Obstetrics is what I was used to talking about and this intensive care stuff was definitely a different field of medicine that I knew nothing about.
They wheeled me to my old room on 4 Women’s and I began my recovery. I avoided most food until later that night and dozed off and on. Mostly I asked about the boys and rested but didn’t sleep as the medication wore off and in between pumpings.
I had made it. My goal and job was mostly done. I would pump what I could to feed those little boys but they were on their own. It was up to them to fight for their little lives. It was a feeling of helplessness and great accomplishment.
The next day I felt better but was still tired and still needing strong medication. I did my best to get up and walk. Gavin held my hand and let me steady myself on his shoulder. He changed my socks for me and even helped me put up my hair. I begged for a shower and Gavin stood in the bathroom as I fumbled around with the hot water, trying to feel clean again. He was my solid rock that I leaned on. He ran to the vending machine and grabbed his weepy wife a Dr Pepper and relayed important information about the boys that I asked him to repeat about 20 different times in a row so my medicated brain could understand and process. He washed pumping parts and even held in a couple of jokes that surely would have stretched my incision. What a guy.
We made trips to the NICU, asking the nurses to explain again what desatting meant and what the heck was in a TPN iv fluid. The neonatologist in charge of our boys, Dr D kindly explained what the procedure was and that the boys were holding steady. We asked the dreaded question.
When was Foster’s surgery?
Dr D told us that Dr G would be by shortly to inform us of what the process would be for Foster. Dr G ordered another MRI to get good images of the meningocele and scheduled surgery for 7:00 am Wednesday morning. We spoke with the anesthesiologist and signed consent forms.
The next morning would be the most critical of our year. We didn’t sleep one little bit.