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Five Weeks and a Day - A NICU Story - Day 2

Updated: Oct 2, 2021

Day 2 - August 15, 2014

I am almost 24 hours post-partum and holding my child for the first time. I'm crying in this picture because it's the first time I'm realizing how shitty and scary this all is. Only now am I getting briefed by her MD team about her conditions and treatments. It's all sinking in... As I hold her, I feel the weight of this new responsibility and blessing, and at the same time, I am having a difficult time bonding and feeling close with her because of the tubes and wires and alarms constantly scaring the shit out of me. I am afraid to move. When I do, something makes noise.

My touch is noxious to her. She recoils from my hand.

She is desaturating because I am holding her. My touch and care have the opposite effect than would on a normal newborn. My touch is noxious to her. She recoils from my hand. Her nervous system is so immature and this stresses all her systems. That's heartbreaking but I have to accept it. Her oxygen has to increase to 37% because she didn't tolerate my holding her very well. I sleep very little tonight despite being more tired than I've ever been. Sean goes home to sleep. I wake every two hours to pump and have my vitals checked. Waking every two hours will be my schedule for the next several months...


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