…of being L and N’s NICU mom.
We had a lot of early activity. Busy days with doctors and meetings. Busy weekends with family and friends. But I’m flying solo most of the time now, and have planned out a routine. And this is sort of what it is supposed to look like.
N’s “care” times are 8, 11, 2, 5
L’s are 9, 12, 3, 6
- 3:00 Wake up and pump. Stumble in to something. Fall back in bed.
- 6:30 Wake up, pump, shower, eat breakfast, gather daily supplies and head over to the NICU.
- 8:30-9:00 Arrive at NICU. Unpack for the day, drop off milk, note the over night weights of the boys.
- 9:00 L’s care/feeding.
- 9:30 Pump
- 10:00 Kangaroo Care with L until 12:00
- Somewhere in here…listen in on the morning rounds. Ask questions, make daily notes, etc.
- 12:00 Pump
- 12:30 Grab Lunch
- 1:00 Back to NICU. Check emails, phone, facebook, etc
- 2:00 N’s care/feeding
- 2:30 Pump
- 3:00 Kangaroo care with N until around 5:00
- 5:00 N’s care/feeding
- 5:30 Pump / Snack
- 6:00 L’s Care/feeding
- 6:30 Final cuddles, lay out clothes for night shift, gather labels and containers for milk, hit the road!
- 7:00 Dinner at the RMH.
- 8:30 Pump
- 11:30 Pump
- 12:00 SLEEP!
Essentially, I try to get in skin to skin (“kangaroo care”) with each boy for two hours. I also try to pump 8 times a day, and eat like a cow (see what I did there?) In between, I try to help with a “care” any time I can. Every 3 hours, each boy gets eye care, mouth care, and a fresh diaper (and the nurses check vitals, tubes, etc). And of course I make sure to take a few photos every day.
Guess what? That day has not happened even once.
For starters I generally sleep through the middle of the night alarm. (If you hit snooze enough times…it gives up?)
People always drop in. (Today the chaplain, a supportive care team, lactation, a safety auditor, occupational therapy, dietician, and the normal morning rounding physicians stopped by).
I have other “to do’s”. I meet with lactation at least once a week. I’m taking infant massage classes once a week. And I have a few other classes to take before we can be discharged. (CPR, General info, and feeding tube training.)
The nerd in me is smiling and rubbing her hands together at the thought of working out a detailed schedule to make our new world at home move like clockwork.
The realistic/lazier person in me realizes if I can’t stick to a routine NOW…it might be impossible.
And the mom in me thinks if the day ends with moments like this…I don’t care about a few missed plans, late arrivals, or interruptions. Because THIS moment…was perfect!