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Monday, October 12, 2009

Hood ornaments

After a few days, they moved me to “the annex”, where the less-than-critical kids were, but nothing else changed except that they gave me my very own “hood ornament” – an IV in the vein in my forehead – Dad said I looked like the Pontiac Indian.

I had been born at 3:27 a.m. on July 3. Mom went home a few days later but came to stay with me every minute she could. Dad’s work heard about me and basically gave him off from work “ until Andrew comes home”. He only had to go into the office for 390 minutes a day and then he could leave so he too stayed with me all that he could. They would take sis to daycare in the morning so that her world would stay as stable as possible and dad would go into the office, then they would come and stay all day until sis had to be picked up. After that, they would have dinner and one of them would come back to stay late into the night.

Mom would always stroke my head and make a cross on my forehead with her thumb and dad would stroke my temple with his thumb, things they started to do again in my last weeks. My eyes weren’t always open, in the beginning or in the end, but when I felt them do that I knew they loved me and I relaxed regardless of what was going on or how afraid I was.

Anyway, they would put there arms thru the portals in the incubator and stroke my head and put their hands near mine so I could wrap my tiny hand around one of their fingers.

After a few days, as long as mom or dad were real careful of the tubes and wires, they could take me out of my incubator and hold me.

Sis hadn’t had chicken pox (more about that later also) and could bring the virus into the NBSCU from an exposure that she was incubating. Because of this, she couldn’t come into the NBSCU as chicken pox could kill me and the other babies in the unit, so instead, even though I got to look at her thru a small window, I didn’t know her touch until I was two months old biologically. That was so unfair, not only to me but to sis and I never really knew until my funeral how much she hurt to not be able to touch me all that time. I loved her so much and she couldn’t even touch me. Here’s a secret though, mom never had te chicken pox either and when the staff asked about sis and then forbade her from coming in, mom quickly decided to not tell them about herself. It was too late for sis but at least mom wasn’t barred.

Oh, you may be wondering what this “biological” stuff is… well, with us premature kids, we have two ages: our biological which is how long since we were actually born, and our developmental which is how long since the date that would have been our birth day.

When I was finally was held by sis, I was biologically 2 months old but was developmentally just born ! Cool, eh ?

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