Life After the Second Line

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Return to the NICU

I mentioned in my second post that Peyton had an appointment with a pediatric cardiologist. That was just last week. The appointment was back at the hospital where I was imprisoned for two weeks, and where the twins were subsequently born. I hadn't been there since June 8, the day we finally drove home with both babies in the back seat.

It was so hard going back. Driving that all-too-familiar route, pulling into the parking garage, making the endless trek up to the fourth floor -- it put knots in my stomach. I felt like crying. All the fear, all the uncertainty, all the heartache I thought I'd put behind me when P finally came home turned out to still be there, lurking just beneath the surface.

As I said, though, we ended up getting great news at P's appointment. She's a healthy little baby girl now, and when my husband asked if there was anything we needed to do from here on out, the doctor said, "Yes, enjoy every minute with her. She's perfect." Hearing that was a relief greater than I can put into words.

I also felt sad that day, though, because while we were there I ran into another NICU mom whose baby was born about two weeks after P & E. She's still there, with no hope of going home anytime soon. And I guess it just made me think, again, of how unfair life is. But also of how much my definition of "lucky" has changed over time. Why was I the lucky one whose babies got to come home, healthy? But can I consider myself lucky in the first place, considering that, unlike the vast majority of newborns, my babies had to spend time in the NICU at all? Why was I the lucky one who had a successful IVF attempt the first time out? But how can that be lucky, when 95% of the world never needs IVF at all? In how many other ways am I "lucky" right now that don't even occur to me because I've never had to think about them?

Anyway, after the appointment, we took all of P & E's preemie clothes and donated them to the NICU. I have no idea if I'll ever have any more children, but I'm hoping, superstitiously, that by not keeping the preemie clothes in the house, I'm helping assure that any subsequent babies around here in the future won't need them. Future, full-term babies? Here? Could I be that lucky?


  • Yay! I'm so glad you're back, and I'm so glad that you, P, and E are doing well.

    By Anonymous amanda, at 2:14 PM  

  • Hi...New poster here! I truly enjoy reading you blog! I hope to come back soon enough...congrats on the new blessings!!

    By Blogger Veronica, at 11:12 AM  

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