(You are now 5 weeks and 5 days old. We had a crappy night last night but still love you when the sun came out. I guess that's parenthood. Right now you just fell asleep and I'm thorn between things I wish I could do - sleep, I need to do - express milk and I want to do -write and find your Daddy a birthday present. Expressing milk wins for now. I'll be back. )
(Aaaand we're back! Only one day later...)
So, last time I posted, Daddy and I were driving down to Chch Womens Hospital, at around 2.30am on Christmas Day. I had been awake now for 24h hours and given birth and my brain was mushy. My brain remained mushy for the next week, so I'll do my best to remember things. Remembering now, even a month afterwards, is still painful and yet it feels like all this happened light-years ago, in another lifetime.
We were greeted by a nurse who told us that we had a parent room (double bed, ensuite, meals 3 times a day for both parents) available for Daddy, but I wasn't discharged from Maternity yet, so I would have to sleep upstairs until the midwives checked and discharged me the next day. I didn't even know there was such a thing as parent rooms in the Neonatal ward, but then again, I'd never been in the Neonatal ward. Or dreamed of it.
While we talked to the nurse and she showed us around the floor - where you'd be, the family lounges with tea, coffee and toast, the milk bar where I'd stored my expressed milk, the reception and that scary corridor where they keep the spaceships and other scary equipment for tiny babies, you arrived in your own spaceship and went into Room 1.
Room 1 of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit would be your home for the next 5 days.
You were X-rayed and once again checked by (pretty and young looking) doctor Claire the pediatrician, who had a green mini-top hat fascinator and green stripes in her dark blonde hair. It was Christmas Day and everybody working was dress up in pretty hair acessories, angel wings and all sorts of fun stuff.
Doctor Claire then proceeded to explain the diagnosis, drawing a picture and everything: you were born with Tracheo-Oesophageal Fistula (TOF) and Oesophageal Atresia (OA). Basically it's a mal-formation of the oesophagus and trachea that makes you unable to swallow food and breathe properly. It's important that it's repaired as soon as possible so you can grow and be happy. It's rare but not that uncommon, happening in 1 every 3500 babies (click here for more info).
You're one in a million baby =)
We woke up a few hours later. At 10.30am we met with the surgeon of the Pediatric team and he was amazing in reassuring us, first and foremost, that this problem was not our fault. There was nothing we could (ou shouldn't) have done to prevent or avoid it or even detect it sooner, as its not seen in a pregnancy scan.
Even so baby, I have a feeling I'll be apologizing for years and years to come.
We asked questions, signed forms and consents and at 12h30 - 24hours after being born - you went into theatre for surgery.
And right now you're waking up for your morning tea, so I'll wrap it up and once again promise to continue soon.