The now

2 Jun

Right now, we’re sitting in our shared hospital room, both absorbed in our phones as we listen to our roommate’s family prepare to be discharged today. He was born only four days before Turtle and today he goes home.

Right now I’m still trying to absorb everything that’s happening to me, to my daughter, to my husband, to us. I’m still trying not to feel the urge to cry every time I think about the fact that she needs another surgery in seven weeks. And that there’s a chance her bowel obstructions will be so bad that she’ll need even a third procedure.

Right now I’m trying to find my way back to thankfulness and positivity, as DH and I vowed to do a few days ago. But it’s hard. To not feel sorry for us and envious of others. To not wish more than anything for my daughter not to have a non-functioning g-tube coming out of her stomach that caused her to vomit bile everywhere yesterday while DH and I tried to take a rare break from the hospital at home. And caused her to get her NG tube threaded back through her nose into her stomach.

To not wish she didn’t need the central line going straight into the center of her tiny chest, keeping her alive on liquid nutrition instead of the breastmilk I struggle to pump 8 times per day. It’s hard to ignore the urge to feed her, to hold her without the tubes and wires, to take her out of this place and let it be breeze and sunshine that furrow her brow, not the flicker of florescent light over her face or the annoyance of yet another group of vital signs being taken.

Right now I watch my husband watch over his daughter, paying meticulous attention to every aspect of her care, making mental notes for tomorrow’s rounds, protecting and loving her so fiercely that even I who knows his heart better than any other have been taken aback.

I watch my parents do their best to support and protect me as I’m hurdled against my will down this terrifying path.

I watch my daughter take it all in stride and patience. Her chubby cheeks, her perfect lips, her bright gray eyes observing all in calm wonder.

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12 Responses to “The now”

  1. Mo June 2, 2013 at 3:00 pm #

    hang in there momma. Sending you a huge hug.

  2. Theresa June 2, 2013 at 3:04 pm #

    What you’re feeling is totally normal momma. You’re doing great. Both of you. Hugs

  3. slese1014 June 2, 2013 at 3:44 pm #

    You’re doing an amazing job! What you’re experiencing is something most of us will never know, and I admire your strength. We’re here for you and sending all the hugs we can. Thinking good thoughts for Turtle and hopes for a quick 7 weeks and an easy surgery and home soon after that!

  4. Amy June 3, 2013 at 9:37 pm #

    I’m so sorry that this whole experience has been so rough, on all of you. You are doing everything you can, and that is enough. It is everything Turtle needs. Thinking of you often, and looking forward to more updates as you can get them to us. Hang in there, and try not to beat yourself up for feeling however you feel at any given moment. This is far from easy, and you are doing amazingly, even if it feels like the opposite sometimes.

  5. jjiraffe June 4, 2013 at 2:48 am #

    (((Hugs))) It must be do hard to be dealing with this. It will get better. Don’t beat yourself up for being sad. It’s certainly understandable.

  6. Alicia June 4, 2013 at 3:07 am #

    Hi Shelley, thanks so much for the update. I’ve been thinking of you guys so much and sending thoughts of strength to little Juniper and her mama and papa.

    This post was beautiful – so much in the moment of it all.

    Isn’t it crazy to see your husband as a daddy? The care and concern are overpowering, overwhelming. I’ve heard that having a baby will make you fall in love with your husband all over again, seeing him in a completely new light.

    And little Juniper, with her calm, wondering eyes. Wow. Amazing how these little babies are born with such patience, beauty, calmness – taking everything in.

    Hang in there Shelley. I lit a candle for your little family tonight.

  7. Aplatanada June 5, 2013 at 10:59 pm #

    Thinking of you, Turtle and your family. I can’t even imagine the difficult time you are going through, having to deal with usual post-partum issues while caring for a little one in the hospital. Hugs coming your way.

  8. Lisa @ hapahopes June 10, 2013 at 12:04 am #

    Shelley my heart breaks for you. I don’t even know what to say, besides that I’m thinking of you and your family. Big hugs.

  9. KK June 10, 2013 at 3:23 am #

    I am here from LFCA and I don’t know any background on your story other than Juniper’s birth story and this post, but I wanted to post:
    Foremost, congratulations on the birth of your beautiful (and surprising!) daughter!

    My daughter (5 months old now) aspirates liquids when she swallows. We had 2.5 weeks of a screaming, miserable baby who were helpless to comfort before we figured out the problem and had an NG tube dropped and eventually a g-tube. The paths are different, but I have traveled some of where you are. You have my email from this comment form, feel free to email me. It will get better, even though that may be so hard to see now.

    I would also highly recommend The Feeding Tube Awareness website and FB page. I have learned at least as much there as I have from the doctors and nurses on feeding tube care and problem solving.

    (And yes, the 297428383 times they take vitals — seemingly always with horrible timing– suuuuuuck).

  10. Nity June 11, 2013 at 1:02 pm #

    Here from LFCA. I wanted to say congrats on Turtle’s birth!! That is very exciting. I’m so sorry things aren’t happening the way you hoped or dreamed, but I pray the surgeries will go smoothly and you’ll all be home soon. And, as someone in Boston too, I think you have the best medical care possible – Children’s is amazing – so you can at least rest assured that your little one is in good hands. BIG HUG to you.

  11. Alicia June 12, 2013 at 10:08 pm #

    Hi Shelley – thinking of you.

  12. Pam August 21, 2013 at 11:43 pm #

    Can anyone tell me where Turtle’s Birth Story is? I have been following the blog sometimes, and I think I missed the post. =/ Thank you in advance!

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