Exactly one year ago today on February 15th, 2015 it was a pretty big day for us. One of extreme excitement and nervousness! One year ago today we were told by the nursing staff that Evie was now strong enough to come home and we would need to ‘room in’ tonight! ‘Room in’ means that you stay the night in the hospital with the baby in a separate room by yourself, because she would have to come home on oxygen and monitors this was our ‘test’ to make sure we could handle it all on our own! We were so excited to be finally to this point and have her healthy enough to be 100% in our care, but at the same time is was scary. I wasn’t bringing home some big healthy baby. She was just under 5lbs, had a tiny hole in her heart and would be on oxygen and monitors 24/7 and had been surrounded by incredible medical staff from the second she was born. Was I going to be able to do this??? Not only that, I knew that I had 3 more following closely who all had the same issues.
Was I cut out for this? Am I good enough to be able to care for these precious souls that God has entrusted me with? What if something happens? I was not going to have the nurses and doctors right there if something happened. Not only that but I was having a VERY hard time separating the babies. They had never been apart before and not only that, if they are divided then so will I be! No more waking up, getting ready and heading down to the hospital all day long till midnight (sometimes later) to be with the girls. Now I have one at home who isnt allowed back into the NICU. This means I have one at home who I am 100% responsible for with no nurses and staff and 3 left in the hospital. I was terrified and unsure of myself.
The staff at this point has become so attached to the girls, we were like a family, and we all are aware that tonight is the last night they will all be together till we get the rest of the girls home. Who knew how long that was going to take. We decided to get some pictures with all the girls together with the staff and each other, including the amazing Dr. Minton. We love him so much and we wouldn’t be where we are today with out him.
Evie did awesome throughout the night and we didn’t sleep a wink, but we were loving spending some one on one time with her and not having to put her back to bed and leave! I remember making bottles every three hours through the night and thinking ‘geez this is hard’. I was so exhausted and the girls were on a special dose of formula for extra calories so doing math in the middle of the night was not fun stuff, and this was just ONE of the four! But we made it!
We discharged her at 6pm that night and got all the instructions on how to work the oxygen and monitors and away we went. I cried tears of joy and sadness. This was such a big step to getting my family together in our own house but leaving the others is a pain I still feel today when I think about it. Such a hard thing! Once we got Evie home for a few days I was just ready for them all to be home. Yes, it would be hard to have them all home with no nursing staff, but at least they would all be back in one location again.
I will never forget that night we brought her into the house for the first time. I finally had one of my babies home and all mine!!!! I took her on a little tour of her house and introduced her to Bentley. I showed her her room and sat down and did something I had dreamed about doing for years and years. I rocked my baby. I cried. I read her my favorite children’s book ‘On The Night You Were Born’ by Nancy Tillman and as the tears streamed down my face I could hardly get the words out of my mouth. I stopped and just stared at her in amazement. This moment defined for me that I was a mother. Yes I had been a mother for a few months now but it felt official to finally have her be 100% in my care at home.
I just rocked her and sang to her most of that night. Cried a lot, because I missed my other girls and couldn’t wait for them to join her and pondered how long that might take. I felt so much gratitude in my heart for my Heavenly Father and how much he had truly blessed me. I told him that night that I know I will not be a perfect mom but I will be the very best I can be for them. I thanked him for giving me these perfect little babies and trusting me with them. I thanked him for all the trials that brought me to this point. Without those I may have not been ready for this amazing blessing he gave me, and I am eternally grateful.
These are just a few feelings from this amazing day one year ago that I wanted to share with all of you. Who knew that exactly one year later we would be where we are today. God is so good.
Make sure you tune in tonight on TLC for Rattled at 10/9c and watch us bring the girls home!