Today wasn't even that bad. Ewan wasn't in any distress or any danger. When I arrived at the NICU, there was a lot of activity. Baby Ewan was calm and alert at first, and it was wonderful to see him without the breathing tube. One of the cardiologists was finishing up an evaluation, and they had started to do another echo to see the effects of weaning Ewan off the prostaglandin.
|A happy, morphine-free Ewan when I first arrived today|
|Ewan has another echo -- you can click on the picture to see it better, but he's holding on to the tech's ring and pinkie fingers as she scans him|
Ewan didn't like it at all.
|One angry boy :: he didn't really like getting the CPAP put on|
You could tell the poor little guy was stressed out. I didn't count, but I think at one point there had to be at least eight people in that little NICU room. So many people were messing with him and he was clearly angry. And so I sat there and watched as other people were helping my baby and he tried to scream or cry, but sounded wet and raspy. And I couldn't do anything: couldn't really comfort him, couldn't hold him, couldn't do anything but watch.
Rip. My. Heart. Out.
Mama fell into tears more than once. And again when she came home.
I wanted to see about holding him, but because of his blood gases, it couldn't happen today. So I stood by his crib, and sang to him one of the songs I made up during my pregnancy. Baby Ewan, how you doin'? ... I invited his little fingers to wrap themselves around mine. He looked at me, held my gaze. I looked into the eyes I hadn't seen since the day he was born. I made sure I was close enough that he could look into mine. I rubbed his little hand, touched his chest, stroked his hair. I wanted to hold him even more.
And after tomorrow's Cath Lab test, it will be a long time before I'll be able to hold him again. In the Cath Lab, they will inject some dye into Ewan's body and get a closer look at his anatomy to know exactly what they're dealing with. This test will tell them a lot more about the course of treatment that will be best for him.
Either way, we will be holding our breath a bit tomorrow, wondering and waiting.
|A calmer, quieter Ewan|
When I left, he was so peaceful. He was sleeping deeply, breathing steadily, sighing sweet baby breaths. The nurse invited me to kiss him goodbye (Wait ... I can do that?!) and I did. I kissed his sweet head a few times, told him how much I loved him, and then cried again as I left. Cried on the way home. Cried in the parking lot at Target when I found myself rubbing my belly and singing to the baby who wasn't with me anymore. Cried on James' shoulder when I got home (he couldn't go with me today because he felt like he had a sinus infection). Cried and cried, just because. Cried because everything and nothing was wrong.
|If I have to leave him, it's good to do it like this: sleeping peacefully, no distress. Sweet, dreamy baby breath.|
I just want what any new mom wants: to pick up my baby and hold him, to be able to do that without needing a nurse's help or a doctor's permission. I am definitely hopeful that we will get that someday -- but for now, I think I'll cry a little again and look at some more pictures of his sweet face.