That's the day he's coming home. Don't ask me how I know, I'll tell you when the time comes. His doctors and nurses have not given me a date, his pediatrician today said he is unlikely to be home by mid january, which just further confirms to me that he will be home January 25th. I am still hoping for a sooner date. I would be very happily proven wrong if he comes home before the 25th.
The 26th is my birthday. Which means this year I will recieve the best present in the world, bringing home a living baby. I kept telling myself that this interminable wait would be easier if I had an exact date to look forward to, and now that I do, it too feels so far away and unreachable. I also feel mortified by the prospect of him staying past his due date. It feels so very unfair. Had he been born at 37 weeks or 38 weeks or 40 weeks on his due date, he likely would have been perfectly healthy and sent home a day or two later with me. I would be one of those ignorant smiling moms with the carseat in the elevator going home without a second thought. I would not be the haggard, tired woman that the security guard recognizes on sight. I would not be "mom R" who has her every visit and every question marked in a chart. I get the feeling most parents with healthy full term babies do not have a chart where someone makes comments such as "Parents seem affectionate, asking appropriate questions, concerned for their baby". I get the feeling those parents who stay briefly and then leave with their babies are not judged on a daily basis.
I get the feeling that they do not get a lecture for breastfeeding their child for an hour because it has ruined the feeding schedule. They do not have to sit and watch their baby cry in a plastic box and not be able to comfort him, and watch him have the most difficult time falling asleep because of the very bright flourescent lights that are directly in his eyes.
I had thought for some stupid reason going into this that once he reached his due date that was it, the time here was up. He would be able to go home, why would he need to stay past his due date? Everyone else goes home at that point. Actually that is not true, many of the other babies go home well before their due dates.
And he is growing so fast, he has outgrown all the preemie stuff now. The clothes we got for him that are washed and folded in his drawer, he never got to wear them. He outgrew them before he even wore them. I feel like I am missing out on everything. I'm missing him growing up, because he is growing up in the hospital, in some stupid plastic box. Where the nurses laugh when the babies cry and say "that baby better learn to suck it up because no one is going to jump to his/her every need." I have these irrational fears that he will be there forever, that he will learn to roll over while in that stupid plastic box and I will miss it because I simply can't be there every minute of every day. I know he probably won't roll over until 6 months or something like that, but he's already been there almost 2 months, what's 4 more? They don't seem to think he is coming home soon. Ugh.
January 25th. That is what I must keep telling myself. He will pass his carseat test on the 24th, and come home the next morning. All I have to do is make it to that day and this will all be over.
Please tell me, how do you make it through the hard times? Do you have any tips for making it to the finish line without losing your mind?