Last week was brought a flood of emotions and memories. It was physically emotionally exhausting. Hard, but good. I think I'm still recovering.
Going back to the NICU has never phased me very much. It's not that our journey wasn't hard or traumatic, it was, I just think everything else we went through was bigger than that, if that makes sense. I'm not sure how, but somehow we were spared the PTSD aspect that so many preemie parents can face after a long NICU journey.
While we were at the hospital we went to visit my friend who is there on bedrest. We visited with her and her husband for a little while and then found ourselves visiting another family there on bedrest. This family was in the very same room that I was in after our boys were born. The room where I held my baby's lifeless body. Where family members came and went quietly. Where I cried myself to sleep.
The days before and after the boys were born were some of the most awful days of my life. My children's births have not been the happiest days of my life, in fact, they have been far from it. Not many parents fear the birth of their child, but I was terrified. Deep down in my heart, I knew it wasn't going to turn out well.
Sitting in that dark room, a reflection of the somber mood, listening to the babies heartbeats on the monitor, having the nurse come in and adjust the monitors frequently. It was all too familiar. The helplessness and incredible fear came right back. Memories of begging God to give me just one more day to grow my babies. And then having my water break and knowing that the time was nearing even though it was still way too soon.
I don't think I said anything encouraging to this family because the memories just came flooding back. I could feel the fear again. I could feel the heartbreak of hearing other children in the hallways, knowing that I would never hear mine. I wanted to help this family, I wanted to hug this mom and tell her that everything was going to be okay. I truly hope with all of my heart that it does turn out okay for them.