That is how long we were in the NICU (neonatal intensive-care unit) or if you wish 7 1/2 months. Every single day longer than the next, always on edge, always worried. Wondering when the second shoe will drop. How you will make it through the day knowing that you are leaving your child at the hospital instead of bringing her home where she’s supposed to be. How you can continue to keep hope and the strength not only for yourself but for your baby and your spouse and everyone else.
The nurses at the NICU are amazing they give their lives and souls to their jobs and make the parents life a little more bearable and a little less nightmarish. I can never repay these wonderful nurses and doctors for doing everything in their power to keep Katie here with us. She definitely did not make it easy for any of them or for us. I’ll try to keep this one short with a summary of what Katie survived and went through during her 225 days.
- Too many x-rays, blood transfusions, MRI’s and ultrasounds to count
- More medications than I care to list off.
- At 3 weeks of life bowel perforated (NEC or Necrotizing Enterocolitis) and needed emergency surgery, they removed 3-4mm of intestines and spent the next three months with a colonoscopy bag . A 2 hour surgery and she was so swollen for weeks and developed an infection of her scar tissue.
- Recurrence of NEC which developed on Christmas Eve of all days that luckily cleared up with antibiotics. It was our own Christmas miracle.
- January 15th 2015 surgery to put her intestines back together ended up scarring incorrectly and needed a 3rd intestinal surgery to fix.
- ROP (Retinopathy of prematurity) surgery to correct your eyes which luckily went great and now you have normal eye sight.
- Confirmed pulmonary hypertension requiring medication.
- Placed on home vent, trach placed and G-tube also place in late April.
- Finally came home on June 2nd 2015
I’ll probably end up elaborating on some of these events so please bear with me because not one of those 225 days were easy. There were times I was sure I was going to lose my mind or worse lose Katie.