The nurses gave us this picture today. Isn't he beautiful! They said during his "cluster care" - when they change his diaper, move him around for a new position and start his feeding - that he was just looking around and very active. They had raised the top part of his incubator to move him, and when they put it down he started crying. So they raised it up again and interacted with him. I absolutely love the nurses that care for our little boy!
At the same time, I hate the fact that they are there to see these moments and that I miss them because I can't be there all the time. Yet, I could be there all the time. Visiting hours are anytime during the day and night, except for 6:30 to 8 am and 6:30 to 8 pm. "Why don't I spend all my day there?", I often ask myself, then feel the guilt wash over me. Don't get me wrong . . . I spend a lot of time at the hospital each day. I want to be there all the time, but hate that I have to be there at all. In order to take care of my health (mental health specifically) I have had to learn to accept a balance.
You see I love going to the hospital and I hate going to the hospital. I LOVE seeing my beautiful baby. That is obviously a given. But I hate seeing him cry when I can't hold him, and sometimes even touch him to give him comfort. I hate that some nurses will allow me to lay my hands on him for comfort, while sometimes they appear to think I'm upsetting him more. I hate that I have to wonder if touching him is upsetting or comforting. I obviously want to do what is best for him - both Tyler and I have stayed at home, because we were ill, to keep him from exposure to possible infections, and we are constantly watching his vital signs for distress. I love that I am his mother, and hate that I have to get permission to touch him. I love that the nurses are so helpful. I hate that there is so little time I have been able to spend with my little guy, unmonitored. I love being informed of his progress, yet hate feeling so stupid as numbers and terms come at me daily and I have to have them repeated over and over.
Sometimes I feel so many different emotions within such a short period of time, it becomes quite overwhelming! Hate is such a strong word, and while I do hate many of the circumstances and conflicting emotions that I feel lately, the feeling that encompasses them all is an overwhelming sense of GRATITUDE! Thanks to the nurses and doctors who care for Marshall. Thanks to ALL who have offered support and love and encouragement. Thanks to our amazing family! Thanks for my most amazing husband who has to deal with all these stresses, and me the emotional roller-coaster, and work at the same time! He is so wonderful! And most of all thanks for my Marshall! A gift from God. And for his journey, which has helped me draw closer to my Savior and learn a great deal of compassion and empathy for others, all the while feeling enfolded in the arms of His love!