“Mrs. Lemke, you need to rest.”
“No.” I whispered as I stood above my baby.
An unnatural shade of blue light splashed over his tiny body and reached out to the ends of the room. Nothing escaped it’s grasp.
“Rest, please,” the NICU nurse pleaded, “he’s alright.”
My voice was edgy as I snapped, “Then why the fuck are we here?”
Convinced I wouldn’t be sleeping, she left the room quietly.
I moved my chair up to the tiny clear box that held my son.
I sobbed as I sang to him and held his hand.
His body was covered in wires and the doctor had placed blinders on him to protect his eyes from the phototherapy.
Alarms blared, filling the room with tension. I quickly checked, my son’s vitals were stable.
The alarms were coming from the monitor of the little girl next to us.
The nurses flew into the room and began working on her.
They finished administering medication to the other baby and carried on as if nothing had happened.
It was time for my son to eat, they said. The nurses began shutting the lights down, plunging the room into darkness.
He was delivered to me as we sat by the nurse’s computer and they prepared a bottle of pumped milk for him.
As I held him, he opened his eyes to look up at me. They were a darker shade of yellow than they had been when we arrived.
“I thought this was supposed to get rid of the jaundice?” I motioned to the lights as I became hysterical.
The nurse, Patience, came up behind me and held my shoulders as I wept.
“It will.” She said, “It just takes time.”
I sat there for hours, rocking back and forth and staring at my 3 day old baby.
This couldn’t be real, I thought. How could this be real?
The sun rose outside the window, penetrating the room with light.
I stood by the window and watched the rest of the world keep moving, without us.
I don’t remember much of the following days or when we were discharged.
I know I fought for him, and I know he survived.
But part of me didn’t.
New Crunchy Mom
This post first appeared here on thepublicblogger!