We were talking the other night about how when they were first born and in the NICU, it was hard to imagine being where we are today. We are constantly baffled and thrilled when they learn something new, amazed at how far they have come. Tony's experience when they were born was different than mine. He was the one that was actually with them that first night. He watched as Ayden struggled to breathe at first and needed a c-pap. I never actually saw my son with the c-pap on. I've only seen pictures. We are fortunate that he only needed it for 4 hours, but during that time, Tony was the most scared he'd ever been in his entire life. Tony was the one that watched as the babies had IV's and feeding tubes put in, and as they were hooked up to all the wires that attached to monitors that let the doctor's and nurses know if the babies were breathing and their heart was still beating.
Tony was the one that was able to calm Ayden when he was uncomfortable and upset that night, simply by laying a hand on his back. Tony's finger was the one that Rylee wrapped her little hand around. He is the one that did kangaroo care with them first.
|Ayden and an emotional Daddy|
|Kangaroo Care with Rylee|
I am so proud of everything that Tony did for our babies that first night when I couldn't. While we were talking about that night almost 15 months ago, Tony admitted to me that he was so scared that night, that he actually prayed that we would get to take at least one of the babies home. They were so small and fragile, and needing extra attention to survive in the outside world. He was afraid that they wouldn't make it. Whenever he thinks about it today, he gets tears in his eyes.
Fortunately for us, for being 7 week preemies, they were actually good sizes and pretty healthy. We had a relatively short NICU stay of only 19 days. It was the longest 19 days of our life, while our babies learned to keep their body temperature up and how to suck, swallow, and breathe all at the same time so they could eat.
After waiting 14+ years to have our babies, and then being on hospital bedrest for a week and developing preeclampsia, then having babies in the NICU, it's pretty surreal to see how big and strong and healthy our babies are today.