Sunday, July 27, 2008

Wow. Those moose are powerful.

+85 grams.

I made her do it twice. I said there was no way that was real. It had to be fluid. The nurse laughed and said "Fluid from WHAT?" And we'd just pulled off a poop filled diaper and he peed on his way out of the isolette. And it was the same scale as yesterday. I'm still expecting him to lose a little tomorrow. Their goal is 30 grams. We nearly tripled that? I don't think so. The parents of the baby next to us were laughing at my disbelief, but still.

Right now, he's listed at 2lb 13.9oz.

Everything else is pretty steady. They upped his feeding volume a tiny bit again, and tomorrow they're going to add a bit more HMF. But that was about it. He was on his cannula twice today and did fine.


I ran into a dad I'm friendly with and hadn't seen. They'd graduated to Special Care but are back. The baby has an RVT- Renal Vein Thrombosis. That's caused a cascade of other problems so they could use a prayer or two.

I'm pretty sure I posted about him, though I can't seem to find the post. He was the guy who came in looking terrified and I asked how big his baby was. When he told me the baby was 2lb 10oz, I commented how big that way. He thought I was nutty until he saw how tiny Robbie was and obviously felt better.


David and I had a rather large fight today.
It started because my family is in town. That should probably be enough right there, but it continued.

I asked them if they wanted to have dinner and when. They couldn't decide what they were doing. I explained that Robbie gets 4 hours at a time off the CPAP and that's when he should be held. If they couldn't tell me if/when they wanted to eat, I was going to the hospital and holding my son because I wasn't putting Robbie off for a "maybe." My dad, being a reasonable man, agreed with that.

David thought that was rude. He doesn't think we should put off our "whole life" to sit at the hospital 24/7.

At first I was amused that he was so offended at NOT having dinner with MY family. But eventually, it boiled into essentially this:

David thinks I'm too obsessed with being at the hospital and too negative.

I think David hasn't made enough adjustments to be at the hospital and is in denial about how serious the situation is.

We're probably both right. And wrong.

David say that I have no hope. I said that I do, but he says that I don't. That I freak out over everything. His penis is bleeding, I think he has cancer and is going to die. I have a growth in my brain, I have cancer and am going to die. The dog has a growth in his mouth, he has cancer and is going to die. Robbie has too many visitors, he's going to get an infection and die.

Honestly, there's a lot of truth in that. I'm an anxious mess. Things keep going wrong and I fear the worst. Part of it is my nature in general, and part of it is that the last few months have honestly shaken me. I personally think that's understandable. But perhaps I could work on hoping for the best instead of fearing for the worst a bit more.

On the other hand, I really think he's in denial. He actually still thinks we could have a welcome home party for Robbie when he gets out of the hospital. No amount of explanation from me about germs, RSV & crappy immune systems seems to convince him. And being David, he twisted my words into saying his family can't visit. That isn't true. His immediate family can visit. So can mine. They have. But no way in HELL are we going to have a party of people in the house. I'd take Robbie and stay in a hotel first.

I'm going to have to get a doctor and/or nurse to explain to him that I'm not being paranoid. He thinks this is one of my points of paranoia.

We argued about housework. Now, spouses have argued about housework for all the ages. But our argument is a bit different. I say to leave it. WHO CARES IF THE FLOORS GET SWEPT? He insists it's still important. He'll give up seeing Robbie for an entire day to stay home and clean the house. He's not asking me to do the same, he's perfectly willing to do it himself. I just think it doesn't need to be done.

Yes- the basics are required. We need clean laundry & the cat boxes have to be cleaned. The dishes should be washed. But really, beyond that.. It can rot. I really don't care. He says it would bother him if it wasn't done.

He says I ignore him. And he's right. Between work, travel time, the hospital and pumping, plus trying to sleep 5 or 6 hours, I just don't have time. I feel like Robbie needs me more than he does.

I definitely don't have this wife/mom thing figured out yet.

Of course, at one point, he had the nerve to complain that he has trouble sitting in the NICU (he spends about 2 hours a day there after work) because he gets "so tired."

He still manages to stay up til 1am every night playing his stupid video game. He says that having a baby doesn't mean he doesn't get to do anything fun or see his friends. I told him that I felt like NOTHING changed for him. That's an overstatement, of course, but I do feel like he thinks that life can continue on just the same as before and it can't. It couldn't have even if Robbie had been full term and healthy. It certainly can't now.

In the end, we both apologized and discussed a schedule. I don't think that either of us really thinks we're wrong. Probably because we're both actually right. But hopefully we can work together to muddle through the next few months.

Oh.. and in an amusing tidbit, this argument occurred on the way to the hospital. It continued as we walked through the parking garage and into the hospital. We stopped in a quiet hallway to sort of finish it up and when we turned the corner to continue to the NICU, I found a janitor in a turban evesdropping without shame. He didn't even bother to try to look busy as we walked by. I hope he enjoyed the drama. I didn't even feel embarrassed. We weren't yelling or being nasty. And frankly, we're under enough stress that an argument every couple of months seems pretty understandable.

Anyway, as of right now, we're okay. In a couple of months, I'll be on a leave of absence from work and Robbie will be home and I'll get to see my husband once in a while.

Tomorrow- PICTURES!



Mrs. Spit said...

Short on commenting time. I seem to spend a lot of time rounding up moose. But that's ok. I'll keep doing it. No problem. I'm sure there's a few left in Banff. Got to be. Sending Delta and Mr. Spit out to look.

As for David, I have noticed, that men and women, well, we are different. Men tend to compartmentalize a lot more. They need to fix things they can fix. They need to take their aggression out on bits and bytes in computer games.

David can't fix Robbie, he can't heal himself, and he can't fix his wife's shattered heart and possible brain cancer. He can mop the floor and work and arrange dinner with your family. He can fix that.

It's hard. And I'm sorry. Because it will be hard for a bit longer. Marathon.

Off to go burn up another moose.

Aidan's mom said...

Yes, yes and yes to what Mrs. Spit says. Having the "benefit" of looking back on our experience nearly 3 years ago now, you are essentially describing what my husband and I went through. I wanted to be at the hospital as much as possible. Certainly during holding time of course. I felt like pretty much everything else in my life could wait because this was so much more important.

My husband also wanted to spend time with his son but not nearly as much. My husband is very social and really craved having his friends around during this time.

And you know what? We really were both right. Because we were each doing what *we* personally needed at the time. For my husband to insist on me being home more would have torn my heart out. I really felt like I needed to be there. And for me to expect my husband to have the same amount of patience was crazy. Men really are fixers and there is nothing going on in the NICU room that he can fix. It makes them feel powerless.

It is a marathon. And the marathon doesn't really end with the NICU. It changes when you come home but you are still on it. Because you are bringing home a medically fragile infant.

As for the fatalistic thinking you describe (i.e. a headache is a brain tumor), it is SO common. This hypervigilance is a major presenting symptom of post traumatic stress disorder. It is completely normal given what you have been through.

I actually finally started getting treatment for my late onset PTSD from my son's birth.

Feel free to private mail me at any time if you want to chat about any of this.

Tracy said...

Wow, when Robbie decides to gain some weight, he really gains some weight! Go, Robbie! I hope he continues with a nice overall increase.

I think what you and David are going through is somewhat normal and to be expected. You have quite a commute and time commitments so something has to give.

Kangarooing with Robbie is important to his health and probably your health too! So people (David and the family) need to schedule things around that time.

Playing video games and cleaning house are probably ways for David to cope with his stress. Men are dads, they don't really have that maternial gene going for them. They like to do things and fix things. He probably just can't understand how he's helping by spending time in the hospital. It probably makes he feel useless.

Sounds like you have the right attitude. He's not completely wrong. Hopefully you both can come to the middle a little and work on a schedule.

Definitely get someone that David respects to explain about exposing Robbie to visitors and how a welcome home party right away isn't a good idea. Try to set a time line farther out though to give David something to look forward to.

This isn't going to continue forever. Robbie will come home and your life with return to a new and better normal!

Two Hands said...

Totally agree with what Mrs. Spit said. She hit many nails on the head with that comment. I'd graduate summa cum laude if I could master that kind of concision.
But I digress. I'm on holiday, I was at a dance last night and while I could have been dancing or watching the many other people cutting a rug (some quite hilarious) you know what I was doing? Thinking of Robbie. His little face filled my mind. Methinks you have many people who are thinking of him and all of you.
Sounds like you and hubby will work it out, but I understand where you are coming from. I worry about exactly the same things and my life isn't one eighth as stressful as yours. You're being a Mom, that's all I can say. I hope the worries about big stuff like cancer fade when the stress levels go down, but it's natural to worry because you CARE.
Hang in there honey. You're doing great and Robbie's doing better too.

Milenka said...

Our son has only been in the NICU for 13 days, but I see a lot of our relationship in this post. I'm too intense and feel that my husband is too unconcerned, though I know deep down that he really isn't. He's just not me, right? Like you said, someday our little guys will be home and things can settle into a whole new type of normal!

Spork Fashion said...

Tim is quite pleased with Robbie's sudden growth spurt ;)

Honestly, it sounds like David is just as tired and stressed as you, he just handles it in a very different way. A very David way.

You guys need some crazy hot makeup sex :)

Heather said...

I will admit that the first year of being parents is even more stressful than the first year of being married. And of course it's even harder with the stress of having a baby in the NICU for an extended period of time. Hang in there. You were both right.