There is so much stuff swirling around in my mind and heart, I can't come up with the right words to say what I need to say, so I'll just spit it out.
Max is coming home!
We got the results of his nuclear imaging testing yesterday and he is *not* aspirating formula. That is not causing the cough. It's probably some chronic lung damage simply caused by his prematurity, and he'll most likely outgrow it eventually.
We started him on fortified feeds yesterday (22 calorie instead of 20) so hopefully the feeding tube comes out tomorrow.
We started trying to wean him off the oxygen as well. The flow was down to .5 L yesterday, and they'll keep dropping it slowly over the weekend in the hopes that we can be off it totally. We're willing and able to bring him home on oxygen, but it's obviously not the ideal set-up.
He will be coming home on a monitor to track his heartrate and such… I've heard mixed reviews of the PITA-ness of this, but again, it's worth it to have him where he belongs.. with us.
We start “discharge planning” on Monday and will room-in (spend the night with him at the hospital, in our own room, just the 3 of us, for practice) some time next week as well. We're bringing his car seat in over the weekend so the carseat test can be done as soon as it's ordered, and we're switching him to the Playtex bottles he'll get at home, so we can be sure they work for him. If all goes according to plan, he should be home by next weekend.
It's been a long 12 weeks… will be 13 if he comes home on Thursday, and I still can't believe I'm typing this! As is true for everything else in the NICU, this is all part of the rollercoaster ride we've been on. Things could change, and he might *not* come home, but I can't dwell on that. I'm looking towards next weekend, when we can finally be home as a family!
I realized something last night, as I was unable to sleep for the adrenaline coursing through me. There's nothing else I'm waiting for in my life. My whole life I waited to see Paris, I waited to marry the man of my dreams, I waited for a baby, and then I waited for that baby to come home. I tried to explain this to Jamie and he just laughed and said “Sorry for making all your dreams come true!” and really, he's right!
I still have my list of 100 things to do before I die, but really, all the big ones are done.
We've been parents for 3 months, but we still have no idea what we're in for. I guess it's a good thing that we're aware that we're clueless, but it's a thrilling place to be.
And because no post is complete without a photo, check out Max's crib mattress! It was $20 more than we had originally budgeted, but it's got his NAME on it!
And now, if you can please do me a favor (assuming you've read this far!) can you please leave a comment, even if you've never left one before? Just a first name and a location if you want… I want to document for Max all the people who have been rooting for him… family, friends and strangers. Thanks.