We came home from the hospital one year ago. Its another moment to mark that we have made it a full year from. We weren't ever re-admitted. In fact she has never been to a doctor for being sick since we left the NICU.
I can't help but remember the day that we left the NICU. I had pictured it a bit different than how it went. After being there for close to 3 months, on tuesday the doctor said "How would you like to go home this weekend?". This just hit me out of no where, I had always been planning on her due date so to be going home a whole month ahead of schedule blew me away.
There was complete chaos in the following days to get an extra car over to us, find a car seat that she could fit into, having her pass a 3 hour car seat test. Trying to cordinate and get everything we needed back home ready for her, as I was some 300 miles away. It was a whirl of all types of final test she had to have at the hospital, as well we were still mastering the bottle feedings.
And then the day came. The doctor came and did one last check of her. It was a sunday so most of the nurses we had worked with weren't there. Ed went and got the car. Then for the first time in her whole life they detached the ECG and pulse ox monitor. After 3 months she didn't have any wires attached to her and she was all mine. We now had a 6 hour car ride in front of us, and I was going home for the first time in 3 months.
She was so small, and squinted her eyes as we went outside. The first time sun had ever hit her face. It was such a surreal experience. I wasn't overly excited, I wasn't overly scared or sad. I was simply ready. We loaded up in the car, as only first time parents can, very slowly and careful. And then we finally went home.
I still carry the NICU phone number card in my wallet, I recently found a hospital parking pass in my car. I look and feels Kate's IV scars at least once a week. Time has moved on and we have too, but we still some have a little bit of baggage to slowly put away.