Sunday, June 29, 2008
I am just not capable of a short post, I tried, sorry.
Zoey spent the first 2 1/2 months of her life sleeping in a crib courtesy of "Property of Children's Hospital Of Los Angeles". We tried to make it look as much as a baby's nursery crib as we could. But try as we might, no matter how many pink blankets, stuffed dolls, mobiles, name plates, crosses or music boxes, that we adorned it with, it looked exactly like what it was ..... a hospital crib. When the day was quickly approaching to finally bring Zoey home, our biggest dilemma was what would she sleep in when she got home? Where would she sleep when she got home? She would require elevation, as she was pump fed nearly all day long. She needed to be hooked up to one machine or another all or most of the day. And most importantly she would require to have someone nearby at all times. All of our time as a family was mostly spent downstairs. We were blessed to live in a large home with a lot of space down stairs. The most logical solution was to bring her large crib down to the family room to be amongst the action and activity. The crib was sturdy. Large. And quite fitting for our little princess. So we moved it down stairs and it became one with the furniture. In fact it was placed directly under surround sound speakers and Zoey LOVED the noise. Noise from TV and CD"S. Noise from her brothers plasma cars that they drove around and around and around the entire living room/kitchen area. There was no such thing as "be quiet the baby is sleeping" For 2 1/2 months she lived in the hustle and bustle of the NICU. She was absolutely use to noise. At night we would transfer her up to our room and in the morning we would transfer her back down stairs. Thus became our lives. Transferring stuff. Medical equipment and this tiny, tiny baby that I often had nightmares of dropping or tripping with as I went from place to place. She was so fragile. But getting her out of the NICU and away from potentially deadly virus's became more important and superseded my fears of bringing home such a medically fragile child. She lay on her back for 3 more months. Only enough energy to breathe. She never cried once in all of her little life that first 5 1/2 months. She never made a sound other then to cough or gag, for 5 1/2 months. Absolutely the truth. Can you imagine that we never heard her cry for 5 1/2 months? She knew that all her body was capable of doing was to lie there in her big, over sized for her tiny body, crib, and breathe and grow, grow and breathe. Surgery came and went. We kept the same bed deal afterwards. It was all she knew. She was comfortable. She was secure. She loved her little nest that we created for her in that over sized crib of hers. When we moved to the townhouse in December, no way was there room for the crib down stairs. So away the crib went and made way for a port-a-crib down stairs if needed but now she became stronger for Bumbos and bouncy seats and saucers and the floor to explore. She kept her night time bed which was a co- sleeper. A co-sleeper is just a fancy port-a-crib that attaches to our bed.The co- sleeper was given to us by a very special friend of mine named Kari. I will never forget the day her husband and her father brought it over to us. It was Zoey's very first day home. They were our first visitors. The first people to to see Zoey out of the hospital environment. Kari's dad is a Deacon at our parish and before he left he ask if we could all gather together and pray. So there we were. Zoey, surrounded by her family and people who loved her,her very first day home,circled together, praying for this tiny blessing of ours. That moment in our living room was one I will cherish. It was a perfect moment and the co -sleeper would come to be a perfect place for Zoey. Perfect for a pint size little soul who still found comfort in the confines of a small space. Well, tonight that all changes. I use to hate change. Dreaded it really. Feared it honestly. Now I mostly embrace it. It means we are living. It means we are moving. It means life is waiting to grant us new moments. Hopefully we are ready. Often we are not. But change comes nonetheless. Mark and I headed over to the "old house" We still own it. Sort of. It's empty. It's beautiful. I miss it. But it's just a house. Normally I just go into the garage and retrieve something from a box or tote that I need or the kids need or Mark needs. We are still in limbo. Some things still there in the garage. Most here. Today I actually followed Mark into the house. Big mistake. You know how a smell can instantly evoke and trigger a memory. Like a hospital smell. That's one I wish I could erase. Or the smell of a baby's freshly lotioned skin. That's one I hope to never forget. Well, today, my "old house" smelled like my house. Visions of my children laughing, fighting, playing, lounging, kept flooding back. Visions of Zoey. Innocent, fragile, fighting, surviving came flooding back. The vision of family gatherings, past and future, came flooding back. Tears came flooding back. I sat on the floor of my living room and cried. Why? I have never been one to yearn for or covet things. They are just things. We were fortunate to have a beautiful home, that had ample room and more for us all. I always felt lucky and fortunate to have that. The home we have now is equally beautiful. I miss the boys having a yard. I miss room for Zoey to roll and hopefully one day crawl, walk and run. I miss a neighborhood. But we are together. We are happy. We are healthy. Zoey is here. I do not understand the tears. They make no sense to me even at this moment. Maybe it was a release. Maybe the limbo of no longer living in that house but still having that house is weighing heavy on me. It will be better when it is someone else's. Maybe then I won't have this strange, uncharacteristic yearning of wanting it back. Change. No matter what we do, it still comes. So tonight, Mark builds Zoey's "new", "old" crib. How strange it will be to see her in it again after 7 months. A long time in the life of a 16 month old. I hope she adjusts well to her change. I hope I adjust well to her change. I am excited for her. She has been so full of change lately. Her two top teeth are almost through. Her kisses she gives are magical. My child who has hated her tummy has suddenly, in 3 short days decided she loves her tummy. My child who only rolled from her left side up and over, now initiates it from her right. Changing everyday, my little wonder. She sits in a high chair. Be it on two blankets to lift her bottom and a blanket to keep her from leaning too far left, but she is still sitting in a high chair. Changes. Tonight my baby sleeps in her big girl crib, no mattress elevation, no blankets to prevent her from rolling. No pumps. No machines. Just my baby, laying peacefully in her big girl crib. Change is good.