This afternoon I made my way from Brinkley's room to the elevator. I have been going up and down this elevator multiple times a day for six weeks now. Many times I see people getting on the elevator pushing carts full of flowers and other things they have accumulated during their hospital stay. Typically, I don't think much about those carts. Today was different. Today seeing those carts brought tears to my eyes.
Today, there was something different about my trip down that elevator. I wasn't just going to the cafeteria or just going to the parking lot to drive home. Today I was going to get a car seat. That car seat marks a HUGE step in our NICU journey.
I don't know how things work in the newborn nursery, but in the NICU it is a major accomplishment to have the doctor tell you to bring the car seat in. Before a baby can be discharged from the NICU they must pass the car seat test and heart patients must pass an additional car seat test specific to their condition. The doctors order these tests for your final days in the NICU. Final meaning last 2-4 days. Around 12:30 this afternoon Dr. Oliver (our Resident) came in and asked me if I had a car seat because she was writing the order today for our tests. We've been waiting six weeks to hear someone ask for a car seat.
Six weeks ago today Brinkley made his early entrance to this world. Monday, October 15th, was the day he was expected to join us. Next week will mark the day he comes HOME!! It has been a long, exhausting, draining, overwhelming, and incredible six weeks. We have met some wonderful medical professionals and families of other NICU babies along the way. I will miss the sweet nurses who have embraced our family and loved our little red headed wonder like he was their own. (These ladies have become dear friends and will continue to be a part of our lives.) It will be hard to get back to life outside of the NICU everyday (as crazy as that sounds). As much as I will miss seeing my new friends, I can't wait to have sweet Brinkley home.
Today as I got on the elevator to get Brinkley's car seat those carts brought tears to my eyes. Tears of anticipation. I couldn't help but think the next time I see one of those carts, it is very likely that Brinkley and his car seat will be on it!