Thursday, January 12, 2006

Hospital Tour

Well, today we toured the hospital where Drew will be born. Unfortunately, it is not the same one where E. was born. Drew needs to be born in a place with ECMO capabilities and OU Medical Center is the only available place in the state with such capabilities. I'm very glad that we only live about 30 minutes away from the hospital.

Anyway, although it's a nice enough place, it's not anything like Mercy where E. was born. The birthing suites are not horrid like I'd been told. They are very nice and spacious, just not as well-decorated as Mercy. Lucky me will probably be in the high risk area, not the normal area.

There are 3 NICU's--basically a high risk, moderate risk and low risk. Drew will most likely spend most of his time in the high risk NICU. No matter how cheerful the decor, it's still a very sad place. I did very good not to break down in tears while visiting. I like the security measures they have in place, only people that R. and I put on a list will ever be allowed in to see Drew and then only 2 at a time.

I saw a baby boy with CDH who was having surgery today. He looked "normal" but the ventilator, feeding tube and all of the other tubes and wires were scary. I guess I'm glad I saw him so that I know what to expect but things have suddenly become much more real to me.

We met with a lactation consultant (they seem to have an amazing BF support staff--10 IBLC's--which I LOVE) and a social worker. R. was given some instructions by the IBLC. That was pretty funny but I know that he'll do a great job. It's extremely important that Drew recieve breastmilk rather than formula. It's important to us, anyway, and the doctors thankfully agree. I still have some residual bitterness about the fact that E. was pulled off of breastmilk due to her jaundice when it was not necessary at all.

We were given a lot of good information that's going to be a great help but keeping it all straight in my head might be a problem! They even gave me some helpful information on finding childcare near the hospital for E. as that's a big concern for me. I don't know how we are going to balance being with Drew and spending enough time with her. I REALLY worry about that.

All in all I'm glad that we toured so I'm a bit more prepared and in control (since I have this need to be in as much control as possible). But at the same time, I'm very sad--seeing all of those babies in the NICU really makes you think about all that can go wrong.

Then I took E. to Gymboree and seeing her be so happy to be back in her class made the day much better. She really missed everyone and all of their activities over the winter break.