Lisa's reflective account of Day 15....

I went across early to see Theo, one of us had been there for practically every nurse hand over and ward round over the last two weeks. We were getting into a good routine and starting to get to know the nurses quite well. I felt a pang of nervousness about which nurse we would have before they came in for handover. That day we were super lucky, a lovely nurse was looking after Theo and she said that we could hold him whist they changed his incubator. Phil took Jack to school, later that morning I called him to tell him to come back because it was time to change the incubator. I had longed more than anything to hold Theo. I’d dreamed of the day. The nurses brought us a big comfy chair next to his incubator and they got us ready. I took off my top for skin to skin as it helps the babies to keep warm and feel safe. It was a military operation to get Theo out of his incubator. He was on the ventilator and they had to disconnect it to get him out so they had to manually breathe for him with the neopuff whist they put him into me and then reconnect him to the ventilator. They strapped his tubes to me and we had to make sure that his breathing tube was safe. It wasn’t until I held him that I realised exactly how tiny he was. He was as light as a feather. My breath was completely taken away, I felt so emotional. It was amazing but scary. He was safe in his incubator and he didn’t like being handled so desaturated a lot. They turned his oxygen right up. I was so happy that I got to hold him but I didn’t want him to suffer or be unhappy just so I could hold him. I was sat so tense that my back was aching. My precious baby, I just wanted to protect him and keep him safe. I’d already failed at keeping him safe in my tummy so the next best thing was the incubator. After about 10 minutes I wanted to put him back where he was safe but the nurses told me to keep him out longer. It was Phil’s turn after me. He was on quite a bit more oxygen by that point and settled down a lot on his Daddy’s chest. It was beautiful to see. He looked even smaller on Phil’s chest. Beautiful boys, such a precious moment. 💕 Jack had his school leavers disco that evening he was so excited. He’d been out earlier in the week with Phil to choose a really smart suit. He was growing up so quickly! Phil sent me pictures and videos of them at his friends house and in the Limo. I was really sad that I was missing things I would’ve usually done with Jack. He understood though and was more than happy his Dad went with him. Theo had a scan of his brain the day before. The first scan that they did soon after admission showed bilateral grade 1 intraventricular haemorrhage which means he had small bleeds in his brain. The Drs said this is extremely normal and expected in premature babies. The second scan Theo had showed grade 3 bleeding. This means that the bleeding was bigger than on the first scan. The Doctors explained that hopefully the bleeding would stop and would resolve over time. They didn’t know if it would affect him long term. We would only be able to tell as he got bigger and older by whether he was meeting his developmental milestones. We knew that it didn’t matter what happened with Theo. We would give him every single opportunity to be the best he could possibly be, whatever that best may be. He’s our tiny little amazing miracle.

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