Lisa's reflective account of Day 19....
I left Phil in bed that morning and went across to see Theo. I had never before been a morning person but getting up at 5am to express, phone the ward and get ready was fairly easy because I couldn’t wait to go and see Theo.
Jack was in the lakes for the weekend having fun so we were able to concentrate on Theo. The Doctors were really pleased with his progress and decided to start aggressively weaning him from the ventilator as much as he could tolerate. They always checked his blood gasses every few hours and had done since admission, it helped them to see how well he was doing and whether he was settled or starting to struggle on the ventilator. If he had a very good gas, they would wean his ventilator either the pressure of the breaths delivered or the amount of breaths that the ventilator delivered. If he had a bad gas then it indicated that he was getting tired and needed more help breathing so they would increase his settings accordingly.
I should have been 28 weeks pregnant that day, how could we have a baby that was nearly 3 weeks old?? It seemed like he had been here a lot longer. The hospital had become our new life and we were really getting into a routine. We did everything for Theo all day, we were getting to know him so well. It was hard not being able to touch him very much or pick him up and cuddle him. He was still so tiny and delicate.
Later that afternoon my Mum came to see Theo for the first time since landing back in England earlier that day from Australia. They went home first and Dad brought her when he felt able to drive. We had a brew in Ronald McDonald house first and spoke about everything that had happened. I was emotional speaking about it all, because getting through each day was manageable I was on autopilot, but speaking about what had happened made it real and brought all of that emotion to the surface. It was hard for Mum not being able to be there for us from the start, she would’ve been there in a heartbeat had she been in England. No matter how much you explain to anyone the magnitude of feelings, thoughts and events at the time it can never really be truly conveyed or understood.
We went over to see Theo, I was so proud of him. He was such a little fighter who was trying his very best. I still felt overwhelmingly guilty and probably still do to this day for not being able to carry him to full term. It must have been so strange for my Mum seeing him for the first time. She had just left another grandson in Australia who was one month older than Theo so would’ve been upset about that and then seeing Theo so poorly and tiny in his incubator would’ve been a shock along with the jet lag! I was glad that she was home. My sister had been amazing but we needed our Mum too!
Theo had done really well that day with his gases and weaning they had reduced his breathing rate on the ventilator quite a bit trying to encourage him to do more breaths for himself. They can only try, hopefully they won’t push him too much and tire him out.
We still couldn’t believe that we had a baby. I hadn’t even gotten my head around even being pregnant! He was such a miracle 💕
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