The NICU occupied until surgery was loud. Stressful. Crowded.
I couldn’t imagine that my little infant, whose smile in the fifteen seconds I had him in my arms after delivery was gone– drowned in medications, was happy. Or peaceful. Beeps, dings, bells and crying were constant. IVs from every appendage, except one arm, were constantly filled with meds, had blood being taken out… The nurses were smart and kept the tissues at his little table for me.
The first few visits to his bedside, post birth, were extremely painful. I hadn’t been able to walk in months, due to my own fading health, and now I forced myself to stand at his side for as long as my body would hold me. It would be a couple hours and I would have to be taken away in a wheelchair because my legs would go numb. Even if I had found a tall chair to sit on, sitting up and forward was very, very difficult for long periods of time. The NICU is not for relaxation. If you can’t hold your child, which not every parent can, then you get to sit on a stool up against your child’s equipment.