Wednesday, January 31, 2007

A progress report

Medically speaking, Hester on the down slope now. She'll probably be in the NICU for another month or so, but at least she's stable and comfortable. Her nurses are amazing, especially one named Debby. Debby gave Hester her first bath (and took pictures for us), and she also started a journal for Hester that she updates daily with notes and photos. She's just so very kind to us, and we are so grateful to her for taking such good care of our little girl.

Other people continue to amaze me with their kindness and thoughtfulness, too. My cousin Sam sent a huge box of wonderful gifts for Hester, and my dear friend JPP made her 3 beautiful hats. Hester's grandparents call daily (at least) and always have kind words for us and for her. Our neighbor Green Thumb takes Clara and the cats each weekend, and L&Y helped out one weekend as well. We've begun to receive some very welcome hand-me-downs from other friends, and many more boxes have been promised. Even the clerk at Old Navy remembered me when I was in there briefly to exchange a Christmas gift; she asked, "Have you heard anything?" and I was so proud to show her the photo of Petunia and Hester I carry in my wallet. Everywhere we go, congratulations and well wishes are in the air. It's truly amazing.

Everything's not all roses and sunshine, though. It's really hard having Hester in the hospital. For me the worst part (now that Hester's comfortable) is not being able to be with her and care for her on a daily basis. It's hard to ask permission to change her, play with her, or give her baths. It's almost impossible to leave her there in the nursery when I have to go to work. I hate that I spend my days caring for other people's children while my own child sits in the hospital without me. At low points, I fantasize about quitting work and staying with Hester full-time.

Time is passing so quickly, too, which is a mixed blessing: On one hand, Hester will be out of the hospital before we know it; but on the other, she won't be a tiny baby when she comes home. I try to remind myself of all the perks of having her in the hospital right now--free diapers! more sleep for us! easing into parenthood! etc.!--but these things are a cheap veneer over my true heart's desire: I want to give her baths and feed her, change her and play with her, talk with her and show her the big, wide world. I want to be her parent, really and truly.

I long for the day when Hester will come home.



Anonymous Round is Funny said...

I hope it's soon. This must be so hard! I'm sure getting a full night's sleep is cold comfort for you right now.

I'm glad to hear that she's stable though, and on the up.

4:25 PM  
Anonymous Jenny PP said...

I'm glad Hester's doing well too, and I know it must be so hard to be in limbo. But hey, you have your whole life to be her parent. Try not to let yourself get too down. Maybe you'll just have to spoil her a little extra when she comes home. ;) I'll help.

4:38 PM  
Anonymous lola said...

Beautiful HW will be home soon! AND don't doubt it-she knows who you are and that you and Petunia have the biggest hearts of love to give:)

7:19 PM  
Blogger Canada said...

I can totally understand, Clementine, and knowing that it will be soon doesn't help because it isn't NOW. {{{hugs}}}

12:14 AM  
Blogger Psycho Kitty said...

Hugs from out here, too, for all of you. It must be so hard.

1:44 PM  

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