Uncle Matt snuggles David

David gets his first bath at home.

Auntie Ellen gives David a tube feeding.
So we fled from the hospital with our little David–having no idea what the future held or how to best care for this tiny guy. The day we brought him home, there was already a baby shower planned for us with some of our family and friends. We went and brought David with us. I attempted my first tube feeding outside the hospital during the shower. My hands were shaking and I was sweating. I was sure we would somehow pull out the tube or feed him too much. There seemed to be so many questions. But we were relieved to have our family together and begin our lives again. As we pulled away from the shower, David was in the back seat making a strange gurgling sound. We screetched over to the side of the road, sure that he was choking to death, but no he seemed completely content. Why do the make newborns sit in the backseat facing backward?!

We brought David home and placed him in a pack and play we had set up in our bedroom. I bundled him in a blanket and felt certain he wouldn’t make it through the night. I set my alarm clock to wake up in two hours and do another tube feeding. When my alarm went off, I raced over to his bed, amazed that he was still breathing. I was so groggy and just generally exhausted. I kept prepared breast milk mixed with formula in the fridge and would pour an ounce into his syringe. The connector between the syringe and David’s tube was a little loose and frequently his milk would go spilling everywhere. The first few nights went on like this. During the days, we had family and friends visit and help out. Steve went back to work, but would come home for lunch. We ate out sometimes and David would tag along. I got a pedicure. We had a home nurse who checked in everyday. I pumped six to eight times a day, but since my milk never really came in, after twenty minutes of pumping I would have 1-2 ounces. I had accepted a new job as a full inclusion specialist in the local school district. Live was getting back to a state of normal little by little, but I felt so overwhelmed thinking about going back to work–even for just two days a week!

When David was two weeks old we were having dinner with Chrissie and Matt and he had a fever I just couldn’t get down. We finally decided to take him to the ER in Mission Viejo. Of course they did all kinds of test, including a spinal tap. Then they admitted him. I guess when doctors look at a 4.5 lbs baby with two fingers and a fever, they usually decide to play it safe. I was so discouraged, but it ended up being a great stay. We had our own room with a twin bed for me to sleep in. The staff was kind and caring. Their were volunteers who walked around with drinks, cookies and magazines. I kinda felt like I was staying at the Holiday Inn or something! During David’s stay we got a phone call from Steve’s mom telling us that Dave (Steve’s dad) had been in a serious trucking accident. He was going to be OK but would have to be in the hospital for a while. So, when David was released after a couple days, we headed up to Sacramento. We stayed with some of Steve’s old friends and felt so blessed by our time with them. It was good to get out and live life, even in the midst of adjusting to David’s challenges. We were getting to know him and we were falling in love.