Today is the day Matthew should have been born.
Earlier this year we lived in this perfect world where today I would be round like the pumpkins we visited, I would have went into what I thought was labor a few times and had a couple trips to the labor and deliery department. But, today would be the day. I would go in, labor a few hours, push out a perfect son, spend the night at the hospital and then we would all go home.
Onviously, we don't live in a perfect world. Things don't always go as planned. It's funny, when I was pregnant with Kaitlyn I wanted a cesarean so I could plan which day she would be here and I would be in control and prepared. I was so worried about giving up that control. This time, the control was ripped from my hands like the last piece of pie at the Donner Party. I not only didn't get to pick the day, I didn't get to pick the week. I had no control over anything in my life. Even now, we have so little control over so many things.
I spend so much time researching things on the internet when it comes to anything child related. I started when I was pregnant with Kaitlyn. I saw the afterschool specials, I know Knoweledge is Power. I want to be powerful in any way I can. Even Matthew's doctor at our first visit thought I was a nurse, how else would I know the lingo. That, was incredibly flattering. I research so much because I don't like the unknown. You cannot control the unknown. You cannot change the unknown. All you can do is try to make the unknown as known as possible.
I know we are so incredibly fortunate. We took the pregnancy to a viabale, healthy point and gave Matthew an incredible chance. I know how rare that is. I am told how astonishing it is anytime we talk to the doctor, the medical staff at his office, the NICU nurses, the neonatologist or other women who have been through the same. I know he is our miracle baby. I am incredibly grateful for that.
There is so much still unknown. Matthew looks like a normal newborn. He acts like a normal newborn. But he isn't. He's 7 weeks old and hasn't hit 8 pounds yet. He's 7 weeks old and we can't let him sleep as long as he wants to yet. He's 7 weeks old and he has to see his doctor every week and a cardiologist and have shots to prevent him from getting RSV. He's 7 weeks old and he's only been home for 3 weeks. We don't know what the future holds. We won't know for months or even years if Matthew has any residual effects from the prematurity. We don't know and there isn't anyone that can tell us. All they can tell us is what he's at risk for and that doesn't help do anything but worry you.
Life is so different now. We used to be able to go wherever we wanted whenever we wanted without a worry. Now, we don't get to do that. We can go out 1-2 times a week to a very controlled environment as long as we don't expose Matthew to illnesses or cigarette smoke. That leaves 5 days a week when we are planted at home making the best of it. It not only affects our life, but Kaitlyn's too. I know she loves staying home, she tells us all the time, but I also knows she misses seeing everyone.
When I was in the hospital, I got used to not being able to participate in everything. I got used to the idea that life goes on with or without you and I don't think that's a bad thing. I think it's a very healthy thing to figure out. And, I'm getting used to it again. There are so many things we are restricted from doing and I'm ok with that. I think we've made it pretty clear that everyone is welcomed to come over whenever they want, and we mean that very much.
With the physical limitations of where we can go and how often, we know that it's not easy for people to see Kaitlyn and Matthew. In a sense, we have to put the responsibility into the hands of those that want to see them. Those people will have to come over here. Chances are in November our 1-2 outings per week will be revoked. I know it is going to take away a lot of the fun and the joy of the holidays, but I know we will still make them special. I have confidence that our home will be a winter wonderland and fun. Kaitlyn loves baking and painting and we have plenty of that to do :) And I have faith that those who want to visit and have time to will do just that :D
I know this is a big change for everyone and a bit of an inconvienance, but we wouldn't do it if it wasn't necessary or incredibly important. I know Kaitlyn will adjust to it and it will help to teach Kaitlyn that the magic of Christmas doesn't involve traveling. Christmas can share the same magic and excitment staying at home or just driving around to see the lights as regular trips to the mall can.
I want to give a huge thank you to everyone that has made this as easy as possible on us. Thank you for visiting, keeping us company, bringing us yummy food, calling, inviting Kaitlyn places with you, inviting us places with you (even if we can't go) and for remembering us and asking us how we are doing. It means the world to me.