Day 126: HOME!!!!

Teddy came home today! At 18 weeks to the day, he made his grand exit from the NICU, of course wearing a cape like the superhero that he is.

Yesterday, the doctors and NP’s decided that Teddy would definitely go home on oxygen, and possibly as soon as Friday. Abigail went in at 5:30am this morning to see his nighttime primary nurse, Kelly, in case we didn’t have another chance to thank her and say goodbye.

Abigail came home and both of us went to work; Marynell and Glenn went in to do Teddy’s mid-morning feeding. At about 10am, the doctors told Marynell that we should make a pediatrician appointment for Friday – this was really happening!

According to Marynell, everyone in the NICU went nuts, running around to get everything done that needs to get done for discharge – prescriptions written and filled, medical equipment ordered and delivered, car seat “challenge” accomplished with flying colors, hearing screen passed as well, insurance checked and double checked, final orders written, follow-up appointments scheduled…

Abigail and I returned to the NICU around 1pm for “discharge class” – an hour or so of our wonderful Nurse Practitioner Nicole jamming our heads full of last minute directions both obvious and not so.

We rushed home at 2:30 to meet the medical equipment deliveryman, who spent about 30 minutes training us on the use of a nebulizer, portable and non-portable oxygen sources, and an oxygen saturation monitor. NBD, just the machines we need to keep our boy alive outside the NICU!

Then it was just a matter of going back to the NICU to get the boy! With a portable oxygen tank and our sat probe in hand, we were out the door to head back to the hospital, with Marynell offering last minute advice to these very nervous and excited moms as we walked out the door.

It was a little bit surreal buzzing in and scrubbing for the LAST TIME after four months of the same routine over and over and over again. Everyone was all smiles as we walked in, with Elena and Christine, two of our favorite RT’s, joking about stealing Teddy before we could take him home.

Respiratory Therapists/Baby Stealers (note Abigail's photobomb...)
Respiratory Therapists/Baby Stealers (note Abigail’s photobomb…)

We changed Teddy into his going home outfit – a “Little Super Hero” onesie complete with a cape and a “mask” on his hat. More instructions on all his various medications from nurse Debbie, and then it was time to say good bye.

Little Super Hero
Little Super Hero

Elena disconnected him from the wall and attached his portable oxygen tank, and took him for his farewell tour of the NICU. After four months, nearly every staff member on the unit has interacted with him one way or another, so it literally took fifteen minutes or more as every single nurse, respiratory therapist, receptionist, nurse practitioner, etc., on duty today stopped to hug us, marvel at Teddy’s progress, and make us promise to come back and visit.

Our NICU “neighbors” showed up for the six o’clock feeds for their babies, and there were more hugs before Cristi, another of our favorite nurses, suggested we get a picture of our whole “cohort” together – Teddy and his two NICU buddies, out of their cribs together for the first and last time – definitely one of the highlights of the day.

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Teddy, Aria and Logan

I ran to get the car while Elena and Debbie walked Teddy and Abigail out. So far in his life he’s traveled from labor and delivery to the NICU, then two months later to a different spot in the NICU; this was his biggest journey by far, and he pretty much slept through it all.

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Heading home!!!

We did the classic new parent ridiculously slow drive home, and were greeted as we pulled into the driveway by several neighbors eager to see our not-so-little anymore guy. Then it was into the house to meet the animals (uneventful so far) and to finally do what we’ve been waiting for all along – to snuggle up as a family on our own couch.

So that’s where we are now! We couldn’t be more thrilled, though also nervous as heck, but what new parents aren’t?

There are too many people to thank for making today possible, though the one I do want to make special mention of is Mary Ann, our daytime primary nurse who has been with us for so much of this journey. She was off duty today, and it felt really strange to be leaving without her there. She was blowing up our phones all day with texts checking up on everything, and we know it was just about killing her to miss Teddy’s graduation. Mary Ann, thank you for EVERYTHING. We feel so so blessed to know you and to have had our boy in your care for so long.

I asked Abigail this afternoon if we’d keep blogging now that Teddy’s home, and her immediate answer was, “Of course!” I imagine updates may get less frequent as our journey hopefully becomes a bit more mundane. If you’d like to keep following Teddy’s story, though, stayed tuned. I’m sure we have many more adventures in store.

Family
Family
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GinaD07
Member
GinaD07
5 years 7 months ago

Love to you all! So glad to have been able to follow along on Teddy’s journey thus far.

SillyKris
Member
SillyKris
5 years 7 months ago

Oh frabjous day! So proud of you mommies, and so grateful to all the wonderful souls that have helped you along your way. <3!

lenepeace
Member
lenepeace
5 years 7 months ago

Seeing the ride home pic on FB made my day! And seeing you all snuggled up at home just made it even better! So glad you were open enough to take us through your journey in the NICU and looking forward to following Teddy’s adventures at home! YAY! So happy for you all!

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