The life of a preemie mom is similar to that of a full term mom. The only difference being, obviously, that our baby is in the NICU. Since R went back to work after being off a full week with us, I've had to set up a routine just for me to follow. As time goes on and Walker grows bigger, my routine will be more hours at the hospital for one-on-one time and more hands on stuff.
My Daily Routine
1 a.m.- First pump of the new day. Sometimes, I'm not going to lie, I sleep through this pump session. I need my sleep to function properly and produce the good stuff for Walker.
4 a.m.- Probably the best pump of the day. I wake up and pump and get to spend our typical morning time with R. I'm hoping that when Walker does come home, that he enjoys it also. I love my mornings with my husband and I wouldn't trade it for the world. Even if Walker doesn't like it at least it will be our given alone time with one another. We eat breakfast and just enjoy spending time together.
7 a.m. - Pump session #3 of the day. By this time I've stayed awake for 3 hours and the tiredness is starting to set in. I usually pump and head back to bed.
10 a.m.- Pump again and get ready to go see Walker. I stay until around 12:30 and then make the commute home to pump again. I can pump at the hospital but Walker knows when we are there and becomes active. I leave to ensure that he gets rest. Don't forget he is a newborn and even though he is a preemie, he needs just as much sleep as a full term baby.
1 p.m.- Pump. and take a nap. This session is typically the session where I get the least amount of milk because I'm so tired by now.
4 p.m.- Pump. Pick up around the house and wait for R to get home. When he does get home, we eat dinner and watch TV since the NICU is closed for rotation from 6:15-8. We take our showers and get ready for bed.
7 p.m.- Pump and head towards the hospital. We like to get there at 8 and spend our little family time just the three of us. R misses Walker so much during the day that we are requesting that guests wait until the weekend to come see Walker during this time slot. R likes it to be just the three of us and I can respect that.
10 p.m.- Pump and go to bed with R. It's hard now that I have this pump session so late and we are used to going to bed together every night. He stays up with me and I know it's starting to wear on him. We go to bed and I do it all over again in the morning.
We count down the days until Thursday. R works four 10 hour shifts and everything after that is overtime. Thursday night, Friday and Saturday we are there around the clock. Sunday we grocery shop and make our meals for the week. This week is turkey sandwiches with havarti cheese and spaghetti for dinner.
I like to think of our outlook in a few ways:
Right now Walker's little body shouldn't be doing the things that it is doing. He is fighting so hard and the more rest he gets the better. I feel guilty about not spending every waking minute by his bed side but it's not healthy for either of us. I need to take care of myself so I can be there every day and keep up with my milk supply.
I view the NICU right now as my womb. Instead of R and I always wondering what's going on every second of my pregnancy, we now get to watch the last stages of development that would occur in the womb.
Walker is here. He's a blessing. He is thriving!
My vices: coffee (Starbucks when I need that extra caramel) and Chick Fil A.