I have to say that things were pretty much an ugly blur from then on out. When Isaac came out, he had a ton of fluid in his lungs due to lack of compression from no labor, and/or lungs not being fully ready. He ended up with "wet lungs" and was transferred to the NICU. My husband advocated for me to see him before he left for the NICU so they let me see him for a moment before he left. My husband spent the night shuttling between baby Isaac and me. I didn't even get to see Isaac again or hold him until the next day at around 2:30, a full 18 hours after he was born.
This did not make me happy. At the time I did not realize what rough shape I was in myself. I had been hooked up to a magnesium drip for the blood pressure, and the next day was told that there was protein in my urine, thereby confirming my diagnosis of full-blown preeclampsia.
Because of the magnesium IV and it being a hard drug on your body, I was not allowed to be wheeled down to the NICU without a nurse present. No biggie, I told the nurse. When could she go with me?
"We don't usually allow the "mag moms" to go down to the NICU. We don't normally have enough nurse staff to go with them for regular trips."
Excusez-moi? Did I hear her right? They were not going to let me go see my own baby that I had birthed in terror and confusion the night before, whose cries I had heard only for a moment, whose little face had been held up to my own for a mere few seconds, and who was down in the NICU without ever having been held by his mother, because of a nurse schedule?!
Tears started rolling down my face. I'm an emotional person at best, and this was not my best.
"Well, you better figure out a schedule. Because I'm going to go. You can't keep me from my baby. That's barbaric. I just want to go once. I haven't seen him since I had him!"
At 2:30, the nurse and my husband wheeled me down to the NICU for Isaac's feeding. I had butterflies seeing him for the first time. My poor little baby with his little IV because his blood sugar kept dropping. His breathing was better, though. And he was much better off than most of the other babies in the NICU. I finally got to hold him and feed him. I was a mess though. Hormones, pain, general traumatic ordeal, whatever, I think I cried the whole time.
Isaac stayed in the NICU for 3 days and we stayed in the hospital for four total. I was in a lot of pain from the C section, but was hanging tough. I was on the magnesium for a little more than 24 hours and could go to the NICU whenever I wanted after the IV came out.
After we got released from the hospital the first few days home were a blur too. I was so dopey and had lost so much blood I pretty much slept the whole time while my mom and husband took care of Isaac. I did feel bad about that, but it wasn't like I could physically fight through it. I just sighed and felt bad and went back to sleep.
Little did I know that's how my life itself would feel for the next year or so.