Saturday, February 6, 2010

February 5th, 2010 -- LILY'S HOMECOMING!!!!


We weren't sure what the plan was at the hospital. Is Lily going home? Staying? Jayasree told us that Lily would be able to watch the Super Bowl, but did that mean we are leaving the hospital on Sunday?

Just in case, I dropped Tracy off and went to take the car to Delta Sonic for an Interior Detail. The garbage has sort of been piling up this last month with all the back and forth travel.

I was still driving down Delaware when my phone rang. It was Tracy. "We're going home today," she said! The doctors just needed to complete a last physical on her before signing off. We said goodbye and I hung up the phone. I'm surprised the sceam I let out didn't blow out the windows!!

I couldn't get back to the hospital fast enough. Delta Sonic was a blur. I don't even remember driving back. All I kept thinking was, "Lily is coming home!"

As soon as I walked into Lily's room, Tracy and I hugged. We knew we were close to going home, but we still couldn't believe it! Lily looked so cute and prepared for the big day!! Everyone in the room thought I was nuts as I started to take pictures of everything. The "Dogwood" room sign. The doctors/nurses area in the hallway. The Light that used to flicker that always caught Lily's attention and kept her occupied for hours:

I took more pictures of her while thinking, "Wow . . . last NICU pictures!"

The wait was unbearable. I returned to the hospital at about 9:30am and the doctors didn't come for rounds until about 11am. They confirmed that we would be going home today, but they said there was plenty of paperwork that needed to be completed and Karen, the Nurse Practitioner, said she would start it when rounds were complete.

It's only fitting. Through two surgeries and about 741 tests, we waited a lot. One more wait would not kill us completely.


Peggy came in to take over as Lily's nurse for Lynn. She started to complete some of the paperwork with Tracy as I held and fed Lily. This was also fitting since Peggy was the nurse that was there the day Lily was admitted. I still remember her asking me all kinds of questions on that first day, and my stock reply was, "Can you please repeat that?" My mind was somewhere else that day!

At about 2:00pm, Peggy told me I should go warm up the car and move it to the front entrance. "It should be any moment now.

When I returned, Tracy was strapping Lily into the car seat, tears already starting to pool up in her eyes. "Hurry up, Daddy," Peggy said. "It's time!"

Peggy placed Lily's car seat in a buggy stamped with NICU on the front like a little license plate:

2:30pm - The Long Walk

Saying goodbye was very difficult. Tracy was in tears as we hugged Janelle's mom and said goodbye. We wish they were walking out alongside us, but their road goes in a different direction. Their strength amazes us, and we know that they will soon be joining us in the outside world.

Dogwood is the farthest room from the NICU entrance. Our walk to the elevators outside the NICU was long. We stopped at nearly every room. Nurses that have cared for Lily and some that just recognize us from our daily excurions thru the NICU for the past month came out of their rooms to say goodbye. Some parents that we have met during Lily's journey also came out to say goodbye.

Tracy and I have discussed our departure from the NICU and how it will be strangely difficult saying goodbye. These people have been a part of our lives for so long. In many ways, they have become another part of our family. This is absolutely crazy to say, but there will definitely be separation anxiety when we are home and there's no more NICU. I actually compared it to the Stockholm Sundrome, where hostages actually begin to care for their captors after a long period of time in captivity. Completely crazy, right?

Anyways . . . this is beginning to get novel-like and it's getting late. How about I tell the rest of the story in pictures?

The Hallway

The Elevator

Lily's First Car Ride!!

Thanks for the sign, Papa and Jeremy!

Crossing the Threshold

On the Couch!!

Do they make smaller cribs!??

We arrived home at about 3:00pm. Not long after, I went to pick up Grace from school. Like I mentioned yesterday, I had wanted Grace to be surprised when she walks in the house and sees Lily. However, how was I going to get her past the Welcome Home sign in front!?

I decided to tell her about a new magic trick I learned which required her to close her eyes. It worked like a charm!!

Grace was pretty oblivious when we got home and not paying attention. When we opened the door, Tracy was on the couch feeding Lily. Grace was paying attention to her shoes when Tracy said, "Hi Grace!" She was surprised, because she thought Tracy was at the hospital! Then she saw Tracy holding Lily. Her mouth dropped and her immediate reaction was, "Awwwwwwwwwww." She ran over to Tracy and watched her finish feeding Lily. It was SO nice, just like we knew it would be!


  1. now that was the picture i was waiting to see
    3 very happy beautiful girls

    much love to you all

  2. Hooray!!!! Congrats to you all! Enjoy. :)

    - becca