It’s 3:20 am

This hour kicks my ass
Later in the day – not fun
Though it’s quiet now

Waking up between 2 and 3 every AM is not a lot of fun. This is the time I’ve chosen for one of our two stinky Neosure feedings.

Ike-a-saurus guzzles a couple of ounces of the preemie formula, then I pump and watch most of the formula rise back up and come out of his nose, I console, clean, re-diaper, change his outfit, find a dry blanket, and then we both collapse into a fitful sleep until 5, when it starts all over again. Though at 5, it’s daddy’s turn. (if only he could pump, too.)
(hush with your dirty jokes.)

And even though this “routine” is exhausting, I have to say… Tiny bright eyes, a warm soft head, squishy cuddles… It’s so nice, even at 3:20am.

I should write that down

for good or evil
memory can go both ways
a tough decision

Every time I sit down to blog, or even to write just for myself, I think that I will write the story of my pregnancy, how it all went wrong, the hospital stay, Ike-a-saurus' birth story, the NICU story, everything. I envision it as a kind of cliff-hanger million-part series. I plan to write just until I can't take it anymore, and then I can pick up where I left off a few days later.

But I can't do it. It's still just too hard. I've started to wonder if not talking about it would be a good way to go. Just put it behind me, kiss Ike-a-saurus on the head, and move on. I don't think that's something I can do, though. It feels like a story that needs to be told, if not to just excise it from my head, to put it out in the ether for other people to read – people who are going through a similar thing.

It feels like, if the only way I can karmically pay back the Universe or God or whomever, is to spread the story then I better well get to it. If carefully illustrating the true pain and scariness and elation and worry is the only real way to pay back the friends and family who sacrificed so much for us – the only way to even begin to try to show them how their efforts kept us bouyant in a time of drowning – then, again, I better get to it.

I sit here, and as I type, I see the scar on the outside of my left wrist from the first IV that was hastily installed when I hurried to the hospital in late July. I can find two more IV scars, but just barely. For some reason that first one is darker than the others. It's going to stick with me, I think. And when I see it, I always think, "I need to tell the story."

The other day, I went through the blog and read some of the posts from that time, and there weren't that many. It's amazing how much love and support we got with just a handful of "things are really bad" posts. No details, or only minor details, and yet, everyone knew we were in need.

I have not really been in need in my life before. And now that things are settling down, I don't know how to transition back. Day-to-day, yes, I do know. Our family is closer than ever. Friendships are bonded with the super glue of shared terror and shared elation. But emotionally – emotionally I am having a bit of a hard time knowing how to be OK again. How to not be scared, how to say thank-you, how to be OK with the fact that my thank-yous will never be enough to really say thank-you.

So I want to write it down.

But I can't.

I will one day, or, really, over the course of many days. But not yet.

I just wanted to let you know it's coming.

And I used to like going to the eye doctor

small gelato spoon
looks so dainty until it
scoops out baby's eye

Ike-a-saurus has to go to the eye doctor every two weeks until he is term. This is to monitor the vascularization (is that a word?) of his eyes. We're watching out (so to speak) for ROP, which I think stands for Retinopathy of Prematurity. So far his eyes are fine, maybe a little farsighted, but nothing major.

Since his eyes are fine, it is hard for me to understand why we have to keep taking him to the opthamologist – or Crazy Ass Eye-Ball Scooping Grouch, MD.

Every time we go get Ike's eyes checked, the doctor gets a nurse to pin him down and then puts in these fucked up looking Minority Report eye speculums. They are actually called Eye Speculums. Then he sticks this thing that I like to call The Gelato Spoon – INTO Ike-a-saurus' eyes. As you can imagine, much screaming ensues. From Ike, from me, from the wee-er one who cries whenever Ike cries… it is a disaster.

They dilate his eyes before this traumatic process, and they put an anesthetic in his eyes before the gelato spoon, but it doesn't seem like they give that anesthetic enough time to kick in. It is just horrifying. And lord does he cry. This is not a baby that cries for anything. Even vaccines just make him squeal for a second and then he's fine.

We have one more visit left (hopefully), but I don't know how I am going to be able to take him back there. It's hard for me to understand how these trips are not doing more harm than good. I hate them. I hate them so much.

And just to add insult to injury, there is this list I have in my head; a list of things I don't want to talk about with strangers. It is like the Seven Words You Can't Say on TV, only it's composed of the Specific Topics You Don't Mention To Me In Public (or mostly anywhere). Things like premature babies dying, how it's OK to be racist if you're old and Texan, future physical and developmental problems former preemies suffer, etc. My list is violated every time I go to that stupid eye doctor.

Next time someone at that place violates my list I am just going to shout forbidden words at them to shock them into shutting up.

"I know a baby that caught a dread disease and—"

"COCKSUCKER!"

"Can you believe how black the new presi—"

"TAINT!"

"Have you had your son tested for—"

"TWAT!"

I think maybe if I do that, we will never have to go back no matter what.

Fucking eye doctor, ruining gelato for us forever AND making me write twat on my blog. Asshole.

Vote early and vote often!

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What is today? History-making Day of Making History OR The Day I Have To Pack Up Everything I Own And Haul The Collective Family Ass To Vancouver?

We’ll see! It’s exciting! And I have cookies and chips and hot dogs to eat tonight while I watch the blowhards on TV get all Minority Report with their fancy touchscreens.

Tim Russert, wherever you are, I will have a whiteboard on my desk quietly weeping for you…

Si se puede!