When It Rains…

It pours.

About an hour after my post yesterday, things fell apart. I hate to be negative, but the reality of our situation is that it’s tough. Very tough. And most days the difficult moments outweigh the positive ones, but it’s more fun to be optimistic. I will continue to use this blog as an outlet to update friends and family and perhaps provide hope, solidarity and perspective for others. However, I’ll also be honest when there isn’t much good to say. Yesterday was one of those days.

Joey and Finn were enjoying “kangaroo care,” or skin time (serene pic below) when two supervisors loudly entered the room, turned the lights on, and said, “Time to move! Come on; let’s get you packed up.” A nurse packed up all our things, Joey and I replaced Finn in his bed, tangled in wires and cords that pull at him and make him scream. I began taking the encouragement/prayer cards off our window–bright spots of hope and reminders of truth that felt wrong to take down while our journey here isn’t finished. They bumped his bed and IV’s to the opposite side of the building into a hot, humid room with no chairs. We immediately began sweating as we tried to calm Finn down. Haven’t you noticed that stressful situations become almost unbearable when you’re physically hot? The real kicker was that in the room change, the supervisors didn’t switch Finn’s monitor to the nurse’s new phone, so when his heart rate was increased to 213 for about 30 minutes and all his alarms were going off, our sweet nurse was in another room prepping the new baby that just arrived, unaware. He finally calmed down when we swooped him up and put him on my chest. He just wants to be held, but each time we hold him there’s danger of hurting him. It feels awful not to be able to comfort your child.

So many other things added to the storm of yesterday: Joey went to another room to get us a chair and a breast pump and someone tracked him down to tell him there’s only one per room (our roommates were using/hogging both). Finn cried constantly. We tried breast feeding and though he latched a couple times, he was in so much pain on his side (can never be supine), he screamed between each suck. After dinner we returned with some strength to face the evening. Upon entering the building, the fire alarms went off, thus the elevators were locked down. We climbed all 7 floors…more exercise than I’ve had in several weeks…and not comfortable with a c-section wound. In an attempt to bite my tongue, I’ll just say our new nurse for the night was the worst we’ve had at the NICU. We actually argued. Joey and I never argue with strangers. Our nurse was completely inattentive, always going to her other rooms (probably in an attempt to avoid us), and Finn was going ballistic. So we tried to do kangaroo care on our own. His cords got caught and Joey couldn’t get them unstuck. I cried hysterically because I thought he was going to drop him. We planned to stay the night sleeping on the tile floor because we didn’t trust Finn with our nurse. After talking to a supervisor, we decided that we’d be worthless parents today if we didn’t go home and get a little sleep. We left at 1:30am.

There was a moment where I was in the recliner holding our little nugget and Joey was in a chair opposite me holding his head crying. We looked up at each other in pain, yearning to just escape. To run away. We were reminded of our summer in Slovenia where a missionary dropped us off two hours south of our base village and told us to find our way home and to minister to rock climbers along the way. We were in a foreign country, no cell phone, we don’t speak the language, there is no grocery store or restaurant around for miles, we are in a tent, it has been raining for 3 weeks straight, and we are scared. We wanted to escape. To run home. God rescued us from our fear and desperation during that time, and though this situation is a million times harder and the difficulty will not end (nor would we want a life without Finn), we know God will rescue us. Maybe in small ways. Maybe there won’t be miraculous healing. But He’ll find a way to remind us He loves us and hasn’t forgotten us. He always does.

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8 thoughts on “When It Rains…

  1. i am SO sorry that you had a horrible nurse. it is absolutely amazing, the nurse that you have, absolutely can dictate what type of day you have. i am SURE you will not have her again. praying for you guys! you all are doing GREAT!

  2. Oh wow. No wonder I’ve been thinking about you non-stop. I love how God does that so that we may cover you in prayer. I can’t thank you enough for sharing so honestly. Please keep it up. 3 of our babes were born at that precious hospital. I do believe we had that nurse too. Isn’t it crazy how one nurse can cause so much angst? Or also bring so much peace! Praying for more of the peaceful ones.

  3. Joey and Ashley we are sending many prayers and thoughts. I am so proud of you two, you guys are awesome! You are great parents! Ashley you are a fantastic writer and you are such a beautiful mommy!!! Your blog touches my heart! Finn is so adorable and a true little fighter. Remember there are no limits when it comes to what God can do! Sending love to the three of you. -Christy Gordon and family

  4. You will always know Finn and how to meet his needs better than anyone. Look at how you were able to calm him. Be confident in that and never hesitate to speak up for him and his needs. You are his voice right now. My heart aches that you had to endure a situation that was awful. Am praying that it never happens again!

  5. Ashley,
    Please continue to be as honest as you have been! We are so sorry for all the situations that have made a difficult time even harder. The pictures are so precious! Finn knows already the people who love him most and takes comfort in your closeness. He is so cute! I am really glad that you have been able to hold him so much. You have been added to the prayer list of a group of women at Acton Baptist Church in Acton, TX. They write out their prayer requests and copy them so all take home the list to remember each day.
    Love and prayers,
    Linda

  6. Keep fighting my love! So thankful that in the midst of the pain, you are never alone. I’m proud of the way you two press on to love Finn and one another amidst some incredibly dark days. You are so right, you three are never forgotten! But rather you will not be consumed by the blaze or swept up by the waters.You are being carried – praying you feel those arms today!

  7. The nurse in me can barely read this. I am so sorry, Ashley and Joey – what a gross misrepresentation of what nurses stand for. Mikel and I continue to pray every day for the healthcare team taking care of Finn, but today I am praying even more for the bedside experience and those with the power to influence it for the positive where that can be found. So relieved to hear this has been the exception….

    Hugs to you guys!

  8. Praying for you guys! I can’t even imagine what you’re going through, but I know you’re right.. the Lord was there in Slovenia, in the times in between, and there now. Love ya’ll! -Danae

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