This is a very special photograph. My husband took it in the rooming-in-room as he left for work. That afternoon we were going to bring our baby home from hospital. We were both so excited. As I prepared for the discharge my husband texted me to say he’d almost skipped up the stairs at work trying to contain his excitement. In the picture you can tell we’re ready to go home. I’ve had my hair cut – cut the day before because when would I have time once my baby was home! Sam is looking smart, ready to go home in the cutest baby grow; the smallest one you can buy, but still miles too big for him! It is the first photo we have without any tubes or lines obscuring his perfect little face, and he has his hospital blanket, which his little brother is now almost surgically attached to!
Just a few hours after this photo was taken Sam was suddenly rushed back into intensive care – once again covered in lines and tubes, attached to beeping machines. It is still the hardest thing I have ever had to do; to telephone my husband to tell him that our previous little boy was not coming home, that we were right back where we had started. My world crumbled around me as I told our nurse I couldn’t go home again without my baby. Yet I knew I would have to and tried not to think of the empty moses basket waiting for him at home.
In one single photo our journey in neonatal care can be summed up – the elation, love and happiness on one side and the roller-coaster of uncertainly and the pain of the ups and downs on the other. It is such a special photo, reminding me that this was our journey. A difficult but special journey, and one from which Sam is even more loved.