NICU life

I am a first time poster and just want the comfort of knowing we are not alone.  I remember the feeling we had when we found out we were pregnant we laughed and cried until my legs went numb.  It was something I had always wanted to be, a father.  When we found out it was twins the whirlwind just continued.  I know babies change a lot of things in your life.  One thing im not sure either of us were prepared for was where we are now.  Our beautiful babies Alexander and Benjamin were born at 25 weeks 4 days on 10/8/2016.  Alex weighed 1lb 4 oz and his brother Ben 1lb 3 oz.  Throughout the pregnancy we had many appointments and told many scary risks that these types of identical twins carried.  When we got transferred to multiple hospitals for multiple opinions it began to worry me.  The doctor told us they weren't growing well and were on the 1% tile of growth which scared us.  We then were transferred to a new MFM because they had a better nicu and our first appt was great.  The new doctor told us he didnt think there was anything to worry about and they would just be small, oh what a relief it was that day.  Fast forward a week to the next appt, which I did not attend and makes me feel horrible, at least she had her mother there.  The new doctor we had not meant had serious concerns about Twin-Twin transfusion possibilities and wanted us to travel to NYC (3 hours away) for an appt the next day.  We get to the city and mom is trying to make light of the situation, i think she was naive to everything.  Wanting to take pictures of the beautiful buildings, I told her no that we were here for a reason.  I know i made her feel stupid but I was nervous and get snippy sometimes.  We go into the appt and the doctor comes in after the tech did the initial ultrasound.  The doctor comes in and says its not Twin-Twin Transfusion, oh what a relief! BUT there is reverse flow in the umbilical cord which is high risk.  So here are our options be admitted there that day, drive home 3 hours to be admitted to our hospital or come back next week and have a chance that one or both babies are gone.  Obviously we are being admitted but could not be stranded 3 hours away from our families.  So we make the most nerve wracking drive of our lives 3 hours to the hospital where we live.  At that point mom gets diagnosed with Preclampsia.  3 days of hell in the hospital we are told we are delivering that day.  I as a man have no choice but to stay strong and be her rock.  I refused to leave her side.  One of the worst parts was having to be apart from her for that 30 mins while she was being prepped for the C-Section.  She doesnt know it but I just cried.  I was so afraid for her and for the boys I didnt know what else to do.  Many blood transfusions and scary moments of self extubation here we are 75 days of them being here.  Having to go back to work has been awful it is really hard to focus.  The past 2 weeks mom has gone back to work as well, once they can come home she will be out again.  Nevermind the financial stress of everything I am just worried about mom and how shes handling things.  Not a day goes by we are not at that hospital with our boys.  The days where they arent doing great are awful, i keep telling mom no matter what we have to stay steady through the good days and bad..  She doesnt always want to hear that.  I pray for all other NICU familes, because truly you dont know how strong you are until you need to be.  These past 80 days of my life have been insane.  To my friends who try to contact me and be there for me im sorry if im not who i once was. The boys continue to be on respiratory support and will need eye and hernia surgery in the coming week which is the next hurdle we will need to leap.  I am writing this because I dont know where else to go. I am the type of person who holds things in and have trouble even talking to my family about how im feeling.  I know they want to know and I know they only ask because they care not just for me but for the boys.  When all you want to do is cry when you are alone its tough to say whats next.  I will not crumble in front of their mother though, because if i crumble she will crumble.  Dads need to be there for their family and that is what i will do, today, tomorrow and forever.  No matter what.

2 Replies

  • I would like to wish you a belated welcome to the site as well as a belated Congratulations on your boys. I'm glad you are here and that more and more dads are coming here and sharing their perspective. I think its easy to overlook the struggle the dads have, as like you said , you are busy being the rock and staying strong for your wife. I hope you can give us an update soon.
    Love and Hugs
  • Welcome to Share. Congratulations on your twin boys! I was searching around for an update. I hope the surgeries went smoothly and they are growing healthy in the NICU. I'm glad to see more Dads on the site. I know that my husband felt the same way. He had to stay strong for me. He was focused on work. One becomes a robot and you simply stay on survival mode until you feel it's safe to relax. It can take a toll on a relationship. It sounds like you're doing a great job at being there for her and listening. It does take a long time to process the whole NICU experience. Eleven years later, we still talk about it and the helplessness we felt. The strength we find within ourselves and each other in difficult times can surprise us.

    Rock on Mike,