It didn't take but a few days for our children to be separated. Claire arrived home Friday afternoon and Benjamin had a bit of a cold. Nothing alarming... just a runny nose.
And then the coughing and fever started. He had 2.5 days with his baby sister before she was locked away behind the sterile doors of our master bedroom.
We're on day 3 of this nonsense and he's very aware "baby" is behind those doors. Everytime he walks by, he wants to see "baby" and tries to get into the locked doors. Claire has literally not been outside of that room in 3 days. Good thing all she needs is sleep and a feeding every few hours.
She can't get sick. She can't. She's barely term (37w2d gestation as of today!) and we are not going back into that hospital for RSV or something serious at this age. We dodged so many bullets to get her here, and we're still battling. But you know what? She's alive.
It's heartbreaking for Benjamin to want so badly to see "sis" and "baby Care" and try to explain to him that he is sick and we cannot get baby sister sick. We tell him that once he's better that we will have lots of time with sister, but he still wants to be near her.
We've got our own little NICU at the house right now. We have designated clothes to change into once we enter our bedroom that were not contaminated by toddler coughs and boogers. Sanitize, wash and enter to touch the baby. When we leave our room, we change back into the grunge to enter the battlefield that is our infested toddler running rampant throughout the house and watching way too much television because we can't go anywhere and contaminate other kids. And even so, we can't leave Claire behind and they have to be separated, so we really can't go anywhere.
Elliot is trying to get back to work, but managing feeding sessions with Claire (around 30 minutes) and figuring out how to occupy Benjamin so he doesn't notice I'm gone behind those locked doors is tough (hello television and iPad, though there's been so much of it that even he is getting bored). I don't want him to misunderstand and assume we are keeping him away from baby sister for any other reason... mama guilt. Tomorrow is Friday. Let's just hope all is well and at least not contagious by the end of the weekend so we can resume our schedule as usual. You know, the schedule where I'm not supposed to lift my toddler (for a month) and somehow still manage to go places and function.
Cursed winter. I've had a December, January & February baby. You'd think I would've planned better and shot for a summer baby. Too late, shop's closed for business. This will pass... but with each minute feeling like an hour, I'm hoping it's sooner than later.
(We have some totally cute photos I'll post once the house is back to normal shape. I am hoping to get a few more before posting their interactions. They are downright precious together.)
Heartbreak and Healing
6 months ago