Sitting down and looking back at our NICU journey it’s crazy to think we actually made it through. It wasn’t something we where even prepared for and I had done zero research on what it’s like, we just had to learn along the way.
So I though if any mums are starting a journey through NICU and would like some tips to help you survive here are a few that helped us:
– Ignore the machines! They go off constantly and at first you won’t know what anything means so unless a nurse comes running don’t panic, relax and enjoy your time with your baby
– HAND CREAM! You will be constantly washing your hands and both of us ended up with really sore skin so keep hand cream with you at all times.
– Don’t stay there all day or feel like you have to be there 24/7 you will exhaust yourself and by the time they are ready to come home you won’t be rested enough to cope, specially if they come home with problems! All they do is sleep anyway and they will be getting amazing care when your not there.
– Don’t buy Velcro Babygrows – there so expensive and once you wash them they don’t work anymore! A big lesson that we learnt as we spent a small fortune and got two wears max out of them.
– Talk to the other parents in there it helps you to know your not the only one and takes your mind of things that are going on.
– Take a drink with you. The NICU unit is boiling all the time and you will get so thirsty so take a drink with you so you don’t have to leave.
– Try and do doctors rounds but don’t feel like you have to be at every single one. – doctors rounds are a great time to ask questions but if you don’t have any and your baby is stable done feel like you have to be there for them everyday the nurses will go through everything with you when you arrive.
– Don’t feel bad if you don’t make it there one day! I had days where Aria was so poorly I couldn’t get to the hospital, I felt so guilty but the nurses told me that they won’t know if we don’t go but Aria will know if we leave! You can ring at all times to find out how your baby is and they will ring you if they need you to come in.
– If you run out of breast milk don’t stress you have done your best and your baby will have already got the best bit from you! Don’t put more pressure on yourself
– Ask questions and DONT GOOGLE! it’s a hard one but you will regret it straight away! Just ask the doctors any questions you have no matter how silly. They will always be honest and won’t ever hide anything from you. Google will just scare you!
– If there is a holiday while your there buy the nurses something to help them celebrate. We brought a huge hamper full of goodies for Christmas and they where beyond grateful. – they are the ones doing such an amazing job looking after your baby.
– Take lots and lots of pictures. They grow so quick and change so much so take it all in and capture every moment because soon NICU will be a distant memory and eventually it will be nice to look back and show your baby.
If anyone else has any good tips that they learnt during there NICU journey leave them in the comments below!
‘Life is tough darling, but so are you’