When we featured Emma on The Monday Snapshot just a few weeks ago, she posted a picture of some of the gifts she had asked friends and family to donate for the local NICU in lieu of presents for her son’s first birthday. Today she wrote a post entitled “NICU Delivery” about the experience of actually delivering all of those gifts to the local NICU that just tugged at my heartstrings.
I arrived at the hospital a bit early, due to my wanting to get home, and I called my contact in the hopes she’d be available earlier than discussed. No such luck. I left a voice mail letting her know I was there then found a place to park and waited. About 10 minutes after our scheduled meeting time I decided to take the items inside and see if the guest services person could page her for me.
My contact called me as soon as I pulled up to the hospital’s entrance. I told her I was out front and she said to bring everything up to the third floor and she’d meet me there.
The third floor. The Labor and Delivery floor. The NICU floor.
It’s amazing how different our senses can cause flashbacks, and in this case, it was the sight of the NICU and the room her son, G, resided in for the first few days of his life.
The coordinator opened the first set of doors and huge tears started rolling down my face. Halfway down the hallway a huge sob escaped, catching me off guard.
She stopped to turn and look at me. “Are you going to be okay?”
I started laughing, despite being a blurry eyed teary mess. “Wow, I’m sorry. I had no idea this would make me cry. I honestly didn’t think I’d be coming up to the third floor, let alone the NICU.”
Emma delivered all of the gifts to the NICU nurses on duty, and got to watch all of them oohing and aahing over the gifts for the patients.
It was about this moment that I realized just how good I felt doing this. Up until then, I had never seen the person on the receiving end of my donations of anything. These items weren’t for the nurses personally, but you wouldn’t have guessed it by their reactions. They were truly happy and truly appreciative of what I wheeled up there.
I showed up expecting to do what I’ve done at Good Will: hand my stuff off to a stranger and be on my way. Knowing someone somewhere would benefit at some point would be a distant afterthought.
But as I watched (through the tears and sobs) as they ohhed and ahhed the goodies I brought, I realized that this was the best thing I had done. In a long while. I felt good, despite the tears and the many feelings and memories (not all good) coming back from those days after G’s birth.
Feelings I thought I had come to terms with. Emotions I thought I had tamed. Memories I thought were filed away as Note-to-Selfs For If-I-Have-Another-Baby because I want things to be
betterdifferent if there is a next time.
Phew… those memories. I cannot even imagine. NICU parents are so unbelievably strong!
Please pop over to read Emma‘s post “NICU Delivery” in its entirety. As always, comments here are closed to encourage you to comment on her post directly. Thank you!
Emma, in her own words: Adventures in motherhood with my Rainbow Baby, plus a little randomness.