As of this Wednesday, our little family of three is flying solo. A piece of my heart left as Patti (my mom), Papi (my dad) and BB made their way back to Texas to resume what my dad refers to as “Ordinary Time”, a reference to the time in the church calendar when nothing particularly spectacular is happening. I was talking to BB and we agreed that there is something beautiful about ordinary time.
If home is where the heart is, my heart is always in two places at once. As long as we live in PA, my heart will have a little piece missing that resides in Texas. My mom once asked me if it would bother me if they moved from Houston or Austin, to which my answer was no – my heart lives where they live. I have been saying many prayers of thanksgiving that Patti, Papi and BB had the ability to put their lives on pause for the past three weeks to support me emotionally and physically as I navigate my way through this journey of motherhood. Having them fill our house with this support gave me some ease of emotion knowing they were available at a moment’s notice to change, feed, snuggle Regan when I needed it most. If I missed them a million times before Regan, I miss them billion times more now that she’s here. I’m about ready to book flights for all of them just thinking about it.
After a long morning of tearful goodbyes, Mitch and I resumed to ordinary time as much as is possible with a newborn. Regan is a wonderful baby and I am fulfilling the role of the stereotypical paranoid first time mom. We’ve had two pediatrician appointments – one the day after we got home from the hospital and the second was just Thursday. Regan is up to 7 lb 3 oz, a gain of 4 oz in one week! Go girl! I felt like I asked a million and one questions but my biggest takeaway from the pediatrician was to relax and let our sweet girl eat and sleep and grow. I have been a stressball tracking her feeds, how much she takes by feeding tube versus how much she takes by bottle. I had this (made up) expectation that her independent feeds would steadily increase once we got home and she has pretty much reached a plateau of about 50% independent feeds. I felt like a bit of a failure in some ways, figuring that surely there was a better strategy to get her to eat more. After talking to the pediatrician, she said Regan is exactly where she would expect her to be given her heart condition. That said, our biggest role as her parents is to let her rest when she needs it and here’s the bonus – even when she is sleepy, we have a guaranteed way of getting her calories via her NG tube so she can grow big and strong! We have a slew of appointments coming up in the next couple weeks – cardiologist, endocrinologist, and hopefully more healthy checkups.
As I sit here typing this update (a day late), the hum of the breastpump lingers in the background, Walter has just stolen another stuffed animal from Regan’s collection, Mitch changes Regan next to her window will she squirms and looks around with her big blue eyes, and I realize this is our new normal, our new Ordinary Time. And now I realize our Ordinary Time is forever changed by our extraordinary girl.