Sunday, March 22, 2009

Reminders from Georgetown

I've begun looking into the history of preemie care, and it's as bizarre as anything else in medicine. Did you know that preemie wards were called "hatcheries" and open for public viewing? This may actually be true.

In the modern NICU, tens of thousands of families have had experiences just like ours. While babies of Max's gestational age normally spend seven weeks or less in the NICU, some, like Max, stay much longer. And "micropreemies" can stay several months. So it's not uncommon for parents to form attachments to NICU team members, especially the nurses. Many families feel a little lonely when their baby leaves the NICU, just like we did. So it's always nice to get an email from one of Max's old nurses. Nurse S. dropped Carolyn a line recently and attached some pictures of Max's last night at the NICU. S. said that the NICU team still miss Max, which is nice to hear, but, I'm sure, they have an all-new class of sick babies and their parents to nurture now. As much as Max, Carolyn and I miss the Georgetown NICU team, Max will not, I hope, return to Georgetown as anything but a robust toddler who threatens to tip over IV trees and generally runs amok.

Max and the NICU Team