A month ago I found myself sitting in a NICU with my son. I saw parents exhausted living in their room and taking a few moments to go eat in the break room since no food is allowed in the rooms. I saw nurses spend 12 hours of their day loving and taking care of all of these little babies and never bringing their personal life to work. When we left without our Ethan and have been trying to get on a new schedule, coming back to photography I knew that I wanted to share others’ stories. Below you will read Bryce and Tucker’s story.
Tucker is my third son, and I expected things to go pretty smoothly this time around. Both of my first labors and deliveries were pretty smooth, and I figured this one would be no different even though I was suspicious of the “nurse curse” that comes along with being a nurse. I was 38 weeks and 1 day when I went into labor with him. I progressed beautifully and within a few hours of my first contraction, it was time to start pushing. Tucker was looking in the wrong direction and as I pushed, my midwife continued to try to rotate him so he could come down easier. Finally, he was ready to come out! His head was delivered and he had a nuchal cord (umbilical cord around his neck) and he was very stunned from delivery. He did not cry or breathe at delivery so he was brought over to the radiant warmer to be assessed. I remember looking over trying to see him and seeing his nurses giving him rescue breaths made my heart sink. They ended up suctioning 10mLs of thick mucous out of his lungs-which is a lot for a baby!! They tried really hard to get him to perk up but he just couldn’t maintain his oxygen at a healthy level so he went to the nursery. After I finished my 2-hour recovery in L&D, I went to the NICU to see Tucker. It broke my heart to see him with the CPAP machine on, an IV, a feeding tube, and monitors all over him. I was so disappointed because I just wanted to hold and snuggle my new baby and I couldn’t. He got an X-ray and started on antibiotics for the fluid in his lungs just in case they were infectious. The next several days consisted of slowly weaning him off of his oxygen and introducing breastmilk/formula to him. Thankfully, Tucker made huge improvements and was a champ at breastfeeding, and after 5 long days in the hospital, he finally got to come home with his family!!! We are so blessed that our story has the outcome that it does, and although it could’ve been a lot worse, it was one of the hardest things I’ve ever experienced in my life.