Our micropreemie, Zoey, was born at 24 weeks. She was our first child, so we were launched into the NICU with lots of questions and very different approaches to parenting. There are certain stand-out moments that in retrospect I appreciate, but at the time, I was embarrassed by them. Here are ten of the most notable conversations I remember from the NICU.
Top 10 Embarrassing Things Zoey’s Dad said in the NICU:
1. Pointing to the defibrillator: “Are you going to zap her with that thing?” Response: “No, we already revived her. And please don’t touch that.”
2. To the neurologist holding a scan of her brain: “That’s cool, did you draw that?”
3. To a Respiratory Therapist: “Is there something you can give me so I can breathe like Darth Vader?”
4. During a height/weight check: “She’s like the size of a 12-inch meatball hoagie. Actually, I think I’ve eaten sandwiches bigger than my daughter. Can she eat sandwiches now? No, just breast milk? Oh, Okay.”
5. We were supposed to be reviewing all of the buttons on the life support ventilator. So he says to our vent trainer: “What’s this button do?” (pointing to her belly button). The vent trainer laughed, I rolled my eyes.
6. When we were learning how to bathe her: “She’s so small, we could just put her in a latte cup with some bubbles.”
7. “She’s almost the size of a football. Not that I ever played sports. I’m too clumsy. Is it my turn to hold her? I promise I won’t drop her like a football.” You mean fumble? Please don’t.
8. “Why does she look at me like that? It’s like she knows I’m an idiot, she just can’t say it yet.”
9. “Her poop is so tiny. Can we keep it?” Like in a shadow box with other precious baby things? No. We’re not doing that. Have you no germ phobia?
10. When given a look about the pacifier in his mouth, he said, “Don’t worry, that’s the one that fell on the floor. She has the clean one.”
Tell us about an embarrassing or laugh-out-loud moment you had in the NICU!