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The word finally came, Thomas was going home!

-- preemie --- choo-choo-------------------

It was the Tuesday before Thanksgiving when we finally got the word, Thomas was coming home! He was to come home on oxygen on Monday or Tuesday of the following week.

We found ourselves unprepared for the very event we had been waiting for. All of the sudden we realized we would have juggle work schedules and prepare for his homecoming on short notice.

-- preemie --- choo-choo-------------------

The game plan was as follows:

  • Wednesday, receive infant CPR/first aid training and learn how to use the home oxygen equipment and monitors (apnea monitor and pulse oximeter).
  • Thursday, learn what medications he was to take, when he was to take them and how to administer them (and afterward go eat turkey).
  • Friday, to make sure we could handle him on our own, we were given a private room at the hospital for an overnight stay with Thomas completely in our care, but with the hospital staff available if needed.
  • Saturday, review any questions regarding the overnight stay with the staff.
  • Sunday, prepare our house to receive Thomas (the required equipment had been delivered Friday).
  • Monday, last minute preparations.
  • Tuesday, assuming a final okay from his doctors, especially from the eye specialist who would be seeing him regularly still for a little while, Tommy would go home.

We made the appropriate arrangements with our employers, and became incredibly excited about Tommy's coming home.

Wednesdays training was a breeze as we had had four months of NICU parenting under our belt and were not intimidated by the equipment we would be using. We spent a very happy Thanksgiving day in the NICU going over Tommy's medication, thanking his primary nurse for everything she had done and receiving congratulations from the other NICU parents (most of whom would be following us very shortly). We left late in the afternoon in time for Thanksgiving dinner at Tommy's Aunt Liz and Uncle Jim's house.

The overnight stay at the hospital went fine. We even managed to get some sleep between false monitor alarms. With just the three of us in the hospital room together, we finally got to spend time alone as a family. We were ready to take him home.

Finally Tuesday came. We went out to breakfast (it would be a while before we could do this again) and proceeded to the hospital to bring him home.

Tommy received the okay from his doctors and was homeward bound.

-- preemie --- choo-choo-------------------
-- preemie --- choo-choo-------------------