21st September 2010.
59 days after they were born.
Esther and William came home.
The few hours that we had not been at the hospital with our newborns we had been busy preparing their home.
The room that would house all four of us for the forseeable future.
They were still so very tiny.
They made everything at home look huge.
It felt like we had over prepared.
The nursery had a jungle theme just as our playroom does now.
Daddy had created all the artwork.
The window was sealed and insulated to keep the room warm and quiet and dark. The window was covered with a jungle mural that Esther and William used to stare at for hours while we watched the clock. They should have been asleep!
We had a cosleeper for the babies to sleep in when they were not in our arms.
A changing cot, just like we had in hospital. Though special care habits die hard.
I tried to stick to the NICU routine at home, changing nappies every three hours round the clock. Washing all body parts before putting babies in the bath. Only now can I see how silly this was. But then I did not know what else to do.
There were lots of cuddles those first few days. Making up for all the time we had lost.
This room was our safety blanket, a secure environment that we could control.
Where we kept all our medicines and guide books, planned our days and adapted our routines.
Where we got to know each other and found our way as a family.
This was our sanctuary. A place we could finally be together and alone as a family of four.
No beeping, no buzzers, no whirring machines.
No probing and prodding and painful procedures.
Things were starting to normalise.
At least that is what we thought.
But of course our lives were not normal. I am not sure they ever will be again.
Follow the blog over the next few days as I share with you our experiences of bringing our premature babies home.