Being a NICU Mom: How to Stay Strong

Being a new mom is a scary thing. It is even scarier to be a mom when your little one is admitted into NICU, the Newborn Intensive Care Unit.

There are so many different feelings that rush through you, and all you want to do is be with your little one once they are born, but put simply, you aren’t, as they are in a different division of the hospital. Moms and dads don’t stay in the NICU… parents have their own room on the other side of the hospital, at least at St. Davids North Austin Medical.

What’s the tip here? Do a hospital tour before you have your baby and ask where the NICU is, and ask, “Can stay with your baby should they be admitted to the NICU?”

What to ask your doctor if your baby is admitted to NICU:

  1. Can you stay with your little one in NICU? If so, what are the accommodations?
  2. What visitors are allowed in NICU? How many at a time?
  3. Who is the doctor while you are in NICU? Do they rotate?
  4. Where do you find out the nurse for the day?
  5. What is the contact number for the NICU and your specific bed?

The doctor’s and nurses do let you spend as much or as little time as you would like in the NICU, we were even offered to sleep in the chairs that they had there, but it was not comfortable. We just made the journey across the hospital instead and slept in our room.

So mamas, if you need help to stay strong while your little one is in the NICU until he graduates and can go home with you, read a little bit further. Here is a list of thoughts that helped me get through the week that baby Theo was in the NICU.

  • You are strong and your baby is strong too. They just need a little help in the first part of life.
  • The doctors and nurses of the NICU will not send your little one home unless they are ready.
  • Your little one is in good hands! These people who take care of your new little one went to medical school, they know what they are doing.
  • If you don’t like a doctor, say something. Request to have them taken off care for your child. You have the power.
  • State what you want, and how you want to care for your child. Your wishes will be respected.
  • Speak up, you are the parent, if you don’t want your newborn to be swaddled, tell them. If you want to do breastmilk and do the feedings, tell the nurses. They will respect your wishes, they will wait for you to get to the hospital to feed your baby, you just have to say something.
  • Everything is a choice and you and your husband have the power to raise your child how you want.
  • Do let the grandparents visit. It can be a good mood booster for you to spend time with your mom and dad.
  • Take a hospital tour, it will help so you know what to expect.

So mamas, being in the NICU can be scary, but remember, that the doctors are only trying to make sure that your little one has a great start to their life. They will take good care of your little one, and you can be there 24/7 if you would like. Y’all can still be the parents if your little one is in NICU.

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