I have been skating around this topic for a while now. My friend mentioned that this should have been one of the very first articles I should have written about. But you know, it’s a very sensitive topic and I want to be able to talk about it objectively. Which I can’t promise because when it comes to a loved one it is hard to think objectively.
I believe that no one can convince someone else to trache their child. I don’t care how persuasive you are or how many arguments you hear for or against it. In the end, you just have to reach that point when you think that that is the best decision you can ever make.
When Isaac’s doctors and even some of his NICU nurses were telling me about some of their former patients who got trached, I received the stories with a half smile thinking, “Yeah, those babies are different from mine, you can’t compare.” But in a sense, they were all the same in that all human beings share the need to thrive, explore and develop in their own way. How could my baby do all those things when it takes two nurses to move him from his bed to my arms? How will he be able to sit up, crawl, and get into trouble and make a mess if he is hampered because he is intubated? My husband and I had to reach the point where we know we had to make a decision that will affect our son’s quality of life now and in the future. Giving him a trache meant being able to bring him home and for him to be around his family. We knew that if we got him out of the hospital and he continues to grow and develop that he will not be needing that piece of tubing in his throat! This was just a setback, but it was one we could work around as soon as we got him home. This is what the people around us were trying to communicate but to no avail! Every time they would tell me a story I would just get defensive. How dare they! But the doctors and nurses meant well and they were only doing it to give me some comfort in making the right decision.
After his surgery and as he started waking up and being more active, I immediately regretted not traching him sooner. For the first time since he was born I could see his face! And what a handsome looking face it was! He is my son so I am biased:) Looking back, I realized that there was nothing I could have done differently. Things happened the way they did for a reason. My husband and I had to be completely sold on the idea or it would not have worked for us as a family. We had to surrender everything to the Almighty and trust that we made the right decision.
As I gaze at Isaac’s face now while he is sleeping, I wonder what it would be like if we hadn’t made the right decision. I would still be making my way out of that parking lot, into that elevator to the 7th floor and in the NICU. I would be spending 12 hours of my day being with Isaac and it would still not be enough because he deserves to spend his whole day with us at home! Sure, when you bring your baby home the situation becomes very real because you can’t compartmentalize life anymore. You breathe the reality 24 hours a day 7 days a week. You have strangers coming into your home to help you take care of your baby. You have sleepless nights worrying when they are sick. But each time I falter, I am reminded by how great God is and also reminded of the lyrics of this song Blessings by Laura Story: