Our visits with Alicia are usually filled with lots of singing, lots of talking - both with Alicia and the nurses and doctors, interspersed with moments of nurses and doctors needing to get her breathing back on track.
Tonight's visit was a bit calmer. We still had a couple of moments where her alarm sounded, notifying the doctors and nurses that she needed help, but for the most part, it was a pretty quiet evening. Linda and I took turns as usual sticking our hands through the incubator and holding our precious one, quite literally covering her with our hands. But today for some reason, we didn't do too much other than that. We just kind of sat there and stared. We marveled at this beautiful child sleeping so peacefully before us, and our hearts were full. Halfway through the visit, Linda turned to me and said, "I could sit here and stare at her for hours." Which is funny, because quite literally right before she said that, the same thought ran across my mind.
No need to play, poke, pat, or anything, just sit and watch. Made me think, is that how Daddy God is with us?
Does he just enjoy sitting and watching us? It's kind of different than the usual picture of "religion" that we're fed, isn't it?
We're taught to read the bible, pray, sing songs, serve. We're constantly in a flurry of activity. But I wonder, as important as those things are, maybe sometimes Daddy God just wants us to just sit with him, just to be.
Could it be that we don't have to do anything and Daddy God just enjoys being with us, just because we are his? I mean just like Alicia, all she was doing was sleeping. She didn't open her eyes. She didn't look at us. She didn't smile, cry, speak, nothing. She just slept. And we were content just holding her, covering her with our hand, and watching. Just being with her.
Sometimes when I'm praying, I like to imagine curling up in Daddy God's lap and just letting him hold me. It brings me lots of comfort. But I can't usually hold that for more than a few minutes. A few minutes of that and I'm off and running, doing something else, checking Facebook, e-mail, or whatever. I really find it hard to sit still.
But after tonight and my experience with Alicia, I'm definitely going to try to sit still some more. And you know what, I'm going to try to stop striving so much. I know there's balance. But if I as an imperfect father, can love my child who has pretty much not done anything except for be alive to bits, then what about our perfect Heavenly Father? Am I better than he?
So great news about Alicia, her last IV was removed today! =) So she's got one less thing sticking into her, and she is becoming more and more free! The removal of the IV is also a huge indication that she's doing well. Doctors and nurses don't want to prick these kiddies any more than necessary, so if there was a high probability that they might need it again, they wouldn't have taken it out. So, them taking it out, at least, I think is a huge indication that they believe she won't be needing anymore IVs. Praise the Lord!
Now we just need to just get her weight up, and her breathing on par, and we'll be good!
Doctors say it might be a few more weeks before they take her off the ventilator, but they're definitely weaning her each day. Problem is that right now her breathing is really unsteady during and after her feeding times. I think I mentioned yesterday, that doctors suspect that this is because her stomach is expanding and taking up room that would otherwise be used by her lungs for breathing. To help with this problem, they decided to try using a machine that will time and spread out the amount of milk that gets injected into Alicia at one time. They're hoping that with the slower feeding, Alicia's stomach can digest as it goes so that it won't expand as much. It seemed to work pretty well today, although she still had a few moments of low oxygen, but for the most part, she was more steady with her breathing than in the past.
It was cute, as I said earlier, Alicia was sleeping pretty well during our visit. It wasn't until towards the end of our visit when she opened her eyes and looked at us. And of course, when she did, Linda and I cooed and talked to her. We were so excited that she was awake, until we realized what may have awoken her. Her feeding machine was beeping because it was done. And being that the machine was inside of her incubator, I'm thinking the beeping was probably echoing about, creating in essence an alarm clock. So our daughter was probably looking at us like, "Could you turn off that noise?" And we're all, "Hi, sweetheart! Oh, look at you. Can you see us?" haha.
Today begins our second month with Alicia. Another day, another victory! Praise the Lord!