So here we are. About a week from right now, the induction process will begin and we will be mere hours away from meeting our first-born. So much planning has go into the last 18-20 weeks since we got the diagnosis of Gastroschisis. It’s hard to believe that it is finally here. Everything is starting to feel very real.
One of the big reasons everything is very real is that we have moved down to the Ronald McDonald House in Aurora, Colorado. They wanted us to be close to Children’s Hospital in case Sofia went into labor. We may only live 65 miles away, but with traffic and snow, it’s enough that we didn’t want to risk having to drive down here if she unexpectedly went into labor.
We’ve been at the Ronald McDonald House for about ten days now.I knew very little about this place before I came here. It is rather incredible. This location houses 45 families at a time. We each get our own hotel room. We have shared living rooms, giant kitchens, game rooms, and more. They provide us with lunch and dinner almost every day–prepared by different volunteer groups. It is an incredible place.
As we’ve looked around and met people, it’s incredible to see what people are going through. The range is substantial. It also creates a strange feeling. If you compared Sofia’s pregnancy to 99 other random pregnancies, we would likely be the unluckiest. But when you compare her pregnancy to what many of these families are going through, I feel eternally grateful. Gastroschisis is unlikely to lead to any long term issues. It just requires a long hospital stay to get the intestines to where they need to be.
It’s also a very strange time to be here. All the normal holiday stuff is pretty much out the window. We’ve been able to replace the normal holiday traditions with some unexpected but amazing things. Yesterday, as my new office in Aurora was shutting down for the four day weekend, all of the holiday treats that had been brought in were about to be thrown away. Instead, we boxed it all up and left it in the common kitchen here at the Ronald McDonald House. It’s been about 24 hours since we dropped off that food and there is almost nothing left.
And we’ve met some new friends. A young couple from Idaho is staying here and going through a similar pregnancy. We’ve used each other as a social outlet, which is a must to stay sane. Whether it is simply getting out of the house for a couple hours or playing board games before bed, it has made our stay here far better and we are quite grateful.
And now our attention focuses on the week ahead. We will celebrate Christmas at my cousin’s house in Broomfield on Monday, shortly after our last Non-Stress Test. Then we will have our 20th and last Ultrasound on Thursday. They will give us a check-in time for induction, but we have been told to expect it between the 29-31st. Which means we have about a week left before we check into the hospital.
So far, everything is going well. The intestine is somewhat enlarged, but not enough for them to worry all that much. In the end, we will know far more once baby is out and the surgeon can get a good look. But that means 2018 is going to end with a bang. It has been one hell of a year–from my grandparents passing, to getting pregnant, to buying our first house, to getting the diagnosis. I will be grateful for this year to end. And 2019 will be a year of healing as we expand our family in the most unique way possible.
Next time I update, I will likely include a picture the new one.