April 1. The day we've been counting down to is finally here! The end of isolation. That's right. Look out world, here come the Savants!
Maybe... Well, let's face it, things change when you spend 14 months confined to your home or the hospital. And ultimately, I'm a little terrified to bring the boys out in public. Don't get me wrong, I'm super excited for them to meet people, to take them to church, to bring them to the office. I can't wait for the freedom we're about to have. But...their lungs are still weak. If they catch a respiratory illness, it can still send them right back to the hospital. I shutter when I think of events like church...everyone shaking hands when they get there, sending their germ infested children along after holding their hand walking into the sanctuary, sitting in the service and scratching their faces. And THEN walking up to us, greeting us with a smile, and touching Dean's hand...which immediately goes into his mouth. Uck. The whole "you have to build an immune system by exposing them to germs" thing absolutely does NOT apply to micro preemies with chronic lung disease.
So, how does one communicate this nicely while in public? Please don't touch my child? Put them in a onesie that says "You can look but don't touch"? Or "Share your prayers not your germs"? How do we kindly let people know that the end of isolation doesn't mean our boys can now interact normally with other adults or children?? (Besides blogging about it and hoping everyone who may come in contact with them reads this and understands...subtle, I know) I'm going to have to invest in industrial strength hand sanitizer and just squirt it on people's hands if they come relatively close to us. Any advice/help from you other preemie mamas out there??
That being said, there is so much hope moving forward. We survived our first winter of isolation. The boys can see people who haven't had a flu shot...after they've scrubbed up to their elbows for 1 minute and only have healthy children of course! I am taking them to visit Andrew at his office tomorrow. The boys first trip indoors that is not to a doctor's office! Then, I may stop somewhere on my way home. Who knows, cause I can do that now! How freeing it will be! And yesterday we went for a walk without screaming in the stroller the whole time. Praise the Lord! Baby steps...all about the little things.
So tomorrow we will cautiously reenter society (armed with sanitizing wipes, lysol, hand sanitizer) as the boys visit daddy for the first time.