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The One With NICU Awareness Month

As a parent, I’m different. Whether I want to be or not, it’s true.

Being at a hospital or doctor’s office makes me queasy, which is unfortunate because I spend a lot of time there nowadays. The stark whiteness and fluorescent lights, the clinking of metal tools and equipment, the vast spaces and uncomfortable quiet, and the unsettling feeling of receiving bad news.  The hospital is where I found out that my whole world was going to be turned upside down and then saw things that I wish I could unsee, but are burned into my brain. Doctor’s offices became an extension of those memories and a reminder of the journey behind us and all of the struggles we had the potential to face.

I can’t use hand sanitizer because the smell takes me back to a place that I don’t want to revisit. I can hear the sound of the dispenser in my head - the automatic whirring of the machine on the wall as the motion sensor recognized my hands beneath it - a noise that became all too familiar to me. The extra prec…

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