Under House Arrest :: Cold and Flu Season with A Preemie

It’s cold and flu season! Have you washed your hands? Have you been around someone who was recently sick? Is your child up to date on their vaccines? These and a million other questions race through my mind on a daily basis since bringing my 2nd micro-preemie home last month.

There is nothing more that I would want to do than to introduce my son to my family and friends, but due to doctor’s orders, we are under house arrest and are quarantined if you will. It has been hard to tell people this and to reinforce that yes, I am for real and totally serious. I know people think I come off as paranoid and/or extreme, but don’t you do what’s best for your baby no matter what?

It’s hard enough to keep my boys, who are 5 and 8 years old, away from him. My sons know the drill – once they are home from school, they must strip down, wash their hands and face and put on fresh new clothes. I am constantly correcting them from getting in the baby’s face and trying to limit them holding and cuddling him. It’s quite hard because all they want to do is snuggle their baby brother, and I can’t blame them, he is quite snugly!

What could be a common cold to you or me could land my baby with an awful sickness and a possible hospital admittance. After a 66 day NICU stay, I sure don’t want to spend any more time at the hospital that we could potentially avoid.

I wish that I could take my baby out to holiday parties, birthdays or even a trip to Target. With him coming home during RSV and flu season, though, this has been even harder since germs and illnesses run rampant during the winter. It has only been one month since he has been home, and at times I feel like these walls are closing in on us! I keep having to reassure myself that this too shall pass.

In the meantime, when I decline the opportunity for play dates or visits, please don’t take it personally. I’ll happily meet up with you and show off my cutie in a couple of months; just give my preemie sometime to grow and build up some immunity. We are counting down the days till spring!

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Mary is a caffeine addicted boy mom to Noah, Liam and Luke. This “stay at home” mom can typically been found cruising in her minivan, jamming to Beyonce with a Starbucks in hand on her way to carpool or after school activities. Mary has been married to her high school sweetheart since 2007. She is a founder of Delivering Hope NOLA and the Vanessa Wolff Scholarship Fund at her Alma Mater. Mary is passionate in the local preemie community and has been heavily involved with the March of Dimes since her sons Liam and Luke were born premature.

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