We did it! Today, Charlie and I attended our second annual NICU reunion. Despite my reservations, it was certainly easier the second time around.
Charlie and I arrived and said our initial hellos. Then, I grabbed a seat out in the courtyard under the shade of a tree and watched from the sidelines as Charlie wandered around close by.
There were several children’s activities available but Charlie chose to obsess over the storm drain in the center of the courtyard. She laughed and clapped as she walked back and forth over the drain. Eventually, she found the mulch more interesting and occupied the rest of her play time by tossing it in the air.
Afterwards, we saw Charlie’s primary nurse. It was tough but I stuck to my promise that I wouldn’t cry this year. We talked while the other nurses passed around Charlie and doted over her. Charlie flirted shamelessly.
Today, had a very different feel. The memories and emotions were not as intense. However, the hospital food was just as bad as I remember it.
It wasn’t long before we had enough and it was time to leave. My NICU mom friend and her daughter joined us for lunch afterwards at a near by restaurant.
Overall, I’m glad we attended this year’s reunion. Last year, I was still reeling from the relatively fresh news that Charlie had bigger issues than expected. This year, I’ve figured out how to roll with what is thrown at us. And Charlie… well, she’s never given up and it shows.