Here's an item for the Not To Do List, Like Ever Ever Again: read the blog of another family's experience in the NICU.
It was by accident. Of course. I mean, I'm not stupid (usually) (I hope). But in the way of the intertubes, I found a thing that lead me to one blog that recommended another, and before I considered the wisdom of my actions found myself reading this woman's account of her daughter's 96 days in the NICU. Her story is different than mine, of course, incomparable and yet so similar, the way these things are. Monitors, alarms, desats... My stomach is still tensed hours later, the way it was for so many months last year.
So, here's the thing. I get angry when I think about people who went through so many of the same things that I did but got to bring their kids home. It comes over me in a flash, a brief but engulfing conflagration of rage. And jealousy. And so, so much bitterness.
How exactly does one get past this sort of thing? Oh, shut up. I know. Time. Stupid, slower than I can bear Time. I know this. After all, I no longer automatically think, "Bastards" as I walk past the pregnancy and parenting section of bookstores, so I assume that someday I will no longer think similarly uncharitable thoughts about those families luckier than ours.
I'm not a complete beast. I am happy for such people. And I understand that coming home isn't necessarily the ending of their troubles. Truly. I'm just deeply bitter that we're not among the fortunate*.
The real kicker? (And by "kicker" I mean, "stomp on the head in the manner of Edward Norton in American History X".) Sarah sometimes talks about Jane in the present tense. I can only hope Time will take care of that one, too. Soon, please and thank you.
*I feel compelled to acknowledge that in most areas, we are in fact among the incredibly fortunate. I know this, too. But I'd trade any of the rest of it to have my girl back.**
**I know you know this, too. Sometimes, though, it just needs to be said.