“What time are you leaving work?” I asked Craig.

“Probably around 4:30 PM.

“Great.  See you at home.” I replied.

I hung up the phone and looked around.

A hospital bed, monitors, a fold out couch…suddenly I realized…this was now home.

At least for now.

I packed our hospital bag over the weekend when I went to my “real” home.  I decided instead of bringing the travel sized lotions and shampoo, I really just needed to bring the regular size stuff.

There was no telling when we’d be released from the hospital.

The moment we thought and speculated we’d be released, Evan had a bad episode of his oxygen levels dropping and we were faced with the hard reality that we’d be here much longer than we’d like.

Of course we understand that this is the best place for him.  Of course we know that if something happens, this is the place we want to be.

But, we miss normalcy.  We miss our everyday life.  We miss taking out the trash.  Picking up the house.  Making meals. Doing laundry.

Seeing Isabelle – every.single.day.

Tantrums and all, our heart aches at the reality of not seeing our daughter everyday.

She still doesn’t understand what’s happening.  She is so routine oriented and the fact that we uprooted her life – even for a few weeks or months – has really affected her.

We were at home this weekend since my mother in law and sister offered to stay at the hospital with Evan.  They wanted me to get a break and see Iz.

We were reading in her room and I had my house shoes on.  She suddenly looked at my shoes and started to take them off my feet.  I told her to stop – that my feet were cold.  She proceeded to have an all out tantrum. Crying, screaming…and trying with all her might to take off my shoes.

I looked at her, held her and said, “Isabelle – honey – what’s wrong.”

She looked at me, threw her arms around my neck, squeezed me tight, and through her tears said, “I don’t want you to leave again.”

My heart broke.

Her innocence.  The simplicity of her love for Mommy and Daddy – she misses us and can’t quite understand why we suddenly aren’t around.

I held her.  Told her over and over again that I was sorry this was happening but we are trying so hard to get baby Evan better.

I took for granted my time with her.  Sure – we have our bad and good days with our children.  But it’s not until you are suddenly in a routine of absence that you truly appreciate it all – the good and the bad.

Home – it’s where your heart is.  And mine is torn in two – one with my baby’s broken heart and the other who captured my heart when she came into this world two years ago.




  1. Ashley Hagler Villacorta says:

    I can definitely relate to this seeing that I was there almost a year ago. My 5 yr old (then 4 yr old) asked if we were giving him away. Broke my heart. Thank God for family. They were able to keep him preoccupied while we were in the hospital with the baby. I stayed a little longer than a week due to my health problems but my hospital at the time didn’t have suites that the NICU parents could stay in. But we just explained to our son how much we love him and that we needed to be at the hospital for his baby brother and so that Mommy could get better. Once he was able to see his brother (only thru the window) he kind of understood the need for us to be there. And as long as he was able to talk to be on the phone and come visit he was fine. Just keep praying to God for strength and I promise this too shall pass. Our little David will be 1 on the 22nd and I never thought he would ever get out of NICU because they kept him there til his actual due date. I had him at 33wks and we couldn’t hold him for atleast 2 weeks. But even after having a surgery and being under 4lbs. He is healthy and stronger than ever. I’ll continue to pray for your family and pray that his little heart is healed and stronger. <3

  2. My heart aches for you. I’m so thankful that Henry is our first baby, and that we didn’t have to try and balance a healthy babe and one in the hospital, especially since our hospital is 90 miles away. I feel like a ‘lucky’ heart mom to have that ‘luxury.’ I can’t imagine how you’re doing it, but I think about you every night and pray that you can manage it all. I know you can. We’re moms. We just do. Continuing to keep you, Evan, Craig and Iz in my thoughts. One day, before you know it, you’ll be looking back at this, hardly believing that this was your reality.

  3. You don’t know me, but I am a friend of Katie Brooks. I just wanted to let you know that your prayer warriors extend all the way to San Antonio. Tonight, I will say a special prayer for comfort and peace that passes understanding for little Iz.

  4. I’ve so been there. It’s hard. Really hard. Carter was 18 months old when my heart baby (Mason) was born. We did not have any long term caretakers for Carter. My husband and I basically switched off every couple of hours between the hospital and Carter. It’s some of the darkest days I’ve ever know. The mix of worry, exhaustion, not having any of your stuff when you need it, your home basically being neglected, no chance to do laundry, bathe, etc… It’s horrible.

    I’m continuing to pray for precious Evan. Please continue to keep us updated.