Today Lexie reached the equivalent of 36 weeks gestation. This had been the goal when I checked into the hospital in November -- getting the pregnancy to 36 weeks. Obviously we didn't quite make it.
Last week Lexie was moved to yet another "step down" room for babies who just need to learn to eat and grow. It happens to be on the 6th floor (the regular NICU is on the 2nd floor). And it happens to be within spitting distance of the hospital room I lived in for so many weeks. Every day I see my old door at the end of the hallway. It's always closed. Inevitably, I've been thinking a lot about an alternate universe in which I am still behind that door. In that alternate universe, today I walked out the door on my own and headed home to wait out the rest of my pregnancy, instead of being quickly wheeled out, terrified, heading to the labor and delivery floor many weeks too early.
But things continue to improve in real life. Yesterday Lexie's feeding tube was removed. That's not entirely accurate -- it would be more accurate to say that Lexie pulled out her feeding tube again. And her doctor decided not to replace it as long as Lexie continues to eat enough on her own. So far, so good. She looks like a regular little baby now without the tube taped to her little face.
In other real-life news, we just received our copy of Lexie's birth certificate as well as her Social Security card. She's not even supposed to be born yet, and already she's just a number in the eyes of the government. Welcome to the world, kiddo. We're so glad you're here.