FAQs: Part 1

Where are you sleeping?

It will be noted that ‘where’ is different from ‘how’ and I will answer both. We have spent every night at the hospital with Liam and each of those nights we spend in his room. To the matter of ‘where’: there is a pull-out couch that expands all of the way to the expansive size of a twin bed. It provides a very comfortable two inch thick plastic covered pad that is advertised as a mattress. We have purchased a foam pad to go on top of the mattress, but it now only makes it  feel a little less comfortable. We have graciously been provided one sheet, two blankets, and three pillows by the hospital, and have supplemented some on our own.

When folks hear that we are sleeping here, the immediate presumption is that one of us is on the bed and one of us is on a reclining chair; however we are both sleeping on the bed together – as it provides a little more privacy with a thin and mostly translucent curtain. Plus, it’s been nice to sleep close to each other, although we are again looking forward to the time when we will have the freedom not to be close on our much larger king bed at home.

Now to the question of ‘how’…depends on the night. For the most part the daily emotional toll has been so substantive that by the time it’s time to go to sleep, we actually don’t have much of a problem. There has been the occasional night of uncomfortable and restless sleep, but we are getting by. Plus with the addition of an every one in a while afternoon nap with Liam snuggling, we have been able to do alright.

How is the cafeteria food?

Well, I have learned a few things by eating in the cafeteria. The most important of those things is that ketchup packets suck. As a response, I would like to propose starting an activist organization that will take up the cause of hospital-cafeteria-goers nationwide and push to institute regular condiment dispensers for everyone’s sanity. Who’s with me?

The most useful tip that we might be able to provide anybody that would find themselves staring at days upon days of this sort of food is to actually eat when everyone else is eating. The cooks seem to try to create a stockpile of the hot food, thus creating an abundance of it after the rush is over – and no need to cook anything fresh. Sometimes the timing of everything simply doesn’t line up, but it’s worth waiting a few extra minutes with everyone else in order to get something semi-recently made.

All of that said, the cafeteria is actually a pretty good and cheap place to eat meals – especially lunch (it’s when everything is up and running and is by far the busiest meal of the day). Today’s lunch options included tofu and bok choy with rice, salmon with asparagus, garlic fettuccine, two different types of soup, a fresh sandwich bar, a salad bar, fresh pizza, and a regular assortment of grill food. We have recently seen everything from Swedish meatballs to teryaki noodles – and a lot of stuff in between.


  1. are you coffee drinkers? have you partaken of the on-demand, fresh-brewed coffee machine in the parents’ lounge? if there is a silver lining to living at TCH, I believe that’s it … 🙂

  2. Christi Johnson says:

    Hey, how about Chinese or your favorite-delivered. I’d be happy to accommodate any of your culinary desires. C

  3. As a veteran of those pull out couch beds at TCH, we just recently realized we can request a egg crate/bedroll from the nurse, and they’ll get it to our room. We’ve never been in the NICU, but if there’s room, it may be worth asking if there are any roll away cots available.

    But, we spend most of our nights at the hospital sharing that couch bed too. It’s so great that they have beds in all the rooms now.

  4. I agree about eating wheneveryone else does, especially lunch! And i always liked the reclining chairs, because then i could sleep next to her bed! I got really, really used to them. I have heard about these bedrolls, but never gotten one myself!

  5. Now I am curious about the other FAQ…I am glad you two are sleeping. Sweet dreams…

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