When Caleb was born, his eyes were still fused shut, like a brand new kitten's. The doctors told us that 99 percent of 27-weekers are born with their eyes open, so maybe Caleb was actually earlier than 27 weeks. But I had had an ultrasound at 8 weeks 4 days that determined my exact due date, so I knew he was exactly 27 weeks and 1 day when he was born. He was also a good size for a 27-weeker. I grow 'em big. ;) I guess he was just in the 1% that have their eyes closed. Just like Caleb! Defying the [bad] odds!
From the beginning, Caleb would try and try to open his eyes. The nurses would put saline drops on his eyelids to keep them moist and hope that it would help them come apart.
I would hover over him for hours (when I knew that he was awake), just hoping that he would open those eyes!
When Caleb was exactly one week old, the neonatologist was by his bedside doing his daily rounds. He looked down at him and said to the nurse, "Are his eyes still closed?!" The nurse said, "Yes, he's been trying and trying to open them, but just can't!" As the nurse looked away for a moment, the doctor bent down close to Caleb. When the nurse looked back, the doctor said, "LOOK! They're open!"
[The very first picture of his open eyes, just moments after they opened!]
Sometimes Caleb just needs a little bit of [unofficial] help.
I made it to the NICU about ten minutes after he opened his eyes. I had really been hoping that I could be there the moment they opened. How wonderful would it have been if I had been the first thing he saw?
It took a long time to be able to figure out this open-eyes thing.
He wasn't coordinated, but that's ok! He had plenty of time to practice.
Of course he figured it out and now I get to look into his big, beautiful eyes every day!