16 separate admissions.
November was the only month we did not spend a single night in the hospital (only because she was sick and we had to cancel the scheduled admission).
These numbers exclude checkups and days where we just went in for labs. These numbers are true admissions, where we spent those days and nights in a room.
They say that the first year after transplant is hard. They were not kidding. It was brutal. Honestly, based on how I feel about 2011, and the many, many memories we have of being in the hospital, I was surprised the numbers were that low. Most of those days were between January and June. Then, from June through December, the admissions were about once per month, with the stays ranging from 1-3 nights.
You might be thinking how crazy I must be to actually have added up those numbers. But I do well knowing the numbers so that I can remind myself just how far we have come. I never want to take for granted the progress we have made. And even though those days in the hospital were hard, and terrible, and painful, and truly exhausting, both mentally and physically, they led us to where we are now. At home, with our beautiful, feisty, challenging, loving little girl.
So to all those families going through that first year of hell, or to those who are waiting for their child's perfect liver, I wanted to tell you that we have been there. It is daunting to see those numbers. Not every transplant patient's journey will be like ours. But I am here to say that those horrific days in the hospital are worth it! Every single one of them.