With her daughter’s tiny fingers wrapped in her own, Julie Davidson could only gaze at her newborn through the glass enclosure.
The tender moments were repeated as she went room to room, visiting her quadruplets in the neonatal intensive care unit at Northeast Georgia Medical Center in Gainesville.
“It’s so hard. I want to pick them up and hold them,” Davidson said. “It’s like my heart is in a box. It’s in four different boxes.”
These are emotional days for Julie and Justin Davidson, a Banks County couple, following Saturday’s caesarean section that brought McKenna Emory, Teagan Kate, Callie Noel and Sawyer Claire into the world.
“It’s hard to see them and not be able to pick them up and just cuddle them,” Julie said.
The Davidsons can have limited contact with the babies — one hour per day each, as long as they’re doing well.
“Yesterday, she got to hold two and I got to hold two for an hour each,” Justin said. “Today, we’re switching which two we held. It’s really special.
“I can put (Callie’s) bottom in my hand and my fingertips nearly touch her neck,” Justin said.
The girls weighed in at between 2 pounds, 6 ounces and 3 pounds, 2 ounces each, and they ranged in length between 14 and 16 inches each for a total of 61 ½ inches.
“That’s a lot of baby,” Julie said.
Overall, mom and daughters are doing well.
The babies are “breathing on their own,” Justin said. “They’re breathing room oxygen, which is real good.”
“They don’t have to have surgery or anything like that,” Julie said.
Jeanine Smith, registered nurse in the NICU, said the delivery of the babies “went amazing, very smoothly.”
“All departments in the hospital worked together, and it went flawlessly,” she said. “We had teams set up for each baby, and we had a team of nurses, respiratory therapists and a physician assigned to each baby.”
Julie likely will be able to go home Wednesday, but it won’t be nearly that soon for her babies.
Hospital staff “wants them to be over 4 pounds, at least,” Julie said.
The Davidsons are expecting to bring them home one at a time.
“They’ll go home when they reach the right goal — when they’re eating on their own, breathing (well on their own), digesting and going to the bathroom (well),” Justin said.
The expectation is all the babies will be discharged by Julie’s original due date, March 29.
Before the delivery, Julie had been on bed rest at the hospital since Dec. 8.
In the meantime, Justin, who also has a son, 4-year-old Bentley, Julie’s stepson, has been busy at home putting together the babies’ crib — they’ll all sleep in one early on — and otherwise preparing the nursery for the big homecomings.
“We’re definitely going to have to build on (to the house), down the road,” he said. “The first thing will be another room or two, as they get older.”
Asked if he thought he and Julie might have more children, Justin flashed a big smile.
“I don’t think so. I think we’re done,” he said.
“She was told she’s very likely to have multiples if she has babies again. There’s no guarantee she’d have just one, so it’s really risky.”