sometimes my neighbor/friend and i will touch back on life in the nicu. we will go through our experiences with our babies. good, bad, and challenging times, and share how we felt. it's hard because all of the feelings we went through come rushing back and it's hard to hold back tears. the countless times we were unsure of how this nightmare of a story would play out. the worries we had.
then we look at our little miracles. so happy and playing with one another. no one would be able to tell now that they were preemies.
every so often we get comments on how tiny lyla is but we just smile.
no one knows the struggle these little miracles went through to survive. and what we went through as parents.
i remember blaming myself after lyla was born. it was my fault she couldn't grow inside of me anymore. i felt responsible. it was the worst feeling in the world.
instead of focusing on that, i focused on what i could do for her. and worked my hardest.
this month is actually preemie awareness month. it is important for women to know complications that can arrise during pregnancy and know about prematurity.
i have found an awesome group of preemie moms online. it is a great place to support and understand one another. one of the moms wrote this, and i have modified it to fit us:
'I am the mother of a premature baby. I did not drink, I did not smoke, I did not do drugs, I took my vitamins and went to all my prenatal appointments. I did everything right and still had a daughter born at 28 weeks. Premature birth can happen to anyone at any time in their life. It can happen to you, your child, your grandchild, your best friend. It does not discriminate in who it chooses or why.
When you a
re the parent of a premature baby your whole world will stop. You will be told your baby won’t survive and if it does, it will have lifelong health issues. You will be told it may never sit up, crawl, walk, see or hear. You will cry yourself to sleep at night and pray your baby lives another day. You will ask God to take you instead of your tiny child. You will fall to your knees every time your tiny baby stops breathing. You will stop sleeping and every time your phone rings your heart will drop to the floor because you fear the worse.
If you're blessed enough to make it home with your baby, you will know way to many medical terms that no parent should ever have to know, you will know how to work an apnea machine, give infant CPR, you will learn sleeping doesn't exist because alarms go off all night long. You will be overprotective and overcautious because you know how close you had come so many times to losing your baby. You will get thrown up on several times a day and you will give thanks to God that your baby is here to throw up on you.
NOVEMBER 17th is National Prematurity Awareness day. Please wear purple to bring awareness to this issue so someone you love doesn't go home from the hospital empty handed.'
these pictures below are some of lyla's preemie friends. all born between one and four pounds. you wouldn't know looking at them now. and you may not know that some of them still face 'issues' related to prematurity. some premature babies aren't as lucky and face many more challenges. these babies were born due to either incompetent cervix, bicornuate uterus, septate uterus, severe pre-eclampsia, preterm labor and/or premature ruptured membranes. those terms are just a few of many reasons babies can be born early.
pregnant women and women who plan on being pregnant at some point in their lives need to be aware of these terms.
because no new parent should have be aware of or deal with the terms: NEC, As&Bs, ROP, blood transfusion, vent, CPap, NG tube and many more.
wear purple to show your support for preemies on saturday, november 17 for world prematurity day. and if you can, show some support by donating to the march of dimes. that organization has done wonders for premature babies.