*I have stopped and restarted this entry now numerous times…here goes nothing….
pre·ma·ture (prm-tyr, -tr, -chr)
1. Occurring, growing, or existing before the customary, correct, or assigned time; uncommonly or unexpectedly early: a premature end.
2. Born after a gestation period of less than the normal time
There is a fairly popular book called Half baked about a woman who had a preemie and her story. There is a fabulous quote in the book that I feel really sums up what this whole mess is:
“Everyone has two memories. The one you can tell and the one that is stuck to the underside of that, the dark, tarry smear of what happened.”
And this my friends and family is my reality. I have two memories of my pregnancy and Brendan’s NICU journey. The sugar coated one you all got to know and read about and then the truth
The truth is every day, hour, minute, second somewhere someone is joining me and my friends in the preemie mom club. It’s a club I never wanted to be a part of and until June 9, 2008 didn’t really know anything about. All of us have blogs and we all had different approaches to relaying our info. Most of us fluffed it so as not to scare friends and family. And I was one of them. On Halloween night this year my cousin and I were talking about having babies and she was saying how I had handled everything so well. I couldn’t stop myself..I laughed and said “Do you know how many drugs I was on to keep me that happy? Do you know how many times I called my mom crying saying I couldn’t do this and I wanted to come home?” I think that was when I realized that I wasted an excellent opportunity to educate myself, my family and anyone who would listen on what it’s like to have a preemie so here goes…
When you find out you are pregnant you have all these hopes and dreams and assume that you will be pregnant for 40 weeks and bring a baby home with you. For me I knew right away that the longest I would be pregnant was 37 weeks and there was definitely going to be a c-section. What I didn’t know was that the shit would hit the fan and nothing would go as planned, my blood pressure would rise to levels that could kill me and my baby, I would leave the hospital without my baby, how hard it would hurt, that noone would understand the guilt I would and do feel, that 2.5 years later I still would have the u/s pics on my fridge as a constant reminder and that everytime you find out someone is pregnant you hope and pray that they won’t be joining the club. Having a preemie means knowing how to measure things in cc’s and ml’s, what a vent and cpap are, closed isolette vs. open crib, desats, bradys and so many more that I can’t share them all. It means fearing being pregnant again because you have already been warned that the next baby, should you ever have one, will also be early and probably earlier then the first one.
The statistics aren’t any better then last year, or the year before. 1 in 8 babies is born premature. Nearly 5,000 never make it home. Isn’t that an alarming statistic!!?
If you are looking for a great organization to donate to, or a tax deduction March of Dimes is a great organization and helps NICU’s worldwide
Also please be sure to check out some other preemie blogs we love:
Here are some pics to show how great our preemie is doing… yes we still have struggles but really he is awesome!