Proud to be the Mother of a Tiny MiracleNovember 17, 2011
Today is National Prematurity Awareness Day.
The Empire State Building is lit in purple tonight in honor of it.
Just over 4 years ago, I knew nothing about premature birth. The thought of it never even crossed my mind. I didn't realize it could happen to me, and then on August 9th, 2007 I became suddenly and unexpectedly aware of premature birth, when my own little preemie entered the world at 3 pounds 4 oz and 16.5 inches long. He was born too early, because I developed HELLP syndrome - a very severe form of preeclampsia. The only way to save me and him was for him to enter the world... early!
27 hard, and yet precious days in the NICU followed. I can honestly say that I still remember two of the nurses there distinctly - Debbie and Amy. I will never be able to express to them how much they did for our family during those 27 days.
I remember the day we brought him home. I remember being terrified that this preemie was now living in my home with me. We had a year of RSV shots, avoiding other people, and being scared at every little symptom.
I still walk into a hospital and can smell that distinct, antiseptic soap smell. It's all it takes for the memories of isolettes and NG tubes to come racing back.
Today... thanks to modern medicine my preemie is a 36 pound, 4 year old. He is in the 50th percentile for weight, and the 70th for height. He wasn't even on the charts until he was 2. He is smart, and fun, and social. He loves computers, scrambled eggs, and music. He can be sassy and sweet within the same 10 minutes, and sometimes he stands in the middle of my living room and poops his pants on purpose... I'd say he is a normal 4 year old boy... wouldn't you? He bounced back from his early start... and then some!
Baby "L" saved me from a life of obesity. It is because of my preemie that I decided I finally had to do something about my weight. It makes me almost teary-eyed when he now shows pride that I'm his mommy.
|"L" 1 day old|
|"L" 1 year old|
|"L" - 2 years old|
|"L" - 3 years old|
|"L" - 4 years old|
Yes... you all know that Lily is a miracle, but my first born is also a miracle! And he was even tinier than she was! I am the luckiest mom in the world to be the mother of 2 miracles!