14 November 2013

When Life Happens Prematurely: Part 3

preemie awareness, nicu grad
World Prematurity Awareness Day is Nov 17

One of most common questions when you have a preemie is "when will it get easier?" Time is the only answer to that, and like other wounds there will be times you hurt...but there will be more times when you don't.

This is the first year I haven't known what to write about - and that's saying something, isn't it? I am a toddler mom who had a preemie.

That doesn't mean some things won't always be hard. I can't relate to third trimester woes even though I've experience pregnancy. While I gave birth naturally - technically - I can't sit over a cup of coffee and discuss the experience without it turning into a tale of terror. My heart breaks when I see babies lifted into mothers' arms after giving birth. I wish Brandon could have cut the cord. I don't like discussing baby showers. I wonder what it's like to leave the hospital with your baby and not have to visit them. That felt so strange - going to visit the baby who was supposed to still be inside me.

The comment that hurt me most this year was, well I consider anything with a 3 in front of the week full term. I knew it was a joke, but it upset me so much. No, that isn't true, and while preemie humor emerges as time goes by it's still a delicate subject.

Three years ago I'd just told everyone we were having a baby. Three years later I am listening to Tristan talk about 'bots (robots) and dino-rawrs. He says, I love you, toooooo. He calls his cat Stormbie (Stormborn) and feeds her kibble and treats every day. He is learning to dress himself and knows most of his letters. He doesn't like vegetables and is still obsessed with mac & cheese. He builds trucks out of Legos and lines up cars. He can tell you what the fox says (ya-da-dah-da-da-dadadada!) and still loves listening to Devo and The Aquabats.

His due date passed without my noticing.

I am a mom who doesn't want anyone to skip the prematurity chapters in their pregnancy books. When you're reading What to Expect sometimes what's most important is what you don't expect. Be aware not only for yourself but for your friends and family. Chances are you'll know someone who delivers early and if they skipped the chapter on prematurity you'll want to be prepared.

You can read more about how to help families who are in NICU here.

If you have a preemie you can join our support page here.

Thank you to all my readers who have listened. I'm so glad not everyone can relate but you've given me a platform to vent and heal. As long as we continue to move forward I think it is healthy to reflect on the past; just don't get stuck.

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1 comment :

  1. Oof. I have a 3 in front of ours, and yep, our experience was easy-peasy compared to many. But I know plenty of 33 and 32 weeker families who had a very rough road! Now and then someone on the Facebook pages I manage will get kind of judgmental about another mom who gave birth later and I have to shut it down. Always so sad to see that happening.


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