It is fitting that the month of November is not only dedicated to being thankful, but it also is dedicated to raising awareness about premature births. While these two things may not seem like they go together, for some of us, they do. My two greatest blessings are my daughters, both who burst into the world prematurely, and I am eternally grateful for them.
After 5 years of extensive infertility treatment, I was more than ready to welcome our first child into our family. So, when she arrived five weeks prior to her due date, I was nervous, but also excited that our wait was over at last. Her dad and I were overjoyed to become parents, and we were grateful that, despite an early start, she was healthy and did not require any special care. We brought her home on Mother’s Day, which was so very fitting indeed.
Twenty months later, we found ourselves making an unexpected, frantic trip to the hospital for our second child’s birth. Not to be outdone by her big sister, she decided to make her grand entrance eight weeks before she was expected. We knew that after having one premature baby that there was a greater risk for history repeating itself, but we had no idea what awaited us or her.
Even almost seventeen years later, I find myself in absolute awe when I recall the night she was born. There was a flurry of activity in the delivery room, followed by a peculiar calm when she was taken to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). And so began my lifetime of gratitude for the NICU team who cared for our tiny miracle for nearly the first month of her life.
I am grateful for the NICU staff for taking such exemplary care of our daughter, us, and her fellow NICU roommates. They truly are angels on earth.
I am grateful for having affordable and easily accessible healthcare. I shudder to think of how this story could have ended, had it not been for the excellent care that my daughter and I received before and after her birth.
I am grateful that my daughters are healthy, happy, loving, funny, smart, and compassionate young women and that I get to be their mom. They are proof positive that good things really do come in small packages. They may no longer be preemies, but they’ll always be my babies.
Good things come to those who wait, but sometimes, they come early, too.
Just one thing each day. . .
Categories: Just One Thing Each Day