What Prematurity Means to Me
By Jen Kossowan, Mama.Papa.Bubba.
Feb 1, 2018
Prematurity is unexpected.
It’s willing something to stop when it’s already too late.
It’s not knowing if it’s safe to celebrate the birth of your child.
It’s watching your baby’s life being supported by machines and wires and tubes.
It’s feeling helpless.
Prematurity is not being able to hold your brand new baby.
It’s rhythmic beeps and the quiet buzzing of a NICU.
It’s never taking your eyes off of respiratory rates and oxygen saturation levels.
It’s alarms and quietly rushing nurses and your baby being stimulated back to breathing.
It’s not being able to fully catch your own breath.
Prematurity is tests and procedures and blood draws.
It’s dizzying and wishing you could volunteer yourself.
It’s anticipating test results and aching for good news.
It’s putting one foot in front of the other and continuing along.
It’s your baby’s life in others’ hands.
Prematurity is splitting your time between home and the hospital.
It’s feeling like you’re not giving enough to either.
It’s being willing to give anything just to be two places at once.
It’s leaving the hospital each night without your baby.
It’s dark drives home through tear-blurred eyes.
Prematurity is pumping around the clock.
It’s spilled milk on the counter at 3 a.m.
It’s nurse-ordered rest but not having the time.
It’s middle-of-the-night NICU runs.
Prematurity is fear and constant worry.
It’s dreading the worst each time the phone rings.
It’s feeling like you haven’t taken a full breath in weeks.
It’s feeling like you’ve failed.
It’s overwhelming guilt.
Prematurity is bravery and strength.
It’s leaning on your village more than ever.
It’s trusting and having faith.
It’s taking what comes and moving forward.
It’s being hopeful.
Prematurity is being in awe of the resilience of a tiny human being.
It’s cheering him on as he fights.
It’s celebrating each step forward.
It’s more pride than you know what to do with.
It’s forever being grateful.
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