Once a preemie always a preemie!

7 Mar

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It took a lot of courage for me to write this article. I have been asked many times to write about my experience having two preemie children and I have been reluctant to do so. Why you may ask, well maybe because I am not over the experience I had and because I am still living it.

I always dreamed of having a family, white picket fence, husband and the whole enchilada. I met the man of my dreams, we bought a house and then were ask to move abroad to California for the second time. I knew it would mean we would have children abroad. I am a planner by nature and we decided to try for a family and was pregnant quickly.

From the get go it wasn’t what expected. The pregnancy glow, the cute bump never happened for me. I was the one vomiting in the corner, having appointment after appointment and multiple hospitalization.

Grace was a iugr baby. What that mean is she had a growth restriction which meant she couldn’t grow as planned. I was closely monitored, praying she would gain weigh each week, hoping she was still in my belly and praying everything was ok.

It was a silent battle that very few people are aware of, and for some strange reason we had faith that everything would be ok. Each night I would sing to pebbles (the name we called he baby) amazing grace, not knowing the sex of the baby, having faith that all would be fine.

I went to multiple appointments each week and it was determine we would have a c section at 32 weeks. At 30 weeks,  faith had another plan and Pebbles heart rate was dropping and I had to have an emergancy c section. It was by far one of the most scary things we have ever done. We prayed that Pebbles would come out and be alive and screaming. I made my husband promise that no matter what, he would go with the baby and be with the baby no matter what happened to me.

Grace was born October 3rd 2014 at 1 pound 13 oz. To this day I don’t remember a lot, except my husband going with Grace to the NICU. I was being put back together after a intense classical a section where I lost a lot of blood.

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Grace spent 49 days in the NICU. She was on oxygen, c pap, had blood sugar issues, jundice, slow weight gain, reflux, to name a few. But she is a fighter and gained weight and got through it. In those 49 days I have never loved my husband as much as I did then. He was the strength I needed and he was my rock and together we took it on.

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Once Grace was released from the NICU, we felt relief but the start of a long medical journey began. Multiple appointments a week, for weight check, physical therapy and eye check began.

We gave everything we could to her to ensure she had the best care, love and support possible. I didn’t return to work and invested all I could to be with her and support her. She continued to surprise doctors with her strength, courage, determination and independence.

Grace is now 3.5 year old and to say it has been a a journey is a understatement. We didn’t realize the journey ahead at the time she was born. She is now a thriving 3.5 year old. She is petite for sure, but there no medical issues and she continues to surprise us on a daily basis.

Since we had Grace we have had our son William, who was 5 weeks preemie and is Grace’s best friend. We have moved countries, been abroad from family and strived everyday to give our kids all we can.

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We are surprised each day with what Grace has achieved and realize that she may in fact always be petite but she is reaching every milestone and taken each
challenge head on.

We thank faith that Grace was meant to be a part of our family and for our parents,  for the support and love through out our journey. I personally don’t talk much about our experience as it was something hard to explain, hard to relive and hard to imagine. There are many people that helped through out the journey and for those people we are forever thankful.

We are thankful for each day for our two children and forever thankful for the staff and NICU of Kaiser, Walnut Creek, California, in which we would not have Grace in our arms.

To those of you reading this while you are waiting for your baby, sitting in the NICU or living the preemie journey, you are not alone, it is not easy and remember it is all worth it !

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