We welcome another guest blogger, Tricia, share her story about her son, Jayden, as a premature baby for National Prematurity Month.
Waking up in the middle of the night with contractions is scary for any first time mom, but it can be numbing when you are only 34 weeks pregnant.
I woke my husband up at 3:00 AM and told him he needed to take me to the hospital because I was having painful contractions 15 minutes apart. I distinctively remember saying, “I’m sure everything’s ok, I just need the piece of mind.” Less than 24 hours later, my son was born 6 weeks early.
Raging hormones, pumping adrenaline, sleep deprivation and an emotional rollercoaster can make for a pretty interesting New Mom Cocktail. I can honestly say, I was thrilled to be able to hold my baby boy in my arms, but I was so scared seeing him hooked up to so many machines. I was so confused about what was going on. I honestly feel God protected me and my heart, by keeping me in a fog for the first 24-48 hours. I was on a high, feeling the new mom bliss! But the day I was discharged, was the day I realized things were serious. So many doctors, nurses, advisors talking to me about my long term stay accommodations….wait, what?!?! No new mom should EVER have be told she has to go home but can’t take her new baby with her!
I learned to take each day one step at a time. Our biggest step to conquer was getting Jayden to eat on his own before he could go home. He was too weak to suck from a nipple (breast or bottle), that he would fall asleep exhausted after a few sucks and we would be unable to wake him. Therefore, feedings were finished through a tube inserted in his nose that went into his stomach.
The experience was so humbling as well. Family and friends poured in with flowers, gifts, cards, meals and visits. It is truly amazing how people come together to help those in need! I remember feeling so blessed by the support from everyone which genuinely helped me through the tough days. I also remember keeping a journal of my emotions and Jayden’s progress, set-backs and accomplishments helped me make sense of everything we were going through.
I lived at Dallas Presbyterian Hospital for 30 days with my husband and son. My husband would go to work and come back to be with us each night. One night he tried spending the night at home to get some quality sleep, but he said he was worse off being in the house alone. Each day Jayden would get stronger and stronger. Our amazing team of doctors and nurses, helped him heal and prepare for living outside the womb, 6 weeks before he was due. I can’t say 6 weeks before he was “ready” because, boy, was he ready!
He came out despite our trying to keep him in. He caught up developmentally and physically fully by his first birthday. Jayden is so full of life, curiosity, energy, enthusiasm and love! He may have had a rough start, but he is still the fighter now as he was then.