I truly believe that each and every child is a miracle. We never know the story of how someone’s child became part of his or her family. Whether it was completely natural, with the help of modern medicine, or through adoption, having a child is in and of itself a miracle and a blessing.
About three and a half years ago I became pregnant with my daughter.
I had just had miscarriage, so I was very nervous. In the beginning my pregnancy was easy and other than being anxious, I felt great. At our 20-week anatomy scan we were told that our baby was measuring a lot smaller than expected, but she was otherwise healthy. They wanted to keep an eye on her and we needed to come in for regular ultrasounds and stress tests. To make a long and detailed story short, her growing continued to slow and my placenta matured at a much faster rate that it should have. We were sent over to high risk at UT.
During one of my regular NSTs, I was told it was “baby time in Tennessee” and that I was going to be sent over for an emergency C-section.
My husband and I were scared and shocked. I was 32 weeks pregnant with this tiny baby and I wasn’t ready to have her. We got to triage and she really perked up — they decided we could hold off on delivery, but I was admitted so they could keep an eye on me and the baby until it was time for delivery. Over the next few days, things were touch and go. I had contractions and high blood pressure and the baby was always doing “just good enough.” Monday rolled around and the decision was made to have a scheduled C-section that afternoon.
We didn’t make it to her scheduled time however, because her heart rate plummeted and I was sent over for a C-section immediately.
Kate was born alert and crying. She weighed a whopping two pounds and I got a tiny glimpse of her before she was whisked away to the NICU. There, she was poked and prodded, and had loads of tests run. Although tiny, she was healthy. It was a long and difficult six weeks in the NICU, but in the end, I brought my three pound 14 ounce baby home on Christmas Eve eve.
It was the most wonderful Christmas present ever.
I tell you this story because I know that we were lucky. There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about those doctor appointments where I wondered if we would no longer find a heartbeat or the day she was born when I was told that I had a placental abruption and that we BOTH got lucky. I know other people didn’t get so lucky. I know other people didn’t get the outcome that I did — the weight of that is so overwhelming that sometimes it’s too much to bear.
To know that so many times we could have lost her. To know that she is a true miracle.
If you know my daughter, you know one thing: she is a handful! She’s energetic, strong-willed, and curious. She is also sweet, smart, and very creative. When you have a miracle baby, the hard days are also sweet. When you experience something like that, whether it be during pregnancy, childbirth, or at another time in your life, it changes you. It changes the way you live, the way you raise your kids, the way you treat your spouse.
This is such a beautiful story! And a great reminder not to sweat the small stuff. Makes me feel a little abashed about how much I complained about the final weeks of my pregnancy when you (and so many others) didn’t make it there at all!
Thank you for sharing your story, Ashley!