Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Being mummy to a preemie

I remember repeating it like some sort of mantra - "he's due the 11th May" I would say over and over again to each person who looked at my bump and asked when he was coming. So when I was taken to hospital on 28th March and told that my waters had broken and baby would be with us in the not too distant future, all I could think was "but he can't come... my baby's not due until the 11th May.

Funnily enough I had a feeling throughout my entire pregnancy that Luke was going to make an early appearance (lets call it mothers instinct). I had my hospital bag packed from about 26 weeks after having a horrible nightmare in which I went in to early labour and had nothing to take with me. That weekend I promptly bought everything I needed for my bag and left it buy the door, waiting for babys birthday to arrive.

         The day that Luke arrived 

I was measuring big from very early on and on the night of 28th of March, I sprung a hind water leak at my friends engagement party (thunder stealing much?!) I will never forget the feeling of panic and uncertainty when the doctor told me "your waters have started to go. We will keep baby in as long as we can but it looks like he's coming early". What followed were a very stressful few days of blood tests, steroid injections, bed rest and scans. We managed to keep him in an extra week but on 6th April, exactly 5 weeks early our little baby boy entered our lives.

                  Baby's first photo 

Having your baby come early, every step of the way is filled with worry. I was lucky to have a relatively straightforward labour and birth. However at the end of it I only got to hold Luke for a couple of minutes before he was whisked away from me and taken to NICU. I didnt get the post birth cuddles and closeness. When everyone else was on the ward with their babies next to them, I was alone with what seemed like a million miles between me and my little boy. It seemed so unfair at the time that everyone else was getting newborn cuddles and spending time with their little bundles of joy and then there was me. Stuck in a nightmare of bad news.

          Luke at just a few days old 

There is also a slight sadness to being a preemie mummy. I am hugely grateful and feel very blessed that Luke ended up being ok. He is now no different to any other 7 month old. However I can't help but feel a pang of jealously whenever people mention being in that 'newborn bubble'.
Being mummy to a poorly little preemie you don't get to be in a bubble of feeding and cuddles and pyjama days on the sofa. My bubble was full of wires, machines, blood tests and hospital food. It is a really hard place to be in, especially when it feels like the rest of the world are living in a happy little bubble of love. And quite honestly with all our problems along the way, I didn't find it got any easier until Luke hit 6 months.

            First cuddles with Daddy 

Unfortunately when you are pregnant, you don't get told about how to deal with being mummy to a premature baby. No one tells you how hard it will be, how drained and helpless you will feel when it all starts to go wrong. When we were in hospital, we had to deal with things I hope I never have to go through again: Our baby being rushed to the resuscitation table, not being able to hold him properly until he was 2 days old, having to navigate your way around a mass of wires whenever you wanted a cuddle. No one prepares you for what it will be like if your baby comes before your due date.

Having a baby earlier than planned is a really scary, difficult thing and I personally think that pregnant women should be educated and made aware of what they could potentially face. I am just thankful that I was lucky enough to have a really wonderful support network of friends and family along with my lovely husband.

     Now a happy, healthy 7 month old 


Best of Worst

9 comments:

  1. What an incredible post. So informative and open. I had never considered the trauma of preemie birth and feel awful for not being more supportive to friends who went through similar situations to you.
    I agree that there is so much you are not told when you are pregnant and there is a huge expectation to just get on with it and know how to deal with everything that is thrown your way.
    I am so so pleased that your beautiful little boy is doing so well now.
    So pleased also that I found your post. Hopefully I will go full term with my current pregnancy but if little one decides to come earlier I will feel far more prepared having read this xx http://www.frillyprettythings.com
    #bestandworst

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    1. So glad you enjoyed it. Good luck, I'm sure everything will go totally smoothly! Xx

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  2. Wow you've really been through it! Must have been so scary but sounds like you've all come through it really well. What lovely photos of your little boy! #bestandworst

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    1. It was a really scary time. It seemed like it would never end, but here we are and you wouldn't guess now that Luke was prem! Xx

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  3. I really like your post :-) as a mother to a gorgeous, cheeky 2.5 year old who was born 15 weeks early I strive to raise awareness too! We got to hold her at 2 weeks old and take her home at 161 days old. We were first time parents too and like you had this odd feeling she was going to come early.. I was so sure I kept telling my Mum and Dad about it. We come from a long history of large, over due babies so they kept laughing it off :-) they couldn't believe it when she actually did come so early.

    Your boy is absolutely gorgeous and I'm so pleased to see and hear how well he is doing.

    Thank you for discussing this, I hope more Mum's are aware after reading your beautifully written post.

    X

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    1. Same here with the large, overdue babies! So my mother didn't believe me at all! So glad to hear she's well now! Xx

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  4. I should add.. I went on to have another gorgeous FULL TERM baby too :-) who's now 10 months old xx

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    1. Ooo that's so wonderful to hear - that's one of my biggest fears if we have another baby xx

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  5. Aw this must have been such a shock for you - it's just not something you expect and are therefore not prepared for. Not being able to have those cuddles and get settled at home must have been hard work.I agree more should be done to educate women - it would help lots with expectations. Hope all is more settled now with your gorgeous boy. Thanks for sharing with #bestandworst and see you soon xx

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