If you asked me 10 years ago if I wanted kids, like every young adult my answer was yes. Like all people though, the reality of pregnancy and child birth was a vague thought, I really had no idea what I was in for.
Fast forward to January this year and the early arrival of my twin boys Harrison and Hunter born by c-section in John Hunter, Newcastle. To be honest with you I didn’t really know much about premature babies, I had no idea what sort of things could be likely and in hope of the best I didn’t do much research into it, despite being high risk with 2 on board.
the first moment I started to feel that fear was sitting in the delivery suit waiting for my time. The mid-wife started to explain to me what to expect in theatre. My ideas of an intimate delivery with a few nurses and my Obstetrician suddenly went out the window as she described the hoards of people awaiting me. Mid-wives,, nurses, anaesthetists and their team and then there’s the neo-natal staff. Paediatricians, nurses and 2 crash carts, just incase….one for each.
Then there was a moment, the moment it really hit home, when the mid-wife looked me straight in the eye and said “just be prepared, they may not come out breathing, particularly the little one”. My heart skipped a few beats, I’d just never thought of that!
I consider myself lucky, my twin boys were born at 35 weeks both breathing but at the tiny weights of 1.7 & 2.2Kgs. I consider myself lucky I got to touch my babies after birth, then, as quick as they arrived, they were whisked away.
I didn’t get to have my babies with me the night they were born.
Instead on a ward of 4, I lay alone, no baby next to me, just a deflated stomach and an emotional memory. I could hear the other Mum’s with their bubs. I didn’t even know where my babies were.
The next morning I was taken to see my babies in NICU. The moment you look at your child/children in a humidi-crib hooked up to all sorts of machines with tubes coming out of them is crushing, your mothering instincts take over. They look so small, so vulnerable and there is nothing you can do.
Again, I was lucky. My babies were just little. They were still breathing. They were fed through tubes as they started to get a hang on life.
The moment I realised how vulnerable my babies were, was the moment I realised how precious our premmie bubs are.
I’m grateful, my babies were only in cribs for 4 days, they have been little fighters but like all premies they needed extra care. Vulnerable immune systems and poor under developed digestive systems have dominated our lives for their first 3 months, but my little dudes keep fighting.
I have no words that can explain the respect and thanks I have for the tireless staff in NICU. They save our babies, time and time again, staying with them through the day and night. I hope that my little guys can become as strong as so many other premies out there.
To all the premmie bubs, keep fighting and to the Mum’s and Dad’s you’re amazing! Go green for premmies!