A week ago, one of my cousins (one of the four of us who are the exact same age!) sent me an email letting me know about her friend whose baby girl had been born way too early. She wondered if I had some encouraging words to offer the family. (I did.) She also passed on their CaringBridge site to me. In case you didn't know, we kept a CaringBridge page chronicling C's journey for a very long time. In fact, for a little while there, it overlapped with my blogging until that got to be too much and I eventually let the CB page slide. Incidentally, if you're interested in knowing a whole lot more about those early days and, quite frankly, more details about our family, you can still access that page here.
I pulled up the site and quickly became engrossed in their story. I read through each and every update of this sweet baby girl's first six days of life. They say baby girls are tougher and this little darling is no exception. I smiled at her feistiness and silently cheered for all her little victories. My husband read it all too. We smiled at each other and we recalled our own feisty, "beat-the-odds" baby girl. But then I said it...
"I'm afraid this is the honeymoon and they're just getting started on the ride. I'm really scared for the crash..."
And then, two days ago, the journal entry that began, "Well, the honeymoon is officially over..."
And I cried.
I saw it coming, but I cried.
It doesn't get easier.
My heart breaks for families who are going through the whole micropreemie roller coaster ride. Even when I know exactly what to expect and, having been through it, I even know you can come out unscathed on the other side... even then, it positively twists my insides to watch others face the sudden devastation that a single blip can cause with these tiny babies.
My average days now aren't that much different from any other mom of three little ones. Watching my children play, one would be hard-pressed to know for sure which one was born so dramatically early. We only see one specialist... and he's an eye doctor. Not exactly anything too scary or alarming. I can go days or weeks without dwelling too much on what all we went through.
And then I read about babies like this sweet little M. and it all comes rushing back. I am once again back in the NICU, listening to the beeps and alarms. I am stumbling, bleary-eyed down the hospital corridor to find a pumping room. I am caring for my 10-month in the Ronald McDonald House when the phone rings and I hear...
So I pray. I pray each and every day for these precious babies born way too soon. And, today, I ask that you take just a quick moment and pray for Baby M, born weighing only 1 lb 11 oz, and currently fighting an infection that is oh, so much work for such a tiny little babe. Pray with me, my friends... please.
I know, I know, the effect of prayer. I know what a difference it made to have people all over this country praying for my beloved baby girl. Even doctors have told me that, without that prayer, she would not be here today.
And so I pray for another precious, precious baby. Won't you join me?