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Challenge: NICU Parenting

Just a little too soon

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At 33 weeks and 4 days, I got really sick with flu like symptoms causing me to become dehydrated. The dehydration caused contractions which landed me in the hospital. They gave me a shot to stop the contractions, but while being monitored the doctor noticed that my son's heart rate would decelerate. This occurred three times in the 4 hours I was being monitored. They admitted me and the declines continued to happen over the next three days. At 33.6, they decided that it wasn't safe for my baby to continue to have the decelerations and that he would be born via emerbedgy c section. He came out crying weighing 5lbs 7oz. Within a few minutes he stopped breathing on his own and was intubated and rushed out of the room. I never got to hold him or really see him. He was unable to breathe on his own, maintain his own body temperature or suckle. He was in an incubator with air flow and an NG tube. I was advised to try breast feeding by pumping since it would help him get the nutrients he needed to thrive. I desperately pumped for days while I was in the hospital. 10-17 ml at a time. Every two hours. I spent my days sitting by my son's incubator silently begging him to breathe at a steady rate. Finally after 11 long and scary days my son got to come home with us. He's a happy healthy 3 month old that is thriving. I owe so much to the NICU nurses and staff. My family will never forget them.

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