After I gave birth to my youngest son, I was adamant that I was done. Our family was complete. Shop was closed. After a very trying pregnancy – physically, mentally and emotionally – there was absolutely no desire to experience those not-so-joyous 30-35 weeks again.Photo Courtesy of http://darrahdejour.com/
In September 2010, when my youngest son was 2 years old, I found out I was pregnant. I experienced a roller coaster of emotions – many not so positive. Ten weeks into my pregnancy I had a miscarriage and was devastated. After seeing an extension of me on an ultrasound and listening to a heartbeat, I truly felt a loss. Many around me couldn’t understand my feelings – heck, I couldn’t understand my feelings. I just knew that I’d gotten attached to this being inside me. My family no longer felt complete.
While we didn’t plan to have another child. We didn’t plan not to.
When I found out I was pregnant again, I didn’t even tell my husband until I was 8 weeks along and then we didn’t tell anyone else until I was out of my 1st trimester. After having my oldest 10 weeks early, going through extra precautions with my youngest son that included bed rest and weekly progesterone shots, and a miscarriage – I knew that this pregnancy was going to be far from a walk in the park.
Thanks to awareness and precautions from my doctors, I was able to carry this baby to 39 weeks.
First Moments, Precious Moments
Words cannot even describe the emotions I felt when I first laid eyes on my daughter
After delivery, her body temperature dropped and it was almost 3 hours before I could hold this bundle of perfection in my arms. I could only look on as she lay in an incubator with my mother and god-sister keeping close watch.
I count my blessings on a regular basis that all three of my children are here. There are trying moments, I cannot lie. However, it’s those moments that I recall those first moments. That feeling of exhilaration when that last push was punctuated with the cries of a small being that was pure love. The anticipation to hold the baby that I’d carried below my heart for months and finally lay eyes on an extension of me.
Not All First Moments Are Happy Ones
Sadly, many parents around the world don’t have the opportunity to share those first moments with their newborns. According to Save the Children’s State of the World’s Mothers report, a baby’s birth day is the most dangerous day of life—in the United States and almost every country in the world. The three leading causes of newborn death are prematurity, birth complications and severe infections. Shockingly to me, more babies die in the US on their birth day than the rest of the industrialized world due to higher rates of prematurity.
The report shows that there are inexpensive products that can be better utilized to help save babies worldwide. These products along with early and exclusive breastfeeding, “kangaroo mother care” to keep preterm babies warm against their mothers’ skin, and skilled attendance at birth (40 million women a year now go without) could make a huge impact. Also, investing in girls and women worldwide is essential. Their improved nutrition and empowerment to attend school, delay marriage and plan and space births all lead to healthier mothers and babies.
See the full rankings, learn more and take action at www.savethechildren.org/