Thursday, November 18, 2010

Blogging For Preemies

One in eight babies is born premature; 12% of American babies are born at 32 weeks gestation plus.  1.5% are born between 28w and 32w, and 0.5% are born prior to that.  Some live; some die.  It's a truth that no one talks about in health class.  Infertility?  Someone else's problem.  Prematurity?  Won't happen to my baby.

Why is it that we forget?  Why is it that we dont think about the 13 million babies born worldwide who are delivered prior to their due dates?

I'm a mother to that 0.5%.  Every single baby I have carried has come into this world prior to 28 weeks.  Although we were super close- 28 hours close- to that 28 week mark, all of my birthed children are 2nd trimester babies.  Expert medical care... Outstanding prenatal care...  And still, in our developed, middle class world, there was nothing that could be done.

Prematurity isn't someone else's problem; it's mine.  And it's yours too.  We are a community; one premature baby impacts all of us.  And something can be done; research can be funded.  Answers CAN be had.  But it takes more than one OB willing to risk his license or professional associations.  It's more than just changing ACOGs mind about what constitutes the risks of pregnancy and a problem like IC.  It's you and it's me.  Speaking out.

Speaking out on behalf of the babies who don't have a voice because prematurity took their lives.   Babies like Nicholas, Sophia, and Alexander.  Babies like my uncle.  Babies like those blogged about on many of the blogs I follow.

Speaking out on behalf of the babies who we are grateful enough to hold in our arms, kicking and laughing and playing, in spite of the incredible odds they faced by being born too soon.  Babies like Bobby and Maya. Babies like me.  Babies like Bobby's godmother, Jody, and Sonja's quads.  Babies like my nieces and my younger cousin's youngest son.  Babies, again, whom are parented by writers of some of my favorite blogs.

You have a voice.  I have a voice.  And, one day, God willing, they will have a voice too.  But, until they do, it is our responsibility to make sure that people know.  Prematurity isnt the punishment of a drug using mother or the poor and destitute.  It is a problem for all of us.  It is a problem for those of us who dont worry about putting dinner on the table and those who struggle for every meal alike.  It is a problem for white, black, red, yellow, purple, and every color inbetween.  It doesnt care what your country of origin is or how often you attend religious worship.

It strikes us all.  And it brings us to our knees.

And it is time to fight back.

Because, really, if we dont, who will?


bibc said...

A beautiful remembrance of your children and so many others like them. I couldn't do it this year, but I hope to next year. xoxo lis

Noelle said...

This was a beautiful post. Thank you.

Marilyn said...

Hi Michele!
Beautiful post! I know it has been awhile since I have said anything but I promise I am a faithful follower:-) I have been following you since we were both on bed rest with twins.

I also wanted to share a preemie blog with you. Her name is Hope. This little one was born at 24 weeks! The doctors did not expect her to live and left her with her parents and family to mourn. They had even given her dad her death certificate to sign.

I won't go into all the details that are in the blog. I will tell you she was born in July and she is still alive today. Everyday is still a struggle.

I will also tell you this blog is filled with a lot of raw emotion. I have not always known how to handle some of the post, but I have never been where they are. So please if you or anyone else could reach out to them or join me in prayer to help bring this little one home to her family please do.