A little back story…My husband and I got married very young. I wasn’t even of legal drinking age, and actually the only reason I was able to drink was because we were on International waters on a cruise. We were both finishing up college and deciding on our future. We lived in a ghetto apartment and didn’t have much money at all, but we were happy. Fast forward a few years…We moved back to our home state to be closer to family, bought our first house, and I received my first teaching job. With everything being so new in our lives, we didn’t feel ready for kids just yet. Over the next 4 years, we just worked and enjoyed each other’s company. Then came the conversation of kids…My mom comes from a large family of 10 (Lord, knows I didn’t want that many) and my dad from a family of 4 (I didn’t want that many either). Two sounded just right at the time. So, I got pregnant with our son in May 2008 with a due date of Valentine’s Day.
I did not like being pregnant one bit. I was sick 24/7 for about 2 weeks, then I just felt FAT all the time. I gained 10 pounds in the first 2 months and steadily after that. Don’t get me wrong, I was over the moon that we were having a baby. I was just very uncomfortable most of my pregnancy and obviously having no prior experience, I didn’t know what to expect. As my belly enlarged, it was getting harder to be on my feet all day as a teacher, and our little guy was getting lower and lower. I felt a little strange as December rolled around and was noticing changes to my body. I went to the doctor to get checked out and was put on immediate bedrest. I was only at 29 weeks. My little boy was already head down and sitting very low. After that point, my doctor wanted to see me every week to see how I was doing.
As a teacher, it is much harder to be absent than to show up at work. I am so thankful that I had a great team of teachers helping my sub get organized. I didn’t have time to get anything ready before I left. So while on bedrest, I sat at home and read books and watched movies. Very boring stuff I tell ya. Yes, it was relaxing, but I was more worried about using up all of my payed-time-off before our bundle of joy arrived. My doctor had okayed me to go back to work at 35 weeks because the baby’s lungs would be developed and would be fine if born early. Well what do you know, at 3:30am the morning I was to return to work, my water broke. You know, I had always had visions of my water breaking and gushing all over the floor in front of my students, but thank goodness I was at home.
Luke Alexander Davis was born Monday, January 12th, 2009 at 6:12pm. 5 weeks early. We were exhausted to say the least, as any new parents would be. He weighed almost 6 pounds, which in preemie terms is gigantic. We were enjoying our new bundle of joy by ourselves for once, when he turned blue. From that moment on, he spent almost 5 days in the NICU. To say that I was distraught would be an understatement. I may have appeared calm and strong on the outside, but on the inside I was a mess. It turns out that premature babies sometimes forget to breathe, hence him turning blue. He was also very jaundiced, so they ran tests to check his liver functioning and put him under UV lights until he was able to come home. We were beyond ecstatic to have our baby home that Saturday. What a present!
Looking at 3-year-old Luke today, you would never know that he was a preemie. He is in the 83% percentile for height (his daddy is 6’5″). He is a strong-willed but very loving and sweet child.
So here I sit today wondering, do I want to risk having another premature baby? My doctor says that there is no way to tell if I am pre-disposed to premature delivery. One thing I should mention, my brother and I were both born prematurely, 12 years apart. Is it genetic? Who knows. Do I worry about it often? Heck yes. I don’t necessarily want Luke to be an only child and adoption isn’t really on my radar. It scares me to death to think about having to go through what I went through the first time. My little guy came out alright, but there were so many other babies in the NICU that could have easily been Luke. Maybe I’ll have peace about it sooner rather than later, and before I get too much older. A second child isn’t on our topic of conversation yet, but these are things that I think about A LOT.
From my heart to yours…