Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Toots Stays Put

We slept through another night, Tootsie and I. Today is Wednesday, Hump Day, and the hump we're hurdling is toward Friday's 32-week mark.  Friday is also two weeks from my scheduled c-section at 34 weeks, and just about a halfway marker for my time here.  We can do this.

I've been clenching a towel when the contractions are strong and long, and mentioned to my sister that a stuffed animal might better serve that purpose.  Last night she brought me a plush pig, whose limbs have been duly squeezed!

The other seemingly decadent request I made was for her to buy me a bottle of my signature perfume (I've worn the same one, Oscar de la Renta, since high school).  It's not that I'm concerned I'm smelly (but that's quite likely--and we'll make today a shower day), but I've read that it can be important for mom to wear her usual scents when she has a baby in the NICU, so baby can use smell as a feature distinguishing mother from other caregivers in the hospital.

Boston was rainy yesterday but still bustling. It is strange to have walked around this vibrant city and now view it from above and know that there was so much fear and violence here not very long ago. Those not at the site of the bombing endured the lockdown shortly thereafter. I'm struck, of course, by the resilience of the city and her residents.

I have a lot of time to think about the efforts going into giving this baby, one of many in residence at this hospital, the very best chance she can have. Because I'm an educator, I have a keen understanding of how this investment pays off later, as many children require interventions which trace back to birth events and developmental delays related to prematurity.   But then I think of all the once healthy newborns who are young children failing to thrive in unhealthy environments in every spot on our globe and my heart hurts.  We have so much work to do to support families raising healthy children. 
Reading preemie stories will convince you at once of the fragility and durability of life.  Babies born at astonishingly early gestational ages often survive and thrive.  But it's not lost on me that I may have a baby, who, without the machines and technologies available in this hospital, would die at birth. What does it mean that my body made such a fateful move early on--ruptured membranes?  What is meant to be?  Is what is meant to be relative to one's surroundings and advantages available?  If so, this baby is more meant to be than others, because of circumstances surrounding the event that brought me to the hospital--the presence of the hospital itself, for one.
It's left to me to sit still in gratitude and do my best to promote my and my baby's health, knowing we're offered precious and heroic chances others don't have.
Hugs, friends.


vertigomama said...

Hugs To You Friend. Thank You For Keeping Us Up To Date. Glad Tootsies Still Cooking And You Are Being Well Looked After.

anna woerman said...

lovely writings, thinking of you and Tootsie. One lucky baby.