“My son Dylan came 2 1/2 months early at 29 weeks weighing 3 lbs, 6 oz and 16” long. I was told I was lucky because he was big for a preemie. I would never think this is getting lucky. Regardless, no one ever prepares you for the possibility that your baby can land in the NICU after you give birth.
I met Dylan for the first time 4 days after delivering him. The 3 days before I met Dylan all I thought about was him but I couldn’t move and the doctors suggested I gain some strength. Moms always dream of the perfect delivery but this was far from it. My placenta had completely broken through my uterine wall due to a condition called placenta accreta and I started hemorrhaging. My doctors took Dylan out as quickly as possible and focused on saving me. I had lost a 3rd of my blood and needed a hysterectomy. I had a 5 hour surgery after Dylan was whisked away to the NICU. I was put asleep through the entire experience. I woke in such incredible pain. I never could have imagined what a trying experience this would be. All I wanted to do was see our new baby.
My husband was our rock. He divided his time between checking on me, spending time with Dylan and watching our 4 kids at home. When I came to, I asked how Dylan was and he was very calm about it. He definitely did not prepare me to see our son so tiny with all the tubes and wires attached to him.
It’s hard to explain the first time you see your child this small. The first half hour I cried because I feared so much for his life. After I regained my composure, I realized I needed to be strong for him. I started talking to Dylan telling him everything was going to be OK. Next came the fierce determination to help him get whatever he needed to thrive. I was his mother and would do everything in my power to give him the best care. I was determined but my heart still broke every single time I saw Dylan. You feel very helpless because no matter what this little child is still getting pricked and touched over and over again with all of their tests.
Even though I was still healing I was at Dylan’s side every single day. I provided him breast milk, pictures of his 4 siblings, a stuffed animal with his parents scent. Everything. Anything. Every chance I got I asked God to help Dylan. My family and friends gave us a ton of support. They helped with our 4 kids so we could devote so much time to Dylan.
Dylan is home with us after 3 months in the NICU and he has tons of therapy. His growth and fine motor cycles are our challenge. It means the world to have Dylan at home and part of our big family. He is the sweetest child and I thank God every day for bringing him into our lives. Our story is like many NICU families who simply pray everyday that their child will be ok. Dylan is 8 months today and 3 months delayed. We do not know what his long term issues will be, but we remain positive and thank God for Dylan’s life and mine.”
This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Tracy of New York. You can follow her journey on Instagram here. Submit your own story here, and be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories.
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