birth

‘He broke down. ‘I’m shooting heroin again.’ AGAIN? I never caught on.’: Mom had no idea her baby’s father was hiding heroin addiction from her, ‘We miss you, we’ll never give up on you’

“This blew my whole mind. I’ve dated this man, lived with him, even had a child with him and NEVER knew. I never caught on. I haven’t been able to get ahold of him, I’ve been worried sick. He is currently using and living in his truck. My son runs around screaming, crying for his daddy. If you ever read this A.J. we miss you, we love you, and we will never give up on you.”

‘I can’t do this,’ I muttered to myself. I was only 22, unmarried. I didn’t want my boyfriend to feel trapped.’: Young mother doesn’t believe she’ll be ‘punished’ for ‘having a baby out of wedlock’

“I was terrified, ashamed. I cared too much about walking around with a large stomach and no ring on my finger. My boyfriend and I had only been dating a little over a year. I’d been indoctrinated with the belief that what was happening to me was a sin that would tarnish me for the rest of my life.”

‘I had a hard time clothing her. I was sure I’d break her neck.’: New mom recalls ‘mean, vicious cold days’ in throes of postpartum anxiety

“I had been placed in a small, windowless hospital room that was 80 degrees. I was rotating between sweating because I was warm to shivering from having cold sweats. The medicines from labor were messing with me. I tried to keep it together but whenever a nurse left my room, I burst out crying. There was so much paperwork to fill out. I was alone.”

‘You’re getting snipped, right?!’ I told my husband, no more babies. He obliged! The doctor had an emergency.’: After harrowing NICU journey, preterm birth, mom excited for ‘freedom’ husband’s vasectomy would bring to their ‘intimacy’

“My husband told me without hesitation, he’d get a vasectomy. I thought, ‘Yeah sounds good, but we’ll see if he’s really down for the cause when that time comes.’ We prepared for snip snip day by getting him a bag of frozen peas and tight underwear. He was nervous, but ready. My OB knew of our plan, but kept asking, ‘Are you SURE?’”

‘Do you want to resuscitate?’ We needed to let him go. Sobbing, I told them, ‘No.’ It was time to stop fighting.’: Mom admits rainbow baby’s birth was ‘bittersweet’ after losing brother to ‘ultra-rare recessive disease’

“Furniture blocked off the hallway to give us privacy as we said goodbye. I watched my husband hold his son for the first and last time; I’d never seen him so broken. We held his hands and kissed his head, telling him we loved him, he didn’t need to fight any longer. When the doctor pronounced him, I asked her to carry him to the hospital morgue. I couldn’t do it myself. She swaddled him in a blanket, and left.”

‘I’ve been on maternity leave for exactly 6 weeks. I couldn’t imagine heading back to work today.’: Mom insists it’s just ‘not enough time’ to ‘connect with our babies’

“In 6 weeks that I’ve been home, I haven’t slept more than 4 hours at a time. My days revolve around changing diapers, nursing and pumping, and trying to figure out why my baby is crying. And while my motherly instincts are loud and clear, we are nowhere near a daily routine yet. I couldn’t imagine going back to work right now.”

‘My daughter arrived on 9/11. I woke up to see the first tower falling. I thought my family was watching an action movie.’: Mother gives birth on September 11th, ‘I was not emotionally OK’

“My OBGYN came in to check on me while not knowing where her own husband was at Ground Zero. I was in a hospital where they were calling in extra nurses and doctors for the casualties that should be arriving, but never came. Everyone knows where they were on 9/11, but I lived that day in a strange reality.”

‘Are you ready to hold your baby?’ She takes a deep breath, sits up as straight as she can. We’re very careful.’: Child loss photographer reminds grieving parents ‘this little life mattered’

“The room is still, almost silent. I meet their beautiful baby, I hold their baby, talk to their baby. All while taking a mental assessment of how much posing I can do. I ask who he got his beautiful wavy hair from, or his button nose or long toes. I talk, but not too much to overwhelm anyone. I work gently, efficiently. I capture every single detail. No one wants this. Their child existed. Their child was so loved, and so wanted.”

‘When can I see the baby?’ New moms hear over and over, before she’s even left the hospital.’: Mom reminds us to ‘nurture the mother’ post-delivery

“Before she’s had a chance to sleep. Before she’s showered off the blood. ‘When can I come see the baby?’ Her estrogen and progesterone levels are plummeting. She’s shaky. Hot, cold, sweaty, and weak. Her crotch is swollen, puffy. She has stretch marks, hair loss, acne, blurry vision, and dry eyes. When you walk into her house, look at HER. Admire the baby, sure. But don’t forget to nurture the mother.”

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