parenthood

‘I woke up in a hospital bed. There was a $100 bill on the bedside table with a note that said, ‘GO HOME.’ My miscarriage left me almost dead.’: Woman quits alcohol and drugs ‘cold turkey’ after addict husband’s death

“I had never smoked a cigarette, never drank a beer, never had a real boyfriend. I was a naïve, 17-year-old virgin. I went to a party with my friends. I paid the guy at the door $5 dollars. ‘The punch is in the kitchen, don’t lose your cup.’ I was found on steps, lying in a pool of vomit. I fell off the Dean’s List. Then I met the man I would marry. I had a front-row seat to the most terrifying horror show imaginable. I was penniless, homeless, trickin’ on Main South for a 40 piece.”

‘When are you going to try again?’ I was still unable to wipe after going to the bathroom. My baby was being reduced to nothing but a ‘try.’: Couple births second daughter one year after first is stillborn, ‘I already WAS a mother’

“As my belly grew, I began being asked the ‘Is this your first?’ question by anyone, from the cashier at Target to the waitress while out for dinner. My answer was, ‘No, this is my second. My first child died.’ You could tell by the uncomfortable look on their faces that my response was always unexpected, met with pity and also toxic positivity. I already WAS a mother.”

‘It’s okay, baby, you can go.’ With tear-filled eyes, we held our little boy’s body as his soul went peacefully to Heaven to join his big brother.’: Parents lose newborn to Alveolar Capillary Dysplasia

“’Is it ok if I nurse him?’ ‘No, I am sorry. He’s not breathing well enough.’ He kept jumping the fence from better to worse, and back again. It was excruciating. We were assured Barrett was not in any pain. ‘What would you do if this was your son?’ We were crying uncontrollably. I asked the doctor to stop doing chest compressions. I’ll always remember Katy hand-delivering Barrett by pulling him out herself. The strongest woman I know gave birth to the strongest boy who ever lived.”

‘A portion of her chromosome is missing.’ We had to prick her on the foot to get her conscious again.’: Mom of special needs twins, one with a chromosomal deficit, one autistic, says ‘I never imagined my journey as a mom would look this way’

“A few weeks later, we received the results. ‘Julius has a diagnosis of autism.’ I went from raising one special needs child to two. I learned quickly I would not be able to have typical ‘mom’ conversations with other new moms. I realized most things parents took for granted were not part of my journey.”

‘How could this happen?!’ I found myself unexpectedly pregnant at 40. Then the doctor said, ‘Syndrome.’ I held back tears.’: Mom births baby with down syndrome, ‘The minute I saw her sweet little head red hair, I fell in love’

“My phone rang while I was asleep. It was my doctor on the other end. ‘Your testing came back positive for Trisomy 21. I’m sorry.’ I started ugly crying. ‘How on Earth could this happen to me?!’ At 36 weeks pregnant, I noticed the baby hadn’t been moving. I did all the things I knew I needed to do. I ate, drank, lay down on my side. Still, I didn’t feel anything. I called the nurse. ‘Come in right away.’ I drove so fast. She hooked me up to monitors. I knew immediately my baby was in trouble. She was in distress.”

‘No, no, no.’ I was emptying the pockets in his jeans to wash them. I felt something small, cold. I knew what it was immediately. ‘How could he?’: Single mom learns of partner’s drug addiction while pregnant, ‘I begged him to love our baby’

“He began disappearing for days. He had no care at all about my pregnancy. I knew something was going on. Little did I know, I’d get the shock of my life. I was excited he agreed to come home for dinner. As I was emptying the pockets in his jeans for laundry, I knew what it was immediately. A glass container used to store drugs. ‘How could he?’ I thought. I sat there crying, holding so tightly to my baby bump, telling her not to worry, I would fix her dad before she got here.”

‘I was doing her laundry FOR her. She was watching me fold her thong underwear. She just stood there holding the baby! This is ridiculous.’: Mom urges others to remember helping means doing so with ‘no strings attached’

“I was sitting at a coffee shop and overheard (I was eavesdropping) two women behind me. One was complaining about her daughter-in-law who’d just given birth to her grandchild. ‘I offered to help, but this ridiculous!’ she said. Here’s the thing. I’ve learned if we really want to help, we just show up. We ring their doorbell and start unloading their dishwasher or play with their kid while they take a shower. We shove a lasagna in the oven so they don’t have to think about dinner.”

‘I’m 30 years old, I’ve never had a child, and the first thing they say is, ‘We need to remove something from your body.’ It was completely crazy.’: Woman diagnosed with PCOS, endometriosis determined to conceive through IVF, ‘He gave us back the hope we had lost’

“We started noticing I was in a lot of pain during intercourse. One night, I was in so much pain I couldn’t bear it. I was taken to the ER. They told me I had an ovarian cyst rupture. I had no idea what that meant. They gave me some pain pills and told me to ‘rest.’ I went on like nothing was wrong. My periods were not coming on time. I’d miss an entire month or two. I was dealing with all these emotions while trying to maintain hope. Time was flying by, and I still didn’t have a baby.”

‘I knew something was wrong just by looking at him. ‘It’s not a blood clot. You have a 5-inch mass in between your heart and your lungs.’: Woman diagnosed with Hodgkins Lymphoma fights to live for her daughter, ‘I’m too young to die. I have a 3-year-old daughter who needs her mom.’

“My first symptom hit like a ton of bricks. I felt heaviness in my chest I couldn’t explain. We had to run to catch our connecting flight. This is the exact moment I knew. I could not run. I WANTED to, but my body wouldn’t let me. I ate well and exercised often, so I knew something was very, very wrong. My friends said it sounded like I was having an anxiety attack. ‘I’m only 32 years old. How can this happen?’ Our lives changed forever.”

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