This year for Mother’s Day, I decided to have a few guest posts from some mothers in my life. First up is my sweet friend, Shawna, from one of my new favorite blogs, Tiny Telecast. I asked if she would write the story of her son, Lyric’s birth. Here it is! Her quite traumatic entrance into motherhood:
A little over 5 years ago as I was 6 months pregnant with my first little one, I had just learned I was having a little boy and was finally starting to feel the little wiggles, kicks, and rolls every expecting mother croons over. My entire pregnancy was relatively normal, if anything I felt lucky most days. I was hardly sick in the beginning and he was right on track at every check up. I was thoroughly enjoying being pregnant.
It was the beginning of February, I was living in New York City and the lights were twinkling, the windows were foggy and I was craving a healthy slice of cheesecake. I walked through the upper west side, enjoying my stroll I had dinner at a little Greek diner, then swung by to grab Éclair (I changed my mind). When I got back to my place I was exhausted. Chalking it up to a wintertime walk, I laid down my stomach was so tight. I remember thinking he must be stretching or maybe I just walked to far to quickly. It is after all New York, home of the speed walkers. As most first time moms would do, I called my mom. After 30 seconds of explanations she was urging me to go to an Emergency Room! Not the words you want to hear. I thought it was nothing, they would say just go home and rest. So I jump in a cab and head to St. Lukes on 110th st. I had no idea what I was in for.
A resident doctor began asking me what I was doing that evening, when this started, how would I rate my pain level. 5 minutes later doctors two and three came in, followed by 4-5 nurses. I was beginning to freak out. I am usually quite calm and will politely wait for them to tell me what is going on, but not this time. The doctor said “You are dilated to a 2”. I was only 24 weeks pregnant. I was promptly put into an ambulance and hysterically transported to Roosevelt on 59th st.
I spent two weeks battling contractions, slowly dilating, and making phone calls. I didn’t know what to expect, I was unprepared, terrified of the possibilities and trying to remain positive. They tried everything that they could to stop contractions and keep me pregnant. I spent 3 days tilted backwards with no food or water. (There was a reason for that, it was not torture, although it felt that way.) I was given medicine, strict bed rest, unable to get up for anything. Day after day, prayer after prayer, things remained the same.
February 15th, 8am, I started having hard contractions, one on top of the other. Hours went by with no medications. 3pm an epidural is ordered. The doctor said they were not ready for me to have the baby, that they were giving me an epidural as a precaution. 8pm, 12 hours of hard labor, the contractions were unable to be controlled by medications, but I was dilating to slow to begin the process of pushing. Finally, a nurse who had been with me all day said to the doctor, “You have to call this, she is going to have this baby.” So they began prepping me in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit for a new baby. I was only 26 weeks.
February 16th 1:58am my son Lyric was born. I told myself I know the survival rates are low, but if I just hear him, even if its just one cry, I just know he will be ok. I have no idea where that came from but I firmly believed it. When lyric was born all I could hear were loud beeps, doctors yelling, nurses coaching me, then the tiniest cry I have ever heard, it sounded like a kitten. Nothing could possibly explain what I felt when I heard that sound. It rings in my ears still to this day. I couldn’t see him as he was rushed away, and I was moved to a different room.
The next 48 hours were the most difficult moments of my life. I waited on my hospital bed for a doctor, a nurse, anyone to tell me what was happening with my son. Two of the Neonatal Surgeons and one of the specialists came to my room. They said, “I’m sorry to say this, but the chances of survival are very low. We are doing everything we can.” Then they left and you can imagine, my hostility and fear. I was still numb from the waste down and he was still unable to be seen. The next morning, a nurse took me to see him. He was in an open incubator. He could fit in the palm of my hand. The nurse said he weighed 1 pound 12 ounces. I began crying uncontrollably. The nurses kindly handed me a box of Kleenex and began answering all of my questions.
The 2 days that followed were unstable, unpredictable and full of tears. I was then released from the hospital, with out my baby. With nothing more than the things I came with and a wristband that matched the one around lyrics ankle. That first night home, I received a phone call requesting my permission for a blood transfusion. Lyric had been losing blood in the procedures he was undergoing.
Everyday I went to the hospital and most nights I slept there. I would watch as more premature babies came in, their parents several hours later would join them. The mother would cry, the nurse would hand her a box of Kleenex, then answer every question she had. The details that occurred in that NICU were much like a million tiny miracles being displayed as challenges. I remember people would say to me “That must be so hard for you” and I was always so surprised that, it never crossed my mind that it could be hard on me. I was just so pleased that he was still fighting.
Fourteen weeks later after the largest battle of our lives, Lyric was released from the hospital weighing 5 pounds and 6 ounces. Since that day he has grown into an amazing 5 year old and an incredible big brother. It is nearly Mothers Day again, and if there is one thing my son taught me, it is that a lot can be said about being a mother, but there is no time to talk about it so just enjoy it.
Tiny Telecast is full of great beauty tips, fun DIYs, and beautiful pictures! Go say hello to Shawna on Tiny Telecast and tell her Happy Mother’s Day!