November is Prematurity Awareness Month. We are privileged that a parent, Savithri B., was willing to write her experience as a mom to a premature child. She will be sharing her story in two parts: 1) being her story and 2) sharing some of her learnings and tips for parents who might face a similar experience.  

 

I am a mother of a now 5 year old boy. In honor of The Yearling House’s efforts to bring focus on preterm births and its unique needs, I wish to share my story here. Because it is so long, I have decided to split it into 2 parts. Part one is my personal journey. Part two are things I have learnt along the way and I wish I had known earlier. Thank you for listening.

 

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PART 1- My baby was born at 26 weeks 2 days weighing 1.01kg. I was feeling discomfort and slight pain in my leg one evening. My gynecologist examined, said it all looks good and sent me home. I woke up early next morning around 4.30am with contractions. Even though we thought they would be braxton hicks, we went to the hospital around 5.15am. I was told that I was dilated more than 3 cms and could deliver my baby. He was born at 8.30am. I had just given birth to my beautiful baby and yet because he was preterm, he was whisked away to the neonatal care facility of the same hospital BUT 2 streets away!! My husband recollects that slow ambulance drive,it is till date  the most arduous drive he has ever had- the two hospitals were only 5mins away.  I missed being with my child for the first 2 days of his life.  I was a mother and yet felt bereft.

 

 

When I finally got to meet him, he was just the size of a mouse , all wrinkly, puny and so vulnerable. The first 3 months of my baby’s life, I was busy making him thrive. I was  living, literally in the corridor of NICU. I had been so afraid to touch him, that it took me a week to muster the courage.  It was such a strange feeling, especially when my husband’s ring would go all the way up my son’s thigh. We did a lot of skin to skin care and it helped me feel less stressful. Every visit, I interacted with the nurses as they would be monitoring my baby in my absence. I used to asked a lot of questions related to his daily health and for general information as well.

 


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We stayed in the NICU for 45 days. When we came home, nobody except me, my mom and my husband would get into the bedroom. We were terribly conscious of dust and hygiene. We would regularly sanitize our hands, wash the clothes and beddings every day. There were absolutely no visitors until my pediatrician was okay.  I used to check for my son’s breathing once every 30mins, and some said I was paranoid, but it’s my motherly instinct to make sure my 850g baby is breathing. During the period of 4-6 months actual age, I started seeing that my baby was blinking and starting to drink more milk, We used to feed my son in a syringe; he wasn’t ready to start sucking just yet. As months passed between regular check ups for ROP, pediatrician visits etc, he blossomed into a happy baby, feeding well and babbling more. At around 6 months, we noticed he was sleeping in  rather unusual position with highly arched back. So we had a talk with our pediatrician and neurologist and we found out that my son has Cerebral Palsy. He was 7 months adjusted at that time. We immediately started early intervention with him, it has helped him immensely. The sooner you acknowledge that your child needs help, the better it is for your child’s development. Acceptance is the key.

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 Please watch out for Part 2 of Savithri’s story and learnings. 
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All comments (4)
  • Nidhi Chauhan
    November 22, 2016 at 8:54 am

    Hi Savitri...i can understand yoyr feeling very much as i lived the same situation for my daughter who eas born in 7th month with 1.7kg..soon […] Read MoreHi Savitri...i can understand yoyr feeling very much as i lived the same situation for my daughter who eas born in 7th month with 1.7kg..soon after two days of her birth she caught septisemia...n her haemoglobin was 2 .. doctors refuted for her chances of survival....i stayed outside NICU for 25 days ..it was horrible time... now she has turned 1.5 yrs n touchwood she is healthy...hatsoff to you as its really difficult to undergo such phase..n coming out with a win.... Read Less

    Reply
  • Shruti shah
    November 22, 2016 at 9:12 am

    Though I would never understand what you have been through in totality but yes I can understand the fear of holding your baby after 2days. […] Read MoreThough I would never understand what you have been through in totality but yes I can understand the fear of holding your baby after 2days. I met mine for 30mins on day 2 &then after 5 days... Cause he was shifted to a bigger hospital 1 hour away from me. pumping with loads of prayer was the only way to reach my bub.. husband being the link between both of us. He used to regularly talk to me & our son in return.. I still can't believe.. baby had to go through all this.. but touchwood our babies are growing good.. happy & so are we.. Read Less

    Reply
  • Shanthi Chandrasekaran
    November 22, 2016 at 9:32 am

    Savi and Selva!! Kudos to you guys!! You are a great example of acceptance, positivity and courage!! May God bless you all!!

    Reply
    • Venkat
      @Shanthi Chandrasekaran
      November 23, 2016 at 6:21 am

      Great Job, focussed courage to meet any situation with the blessings of the Almighty

      Reply

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