November 17 is dedicated to raising awareness of the crisis of premature birth with the March of Dimes. November is Prematurity Awareness Month.
As all of you know, prematurity has touched our lives. Ariana was born 5 weeks too early after I developed severe preeclampsia. I was so naive and thought everything would be perfect. Unexpectedly thrust into a world where I didn't understand what was happening was so overwhelming and frightening. A's & B's, NG tubes, oxygen supplementation, etc. When one becomes pregnant, she dreams of the perfect baby and all it's wrappings, the crib, the clothes, what color to paint the nursery. Unless you've been touched by prematurity or other complications, one doesn't wonder if you'll bring home a live baby or one who needs to be resucitated at birth. Prematurity is the #1 killer of newborns and can lead to lifelong disabilities. These preemies face challenges that no parent dreams of when that plus sign shows up on the HPT.
There are too many babies who don't make it to take that first breath, that have to struggle to breath or to learn how to eat, crawl, or walk. Lifelong effects of prematurity such as cerebal palsy.
So for all the preemies out there, please keep them in your thoughts and do what you can to help stop prematurity by raising funds & awareness. If you are pregnant or will become pregnant, YOU are the best advocate for yourself & your child.
While I wish that our experience didn't happen at times, I am also grateful for it. It has taught me to appreciate my children and has allowed me to meet & become friends with some of the most remarkable individuals.