Dear Baby

Dear Baby,

I’m sorry I didn’t address you by name.  To tell the truth, I’m not even sure you have a name yet.  My name is Ginny, and I’m a friend of your mom’s.  And because I’m old, and old people like to tell stories, I’m going to tell you how we got here.

We met when we were 5, your Mom & I.  She moved to the farm a couple of miles up the road.  My grandma took me over to visit the new girl.  We had ice cream cones.  We stuck our front teeth right into the ice cream.  Then we screamed and giggled, because it was painful and stupid and silly and then we were friends.

We went to school together for 12 years.  Rode the same bus every day.  Your mom played sports.  All of them.  I was smart.  Your mom liked country music and doing whatever boys did for fun.  I liked rock’n’roll, and reading quietly.  Your mom, even as a little kid, would always choose to beg for forgiveness rather than ask permission.  She was fun.  And she was exactly what I needed, to balance my serious self out.

We didn’t always get along.  The quiet loner and the popular jock can only hang out so much, especially within the constraints of junior high.  But we always managed to come back together.  The first time your mom ever got drunk, was with me.  She came to my house, to throw up and sleep it off and swear never to do it again.  (She lied.)  We confided in each other the crazy and stupid things we did with boys.  We were going to be friends forever.

And then we weren’t.  Grown up life took us in different directions, geographically, emotionally.

We both got married when we were 23.  Something about that common ground made us seek each other out, catch up.  Your mom only stayed in that marriage for a year.  I waited until he was gone before I told her he was a waste of space.  She never complained, not one damn “woe is me”.  She worked 2 jobs to pay for the divorce, never took a dime from your grandma and grandpa. 

She watched me bring home my first baby.  I think it scared her.   All that crying and carrying on.  (Me, not the baby.)

Then she met your dad.  Great guy.  And with him, babies didn’t seem scary at all.

They had your sister 2 years ago.  Cool kid. 

And then there was you. 

 

You’re in a bit of a hurry.  You started pushing your way out too early.  At 22 weeks, your mom got scared into bedrest.  And tonight, you decided you couldn’t wait anymore.

 

You’ve only been developing for 27 weeks.

 

I’m hoping that’s enough.  I’m hoping you’re among the 80% of babies who survive birth at 27 weeks.

 

Hell, if I’m hoping, I’m gonna shoot for the moon, hope that in 2 years, you’re a normal kid, fat and sassy, and no one ever knows there was anything different about your birth.

Really, all I’m hoping for is that in the morning, I’ll get to hug you, and see your mom smile.

 

Until then,

Ginny

 

 

 

 

 

UPDATE:  Baby Elise came into the world, yelling at the top of her lungs, at 4:19 this morning.  Her mom was in labor for 10 hours before they performed a C-section.  The baby weighed 2 pounds, 14 ounces (which is really, really good for 27 weeks).  She’ll be in the hospital till March, which was when she was due to make her entrance into the world.  Her mom is thrilled and still a little nervous and grateful and completely and utterly exhausted.

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19 responses to “Dear Baby

  1. This is a sweet letter – I hope that the baby gets to read it as a teenager, and rolls his/her eyes at the old people telling stories again.

  2. Lord….

    The odds are good.

    Best of luck and best wishes to baby & mum.

  3. All the best to your friend and the new little one. If this baby is half as badass as Mom….

  4. 4 years ago, my good friends had their daughter at 25 weeks. I remember that fear for them, and feeling so helpless being so far away. She has thrived (and now we get her hand-me-down clothes for my daughter). I hope your friend’s baby and family have a similar good story.

  5. I have spent my morning slogging through the 157 million unread posts in my Reader. I worked my way up from the bottom of the list, back to the top where I have my ten favorite blogs. Your blog is there. And this is why.

    156,999,999 posts, and the last one is the only one that made me cry.

    Give your friend and that new precious one a hug from me, k?

  6. I’ve been there. I’ll be keeping mom and baby in my prayers.

  7. Ok bitch, now you made me cry, god payback sucks. That fat and sassy future bebe is in my thoughts too, so are mom and dad because I’m going to bet that the waiting game is hellish and something one can’t even begin to fathom unless you’ve been there.

  8. go read Silverstar’s post about the premmie baby she delivered one christmas

    http://silverstar98121.wordpress.com/2008/12/10/the-preemie/

  9. 36 years ago – a sweet baby was born. She came way to early. 3 months, 12 weeks early. She only spent 28 weeks inside the safe confines of her mother’s womb. 36 years ago she spent over a month in the hospital. Her lungs by a miracle of God were strong, but she couldn’t maintain a consistent body temperature. Two nurses and a doctor that were unsure if this tiny 2 lb 10oz bundle would survive, arranged for this baby’s older brother and sister to come up to the hospital nursery to meet their little, little sister.

    36 years later – this sweet little baby is a strong, independent, vivacious woman. This woman is my sister and my closest confidant next to my husband. I can’t imagine life without her!

    Miracles do happen – and I’m hoping and praying the same miracle for your friend and her sweet little precious one!

  10. I was getting ready to post Silverstar’s link but Nursemyra beat me to it.

    Sending good thoughts that way Ginny, let us know how this baby progresses.

    Beautiful post.

  11. Lis: I wish nothing more than to be dismissed by a surly teenager. Thank you.

    Xbox: So far, so good. Oh, the thrill ride that is parenthood! (Thanks for the good thoughts.)

    Beej: That’s exactly what got this baby out, and what will sustain her. Thanks.

    Ann Z.: I spent all night, obsessively looking up stories with good outcomes (like yours). Thanks, I hope so too.

    tysdaddy: Thanks so much 🙂

    derfina: Thank you.

    formerlyfun: Let’s call a truce, only make each other laugh, or shrug our shoulders and go “That broad is WEIRD!!”. Yeah, I can’t imagine what it’s like. But I can. And that’s what scares me.

    nursemyra: That was an awesome post! Thanks for directing me there.

    arynsmom: Thanks so much for sharing your story. Like I said above, I was seeking out happy endings, and will keep on doing so.

    Kitty: Thanks. I will.

  12. In a world where there is way more writing than thinking please keep writing, as your observations are reliably funny, thoughtful, original and worthwhile. Perfect for us shut-ins and ne’er-do-wells.

    Stan Tohome

  13. If she came out screaming, she will probably be that surly teen-ager in a few years. My bet is that she leaves the hospital sooner than March. My bet is end of January. It’s the ones that come out like limp dishrags that are the ones that are hard to keep alive and have the most sequlae. Give your friend some virtual hugs from me.

  14. One of my dearest friends has two kids, both of which were seriously early. Now with a third on the way she has to be ready for it again. But her kids are fine and awesome! I wave her good karma in your friends general direction 🙂

  15. Mark: Thanks 🙂

    Silverstar: She’s breathing on her own already, so yes, I think she will be a little ahead of schedule. Thanks for the good wishes.

    Em: Thanks so much.

  16. Welcome Elise! It’s a little drafty out here, but not all bad.

  17. I’ll pass it along, gnome. She’s already breathing on her own.

  18. Awh ~ funny and truely heart touching. Is heart touching even a phrase? Anyhoooo.
    Odds are very good. My husband’s cousin had twins ~ both VERY premature and tiny. The girl was very underdeveloped and they are both adorable screaming 3 (or perhaps 4) year olds now. (I’m bad with time)
    Thinking and praying for your friend and her family.
    And I LOVE your blog ~ just started reading today!!!

  19. Welcome, lebaneseblonde. Thanks very much; she’s doing quite well 🙂

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