Friday, November 16, 2012

Worth The Wait

 When parents find out they are expecting a new baby, the wait begins. The days pass slowly at first as they dream about their new son or daughter and how their lives will change. Towards the end, there is an eagerness for baby to hurry up and be born. For a preemie parent, things are a little different.

As a preemie parent we did lots of waiting, too. Although not the kind of waiting with hopeful anticipation. Instead of waiting and praying for labor to come and have it be time to go to the hospital to have a baby, we waited and prayed that our babies would stay in just one more day, one more week, and maybe even one more month. Instead of hope for the future, we faced fear over frightening statistics of babies born early. While some worried that their babies would be too big to fit in their newborn clothes, we worried whether our babies would be big enough to take on the challenges of extreme prematurity.
As NICU parents, we spent hours and hours sitting by our little ones sides. Waiting for change. Waiting for progress. Those first days were spent staring at the clock on the wall, watching the minutes pass and praying that for that moment, nothing would go wrong. I kept my cell phone with me constantly when I was at the hospital, always turned to the highest volume. I waited for my phone to ring, praying it wouldn't as it nearly always meant bad news. We waited to see our baby without tubes, wires, and tape. We waited days and sometimes weeks for that first chance to hold our son. While other new parents waited for the next feeding or diaper change, we waited for the next blood draw, procedure, or diagnosis.

{Tiny footprints}

{Holding Cohen for the first time at 11 days old}

The days eventually stretched into months and the waiting continued. Waiting to be able to feed our baby a bottle. Waiting to be able to put clothes on him. Waiting to hear what the next problem was going to be. Waiting for the day he would be able to come out of the isolette. Eventually though, the fearful waiting turned into joyful waiting. There was a light at the end of the long, long tunnel. We had waited 130 days to hear the okay to take Cohen home.

{Going home}

The waiting was hard, and painful at times, but in the end it was so worth it. Maybe now, thanks to all that waiting, we have a little more understanding, faith, and appreciation for the little things. Now, we are able to look back and see all that we have been through and look forward with anticipation as to what the future will hold for our little miracle boy.


  1. Beautiful! Whenever I look back at our tiny footprints, it is so incredible. The scrapbook stickers of baby footprints were bigger than the actual footprints. Your handsome little man is looking so grown up now.

  2. The 1 in 8 pic above - do you ever wonder what the statistics are for 24 weekers? I have and can't find it anywhere. 1 in how many babies are born at 24 weeks. I wish I knew.

    1. I was trying to find more specific statistics on preemies by week last week, but I never really found any good information. There were some interesting things on this site. It seems like the research would be out there by now!