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Ethan’s Story

Our son Ethan was born at 4:40pm on December 29, 2010 — two months before his due date, February 26. Read the probably too detailed account of this day here. He was 3 pounds 8 ounces and 18 inches long. It was the wrong date, year, time, weight, length…everything.

It turns out, though, that it was all exactly RIGHT for Ethan. And I wouldn’t change one single thing.

Yes, we spent 6.5 weeks in the NICU at St. Louis Children’s Hospital.
Yes, I cried more in those weeks then I had in my lifetime.
Yes, we lived in a constant state of fear/panic/stress for every day our baby was not home.

But through all of the craziness, we learned so much about life, love, and our perfect little man. We learned about the resiliency of babies and their strong will to survive even in the toughest conditions. We also learned that babies are born prematurely ALL. THE. TIME. Until Ethan came along, we had never heard a single preemie story. Not one. Then suddenly, we were not only surrounded by preemies in the NICU, but our friends and family had multitudes of stories to tell us about early babies. Every one of those stories comforted us in ways we couldn’t even begin to describe. Finally, we learned that while serious and scary, our situation was far from the worst — we were so very very lucky.

Now, looking back at the pictures from Ethan’s first few days, I can’t believe he was ever so small. It is absolutely terrifying to see the cords, wires, and tubes coming off of his tiny body. At the time, those things were invisible to us…they were just part of our every day life, along with the constant bells and alarms of the NICU. All we saw was our precious little peanut growing with each passing minute.

The doctors and nurses promised we would smile about our hospital experience someday. They swore up and down that, even though it felt like it would never happen, Ethan would indeed get home safely before we knew it. And sure enough, on that sunny day in February, the doctors released us and the nurses walked us to the door. And we just drove away. It was the strangest and best feeling in the world.

It sometimes feels like it was all a dream. Like we just imagined the first two months of Ethan’s life. To look at him now, you’d never know there had ever been a day of unrest over his health. Then I’ll take him to the pediatrician and terms like ‘adjusted age’ and ‘delayed development’ will pop up and it all comes rushing back like a giant wave. We rarely worry about these things  though…Ethan will do what he needs to do in his own time.

This blog started as a fun little project for infrequent pregnancy updates, but became my ‘journal’, my connection to our family and friends so they could follow Ethan’s progress. I don’t know how I would have survived without it. I guess I would have been glued to my phone!

Thanks for joining us. Hope you follow us in our journey!

 

7 Responses leave one →
  1. January 28, 2012

    He’s a darling little peanut!

  2. August 26, 2012

    Life is such a wonder, a miracle.
    Wish you and Ethan loads of wonderful days together.

  3. September 11, 2012

    Our baby was born at 27 weeks, and it’s so helpful to read the experiences of other NICU families, so thanks for sharing. We’ve kept a website of little Nora’s experience, which I hope helps others…

    • Becky permalink*
      September 11, 2012

      Congratulations on your baby girl! I’m so sorry to hear she will be spending some time in the NICU but I promise you will look back on this time as just one more thing that makes little Nora so special! I’ll be visiting your blog to see all the cuteness!! So glad our story was helpful…that’s why I love sharing it.

  4. October 15, 2013

    I’ve just spent several hours on your site… first, I love it. Second, I think we’re long lost relatives or something. Too many similarities not to be! Third, our little love bug was born almost exactly 2 years after your peanut. December 28, 2012, 6 weeks early at 3lbs 11oz. These overly-anxious little guys sure do give their mommies a run for their money! It is so incredibly encouraging to see “our life” 2 years from now. Your boy is absolutely darling. Count me as a new peanut follower :)
    Brooke recently posted..October 15, 2013 at 05:11PMMy Profile

    • Becky permalink*
      October 16, 2013

      Thank you Brooke! I love meeting other preemie moms through the blog! So glad your little guy is ok, I popped over to your site to check him out, adorable. The NICU is a story I’m sure our kids will be REALLY sick of hearing about sometime in the near future. :)

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