I've been thinking about this post for a while now. I've thought about the various angles to write from. I've thought about all the facts about premature births that I should help spread. I've thought about this post a lot...
Today I am wearing purple. I'm honoring my little bees and their fight for life. I'm remembering babies that were born too soon that didn't win the fight. When I think about that possibility for my bees, a knot instantly forms in my stomach. I wonder why were my bees able to be saved, but other babies aren't. How did Honey Bee and I get so lucky?
Being a parent is not easy. There are sleepless nights, long days, cries that won't stop. Being a mom to twins means double the sleepless nights, long days and crying. Being a parent to multiples is not easy. But, when you add the "preemie" label to the mix....sometimes it can feel dang near impossible. On top of the sleepless nights, long days, and crying, you have countless doctors' appointments, you have winter hibernation, you have a newborn MUCH longer than intended.
It IS hard, but it is SO worth it. I get to celebrate each milestone with each of my bees. I get to experience "baby's first (insert something silly here) twice in a short amount of time. I get double the toothless grins. I get double the belly laughs. I get double the snuggles.
My bees have come a long way since their early arrival. I marvel at the strides that they have made and often find myself asking "what happened to my 5 pound baby I brought home?". I find myself dreaming about their future. What will they be when they grow up? Will they play sports? Will they be into the arts? Will they be in the band? Will they be nerds? What if one is a "cool kid" and the other is a nerd? Will they get married? Will I be a grandmother someday? (Sidenote - if yes, please remind me how insane my mother and mother in law can be at times. grandparent = a little insane)
As I think of all these things, I find myself overwhelmed with feelings of thanks. Thanks to my OB who sent me to the MFM "just to be on the safe side". Thankful for the MFM who I met and admitted me to the hospital within 30 minutes. Thankful to my nurse in L&D, Miss Myra. I don't even know her last name, but she was an angel on the day of my admission. Thankful to my college roommate, Ashley, who is a Nurse Practitioner at the NICU where the bees were born. Thankful to the MFM that safely delivered my bees. And thanks that I cannot begin to describe to the neonatologists that worked feverishly on my bees after their birth, and continued to work for them day in and day out. Another group that I will forever be thankful for are the nurses in the NICU. They are the ones that know your baby, sometimes better than you. They are the ones that know you by name. I was never "Mrs. Bee" to them, rather I was "Bridgit". They were the ones that took care of my bees when I couldn't. They cared for my bees when I wasn't able to be at the hospital. They were most often the ones the shared the big news - Chunky Bee is on room air, Itty Bitty Bee has been moved to CPAP from the vent, Chunky took his whole bottle for me, Itty Bitty had a clear brain scan....the list goes on and on.
Today I am thankful. Although it is not the life I would have chosen, I can't imagine it any other way.