I like many other moms-to-be watched a lot of The Baby Story on TLC during my pregnancy. I watched show after show of moms giving birth to perfect little angels, and spending those first precious hours of their baby’s lives holding them safely in their arms with family and friends standing nearby. But my mommy story is nothing like what I watched on TV and dreamed of during the forty weeks of pregnancy. (Which even though we already knew that Emma might have some kidney issues, we were also told not to worry.)
My precious angel was brought swiftly, but calmly into this world in a bleak OR (not in a birthing room with soft music playing) on a Thursday night in April. Family was waiting anxiously in the hall to catch a first glance of the new arrival. Emma Rose was placed onto my chest for my first close up view of my perfect daughter, and then was walked out to the waiting family by her proud father. After, my surgery was completed and I was returned to my room to await the return of my daughter. A wait that was to never end, my little Rose was not coming down the hall to her waiting mom’s arms.
My little Rose was being moved to the NICU to receive critical care to get to the root of what was wrong. My husband and a doctor entered my hospital room to inform me that my daughter had some problems and that she could not stay at the hospital we were at, that she needed to be transported to the areas children’s hospital to receive specialized care and support. They informed me that she was breathing well, and holding her own, but that there were some concerns about her ability to go to the bathroom. They felt the hospital we were at was not the best place for her at this time. All I knew was that I wanted my daughter. I had waited so long to hold her and they were not bringing her to me. I could not comprehend that the doctors thought there was something wrong. It could not be true! I wanted my perfect TV ending, like the ones I had watched for so long.
I was instead wheeled in bed to the NICU to see her briefly as they waited for the ambulance to arrive to move her. I was not allowed to hold her or touch her. I just had to stare at my beautiful little one that till moments ago was safe in me. I felt that I had let her down. This was not how the story was supposed to go.
Vanderbilt arrived shortly after midnight to take my angel away from me. They brought her to me, a tiny bundle of beauty, to kiss goodbye. They wheeled her away, and took her across town. There I was left, a mom, alone, waiting……a different kind of mom then all the mom’s surrounding me that were at that moment caring for their new arrivals. My new arrival’s care was taken away from her mom and placed in the hands of doctors.
For two days my daughter and I were apart. I was healing my body, but not my aching heart at one hospital, while she was put through test after test to diagnose what was going on in her tiny body. My husband was by her side as were many other family members. But I was not there. I could not be there. I was without my Rose!
Luckily for us all, my family was able to quickly rally around us and care for us all. My sister, my dad, and Daniel's mom took turns staying a night with Emma at the NICU. My mom kept me company at my hospital, with my dad and Daniel coming back and forth to update us and visit me. My aunt Susie, Uncle Gary and Aunt Linda tried to keep me upbeat as well with visits. It is really all just a blur for me. My body was fighting to heal and my emotional state was a mess. I will leave out the tornado part of the story, since we were all safe, but yes you had an ambulance ride and a tornado within 24 hours of birth. Way to enter the world.
Emma's bed during the storm. Luckily she was already in the basement having test when they evacuated to the lower levels of the hospital.
My amazing OB group worked hard to get me back on my feet and after about 48 hours felt confident to allow me to go home, so I could visit with Emma for short times and then go home to rest. They felt I would not heal without seeing her. My mom was in charge of keeping my visits short and making me rest. I gingerly got into my parents car and was slowly driven across town to my daughter's bedside.
Seven years later, you are the light of our lives and my hero. Your brother adores you and hates when you are at school. You have fought harder and been through more then I care to remember or mention. I dont know what your sweet future will hold, but I know God holds it and is in control.
I love you my sweet Rose to the moon and back,