Monday, November 1, 2010

It's November...

...and that means it is Prematurity Awareness Month!
Obviously this is a cause that is now very near and dear to me. So bring on the prematurity related posts and Facebook status updates, facts, memories, and purple things. (Purple is the official color for prematurity because of the March of Dimes.)
Here are a few starter facts:
  • 1 in 8 babies are born premature in the US (that is approximately 543,000)
  • The rate of premature birth has risen 30% since 1981.
  • Almost 40% of premature births do not have a known cause.
  • The number one known cause is preeclampsia.
I had no idea the numbers were that high until my baby became one of them. I don't really remember what exactly my thoughts were about preematurity before I found myself laying in the hospital knowing I was now part of it. I do remember reading in one of those books that gives you little tidbits about your babies development each day of your pregnancy on the day when it said that if the baby was born it would most likely survive, and thinking something along the lines of "well, that's a relief to know, but I think I will make it to the end" along with that little bit of "what if?" cropping in. I soon learned...
There are two random things that popped into my head concerning "awareness" as a mom of a preemie. One is that yes, preemies catch up and many of them thrive and you would never guess how they started, but the affects on the parents stay. The other is that even when a mom does everything right, that is no guarantee that her baby will not be born premature. I loved being pregnant; I did things "right" within my power; I felt great up until I landed in the hospital. I think that is the main reason prematurity wasn't so much on my radar. When someone says "premature" I think often our minds jump to smoking or drug abuse or some cause like that. But 40% don't have a known cause. And although preeclampsia is the #1 known cause, IT doesn't have a known cause.
So I want to know what are YOUR questions about prematurity? Or thoughts. Or specific questions about Noah's story. Somebody leave me a comment about something! :)


  1. But less than one percent of all babies is born before 28 weeks, making Noah a little more miraculous. :)

    I can honestly say that it hurts to see March of Dimes stuff that has a little check list of things to do that will decrease your chance of delivering prematurely. I did EVERY SINGLE THING right, and I still feel at times like I "failed" by not delivering a "healthy" baby. Do you ever feel that way? It would be nice to know that I'm not alone.

  2. Yes I do! I'm guessing most moms of preemies in situations like ours do. You are not alone! And since there are no real answers as to why I developed preeclampsia so severely I sometimes play the "what if I had done this, or hadn't done that" game too. Oh the joys of being a woman...
    That is a big reason why the whole "prematurity awareness" thing appeals to me so much. It can happen to any mom, even those who take good care of themselves. And then it changes your life. But I love my life and my baby!
    We didn't fail. But we have been through a lot that will always be a part of us. And so here we are, blogging about and loving two of the sweetest little miracles ever, prematurity and all. :)

  3. Hi There!
    My son was born at 28 weeks.
    Hope you will come read some about him.
    What complications/special needs does he have now?

  4. Love your posts and your continuing story about your handsome little man. The NICU experience is stressful and scary. Having people like you blog honestly about the ups and downs will help so many people. Thank you, thank you for joining the Fight fro Preemies.