I am strong because in April of 2012, I gave birth to a precious baby girl named Evelyn, prematurely at 24 weeks due to incompetent cervix, premature labor, and infection.
I am strong because I endured a frightening classical c-section 4 hours after entering the hospital with a smile on my face, knowing it was the best chance my baby had to survive.
I am strong because I was told I will never have a future vaginal birth due to my vertical incision, and I would never be allowed to go into labor for fear of rupturing my uterus.
I am strong because I spent every single night in the NICU watching my tiny 1 pound 5 ounce, 11.75 inch long daughter through a plastic window, unable to hold her.
I am strong because I pumped breast milk for her every 3 hours.
I am strong because at 5 weeks and 3 days old my little girl developed an infection called NEC, and within hours of its discovery, it took her life.
I am strong because I held her for the first and only time as she was passing away.
I am strong because throughout the most horrifying time of my life I was able to plan a beautiful funeral for my baby, something no mother should ever have to do.
I am strong because 4 weeks after she died, I donated all of my pumped breast milk, roughly 600 ounces, to a milk bank to help babies like her.
I am strong because 1 year and 9 months later I discovered that I was again pregnant, I was elated.
I am strong because I was considered high risk and went to many, many extra appointments.
I am strong because at 13 weeks and 5 days I went into the hospital to have a preventative cerclage placed in the hopes of getting me to full term.
I am strong because I was placed on modified bed rest for over a month, but I took it upon myself to continue bed rest as much as I could throughout the entire pregnancy.
I am strong because I was given weekly progesterone shots.
I am strong because despite the constant fear of losing another baby I decorated a beautiful nursery for our second daughter.
I am strong because at 6 months I was diagnosed with gestational diabetes.
I am strong because I gave up all of my favorite foods, took medication, and drew blood up to 5 times a day to control it.
I am strong because I held my breath during more than 21 ultrasounds, expecting to hear the worst each time.
I am strong because at 37 weeks to the day, 3 days after my cerclage was removed, I began having contractions that eventually were 2-4 minutes apart.
I am strong because I finally realized they were not Braxton Hicks and had my husband drive me to the hospital.
I am strong because I was given 4 pills of Procardia to help relax my uterus, but the contractions continued to get more intense.
I am strong because after 3 or so hours of contracting in the hospital I was told I would be having my cesarean that night.
I am strong because at 8:08pm, just one minute later than my first daughter’s birth, my second beautiful girl, Emily, came screaming into the world at 6 pounds 5 ounces and 19 inches long.
I am strong because during her birth my doctor discovered that my previous incision scar was thinning, and had I not gotten to the hospital when I did it would have eventually ruptured, and endangered both of our lives.
I am strong because I heard over the curtain the doctors exclaim that Emily had a true knot in her umbilical cord and her cord was wrapped around her neck, but thankfully neither affected her health.
I am strong because my baby had to spend 5 days in the NICU, due to being slightly premature and having jaundice, a place I thought I would never have to visit again.
I am strong because I was finally able to bring our baby home from the hospital.
I am strong because I have two beautiful girls, one on Earth and one in my heart, to motivate me to be the absolute best mother that I can be.
From Katariina Shoemaker
Thank you for sharing your birth story. I lost my son last month because of cervical insufficiency. It is so comforting to my fears to read about women who have tried again successfully. Blessed be.
Love to you, mama. You are strong!
two beautiful baby girls that are forever yours. <3 you ARE strong.
You are an inspiration.
Wow, what a wonderful story! All mothers are strong and those that share such inspiring stories like yours are at the top of the tier.
I have never experienced a risky pregnancy or complicated birth. I gave birth naturally and did all I could to prepare beforehand so that I could control everything within my power to give my babies the best I could.
Of course things happen beyond our control and modern medicine saves lives because of it. You are truly inspiring and I hope others reflect as I have.
I too lost my first child, a daughter in July of 2014. It was the most difficult thing I have ever experienced. You are right. No mother should have to plan her child’s funeral. I am currently pregnant again with our second child, a boy. There is certainly a lot of anxiety when you have a history like we do. However, I do take strength from knowing that my sweet daughter is praying for her mom and brother from heaven.
It’s truly inspiration!
You are strong and wise! Thank you for sharing this beautiful story.
You are strong this story has given me hope me and my partner lost our little girl in the exact same way in March she was born early via c section due to ic and prom and also got NEC which took her from us our angel I feel so empty your story has given me hope for the future beautiful xxx