"I was having an easy pregnancy, but at 18 weeks' gestation, we got some uneasy news: Our baby had an abdominal wall defect and would require surgery upon birth."
I will never forget the way my heart skipped beats when I first saw that positive pregnancy test. My husband and I found out we were going to be parents during the week of our first anniversary—there’s no greater gift than that! I wasn’t sure if I was ready to be a mom, but I was determined I would be ready when the time came.
I was having an easy pregnancy, but at 18 weeks’ gestation, we got some uneasy news: Our baby had an abdominal wall defect and would require surgery upon birth.
The day before my scheduled 37 week induction, I started feeling my belly tighten unlike it ever had before. I dismissed any thought of being in labor—I thought it was just Braxton Hicks contractions. At 3 a.m., after hours of tossing and turning, I woke my husband up and told him that it was time to go in. We drove 70 long miles that early morning to the children’s hospital, where I had planned to deliver.
By the time I arrived at the fetal health center, my contractions were a minute and a half apart. To think I would meet my son that day was so surreal. I “patiently” waited the 11 hours of labor to meet him. The ice chips and soap opera reruns were not cutting it—I wanted to meet my baby! In fact, I was so eager that I required an oxygen mask while pushing. There was no chance I was willing to wait another one or two hours.
On September 28, 2015, at 5:35 p.m., Warren Emil was the 500th baby born at Children’s Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Missouri. He weighed 5 pounds, 8 ounces and was 18 inches long.
The doctors and nurses immediately brought him to the next attached room, so they could give him the care he needed. I could see them working on him and was amazed when I heard his little cry. Before they brought him to the operating room, they brought him over for me to see him up close. He was perfect in every way I could have imagined.
For the next 29 days, the NICU was our home. We lived one day at a time, made great friends with a nurse, and dreamed of the day we would bring our little boy home.
Gradually, we watched Warren get better. It seemed each day there would be one less cord attached to him. After 10 days, we were able to hold Warren for the first time!
Days passed, and we began to pick him up without assistance. We were changing his diapers. At day 18, he had his first taste of milk!
The wait was totally worth it. Warren is truly a miracle—I have never seen such strength come from a small little package. I’ll forever be grateful for him and his special delivery.
Send us your birth story! Whether you had a home birth, hospital birth, 37-hour labor or emergency C-section, we’d love to read the tale of your little one’s grand entrance. Write up your birth story (click here for tips on getting started) and email it, along with a few photos, to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’ll share it on our Birth Day blog and may even print it in an upcoming issue!