Post Preemie Pregnancy

July 20, 2012

Katrina Moline at 35 weeks pregnant after a 24 week preemie.My first pregnancy was planned.  I was 29-years-old, married for seven years and healthy, healthy, healthy.  We had a midwife and were planning a natural delivery at a birthing center.  Everything was going along just as expected – until suddenly it wasn’t.

At 24 weeks gestation I went into precipitous labor and delivered my 1 ½ pound baby boy in our master bathroom.  Unaware I was in labor until it was too late, I was suddenly and unexpectedly robbed of every sweet, dreamy idea I had of bringing my first child into this world.  Miraculously, Bryce survived the night and then a week, and five months later he came home and two weeks ago he turned 3.

Over the last couple of years people have asked me time and again if we’d have another.  As an only child myself, I’d always promised my unborn child that they would have a sibling.  But after everything we’d been though with Bryce, and continue to struggle with, I couldn’t bring myself to commit to that as-of-yet unkept promise.  But as serendipity would have it, the decision was made for us and here I sit almost 36 weeks pregnant with Bryce’s little brother.

Rarely do I admit it, but it’s been a challenging time for me.  I felt guilty for not being more excited, for often wishing it wasn’t true.  The doubts about how Bryce’s rigorous therapy schedule and constant doctor’s appointments would impact the childhood of this unborn child riddled me with even more guilt.  I’ve wondered how I can love another person as much as I love Bryce.  Asked myself over and over if this is what is right for Bryce.

You see, my life has completely revolved around Bryce from the moment he made his dramatic entrance into this world and began his long, hard struggle to survive.  I waited weeks to hold him, months for him to breathe without a ventilator and more than a year for him to sit up independently.  I’m still waiting for him to say he loves me, or even look at me and say, “Momma.”

So to think of adding another person to this crazy life of ours, to even consider further complicating this tangled web seemed simply absurd.

As if all of that guilt and shame weren’t challenging enough I’ve continued to battle lingering effects of PTSD while coping with the unknown in regards to another possible premature birth.  And the complex medical hurdles we’ve had to tackle, from weekly progesterone shots, more cervical checks than I care to mention and a cerclage, well let’s just say it hasn’t been the easiest.

But with nearly 36 weeks of hindsight and an extra special prize looming large, I can now confidently say that it has been worth it.

{Editor’s Note: Katrina gave birth to a healthy baby boy, weighing 6lbs. 10oz., on July 9. He was just a few days shy of 37 weeks. From all of us at, congratulations Katrina!}