Pregnancy After a Preemie

January 14, 2019

pregnancy after prematurity, pregnant after preemiePeople often ask me how it feels to be pregnant after a preemie, and honestly, sometimes it’s surreal. You see three and a half years ago, having another baby was far from our minds. I had given birth to our son Jaxson at 22 weeks, 6 days, and we endured the NICU roller coaster for four months. And although he came home relatively healthy and didn’t have any long lasting complications, the thought of going through preterm labor again was scary. We enjoyed loving on our first born and little miracle. It wasn’t until he was a little over two that we played with the idea of trying again.

I kept feeling a tug in my heart and a desire to have another baby. I prayed and asked God for guidance. I didn’t want what He didn’t want for us. While in my waiting for guidance I couldn’t shake the baby fever, and I knew this feeling had to be supernatural. I had healed emotionally from my whirlwind pregnancy and birth with my son, and I was beginning to get excited about the possibilities of a future pregnancy.

Prior to getting pregnant I wanted to make sure I found the perfect OBGYN and was well informed. I wanted to discuss my history and a plan of care going into a new pregnancy that would be deemed high risk. While we knew nothing would be 100% guaranteed, we did know that being well equipped was necessary. Once my husband and I had a consult with my OB, everything just felt right. She shares the same faith as us, reviewed my history and came up with the best care plan and ultimately really believed that she could help me carry to term.

All of these things helped us feel comfortable and confident in moving forward to having one more baby. Getting pregnant wasn’t our challenge, but staying pregnant was. I went through a miscarriage in February 2018, and it really did shake me. It was hard to understand why we had to endure something so painful. After a few months of healing, we decided to try again, and here I am now, 32 weeks pregnant with our second little miracle.

Makena shot, pregnancy after preemieThe journey to get here today hasn’t been easy. I have been watched so very closely by my doctor. I was on oral progesterone from weeks six to twelve, and then I began Makena shots, a hydroxyprogesterone caproate injection that is indicated to reduce the risk of preterm birth in women with a singleton pregnancy, at 16 weeks. During that time I was also seen by my OB and her sonographer every two weeks to check my cervix and make sure it was long (not funneling) and closed. At 24 weeks I did receive a round of steroids for our baby girl’s lungs, “just in case,” but thankfully I didn’t go into preterm labor.

There have been days throughout this journey where I have felt nervous, anxious, uncomfortable and scared. But in those moments, I’ve reminded myself to just take things on day at a time. I can’t let fear control me or stop me from enjoying this pregnancy. I can’t say that I trust God but live in fear of what “could happen.” Keeping a positive headspace is so important when you are pregnant. Remembering that each pregnancy is different is crucial. So I’ve allowed myself to truly FEEL the hard, but I don’t stay there. I let it go and eat something satisfying, and because of what I’ve previously gone through, it’s helped me to appreciate each day carrying this precious baby girl. I embrace every little thing and I don’t take any of it for granted. That’s what giving birth to my 22 weeker three and a half years ago taught me.

pregnant after preemieI hope my journey inspires you to try again and know there’s a chance the outcome won’t be the same as before. Don’t lose hope on the possibility of carrying a child to term. With the right medical team, a positive mindset and hope, there’s a chance for something great to happen!