It can go without saying that being a mom is one of the toughest but most rewarding jobs. Each year, we set aside one day to celebrate the women who raise us. Mother’s Day is extra special to me because of the little one who made me a mom.
My husband, Bobby, and I were so excited, but equally nervous when we found out we were having a baby and would soon become parents. My pregnancy started off normally and for the most part, was a wonderful experience. It wasn’t until around 20 weeks that things changed.
I was at my regularly scheduled doctor’s appointment when they noticed my blood pressure was high and my amniotic sac was measuring below normal. My doctor was concerned and referred me to Dr. Veillon, a Maternal-Fetal Medicine (MFM) Specialist at Woman’s. I scheduled an appointment and met with him. In meeting with Dr. Veillon, he discovered that my baby didn’t have enough room to move and her lungs were in trouble due to my amniotic sac not filling properly.
A few weeks passed and my condition continued to become more complicated. It was then that the doctors sat my husband and I down to discuss the options. Each option had risks, and while some looked grim, I chose to give my baby the best fighting chance of survival, even though that meant putting myself in danger. While my husband and I were extremely nervous and anxious about our choice, a few days later, my blood pressure rose to 210/120 and it was time. At a little over 24 weeks, I was rushed into a C-section. At 12:45 AM on March 13, Blayke Leigh Williams was born.
Blayke was admitted into Woman’s NICU and our next journey began. It was like a never ending rollercoaster – one minute her vitals were perfect, the next they were plummeting. She was so fragile, so frail and extremely critical.
Blayke then developed three blood clots in her heart, which prevented holding and touching her out of fear the clots would detach and move into her lungs. As the weeks passed, our rollercoaster continued and I would have given anything to hold and comfort my sweet baby girl.
Months passed by slowly, but on Mother’s Day 2012, Bobby and I walked into the unit and noticed there were two rocking chairs by Blayke’s bedside. As I walked closer, I was greeted with an envelope that said “Mommy” written in different color crayon. With tears streaming down my face, I opened it to find a beautiful card that had her two little footprints on the inside. It had finally hit me, I was a mommy; I was her mommy!
Bobby and I sat down in the rocking chairs and one of the nurses looked at me and said, “You have another gift.”
I looked at her with such surprise and then looked at Bobby and then looked at a piece of paper that said, “You are the best mommy ever! Treat yourself to something special.” The note was attached to a bag filled with lotions, bath scrubs, bath bombs and a face mask. I was speechless; to think that someone would take their time to think of me in such a way!
After I finished crying and wiped away the tears, the nurses told me it was time and should get ready. I thought to myself, “Get ready? Get ready for what? Is something wrong?” The nurse calmed my nerves and then told me that everything was ok and she was sure this would be the best Mother’s Day ever. I smiled and told her it already was, but then she rolled the privacy curtain around Bobby and me and asked if I was ready to hold my baby. As tears came down both of our faces, Bobby leaned over and whispered in my ear, “Happy Mother’s Day, love!”
We spent a total of five months in the NICU, and while the odds may have been against us, we made it through. Blayke fought bravely and is now a very happy, very active five year old. And while every day with her has been special, I’ll never forget that very first Mother’s Day.
So while we celebrate Mother’s Day, it’s important to remember that the name “mom” isn’t always so easy to come by. There are so many moms out there who have fought infertility, miscarriage or even the loss of a child. Today we celebrate them all, whether you’re in the middle of raising babies or find yourself in the pain of remembering that special one; this day is for us all – all the mothers!