I am usually optimistic but this situation made me think of the worse. It was and has become one of the scariest days of my life! My youngest son Andrew was born premature. He was born when I was 29 weeks pregnant. I was unprepared for his birth. It was unexpected and very scary. I checked myself into the hospital for unexpected bleeding on Friday, had some tests done and I was sent home. The same thing happened on Saturday. I had a strong feeling that something wasn’t right. I ended up having contractions on Sunday and bled heavily. I checked myself into the hospital Sunday, was evaluated and rushed into the delivery room where I literally gave birth 15 minutes later. I was emotionally and physically exhausted!
After mixed emotions filled the delivery room, I gave birth to baby Andrew who was just a little over 2 lbs. After his birth, I heard a weak cry. He was brought into my arms and then whisked away. After awaking from sleep that seemed liked days long, my husband and I were told we could visit Andrew in the NICU. There, I saw his tiny body lay in an incubator attached to a respirator, and many different lines attached to machines that detected his heart rate and oxygen level. I was overwhelmed seeing and listening to the nurse explain to us of his current condition. Fortunately, he did not have many health issues. He was on and off the respirator and ate poorly. He needed supplements and was on some medications. Each day I visited him, held him in my arms and prayed for strength and good health. After 3 months that seemed liked years, Andrew was released from the NICU and went home to his siblings.
After bringing Andrew home, I was anxious. He was fragile and still so small compared to my other children. Fast forward several months, Andrew was growing fast physically but developmentally, he did not seem to be caught up. I recall Drew’s pediatrician recommending Early Intervention which at that time, I thought was too early. I decided it was time to call them. They came by for an assessment and Andrew qualified for Early Intervention. For almost 2 years, Andrew had early intervention for speech and other general skills. For each appointment, the specialists conducted therapy at home. Each session was an hour and it was 2 days a week. Andrew flourished and caught up quickly with Early Intervention. I highly believe that Drew is successfully caught up and sometimes think he could be older than his age because of Early Intervention.
A brief explanation of Early Intervention:
-It provides support and services to infants/toddlers who may be at risk of developing a handicapping condition or other special needs that may affect their development.
-Early intervention can begin at any time between birth and school age.
-Specialists help to enhance the child’s development and to provide support to the family.
– There is evidence that Early Intervention (EI) increases the developmental and educational gains for the child
Andrew’s my super boy (man)! He was born fighting and still continues to flourish! He is currently 3 years old! He speaks full sentences and getting prepared for pre-school in September! Stay tuned for a video on the next post on Early Intervention during home visits…