Saturday, 17 November 2012

My Little Fighter

When Joseph was a day old I was by his incubator and one of his doctors was examining him, talking to me whilst he was doing it. He leaned in close to check his skin tone and suddenly "thwack!" that board you can see on Joseph's arms hit the doctor's face. "Well, this one is certainly a fighter", he said, smarting a bit, from shock more than anything!

At first, I didn't like that description, "fighter". To me a newborn's life should be peaceful, snuggled in a mother's arms, not lying in an incubator fighting. Infections, fighting to breathe, fighting to maintain temperature, there are so many things these tiny babies have to fight in order to survive.

And, along with that fight, comes guilt. This was "my" fault. I should have kept my baby safe, I have failed. If I was only a better mother, then this would not have happened. My baby shouldn't have to fight, this should have been my fight.

Stop. You learn, hopefully, that there is no leverage in that line of thinking. This is how it is. This is reality. Joseph knew it, and really I knew it too, that this had happened and we just had to fight, taking each hurdle in our stride.


It's funny, when I was working through Joseph's photos there are so many with his fists up in a fighting pose, though this one is by far my favourite. Joseph put up the fight of his life to stay with us against the odds.

He inspires me everyday. Whenever I think "this is too hard, I can't go on" I think of my tiny 1lb 7oz baby thwacking that doctor on the head thinking "just leave me alone, will you?"

When you really get to know a preemie, you are blessed. Every one of them I have met has a truly amazing spirit.

I am blessed.

1 comment:

  1. You are blessed. We are blessed. And that picture of Joseph is my absolute favourite :) it's fab!!!

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