Life With a Preemie

This post is more like a journal entry, but there are many thoughts that can run through your head when you’re sitting in a hospital day in and day out waiting for your son to simply develop the skill to suck, breathe, and swallow at the same time.

Our sixth little babe, Josiah, was born on the 26th of June. He’s gorgeous. He was also born at 33 weeks, our first premature baby. I feel like a first time parent again. And I’m an emotional roller coaster. Of course, Bill would probably say that’s pretty much true of me all the time. 🙂 The following is simply a list of thoughts with no summary statement. Just one mama being transparent.

Things I’m grateful for:

  • Josiah was big for a preemie (5 lbs.) and is doing remarkably well
  • The delivery was great, in fact it was the easiest delivery I’ve had (except for a little placenta issue that will be told on our other blog)
  • I couldn’t be happier with the care we’ve gotten at this hospital, both the nurses and doctors who took care of me and the ones who are caring for our little man
  • The kids love their new baby brother
  • God used my hospital stays to connect us with some sweet new friends and believers–one nurse is part of a church that is generally doing the same thing Bill and I came to Indy to do (inner-city stuff)–this same nurse wants to set up meals for us when we all get home; another nurse has invited our whole family (yep) to her farm
  • Josiah latched on today and took in 10ml of milk from me–I cried and laughed at the same time (did I mention anything about being an emotional roller coaster?)
  • We still are being loved on by our friends in the Louisville area–one sweet sister drove up to Indy yesterday with the plan to take care of our kids as we need her–Bill will be driving them down to her tomorrow to stay for the rest of the week
  • Bill has been blessed again with a flexible job and an understanding boss, so he’s had a bit more freedom with hours and some ability to work from home, making him more available for the five kids at home and the wife and baby in the hospital
  • I feel great, really great, better than I usually do after having a baby
  • I’m always reminded during these times how gracious our parents are–Bill’s parents took all five kids to their home in Murray last week, all week, so we could focus on Josiah; my parents came in this week with the plan to stay with the kids “as long as it took”–we had to force my mother to go home when we realized she was unwell with some kind of inner-ear issue after flying home from Liberia last week (yep, she’s a rock star)–otherwise she would have stayed on and suffered silently through the whole week
  • My faith is being challenged and grown bit by bit every day
  • I can now say I’ve done it all when it comes to birthing babies
  • Bill and I decided Josiah would be the last baby I would carry a few months back after realizing with some medical advice that my body was shutting down to having babies–this was confirmed by the doctor who delivered Josiah based on the complications that came along with the delivery–it gave me more peace about calling it quits in the pregnancy department
  • I’m getting some planning done in my down time
  • Josiah will most likely only be in the hospital 2-3 weeks–I have known people whose little ones have been in the hospital for months–my heart suddenly hurts for them much more

Things my sinful heart is tempted to complain about:

  • When I’m with Josiah, I desperately miss my children at home; when I’m home, I desperately miss Josiah
  • My heart stops every time Josiah’s oxygen levels go down, even though it’s perfectly normal for a preemie and the nurses have it totally covered
  • I’m emotionally and physically exhausted
  • It’s lonely to be here in a new city without the huge friend support we’ve grown so accustomed (aka been undeservedly blessed) to have–I hate my sinful, selfish flesh
  • My kids at home are going to go away again to be cared for by other people–I want to care for them
  • Everything is unpredictable right now–I don’t do unpredictable well
  • I miss cuddling with, reading to, and playing with the five at home–pattern anyone?
  • As Bill said today at lunch around our table, “One of our places is empty right now. Let’s pray that little Josiah gets to come home soon to fill it.”
  • I want to be all alone and with a million people at the same time

11 thoughts on “Life With a Preemie

  1. Thank you for your honesty Courtney. Please know that even when you are not around your friends that we are all praying for you and care even from a distance. So glad to hear that Josiah is doing well and will be home soon.

  2. Wow, Courtney. I’m a mother of one- a healthy little girl. And I feel maxed out at least one day out of the week. I would say that I can’t even begin to understand what you and Bill are going through, but you laid it all out pretty concisely. Reading this post really helped put things in perspective for me, and renewed my respect for other moms out there who are facing considerably more difficult challenges. I’m thrilled that little Josiah is doing well. You have so much to be thankful for, but you’re human, and it’s okay to feel those other things as well. (Part of that is due to having a baby last week!) Keep focusing on the good, and remember that you’ve got a lot of people keeping your family in their thoughts and prayers.

    Love and roses,

  3. Loving you as one of the millions from here. Praying for you and Billy, Josiah and the kiddos. There is so much power in prayer! Love you!

  4. Your family may have moved, but you are still in our hearts. I pray that Josiah is happy, healthy and home very soon. I’ll be passing through Indy next week, so if I can help, please let me know.


  5. Love you Courtney and your sweet sweet family. Your transparency is a blessing to read,including your ‘temptations to complain’…the desires of every mothers’ heart when away from her babes, no matter the age of those ‘babes’. I’m keeping all of you close in prayer, and for God’s protective and comforting hands around each of you, may He give you rest and give you peace as He continues to give little Josiah strength and health.

  6. Beautiful thoughts from a beautiful person. This is a season that will only increase your ministry and outreach even more. Blessings!

  7. Courtney and Bill my heart and prayers go out to you. You post brought back so many thoughts and feelings. It sounds like he has done so well! I am glad but I also understand that in our sinfulness good is never good enough and then we get angry at our limitations put on us by sin. Can’t wait for you to be able to love on him at home try to take this time to slow down and just enjoy the little things, Preemies are all about the little stuff. Love you!

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