Jade’s triplets were born at 31 +6 by emergency c-section. Below is a poem she wrote to her babies telling them of their NICU story.
Kids before I’m thirty, is what I’d always said.
Kids before I’m thirty, was always in my head.
Lets just try to not try, and then who knows, we might.
Three weeks later pregnant like a bolt out of the night.
I remember waking up in bed, such pain all down one side.
Using Dr. Google left me scared so much I cried.
Seven weeks exactly we went for an early scan.
Sombre like a funeral home full of dreams not gone to plan.
In the room I shakily laid down upon the bed.
Thoughts of loving what I never had running through my head.
I held my breath, I clenched my fists, I kept my eyes low down.
The nurse went quiet all at once and wore a surly frown.
She turned the screen and pointed out three dots for me to see.
Three blinking lights, three little hearts beating inside of me.
I laughed, I cried, I was amazed, and Daddy turned to stone.
No longer would we ever be two people on our own.
“The pain”, she said, “is just your womb stretching out for size.
You need a lot of room in there for growing those little guys”.
And there we were, a family of five, full of wonder and of dread.
Who knew just growing you would leave me cooped up, trapped in bed.
I’m not going to lie to you and say it was all a dream.
Cooking up three buns in you is not as easy as it seems.
Mammy cried and Mammy tried to keep you safe and sound.
Growing day by day I was swollen, stretched and round.
Each little kick I felt from you was a miracle and a fright.
That I might not keep you safe inside was a worry every night.
There are no words to describe what we all went through.
The extra scans and hospital to put off meeting you.
And then far too early for us all water gushing out.
I gave a cry, a fearful gasp, and gave your Daddy a shout.
Dr said you were too early and they had no room,
to care for you three miracles who were coming far too soon.
Mammy taken all alone trying to hold on some more,
to the Dr’s far away, by now my heart was full and sore.
Sore because I’d failed you and not kept you safe and tight.
Sore because I wasn’t ready for you to come this night.
I felt so guilty that I’d moaned at how my body ached.
That now you were all coming out my buns just partly baked.
But once again you amazed me and held on good and strong.
For three more days you stayed inside but I knew it wouldn’t be long.
My body hurt, my back was sore, nothing was quite right.
A few hours later, a little check, a head was full in sight.
To panic stations was where they went, and wheeled me to the room,
where you would all be taken out for meeting all too soon.
The next part is not a part I remember very clear.
Too much blood and dropping stats and lots of gloom and fear.
I just recall being comfy and drifting quiet away.
Your Daddy trying to wake me, his memory to this day.
Twelve hours did they watch me and kept us all apart.
Daddy took your photos to hold close to my heart.
And then they wheeled me to you still strapped up in my bed.
To look at you through glass, so many tears I shed.
And that is where I met you, in NICU and in pain.
Knowing that my little life would never be the same.
So delicate and wrinkly, just like a little bird.
So small and perfect you all were, the first, the second, the third.
So many wires, so many beeps, so foreign to us all.
Too afraid to pick you up, scared you were so small.
Fed with a tube and not by breast but milk for you a must,
Mammy expressing colostrum like actual golden dust.
And one by one you began to breathe without any help at all,
And every day became a waiting game for the transport call.
One by one you were taken away to the Dr’s close to home,
and once more I sat bereft, just a woman on her own.
Finally I joined you out of glass and into beds,
Still connected to the wires, tube fed and lots of meds.
And so we struggled on and on the hardest time of life.
Leaving you every day alone, my heart hurt and full of strife.
And finally at three weeks I learned what breastfeeding was all about,
To hold you close to nurture you, so in love I had to shout.
To shout about your wonder, shout about your strength,
To shout about your courage, true fighters breadth and length.
And eventually the day came when we could take you home,
To start our new life together we’d never be alone.
My three amigos, my little clan, my Musketeers so true,
All for one and one for all, I’ll always be there for you.
And even though we all came home it’s not plain sailing as they say
But I will be forever grateful every single day.
Grateful in the way you’ve changed me to my very core,
Grateful that we made it with all that went before.
I will never be the same, now I’ve met you three.
I never want to be the same, I want to be you plus me.
And some days will be fantastic and some days we might all cry,
But I can promise you one thing, I will always try.
I will always try to be the best I can for you,
And some days I might mess it up and leave you feeling blue.
But I will always love you and keep you safe and sound,
In a way I couldn’t do it when I carried you first time round.
I will always try and smile when people point and stare,
And teach you how to rise above and that you shouldn’t care.
I worry about when you can understand the silly things they say,
“Nightmare”, “trouble”, “chore”, “oh bless” a few times every day.
But they will never understand just what we all went through,
Just to get you where we are a five, no more a two.