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Personal Stories ~ From Kim
My son was put into the NICU when he was born. I was 17 (at time of birth) and he was due October 31 1998. Everything was fine with the pregnancy, ultrasounds were good and everything. But come my 8th month checkup, the doctor said my belly wasn't measuring quite right. She sent me in for another ultrasound that week. When we went, they told me that the baby's measurements were smaller than normal, and that it seemed as if he had quit growing. He was still alive and well, just not developing anymore.

The next week when I went back to my doctor, she reviewed the ultrasound results and told me that she thought the baby would grow better outside of the womb and that she was going to induce me in five days!!! Ack!! I wasn't ready yet as I was only going to be 36 or 37 weeks by then.

On October 7 they had me stay overnight and they would induce me first thing in the morning. They put a gel on my cervix as I was not dilated at all. The next morning came and the gel had done nothing. They started the Pitocin. To make a long story short, I had three epidurals and none worked. I was in natural labor for 19 1/2 hours!!! He was born at 1:06 am October 9th. He was 4 lbs. 11 oz. and 17 1/4 in. long.

Because he was so small and not breathing (they had left him in me without water for 18 hours!!!) they rushed him to the NICU. He was blue and that was all I saw. I fell asleep and when I woke up, I got to go see him. He was so tiny and he had a respirator. It was so sad. He had all sorts of tubes and wires. He stayed there for about two weeks, slowly getting better each day. It was a sad time, but it is also a time I remember as special. How lucky I was to have a baby that was alive and to have people taking care of him. I still remember the smell, and sounds of that room. I later found out that I had intrauterine growth restriction due to being so young. But he is perfectly healthy and happy now. It is a hard time, but there is definitely light at the end of the tunnel.

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