In 2007 my husband and I were expecting our first child. My pregnancy was perfect and we had everything prepared for her arrival. Reese was born after a terribly long day of labor (I was induced) that ended in an emergency csection due to fetal stress. When she was born I thought our hearts were going to explode with happiness! Although she was very quiet and we could barely hear a whimper out of her. For the first couple of days of being in the hospital I could tell something was wrong with my baby. I would feed her and she would throw up and I noticed that she had very strange eye movements.
The nurses kept telling me that newborns had a hard time controlling their eyes, and that she was just spitting up and that was normal. As a mother though, even a new mom, I could tell something was not right. The day we were to go home the pediatrician told me that something was not right, and she was ordering an ultrasound before we left the hospital. Praise the Lord she did, because Reese had a Grade 4 hemorrage in her brain! We were utterly devastated. I cannot express the sadness you feel as a parent to hear the words that were heard.
I had no clue what any of it meant. I was told that she would probably never walk or talk due to the extent of the bleed and how compressed her brain was. We spent 47 days in the NICU, and I only left her side when I was kicked out for closing hours. She went through many spinal taps and procedures. She did not recieve a shunt until she was five months old. I believe that our doctor was amazing because the neurosurgeon we have now can't believe that her shunt has not needed revision yet. She is four years old. We did PT and OT. She walked at 15 months old. She knew her alphabet at 18 months old.. she could tell me a word for every letter and could count and knew her colors. She amazed me.
She has the most incredible memory of any child I've ever met. She tells me things that happened to her when she was not even two yet. She had a tumor this summer in her thigh bone that we battled (she went undiagnosised for 2 years) and I was told that was probably why she walked so late because she was in terrible pain. I always thought it was the hydro. She had three surgeries due to the tumor and was in a wheel chair for several months, but luckily she was out of the wheel chair in time to start pre-k.
So far she the only intervention she needs is a little help with muscle tone and being able to write. She loves to dance and is taking ballet which makes my heart soar to see her moving and not in pain. She also loves to ride horses and loves to take care of her baby sister. She is truly my inspiration hands down.
I love you my little Reese cup!