Hand to Hold's Official Blog: Written by Parents for Parents

How Preemie Moms are Chosen

By Erma Bombeck


Did you ever wonder how the mothers of premature babies are chosen?

Somehow, I visualize God hovering over Earth, selecting his instruments for propagation with great care and deliberation. 

As he observes, he instructs his angels to take notes in a giant ledger. 

“Beth Armstrong, son. Patron Saint, Matthew. 

Marjorie Forrest, daughter.Patron Saint, Celia. 

Carrie Rutledge, twins. Patron Saint … give her Gerard. He’s used to profanity. 

“Finally, he passes a name to an angel and smiles. “Give her a preemie. 

“The angel is curious. “Why this one, God? She’s so happy.” 

“Exactly,” smiles God. 

“Could I give a premature baby a mother who knows no laughter? That would be cruel.” 

“But does she have the patience?” asks the angel. 

“I don’t want her to have too much patience, or she’ll drown in a sea of self-pity and despair. Once the shock and resentment wear off, she’ll handle it. 

I watched her today. She has that sense of self and independence so rare and so necessary in a mother. 

You see, the child I’m going to give her has a world of its own. 

She has to make it live in her world, and that’s not going to be easy.” 

“But Lord, I don’t think she even believes in you.” 

God smiles. “No matter, I can fix that. 
This one is perfect.She has just the right amount of selfishness. 

“The angel gasps, “Selfishness?! Is that a virtue?” 

God nods. “If she can’t separate herself from the child occasionally, she will never survive. 
Yes, here is a woman whom I will bless with a child less than perfect. 

She doesn’t know it yet, but she is to be envied. 

She will never take for granted a spoken word. 

She will never consider a step ordinary. 

When her child says ‘mama’ for the first time, she will be witness to a miracle and know it. 

I will permit her to see clearly the things I see ignorance, cruelty, prejudice and allow her to rise above them. 

She will never be alone. 

I will be at her side every minute of every day of her life because she is doing my work as surely as she is here by my side.” 

“And what about her Patron Saint?” asks the angel, his pen poised in the air. 

God smiles. “A mirror will suffice.”

Aimee Sprik About Aimee Sprik

Aimee Sprik (IL) is mother to Connor, born unexpectedly early at 26 weeks, in December 2008, due to an infection. Connor, with his parents, survived a complicated 120-day NICU stay, which changed their lives forever. Since bringing her son finally home, she's felt passionately about volunteering her time and resources to supporting fellow NICU parents, both at the hospital where Connor was born, and by co-founding Life after NICU, an online parent support forum now moderated by Hand to Hold. You can follow Aimee on her personal blog, Sprik Space, or send her an email.

Comments

  1. tears came rolling down my cheeks as I read your post. even though it’s been almost 5 years since our little angel girl was brought to us, the feelings of wonder never go away. and there in lies the gift that is each and every preemie.

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