Birth Day

One year ago today, my youngest daughter Makenzie was born. And one year ago today, my youngest daughter Makenzie was taken from my arms.

It’s been one year since the best and worst day of my life.

Makenzie was born 3 weeks early, but surprisingly completely healthy. After an easy (16-hour) labor, she was born with no complications. The doctor placed her into my arms, and I swore to myself that I’d never let her go again.


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A doctor I’d never met showed up instead. Calmly explaining to me that Makenzie was in respiratory distress, and had been taken to the NICU.

But doctor, she was perfectly healthy. Everyone said she was perfectly healthy. I saw her with my own eyes, and she was perfectly healthy!

Everyone ignored me.

I begged Chris to wheel me down to the NICU, so that I could see her. She looked so tiny. The nurses reassured me that she’d be fine in a couple days, when it was time for us to go home. They urged me to go back to my room, and get some rest. I reluctantly agreed, since it seemed like the logical thing to do. She looked so tiny.


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The next morning, a different doctor came into my room. After hearing the words “premature lung” and “admit to the hospital long-term”, I mentally checked out of the conversation. Suddenly, I was signing paperwork to allow doctors to place my 1-day old daughter on a respirator. And then, I was going home without her.

I visited every day, but unfortunately didn’t find much comfort in the sight of her. Frail, helpless. And me, even more helpless.


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She wanted to be held, but they’d barely let us touch her. So many doctors, so much I didn’t understand.


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Like the first time she held my hand.


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And then, she got better.


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Happy first birthday, Makenzie. I am looking forward to many, many more.


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