Tuesday, May 7, 2013

My Miracle Baby

My birth stories are much different from most mothers. My first two children were adopted, and my third child was the only one who I gave birth too. When I first found out that I was pregnant, I was excited and nervous at the same time.

After my first appointment with the doctor, we learned that my pregnancy would be an extremely high risk pregnancy. They had found that there was an abnormality in my womb that put my unborn child and I at risk.

With three young children running around the house, I was had to stop everything and stay in bed for my entire pregnancy or run the risk of pre-term labor. I went from being an active parent, to parenting my children bedside. Everything was going smoothly until I went into full-term labor at 18 weeks.

At that time, I was faced with the possibility of having a premature baby who might not survive. As the doctors stood there telling us what was going to happen if they could not stop the labor, my world stopped. Their mouths were moving, but the world was silent. In that moment - I felt helpless.

My body felt like it was being poisoned from all the different medications that were being shot into my blood stream. I laid in that hospital bed, only getting up once during the 16 weeks that I was hospitalized. After all the hard work of my medical team, they were able to be successful in keeping my baby in a place where he could grow and survive birth.

Although, my son was still born premature with some health issues, he is now an active busy young boy. Without the care that I received, there is a possibility that my son would not be here today. Not all women in the world are fortunate to have the medical care that I have. Many are faced with the same situation that I was in, but without any options.

Save the Children are helping to raise awareness of the women that are in need of healthcare, with their first feature Birth Day Risk Index. The index will compare first-day death rates for babies in 186 countries to identify the safest and most dangerous places to be born.

This is not a sponsored post. This is just a story to help raise awareness of an issue that I am passionate about. :)


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  2. Previous research has shown that divorce is tough on kids, with one study showing the experience doubled a kid's risk of stroke over a lifetime, perhaps due to the effect of stress. But parental screaming and fighting are bad for kids, too, so the question remains: Is divorce ever good for kids?

    Kim used data from a nationally representative long-term survey following kids who entered kindergarten in 1998 until eighth grade. He followed kids whose parents got divorced between their child's kindergarten and third-grade years, finding 142 kids of divorce compared with 3,443 kids in intact homes. (Kids whose parents had been widowed or already divorced and remarried were excluded from the study.)

    After controlling for factors such as socioeconomic status, teen parenthood and parents' marital satisfaction, Kim compared the kids of "stable" and "split" households on measures including math and reading tests, teacher ratings of social skills, and teacher ratings of behavioral problems.

    He found that kids of divorce began to struggle as soon as their parents began divorce proceedings. Over the next two years, the kids of divorce stayed behind other kids on math skills and social skills and they began "internalizing behavior problems," that is, behavior problems that manifest themselves by way of sadness, loneliness, anxiety and depression, Kim found. [Read: 6 Scientific Tips for a Successful Marriage]

    Postdivorce difficulties

    Given that parents on the road to divorce likely have troubled marriages, Kim had predicted that the conflict would be reflected in their kids' development.

    "It was a little bit surprising, but when I looked the research about divorce and child development, there are some explanations," Kim said. "For example, not all divorces are plagued with marital conflict."

    Another explanation, he said, is that parents whose children seem especially sensitive (struggling even without divorce) might decide to hold off on divorce for fear of upsetting their child. Thus, a large proportion of kids struggling with unhappy parents end up in the two-parent home group rather than the divorced-parent group.

    The sample size wasn't large enough to look at the effects of divorce by gender, age or ethnicity, Kim said. One 1989 study found that children whose parents divorced in the first five years of the child's life were worse off than children whose parents divorced later, so the results may not apply to every age group. Kim plans to replicate the study with different groups of kids.

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