Real life preemie stories - take one step at a time. Interview with Kimberly Wilson, co-author Living Miracles
What prompted you to write Living Miracles?
After the birth of my son Dustin at 32 weeks' gestation I searched for a book that contained real-life stories. I wanted something I could read that wasn't written completely from a medical standpoint. I couldn't find this type of book and I knew that if I was searching for a book that offered hope and inspiration, other preemie parents were probably looking for the same type of book. In the back of my mind I always knew my baby could die. I wanted to read about premature babies that lived and discover how other moms and dads coped with this new experience of preemie parenting.
I had started to work on Living Miracles when my mom told me about Kimberly Powell, another preemie mom who was writing a similar book. Shortly after being introduced we started working on Living Miracles and as the saying goes, "the rest is history."
What advice do you have for new preemie parents?
Take things one step at a time, whether it's minute by minute or day by day. Things will eventually get better and soon the roller coaster ride you're experiencing will turn into an easy going merry-go-round.Also, try and take care of yourself. I know it's hard, but try to eat on a regular basis and get some sleep. It's also important to remember that your child is an individual and will do things at his/her pace. Just because another baby is progressing faster doesn't mean something is wrong with your child.
What did you learn through your experience with Living Miracles?
That I am not the only one with specific worries, concerns and feelings. Regardless of the child's gestational age at birth or the cause of prematurity most parents of premature infants have many things in common, primarily the emotional roller coaster and the one-step-forward-five-steps-back syndrome. We also share similar concerns for the future such as wondering what long term effects, if any, the child will suffer because he or she was premature. Also, many mothers (including myself) feel guilty if we cannot breastfeed or if we're pumping and naturally dry up. To us, it's the last maternal thing we, as mothers, can do for our child. I also learned that I'm not the only mother who felt cheated because I missed the majority of my third trimester.
Who would benefit from reading your book?
Parents of preemies and women experiencing a complicated or high-risk pregnancy. It's also a great book for relatives and friends of preemie parents, as it gives insight into the world of prematurity and a general idea of what parents of premature infants go through. I've even heard comments from people that have no direct connection to preemies say they really enjoyed the book because it was so interesting.