*I posted briefly yesterday about my nephew's first day at Pre-K. Today I want to share their story, and how I came to work for them*
So, I haven't really delved into my job as a nanny on here. I'm right smack in the middle of a transitional period in my life that involves moving on from that job. But its more than just a job to me. I have worked for the last three years and almost nine months as a nanny for my sister. She has almost four year old triplet sons, and I have been there everyday since before they were born.
Let's back up a hot minute so I can do this story justice. There's a lot to say, and it's still hard for me to say it. You see, my sister Jaime tried for many long, hard, disappointing years to get pregnant. Finally, the doctors told her conceiving on her own just wasn't going to happen. That was a blow for all of us that I'll never forget. So being the incredibly strong woman that she is, she picked up the pieces and she moved forward. She and her husband Kent decided to give IVF a try.
The odds are stacked against you with IVF. There are people out there who have tried in vain for decades and spent thousands of dollars and never had any luck. This is where our family's miracle starts.
It took one try. Just one. The first miracle.
Two fertilized eggs, one that split into two, and with the odds stacked against them of having even one child, quickly things turned into beating the odds a thousand-fold by carrying triplets. I'll never forget the day my sister sent me a text at work with one word. "Triplets." The second of our many, many miracles.
Carrying triplets is already an incredibly high-risk pregnancy for anyone. Things were made even more complicated by my sister's complete placenta praevia. Basically, the placenta of the identical twins was laying very low in my sister's uterus. The risks of this included bleeding and premature delivery. So, as a precaution, Jaime was placed on bed-rest at 20 weeks in the hospital.
I would get off work at my retail job and spend evenings at the hospital with her. We would sit and fantasize about what they would look like, how they would act, and who they would be someday. I would bring her food (she was eating for four ya know!) and we would sit and watch "To Catch A Predator" and laugh. Then we would scour the Internet looking for potential predators in our own neighborhoods and get paranoid. We're a mixed bag together to say the least. I'll never forget those times with her in the hospital, they are some of my fondest memories for sure.
One beautiful, blue-skied morning in September, I arrived at work at 8am. Some of the other managers and I were hanging out, filling out paperwork for the day and waiting impatiently for our Starbucks to kick in. At 8:15 the phone rang. Another manager answered it and her face dropped. I knew before she said a word what the message on the other line was. My other sister Heather was calling to say that Jaime had been taken for an emergency c-section about a half an hour before. She had no answers for me other than that. Immediately I started hyperventilating. I have never known such primal fear and shock in my entire life.
So, I left work as fast as I could, trying to keep myself together on the inside and outside. But the truth was, I was losing it. I didn't know what I was going to find when I reached the hospital. To put it frankly, I didn't know of the four of them who was going to still be Earth-side when I arrived. That is terror at it's darkest point. I will never, ever, ever forget that feeling. It shook me to my core.
I was the first one there because I worked in the same town that my sister's hospital was located. I went to the floor she had resided on and they sent me to the waiting room to wait for news. Slowly, my family members started showing up and we just sat and prayed together. Prayed for their safety, their health, and any news at all to come our way. At around 9am, they told us she was being wheeled into her post-op room and that the boys were down in the NICU. They were all alive. This was our third, and most beautiful miracle yet.
I won't go into detail about the medical hardships that each of them initially face. It's still a little hard to talk about and it is quite extensive. Being a micro-preemie is one of the biggest fights to be fought, and I don't like to go back to that place where I picture them in incubators with CPAP masks and IV's. Especially now when I see these perfect faces looking back at me at almost four years old. I will say that D,K, & G (I won't post their names to give them just a little anonymity) were born at 8:01am, 8:02am, and 8:03am and each weighed in at 2.5 lbs, 2.1 lbs, and 2.0 lbs respectively. They were born 13 1/2 weeks premature, and were incredibly lucky that my sister was able to hold on as long as she did. It meant the difference between life and death for them.
|From left to right: K, G, & D (Around 70ish days old)|
As ashamed as I am to say this, there was a moment where I lost my Faith. A few days after they were born, the doctor's called the entire family up to the NICU. K had a grade three brain bleed. There are four grades total. It was dire. I lost my mind to think that God would do this to my sister. That he would do this to this innocent little boy. That I had bought my sister three of everything I could find and she would have to look at these extra clothes and that it would tear her apart. I cursed God and everything else. As I walked away trying to console myself, I ran into a woman who was concerned that I was crying. The words poured out of my mouth and I told her the whole story. She simply looked at me and grabbed my hand and said "Honey, let's pray." So we did. And there was God again, even when I had given up all hope. Yet another miracle.
Days turned into weeks, weeks into months, and after 77 days for D & K and 79 days for G, babies were home! All five pounds of them! They needed fed and changed every three hours, medicated multiple times a day, and they were hooked up to heart and breathing monitors. It was very tiring for all of us in the rotation trying to help out Mom & Dad. One day I had a conversation with my sister about where they would go when she went back to work. She simply said she didn't know, and she couldn't afford to quit her job because of all their medical expenses. That's when I knew what my next step was going to be.
So, I quit my job as a retail manager and went to work for my sister. There is not a day that goes by where I do not praise God for that opportunity. I cannot express in words what they have done for me and how much joy they have brought to my life. I went from working a shitty job where I was obese and literally losing my hair, to being surrounded by the three most beautiful souls I've ever known. The happiness they brought to my life was definitely another inspiration for me to lose the weight. They helped me learn to love myself, and gave me a reason to be happy with my life. The miracles just kept coming.
Now almost four years later, I have to say goodbye (sort of.) I'll see them all the time I'm sure, but in my heart it won't be the same. It's like going from seeing your own kids everyday to a couple of times a week. It's a heartbreaking concept to grasp. That is why I was a horrible mess for their first day of Pre-K. Because in a small way I'm losing them. But in my heart I know that it's time for them to move on, grow up, and shine their light on the rest of the world. They fought so hard to live, and fought so hard to beat every odd imaginable. They have become such intelligent, articulate, loving, and independent little boys over the last four years. Pre-K is just another victory for them. One of many that have passed, and one of many more to come.
So that is their story. At least the Cliff Note's version. I wanted you all to know where I'm coming from, and what my transition is all about. That way, as you follow along with me on my journey, you'll have a better understanding of where I'm going. If you take anything from this, I hope it's that Faith will overcome any obstacle you face, and that God will never give you more than you can handle. He gave us three of the most amazing souls to guide through life, and they have taught me personally so much.
They've shown me how to fight when I want to quit, how to laugh when I want to cry, and how to love somebody until it hurts.
I truly, truly do believe in miracles. I've seen them with my own eyes.
|From left to right: D, K, & G|