By: Emma Aguirre

Motherhood is full of surprises…there’s even a commercial featuring Susan Sarandon that says so. My surprises have been 95% good, and yes, there have been a few not so good surprises over the last seven months. A close friend of mine experienced one of mommyhood’s biggest surprises today, by delivering her son at 30 weeks.

So far, mom and baby are doing as well as can be expected. She had a severe case of pre-eclampsia but the doctors were hopeful that they could keep the baby inutero until 32 weeks. I guess the forces that be had other plans. Right now we’re just hopeful mom and baby stay healthy.

My friend had nothing prepared, and barely had done their registry. Given that they just moved into a house a month ago, and with (they assumed) at least 10 more weeks to go, it’s not too surprising. We were just planning her shower last week, but we quickly went into crisis mode and decided to do her nursery instead. Baby will be in the NICU until his due date, but we wanted to put our friends mind at ease, knowing that he would have a room to call his own at home. Hopefully, it satisfied that nesting instinct we moms get and she can tackle it better when she’s feeling up to it. She too has been through so much already, and won’t be able to do the things that need to be done, which would just frustrate me to no end if I were in her shoes. We painted, the furniture is waiting to be built and whittled down her registry to the ‘must have’ items that friends can help with. Toys and books won’t really do much for this little guy right now.

It’s really just been more of a shock to our group of friends. We’ve had two very healthy, happy babies born in our group, mine included, and to now be faced with this situation just makes us hug our little ones a little tighter. Ironic, given that my friend can’t hold her baby for a few days at least. It would have killed me. My very first words after my daughter was born and placed on my stomach was “Can I touch her?” (well, duh!). It’s our natural instinct. It makes me thankful for my healthy pregnancy and my birthing experience. There’s no telling what the future holds for my friend’s little one, or mine, but I hope she gets to experience some of the good surprises motherhood can bring before too long. This could be the beginning of a long battle for my friends, and they will have our support the entire time, but it’s also the beginning of an incredible journey that is parenthood. I wish with all my heart it could have gotten off to a better start.