Monday, January 9, 2012

Wow...

Hello new readers! There has been quite the jump in activity on Life with Jack this morning. It seems many of you are coming to read my "What Not to Say" post... and many of you are having strong feelings about it. I want to say thank you for stopping by! I always love to see new traffic and people interested in micro preemies and especially our miracle Jack. I want to give you a little context for how that post came about. 

It was actually a year ago, right during this time, that I wrote it. I was having a particularly hard week. I was frustrated and scared about Jack's progress. No one ever said having a micro preemie would be easy! I was experiencing what many of us preemie parents experience. Unfortunately, people can say some hurtful stuff and that specific morning, I felt I needed to write about it... to explore my feelings and to have some time to vent. Yes, this is my blog and I believe blogging is the cheapest form of therapy, so I vented. I can see now, looking back, that I was very angry and trying to process my anger.  I am the first to admit it. 

I don't apologize for writing it. On the contrary, the majority of feedback I have gotten has been positive and affirming. But, I felt the need to explain this to you today. That is the process of blogging. You have good days and bad days. A blog is a personal opinion and not everyone has to agree.

Let me end by just saying this: We will never, ever regret saving Jack's life and performing life-saving measures on him. It has always been worth it, even with the challenges and special needs. It was never even a consideration. Life is ALWAYS worth it.  I feel very sorry for you if you disagree with our decision and sad that you would feel the need to share that. I challenge anyone to come and say such a thing to Jack's face. I assure you, one look and your heart would change. 
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16 comments:

The Kimmels said...

I must have somehow missed your "What Not to Say" post, but I had also written a similar one on my blog. I found myself nodding along in agreement to many of the things on your list. While Cohen doesn't have some of the challenges that Jack does, I still relate to so many of the things you said.

I think there will always be people that just don't "get it". They never will either. They haven't been through it so there is no way that they could and that's what I try to remind myself of. And yes, some people will always have a worse "sob story" but I don't think that's what this is about. I think the reason these things bother us so much is that these are our BABIES. We know how hard they fought, they have been through more in their little lives then most adults have been through. We want to protect our kids and I think part of it is also the grieving of our "normal" birth story and raising a baby that we didn't get to have.

I too try hard not to complain, and the "I had such a hard pregnancy" comments especially really get to me because i would have given anything to have a normal uneventful pregnancy. Experiences like you have had changes your perspective of what is "bad". Of course none of us are perfect, so of course I am going to complain occasionally. I would have given anything to have both of my boys here. Thank you for helping people understand a little more the things that we and our babies go through. (Okay that was kind of long...sorry! This just happens to be a topic that I feel strongly about too :)

Anonymous said...

Oh my! I have been reading your blog.....having been lead there by another blog. I did not have a micro-preemie, but I applaud you and every parent who chooses LIFE!!! It is so amazing to me the strides that Jack has made. He is a precious child of God. You have educated me is so many ways.
So, I am in support of ANYTHING you feel you need to share on YOUR blog. I would think that the vast majority of your readers feel the same way.

Continuing to pray for you, for Jack and other sweet little ones and their parents.

Thank you for sharing your heart with us!! Blessings to you all!

Anna

Anonymous said...

I love, love, love your blog Jessi! From one micro preemie Momma to another, a huge high 5 for posting this today! I can understand the comments and the hurtful sayings but I can say that my 23 weeker, who weighed 14 oz., is still here with me today because I never gave up on him either! You go girl! I will never regret intervening and having dr.'s save Michael's life! Big hugs to you Momma! You inspire me every day! Love, Kristin (Miracle Michael's Mommy)

Kristi said...

I have been following your blog for a couple of months and it actually inspired me to create one of my own. I find it very helpful and thoughtful that you let us into your life and most importantly Jacks life. It is a good feeling to know that your not alone. That there is a light at the end of the tunnel. Whoever doesn't like your blog or agree with it should just ignore it. I, having a 24 weeker, know how difficult and mean people can be regardless of whether they know it or not. So from my bottom of my heart, thanks for being frank and honest.

Shannon said...

AMEN, Jessi! I have been challenged so many times, especially lately for choosing life for my children. I did not give birth to any of them, but by adopting them, I chose life for them. There are people who belive we chose wrong. There are people who have shunned us, who have chastised us for our decisions. There are people who have said our children would've been better off left to die in their orphanages. Yet, those people have never had the courage to stand before my children and say it to their faces (nor would I allow it). My children are amazing, beautiful gifts to us and I belive, gifts to this world. So is Jack. Despite the challenges we face as families, and despite the challenges our children face, THEY ARE SO WORTH IT!

. said...

Thank you so much for making the time in your busy schedule to share your feelings and thoughts, both negative and positive. That's real life after all. I did make the mistake of saying "my daughter was premature (33 weeks)" and I then heard for the first time the term and description of "micro-preemie". Today, I'm learning more, thanks to people like you.

Please forgive those of us who are trying to empathize and end up saying something that is upsetting. I know I also took it hard when people asked me certain questions. It's the human condition.

One thing I do wonder - do you think it would be of benefit to you and to your son to have little slips of paper with your blog address printed on them that says something like "Please refer to www. for more information" and thanks for understanding my need to not continually answer these questions?" Just a thought.

The Very Best to you and your family.

J and Y said...

I just found your blog and started following the other day. I have twins that were 24 weekers and am just starting to face the questions. We spent the first years pretty much in isolation. At two, we are about to enter into humanity again this spring, and I am nervous, mainly for all the reasons in the "what not to say" post. I have already had a few of those questions, and we haven't even done that much. One of my boys wears glasses. You can only imagine the number of comments those have elicited, my favorite was the one from the grown adult asking if they were swim goggles and if we had just come back from the pool... they look like the REAL glasses that they are... You have inspired me to do my own what not to say post, because honestly, a little more compassion and kindess would be nice. I was just asked the other day when my two year old was going to walk, because you know all parents know exactly what day, hour, and minute their child is going to walk. :)

Jessi said...

J and Y - thank you so much for reading and taking the time to comment. I really, truly LOVE hearing from you. I think writing your own What Not to Say post is a great idea. Sometimes you just have to put it out there!

Anonymous said...

Love, love, love this Jessi! Just found your blog and I think it's great. My son is 9, was not a preemie but had a serious birth injury, so we have dealt with some similar issues... He has CP and is still doing therapies and making progress every day. The initial few years of exhausting daily life eventually morphed into a challenging but much more manageable and social existence, and I very much hope that yours does too. Jack is absolutely adorable. What a lucky momma you are! Keep up the great work on the blog and on all that you and your husband do to help Jack to keep making progress. It really and truly adds up.

Graham Girl said...

Thank you for this post. My son was born with a heart defect. We spent the first three and a half weeks in the hospital. When we were finally home I had very similar questions.My favorite was "I know exactly what you are going through. I had to take my son up to the ER with a temp or 104." After 15 years of this on and off, I am SO glad to hear I am not the only parent who is annoyed if not angered.

Thank you for your blog. It is so up lifting!

Charee Harrison said...

Hi Jessi. I don't think this was a negative post in any way...I'm sure you are overloaded often with questions and comments that are, to be kind, rude. Don't ever apologize for being you. Wouldn't it be great if there was a way to convey these tips before people open their mouths? Maybe you should print this up and hand it out lol. Your little man is adorable and I think you are an amazing momma. Keep blogging, and know I pray for your family's health daily.
Charee Harrison

hmv003 said...

Oh, and every baby is worth saving. Every. Single. One.

lizard1508 said...

Thank you for being so open and honest. As a person who has never been in anything close to your situation, it is incredibly helpful to hear what would be best for you and others like you to hear. Before reading this, I might have said something that set a negative tone to your day. I am now aware that I should choose my words carefully in order to build up.

Thank you so much!

Hannah J said...

I just found you on pinterest, and I wanted to tell you I am going to pray for you and your family.

I'm so sorry for all that you've gone through. I can't even imagine the pain that was caused by some of the comments people would say.

I hope you and Jack are doing well. On a side note, I looked as his picture on the side panel and he is adorable.

Have a nice day.

Anonymous said...

I just read this today. My prayers are with you and your family.

Anonymous said...

Jack is one GORGEOUS boy! Congratulations on your beautiful family:)