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Meet Desirè, Preemie Mom

November is World Prematurity Month. To honour and support the moms of preemies, we are sharing stories of moms who’ve been there and who can offer support from the other side of a long road. This is Desirè’s story.


Tell us about the day your baby was born.

Matthew was born at 32 weeks and 3 days. It was a normal day driving to work for me after dropping off my husband at the airport, undergoing his way to Durban. I felt weird and remembered lower back pain during the evening but didn’t think much of it. I work in a Military environment as a Social Worker. Arriving at the Military Sick Bay I felt pain and went to the bathroom. When I saw the blood I had to tell myself to keep calm. Luckily for me we have medical personnel in our Sick Bay as well. I told the Doctor that I’m bleeding and she immediately phoned the Gynecologist department at 2 Military Hospital who suggested I came in to the Hospital. My colleague drove me to 2 Military Hospital which is in Wynberg, Cape Town. From Gordon’s Bay to Wynberg, opposite sides from each other in traffic. I could feel I’m bleeding more and more and all I could do was remain calm and telling God that I’m trusting him. Arriving at the hospital they did not waste any time. I lost too much blood and the Gynecologist told me we have to deliver to save my life as well as baby’s life. There was also a risk of both losing our lives, or either one of us surviving or not. In all the chaos happening around me I had to inform my husband, who just landed in Durban he needs to come back home and inform my parents as well. Everything went so fast. I was totally sedated and only saw baby 2 days after birth.


Can you describe some of the emotions you experienced during the early days and weeks with your baby?

I felt emotional and not in control. I felt sad and not competent cause I struggled to produce breast milk and knew that baby depends on my breast milk for survival. I was 90% teary and an emotional wreck. But baby was so strong and overcame each battle thrown at him and this gave me the encouragement to also go on.


Do you have any words of encouragement for a mom who is currently waiting for her baby to come home?

Stay strong. Trust God (or whoever you believe in as a higher power). Pray, pray, pray. Depend on your family for support and know that your strength filters down to baby and vice versa.


Read more stories like this one.