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It’s amazing to me how much my life has changed and evolved in such a short time. Five years ago, I was ecstatically pregnant with my first child. We had gone through almost two years of fertility treatments (admittedly not long in the world of fertility tx), and couldn’t wait to enter the world of parenthood. Who knew that Ryley would let us know from the beginning that it was all going to be on his schedule? Fast forward five years to Ryley, almost 5 years old, Grace, almost 4, and Ethan, 16 months. Grace and Ethan were thankfully both full-termers. I thought I was “over” Ryley’s preemiehood. HAH! Just before going out on maternity leave for Ethan, MOD came to my office to do a WalkAmerica presentation. I was asked by the office committee to speak, knowing I’d had a preemie. Just getting ready for that speech was emotionally draining, giving it was a whole other story. I had the shakes so bad when I was done, I had to leave the room. I’ve told our story to family, friends, co-workers before, but never before had it so strongly hit me, never before had I so completely relived those emotions, the fear, the triumph. I decided then that it was time to start giving back, to get involved in a way I hadn’t before. This year, I found SHARE, we walked as a Family Team for the first time in April, and I’m looking forward to more opportunities to get involved. God had put other potential and new preemie parents in my path to help along their way. What a gift out of a struggle.

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