I’ve always hated the word, “viable”. I associate it with abortion, which instantly makes me so very sad. So I really, really, really hate that I’ve had to think about it in terms of this pregnancy; that I’ve had to hear it from my doctor in referring to my baby.
Fact: if I go into labor and have this baby before 24 weeks, my doctor has already told me that the big city hospital that I would have to be transferred to will not do anything to try to keep the baby alive. Because before 24 weeks, the baby is not considered viable.
Wait, what? You won’t even try? We just get to hold our baby and watch him or her die? How is that a thing? What the fuck does viable have to do with it? Human life=worth saving. Period. Who gets to decide when it’s too early for a miracle?
So since I started having daily contractions in my 16th week, 24 weeks has become my new mental finish line. Not that I want the baby to come any earlier than my December 1st due date, but 24 weeks is now the safe zone in my head. Of course, there’s still a lot that could go wrong with a baby born that early. It’s definitely not even close to a 100% certainty of survival. But at least there would be a chance. That’s what I’m hoping for with this baby–that there at least be a chance that he or she will live.
Fun fact: my mom was born at 24 weeks in 1964. The fact that she survived in and of itself is miraculous. The fact that she has absolutely no birth defects is God. She’s never had any mental handicaps and the only lung deficiency she suffers from is exercise induced asthma. Looking at her now, no one would ever be able to tell that she was born so early.
Horribly ironic fact: I will be exactly–to the day–24 weeks pregnant on my mom’s birthday.
I might be freaking out now. But let me go ahead and shake all this off so I can stay calm, because stress is bad for my condition.