On March 26th, 2016 at 8:05 am my life changed forever. Miss Adaline Grace entered this earth weighing 6lbs and 13 oz at 19.5 inches long. As my husband watched from his army barracks on FaceTime, our family of two grew to a family of three. The best moment of my life was quickly ruined by the worst moments of my life. I type this as my beautiful baby girl lays next to me (in her bassinet) making sweet sounds fast asleep, and my heart is bursting with joy. A feeling I feared I would never experience with her. After she was born the doctors took her away for “observation” for what seemed like forever. My sweet nurse Cindy finally asked me if I’d like to see my daughter, and she rolled me to this glass room. On the way there, I’ll never forget the looks I received from all the staff on the floor. At first I thought they were all moved to tears by her existence like I was. But I was soon going to find out exactly why the halls were filled with pitty. They rolled me into the “nursery” and placed her in my arms. The tubes in her nose scared me. But I couldn’t help but hold her close to my heart. Literally. I’ll never forget the doctor who told me she was going to be transferred to a different facility and need the NICU because she couldn’t breathe on her own and she had a pocket of air outside her lungs. I had about 30 min with my sweet angel before they took her from me and placed her in the scariest incubator thing I’ve ever seen and rolled her onto an ambulance. My heart shattered. Within the first minutes of her life she was being covered in wires and taken away in an ambulance. My baby. She was supposed to be being loved up on by all of our close family and friends. Hugged and kissed and constantly told how beautiful she is. But instead she was to be poked and prodded and left alone in an incubator. Her first night here on earth, she was alone and I was alone. No husband and no daughter. My womb was empty. I was empty. This was the first in 9 months I was alone. I was discharged as soon as they would let me go. The next week was filled with countless hours in the same uncomfortable chair, watching her heart rate, her respiratory monitor and her stats. I was told how to hold my daughter, when I could hold my daughter, that I couldn’t try breast feeding my daughter, I wasn’t even allowed to kiss her for the first whole week of her life. But none of that was going to stop us from being there everyday for as long as they would allow us. We got in the way, we made our selves at home and I did my best to mother my baby. When she was allowed to be touched and held, I made sure that I had her every second. Covered in wires and tubes and surrounded by alarms we somehow managed to bond. I remember falling into a deep sleep. Probably the best sleep I had in months. With her on my chest, this was the first time she was hearing my heart beat outside my body. Each night going home was torture. Tears were shed, I was mad at God and my self. I slightly still blame my self for her being in that place for so long. “If I had just taken antibiotics for that terrible cold I had for the last three weeks she would probably be at home with me by now” played through my head on repeat every night. Each day was an unknown. But God always showed up. Everyday she was improving. My little fighter. She needed me as much as I needed her. When I wasn’t with her I was watching all the videos we had just taken of her. My heart just wanted to explode. It took everything I had to not demand treatments stop and just bring her home. But sadly I knew I wasn’t the best thing for her just yet. These strangers were the ones taking care of her, replacing my job. Looking back on it I’m very thankful for them, but in the moment I would leave angry at them. Angry at the situation. Angry at my self. But I know this won’t be the last of Doctor appointments. My little one will eventually need more help than most and require more visits and tests. So they will be more like adventures for us. With each visit we will learn more about this little warrior God has blessed us with. She will challenge us, take us to depths of our heart we didn’t know existed, and allow us to see beauty through different eyes. She already makes me want to be a better person. A better mom, a better wife, a better daughter, sister and friend. I hope one day, you are blessed enough to encounter the amazing soul that lives in my precious Adaline. Though she be but little, she is fierce.