Road to Motherhood


USA, Illinois, Metamora, Hands of mother and daughter (4-5) holding paper heart

Mother’s Day is the day we appreciate our moms for all the love they have shown us, the time and energy that they put into raising us, and of course the tears we have knowingly and unknowingly caused.  

As children, we created cards and art as gifts to give our mothers in school, or someone took us to pick out a little something special for Mom.  This is something I can’t wait to experience. My son is only 9 months now, but down the road I’m sure I will have a box full of uniquely handmade items from my precious boy.  

Celebrating Mother’s Day as a mom was something that I did not think I would get to partake in. (Don’t tell my first baby, Bailey, my 12-year-old terrier mix, that I said this!)  I was told in November of 2014 that I would most likely not be able to get pregnant due to medical complications.  My cycle had completely stopped earlier that year after over a year of multiple hospitalizations and large amounts of IV antibiotics.  

I honestly shouldn’t even be here to tell this story but I AM!  I survived a deadly bacterial infection, necrotizing fasciitis, in June 2013.  I was septic, kidneys failing, barely awake, and in need of emergency surgery, and my family was told it did not look good.  The chances of survival once you are that sick are low; most people end up with amputations or they lose their lives to this fast-spreading, painful, flesh-eating disease.  I lost all of the soft tissue in my right foot and lower leg down to the muscle and bone; it was a miracle I did not lose my right foot completely.   

Somehow, even with collapsed lungs, I never stopped fighting.  It took six months to learn how to walk again after skin-graft surgery.  But I was determined to get stronger.

During this insane time in my life, full of surgeons, nurses and intense pain, I often questioned why I survived…why me?  Once I had my son, two years later, I knew why: he was the reason. I was meant to be his mommy. I went through hell and back. Every time a doctor said that my body wouldn’t be able to do something, my body almost had to prove them wrong.  So, of course when I was told that I would not be able to have a baby, I proved them all wrong! 

By January 2015, I still had no cycle and went to see a gynecologist who was planning on doing a ton of hormonal tests. She even thought maybe I had a pituitary tumor. As I drove to the appointment with my mom, I was mentally preparing myself for the doctor to order a barrage of tests.  So I was shocked when she announced that she did not need to order anything.

She said that after I provided a urine sample, she knew for a fact I was pregnant and did an ultrasound to prove it! There was my almost 7-week-old son’s heartbeat on the monitor. I melted into tears.

This will be my first Mother’s Day but each year it will be special, not just for me but for every mom. Because having a baby, no matter the road traveled, is a true miracle.  

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Nicole is a San Francisco native who grew up in the Noe Valley neighborhood before majoring in Sociology at San Jose State University. In her third year she realized her love of children as her true calling and earned a Early Childhood Education Teaching Certificate. She taught Preschool along the Peninsula for 10 years before a rare medical condition left her unable to continue her career. Now a single mom to the apple of her eye, Joey James keeps her busy. When Nicole is not playing, teaching and snuggling with Joey James she enjoys stroller walks around the Bay Area, music, San Francisco Giants Baseball and ice cubes floating in her Chardonnay.


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