For as long as Jessica Marrota can remember, her son Mikey has longed for a little brother.
Mikey started asking Jessica and her husband for a little brother practically as soon as he could speak. Jessica and her husband were young and had only been married for about a year when they had Mikey. They thought they had plenty of time to give Mikey the little brother he wanted so badly.
When Mikey was three, Jessica and her husband began trying for baby number two. Even though Jessica had gotten pregnant with Mikey with no trouble, her second time was much harder.
After a year of trying and numerous visits to fertility specialists, Jessica finally got a positive test on December 9, 2016. This also happened to be Mikey’s fifth birthday, making the news even more special. Jessica, her husband, and Mikey went to her parents’ house to celebrate Mikey’s birthday. She told them the news, and they were overjoyed.
Unfortunately, in January 2017, Jessica suffered a miscarriage. The baby had trisomy 13, which would have been fatal even if the baby had gone to full term. While she was on the phone with the doctor, she asked if they knew the gender. The doctor said it was a boy, and Jessica’s heart broke even more—Mikey had finally gotten his little brother, but now he was an angel baby.
Over the next few months, Jessica and her husband put their baby plans on hold while they moved to a new town and got settled into their new house.
In summer 2017, Jessica and her husband sat Mikey down and explained there was a chance they would just be a family of three. This was hard on everyone, but they did their best to enjoy their summer.
That fall, Mikey headed off to kindergarten. Jessica noticed that she was a bit more emotional than usual while she said goodbye to Mikey, and she was also exhausted. Jessica took three pregnancy tests, and they all confirmed what she had already suspected. She was pregnant again!
On Halloween, Jessica and her husband learned they were having another little boy. Mikey was thrilled—he couldn’t wait to finally be a big brother!
From Halloween to Christmas, everything went smoothly with Jessica’s pregnancy.
But unfortunately, at the 18-week scan, they learned the baby was measuring a week smaller than he should have been. The OB had them come back three weeks later, and then, they learned that the baby was now five weeks behind where he should have been. The doctor warned them there was a high risk of ‘uterine demise,’ but Jessica and her husband both said they would fight for their little boy.
In February 2017, Jessica was admitted to antepartum, where she spent the last month of her pregnancy.
Mikey visited her twice a week, and he held his mom’s hand while she was put on the monitor. The sweet little boy wanted to make sure his mom was alright.
When the baby was 30 weeks and 6 days old, the doctors told Jessica they had to induce birth, or they would risk the baby being stillborn.
Jessica had an emergency C-section, and soon, little Jake Eric was out in the world. He weighed only 1 pound and 12 ounces. While the birth was difficult, telling Mikey he finally had a baby brother helped add joy to the day.
“That night my in-laws brought Mikey to see me and we told him he finally had his baby brother, Jake,” Jessica says. “The first time Mikey saw him, he beamed and said, ‘he has red hair just like me!’”
Jake spent about two months in the NICU.
During that time, Mikey spent as much time as he could with Jake. He learned how to wash his hands and open the isolette’s portholes so he could touch his brother. But Mikey was sad that he couldn’t hold Jake.
One day, Jessica asked the doctors if Mikey could do skin-to-skin contact. She expected the doctors to say no, but to her surprise, they agreed. On March 17, 2018, Mikey became the first ever-sibling to do skin-to-skin contact at the NICU Boston. Jessica captured a beautiful photo of the moment.
After 62 days, Jake was allowed to go home with his family. As soon as they got home, Mikey quickly took to his role as big brother.
“Every morning our two boys start their day with snuggles in my bed. I feel honored to witness their love. Their bond is amazing, and my husband and I often say that we wish Jake looked at us the way he looks at Mikey,” Jessica says.
Mikey is a truly incredible little boy who loves his little brother more than anything in the world! If you’d like to see more photos of Mikey and Jake, check out their Instagram page.
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Source: Love What Matters