Teeny Tiny Girls

A Memoir

Have you ever held a new born baby? I don't know what the statistics on average birth weight are, but let's say a baby born at 6 pounds 9 ounces - the size of my first baby girl. She seemed tiny and oh so fragile. Holding her for the first time was almost frightening, supporting the head, making sure to hang on to the rest too and not drop her on the cold tile floor. Daunting for a brand new parent.

Now reduce that tiny 6 pound 9 ounce little girl to 4 pounds 14 ounces. That was the birth weight of my second little girl. Tiny for real. Physically, holding her was probably easier. Her body could lie on my forearm, her head in my hand. Mentally, it challenged the imagination.

Take one more reduction, to 1 pound 8 ounces for baby girl three. If 4 pounds 14 ounces is tiny - and it is - how do you label 1 pound 8 ounces? Fortunate to be breathing, absolutely. Miniscule, Lilliputian, the size of a Barbie doll. All the above. And forget about holding her. She was in an isolette in a neo-natal intensive care unit for a long haul.