February 10, 2017


Nicholas’s Story

by Cyndi Mininni

Do you remember that poem; Monday’s Child?

“Monday’s child is fair of face,

Tuesday’s child is full of grace,

Wednesday’s child is full of woe,

Thursday’s child has far to go. …etc.”

Well, this poem always stuck with me. You see, I’m a Tuesday’s child, and as a pre-child adult, the one word my friends would always use to describe me was classy. I remember looking up when my mom was born and she’s a Wednesday’s child. Boy did that ever fit her! She struggled her whole life and I swore that would not be my life or my children’s life.

New Year’s Eve 2008, I broke up with my then-boyfriend of 6 years. At 35 years old, after many failed long-term relationships, and helplessly watching my dreaNicholas19ms of having a family, a child, slip through my hands and not be able to do anything about it, I decided to let it all go and just take care of me. In January 2009, I searched for how to become a foster parent and I started going to the gym. I was going to move on and not wait around for another relationship to fail me, and I was going to lend myself to children who already existed who needed someone to help them. By mid-January I had started the classes at the gym, and my foster parenting certification classes started soon after that. I loved the gym I was going to – a boot camp style gym and felt right at home. I immediately hit it off with the owner of the gym and soon he and I started dating. He was charismatic, had the gift of gab and his boot camp program worked amazingly well. I had lost 22 lbs in 2 months and I hadn’t even changed my Taco Bell diet. After about 2 months of dating this guy, we were intimate. Twice. And right after the second time I found out things about him that forced me to end the relationship. Around the same time, I also finished my foster parenting classes. Even though romantic relationships were clearly not working for me, at least I was still moving on towards something that would fulfill me in other areas. A few weeks later I found out I was pregnant. Wait, what?? Talk about mixed emotions. I was happy, confused, now what? I told the guy I was pregnant and to my surprise he wanted nothing to do with the baby. Are you serious? Who does that? A man walking away from their child was something I had never been around. I’m one of 4 and I have LOTS of cousins. Even if people in my family got divorced, they still took care of their children like nothing had ever happened. Now I was hurt and mad too.


I was due December 12, 2009. I had a pretty easy pregnancy. I found out I had to watch my blood sugar, but aside from that, everything was good. I LOVED being pregnant!!! I managed my blood sugar well and I only gained 8 lbs during my pregnancy I didn’t feel Nicholas move around too much, but I just thought that was because I was overweight. My ultrasound and prenatal appointments went well and Nicholas was a “good healthy baby boy with LOTS of hair!” December 12th came and went, no Nicholas. December 13th, no Nicholas. Monday, December 14th came and my doctor said we have to induce. I said ok. My doctor said the 16th, I said no, any day but the 16th. She was in surgery all day on the 15th, and going out of town on the 17th. I begged her “not the 16th, please, not the 16th!” She didn’t understand why I was so against the 16th, but if I had told her it was a Wednesday and attributed the outcome to the poem, she probably would have assigned me to the mental ward.

Nicholas%2010So, I went along with along with it. I was admitted into the hospital at 6pm on Tuesday, and after not dilating AT ALL, my doctor decided against inducement and on Wednesday, December 16, at 7:35am, I delivered Nicholas through C-section. It’s a good thing too because Nicholas’ left leg was bent so far forward that even though his foot was in the air, his knee was still facing forward because his hip twisted completed around. Nicholas was born with hip dysplasia. They ordered a harness for him and it was an easy fix. My hospital stay was easy, Nicholas never cried. After 3 days of healing, we got to go home.

Nicholas was such a great baby!!! He was always content, never cried, and slept through the night Nicholas%2015after 1 month. At 3 months He went from his bassinet to his crib and the transition was seamless!  I breast-fed Nicholas until he was 4 months old. My milk had stopped coming in and I switched him to formula. That’s when everything started changing. Nicholas began to start having constant issues with gas, bloat and constipation. I tried 6 different formulas and I settled on gentle-ease. He was still having issues, but they we mild in comparison to the effects of the previous 5 formulas. Nicholas wouldn’t roll over or really move too much at all when we did tummy time. He had no interest at all. Even though his eye contact was there and he was Nicholas%2014connected to me socially, Physically-speaking it was like he was a preemie. I had spoken to his doctor about his development and he said it was normal, nothing to worry about. At 7 months old, still not sitting up, but very much into me, Nicholas began what turned into 6.5 years of constant, repetitive sinus and ear infections. From age 7 mos to 12 mos, he had 8 ear and double ear infections back to back to back. He was consuming antibiotics like I consume water and he was still dealing with his gut issue. At 9 months, Nicholas had a 2 week break from infections and the ENT doctor said let’s place tubes in his ears (this would be the 1st of 4 ear tube surgeries in 4 years). He put the tubes in. A few days later he was sick again and on another round of antibiotics. 10 days later we had his well-baby check-up. Because Nicholas was so far behind in his vaccines, his Pediatrician said he needed to be caught up. On his last day of that round of antibiotics, Nicholas received 4-5 shots with a total of 8 different vaccines. (I didn’t know at the time that 2 weeks needed to go but from his last dose of antibiotics before he was to get shots). That night Nicholas came down with a 103.2 fever and held it for 2-1/2 days, after which he broke out into a rash covering his entire body. I took him to see to the doctor and was told it was Roseola and that it was going around.  That’s when Nicholas stopped looking at me, stopped cooing, oohing and aahing. It was like someone turned his switch off. I didn’t exist is in eyes anymore.

At 7 months old, Nicholas still had not yet been able to sit up completely. He started walking while holding on to things when he was 12 months, and began craw