I was born to be a strong woman

The name Aisha has many meanings in Muslim, American and Arabic, but they all can be summed up to mean life and a prosperous, vivacious woman. According to sheknows.com, women named Aisha tend to be quiet, considerate, trustworthy, and also like detail and order. It also states that Aisha has a deep inner desire to inspire others. (Hmmm so that’s where I get it from.)

But Aisha wasn’t always my name. Actually my parents didn’t have a name nailed down completely when I arrived, but my mom had her mind set on Sarah. So luckily, my parents didn’t name me. My Auntie Jamilla did and boy am I happy for that. It’s such a special piece of her that I keep with me, a gift of a name. I wonder if she knew the meaning of that name or just picked it from the sound. To literally be named “life” after almost not making it out of your mother’s womb is pretty powerful and gives me so much meaning.

My mother was seven months when she was admitted into the hospital after having complications due to her blood pressure. I was no longer responding well, and neither was she. Her doctor decided to do an emergency C-Section to get me out and get her stable. I stopped responding several times after they delivered me, but those awesome doctors and God were able to keep bringing me back.

Two pounds. Two Ounces. That’s how much I weighed. Many preemie babies don’t survive that weight or can grow up with health complications later. They kept me cooking a bit longer in an incubator, and my parents got to know me in there. So there are no cute hospital photos of me. Just a tiny little baby, with tubes and war tape trying to make it fully into the world. I say war tape, not just because it sounds cool, but because preemies aren’t called miracle babies for nothing. There’s a true fight that takes place in them and I’m happy God blessed me with that fight.

After reaching five pounds, a month later, I was released to go home. Many fear of the developmental complications preemies have from being born so earlier, but I was good. Went home and did what other babies do—kept my parents up most of the night. They actually had to give me cereal in my bottle in my first week home (approved by the doctor) because I wouldn’t stopped crying. My doctor said, “Maybe she’s hungry, give her the cereal”. It worked, ha! Seemed like my appetite was catching up. I’m sure that’s why I love food so much now.

I always love telling my birth story, because many people wouldn’t guess it. Many wouldn’t guess half of the things I’ve been through in my life. My dad once said, “You fought your way into the world and you’re still fighting to get where you want to be.” He was right and I believe that my name prepared me for that. It’s a daily reminder that life can end before it starts, that it can be short, it’s precious and every day is valuable because it isn’t promised. So Aisha will live life just that way, like there’s no tomorrow.

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