You know how a dog tilts his head in curious confusion? That’s the look I’ve gotten lately from Toby, Eleanor and Callista when I’ve mentioned that November is Prematurity Awareness Month and that World Prematurity Day is this Friday.

They know that they were born “really early,” that they were “very sick” and that we were all “worried,” but the impact of those words don’t hit them as they hit me.

I am grateful for that. Our lives could look much different.

Survivor’s guilt is a real thing, and mine manifests in different ways. One way is constantly feeling the responsibility to advocate for all babies to have the best possible outcome just like mine did.

We have participated in March of Dimes’ March for Babies, they have heard stories and seen pictures, but the passionate advocacy just isn’t there.

And before you tell me they’re just kids, let me tell you that these kids have passion to spare. Believe me. So much passion. All day long.

So how do I stoke that fire? How do I help them get it? Stacey Stewart, the current March of Dimes president had a simple suggestion:

My next conversation about World Prematurity Day with Toby, Eleanor and Callista will look more like this. Fairness is one of the issues they are most passionate about, so I can’t see fairness failing to get them fired up.

Regardless of whether this new approach works, I’ll be writing, and we’ll be wearing purple on Nov. 17. What are you doing to support babies everywhere on World Prematurity Day and beyond?

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