To all of you who have read my posts this month and shared them, you did your part in raising awareness. Before A&R were born, I really had no clue how common it is or all the reasons for it. But prematurity exists and it is a very big problem. Sure, some kids go on to lead typical lives leaving their NICU journey deep in the past, but for many kids it isn't that simple. They struggle daily, and for many years or even for their entire lives, with issues stemming from their birth. And rarely is this made known. Take for example this article that was published in Parenting magazine; All the stories told have the happiest of endings with children having no lasting effects from their prematurity. While success stories like these can give us all hope, the truth is that most premature babies don't have such happy endings. As I complete the "Meet My Preemies" series, I'd like to mention that while we will never be able to leave the NICU behind, we are a success story. I hope I did my part in bringing awareness to the very scary reality that is premature birth.
Without further adieu, I bring you Grayson & Audrey.
|Grayson and Audrey, 24w1d. G was 1lb 8oz and A was 1lb 5oz. They spent 109 days in the NICU and came home 2 days before their due date. They are now 20 months old, and they love swinging, story time, blocks, and bananas :)|
And last but not least, Owen & Miles.
Owen and Miles are identical twins born at 28 weeks gestation. Their early arrival was due to a serious condition called Twin to Twin Transfusion Syndrome. After many tense weeks on hospital bed rest a 100 miles from home, the Dr. felt it was no longer safe for them to remain inside because of Owen's lack of growth from his reversed cord flow. Owen was 2 lbs 13" and Miles was 2 lbs 7 oz 14.25" at birth.
They spent 10 weeks in the NICU facing the typical challenges of being born so premature. After 5 weeks of weaning off the vent and CPAP, Owen and Miles made the 100 mile journey to be closer to home. They spent the last 5 weeks as feeders and growers before they were discharged home together. One of my favorite NICU memories is of them sharing an open crib and them having one another to snuggle with when we weren't there.
They are now 16 months old weighing 18 lbs and 20 lbs. They are catching up in some milestones but we are still working hard to get Owen to eat - he is very stubborn! Both are running (and falling) all over and keep me very busy. Their favorite activities are going on walks, going to the playground and riding the swings, reading books, chasing the cats, running laps around the house, eating pancakes, and watching Baby Einstein. They are a true joy and not a day goes by that I don't feel grateful for how fortunate we are to have them.
Thank you momma Jessica and momma Alice for submitting photos and blurbs.