I cannot believe the walk is less than a month away, well, here in Florida at least. I know there are other places around the country that may even be participating in their local March for Babies walk this weekend or soon after.
Another week, another preemie story to share. Read, cry, smile. These stories pull at your heartstrings whether you’ve walked the preemie walk or not. Please welcome Samantha, from Mommy to a Princess, and the story of her 29 weeker, little Roxy.
Before and during my pregnancy, I had heard the term “premature”. I even have a cousin who had twin boys and lost one after their early arrival. Still, nothing could have prepared me for having my own premature baby, much less, a micro preemie.
The majority of my pregnancy was normal with the exception of constant nausea. There had not been any indication of any problems with the pregnancy progressing full term until I went for my 28 week check-up.
As the nurse was taking my blood pressure and the cuff kept getting tighter, I could feel that something wasn’t quite right. My feelings were correct because I was immediately told to lay on my side in an attempt to get my blood pressure down. Another nurse came in and we were told that the protein in my urine was extremely high.
From the local hospital, I was transferred to a high-risk obstetrician at another hospital. My blood pressure had elevated and was sitting at 191/101. I was seeing bright spots in my vision. Even after feeling exceptionally well before the doctor’s appointment, I was beginning to be a bit concerned with all the developments of the morning.
We were told by the high-risk specialist that our daughter would be born within 48 hours. It was only a matter of how long she and I could co-exist without it becoming fatal.
Twelve hours later, at 29 weeks, 1 day, our daughter was born. Pre-eclampsia was the culprit of her early arrival. Intrauterine growth retardation was the culprit of her small size. She weighed in at 1 pound, 9 ounces. Her small size was just a bit terrifying.
She was whisked away from the delivery room after my husband watched the neonatologists performing resuscitation on her. A couple of hours later, we were able to see Roxy for a short time before she was being transported to a larger hospital with a Level III NICU. It was then that our rollercoaster ride began.
Roxy had a fairly good ride through the NICU. Our biggest scare was a staph infection her first week. Once we overcame that, it was a matter of growing bigger, gaining weight, maintaining temperature and learning skills that full-term babies learn in the womb.
We did have a few small scares – apnea and bradycardia episodes, blood transfusions, testing for NEC and ROP, and routine ultrasounds for her Grade I Intraventricular Brain Hemorrhage. We spent 53 days in the Level III NICU cheering for her as she reached every milestone.
Those milestones are different for premature babies. For Roxy, it was the first time she wore clothes; the first time she had breastmilk; the first time she took a bottle; the first time you see them without tubes and wires and nasal cannulas; the first time you can hold your baby; and the first time you are allowed to change a diaper, give a bath, or take care of their daily care.
Roxy was discharged from the Level II Nursery after another two weeks of care. She came home at 2 months, 1 week old. Today, she is a feisty and spunky 2.5-year-old who loves Disney princesses, Mickey Mouse, and any technological gadget Mommy has. She graduated the NICU Graduate Clinic when she turned 2 and we have never looked back. We are fortunate that she suffers from no long-lasting complications from her early arrival.
We think that babies are too little to fight so hard so we joined the March for Babies in order to fight for those babies ourselves. We believe, one day, all babies will be born healthy!
Want to help out yourself? Donate by clicking the badge in our sidebar. Every dollar makes a difference. At last check, we have raised $590 towards our goal of $1000 this year!