Newborns In Need

Thursday, September 6, 2012

*Warning: This article introduction contains a bit of baby-birth-story information though I attempted to keep it tame.*

Goodness, this picture was taken four and a half years ago. It seems so long ago, yet I remember seeing my baby in that little incubator box, with tears in my eyes, like it was just moments ago. Little Miss surprised us all by coming early. She was a robust premie if you can even put those two words side by side. 5 pounds, 5 ounces. A tad more than 35 weeks.

I started bleeding in the morning and we wound up in the hospital, checked-in, by early afternoon. Four hours into labor, as the nurses outside our door were casting lots to see if we would end up in the OR for an emergency c-section. But Little Miss made her appearance there in that delivery room.

She seemed tiny. They took her first. She was breathing okay. After a bit she went to her daddy because I kept bleeding. The placenta delivered and we realized the abruption was more grave than we had seen on the ultra sound earlier. She and I were very lucky to still be here.

We went home after a few days, only to come back to the hospital for photo-therapy. Routine. Her brother had the same thing. Then the nurses found she was cold. Very cold. Whispering they rolled her little incubator away from us and out the door. Blood tests. IV lines. Spinal taps. Twice attempted. So many wires. Tubes. Beeping. They didn't know why her body was so cold. We felt worried. We felt empty scared.

She was admitted to NICU. And we had to go home.

We traveled an hour each way to visit our tiny daughter every day. We held her, tape, tubes, lines and all. We prayed, we talked to her, we rocked her...and we cried a lot.

She didn't have anything wrong with her. Her brain had just decided to not warm her little body. She only stayed a week and came home to us in the baby seat her brother had used.

We realized she needed premie clothing. Regular newborn size fanned out on her like flippers. She needed premie diapers. Newborn diapers fell down off her bottom. She needed premie everything. And we realized we needed a premie mindset and a premie heart to get through that time and then all the ups and downs that can come from being born a bit early.

My husband and I were so very lucky. We were surrounded by so much love, support, and compassion from the nursing staff, friends, and our families. We feel lucky that God led us through. He held our hands and walked right beside us when we needed it the most. And he blessed us with the wonderful soul Little Miss is today.

As I watch my premie-girl grow, I think about the babies born to so much less. Who is watching out for their needs? Who is helping mothers struggling? Sometimes no one. I ask myself, can I help? Can I be that one to support a baby? A new mother? In my heart, I know I am being called by God to do just that, help others in need. 
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Newborns In Need (NIN) is a 501(c)(3) non profit organization with chapters across the country. NIN is dedicated to bringing love, support, and living essentials for babies born to poverty, especially the tiniest, who are born prematurely. Through NIN’s specific initiative, Sophie’s Place, special volunteers help give comfort to families grieving for their little one who did not survive. Donated clothing, formula, diapers and other essentials are distributed through local chapters to area agencies, hospitals, and shelters.

And now the bit for you the is how you can help right now. NIN also greatly appreciates donations of fabric, thread, quilt batting, yarns and ribbons. Chapter Volunteers meet monthly to cut, sew, knit and crochet blankets for local babies who have little else. Please check their website for the specific types of materials they accept before making your donation. Send your donation to your local chapter, and sign up to be a volunteer to start making a difference.

If you feel compelled to give, visit their website to learn more about their other initiatives serving the needs of newborns across the country.

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Thank you for visiting! Hugs and prayers ~ Abbie


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