Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Fight For Preemies


I have seen 2 sides of the NICU. I have seen the bright side, where my baby although was born early, was born healthy enough to go home after a few light treatments for jaundice. I also saw the scary side, where my baby was born too early and struggled with things that we do unconsciously, such as breathing. Her organs weren't developed enough to handle milk that I had nursed, she received nutrients through an IV with a fluid called TPN. The NICU had to special order her diapers because the preemie sized were too big. I saw my baby fight for her life from the get go. We are so blessed to have our daughter home and healthy. Bright eyed with a smile that would melt a heart made of stone, many parents aren't as lucky. Many parents see 'prematurity' listed as one of the primary reasons of death on the death certificate of their child.

No parent, no mother, no family should have to endure the pain and heartache of having a premature baby. No child should have to fight for their life. We all deserve to have a healthy baby and a healthy start.

I recently found out that more than half of premature births, the doctors have no idea what happened. With Nate, I developed preaclampsia. With Abby, no clue... and I didnt go into labor, I didn't develop preaclampsia, my body simply couldn't handle being pregnant and the doctors don't know why and couldn't stop it.

Premature birth jeopardizes the lives and health of nearly half-million babies each year. It is the #1 killer of newborns and can lead to lifelong disabilities. Worse: the number has increased 31 percent since 1981. That's scary. With all the medical advances we have made since 1981, we can't seem to decrease the number of premature births in America.

That's why it's up to us... The parents... the people who have been affected by a child born too soon to fight. So that the ones who haven't been affected, aren't. Educate yourself if you are an expecting parent. Don't go into your pregnancy blindly, hanging on every word of your doctor. Knowledge is power and you are in control of your life and your babies life.


3 comments:

Alisha said...

Beautiful post. You make a good point that the NICU has 2 sides.

THE PARKERS said...

LOOK HOW BIG THEY BOTH ARE GETTING.... PICTURE TO CUTE. SO TRUE CAUSE I HAD TWO HEALTHY BOYS BORN FULL TERM AND THEN ALL OF A SUDDEN I WAS GOING INTO LABOR AT 34 WEEKS WITH MY BABY GIRL... THEY HAVE NO IDEA WHY JUST TELL ME SHE WAS READY TO COME. SHE WAS IN THE NICU FOR 8 DAYS AND I FEEL LIKE WE SAW THE GOOD SIDE OF IT, YEAH SHE HAD TROUBLE BREATHING BUT OT COULD HAVE BEEN SO MUCH WORSE AND WE ARE VERY THANKFUL FOR A HAPPY, HEALTHY BABY GIRL

Azzy said...

Traci:

There are no words to describe how unfortunate premature birth can be, but I have to say that you managed to summarize it in a very exceptional way. The toll for the families, the baby and for all of us as a community it is just tremendous. I am glad to hear that Nate and Abby are doing well. On the behalf of the March of Dimes, I thank you for supporting our fight for preemies. We are fighting to help every baby have a healthy start. Once again, thank you for your support and for sharing your story.