Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Fighting for Preemies (and their parents)

Today, I'm stepping into a different pair of shoes. I love photography and happy handmade things, but my heart also rests with families and children. It was an unknown passion that I eventually chased after in college. So when I found out about the Bloggers Unite, Fight for Preemies event, I knew I had to contribute.

The medical advancements in premature birth continue to break through previous barriers. Researchers are finding causes, treatments, and prevention methods for preterm birth. It's still not enough. We need to continue supporting organizations such as the March of Dimes so that we may continue to diminish preterm birth. 

According to the March of Dimes, more than half a million babies are born prematurely in the United States each year. That statistic is rather striking to me and caused me to take a different direction with this blog post. With the half million preemies born each year, there very well may be close to a million parents suffering a different sort of stress. 

NICU parents undergo extreme highs and lows, day to day, hour to hour. They are required to make life or death decisions on a regular basis. Months and years after having a child in the NICU, parents may still be overcome with extreme levels of stress. It is something that will stick with them wherever they may go. 

There's not much we, as bystanders, can do to prevent the tragedy and stress they are enduring. We can, however, ask them if there is anything we can bring them; a toothbrush, some extra clothing, maybe a meal or two? We can help them clean their homes or their laundry. We can sit with them and hold their hand. We can pray for them. 

Being a student of Child Life definitely does not make me an expert in this area; I know this. All the same for my lack of being a parent right now. I can only hope that by making this post, I can encourage some of you to seek out education on premature birth, the NICU, and the immense parental stress it causes.

If you would like to learn more about parental trauma and the NICU, check out this NY Times article.

Also, if you have a moment, please stop by Kayla Aimee's blog. She and her husband Jeff have welcomed Baby Scarlette into the world. Their family would appreciate your prayers!

1 comment:

  1. Nicole:

    On behalf of the March of Dimes, thank you for raising awareness of prematurity and for being part of this event.


Thank you so much for taking time out to comment on my blog!


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