Hello and welcome to our first every Micro Preemie Monday! I’m so excited to have you here, and to share some amazing stories with you. I’m even more excited to share some beautiful, super strong babies with you.
Many people have probably heard the term “Preemie” before, but “Micro Preemie” may be unfamiliar. According to About.com, “a micro preemie is a baby born weighing less than 1 pound, 12 ounces (800 grams) or before 26 weeks gestation.”
To give you some perspective, a full-term baby is born between 38 and 40 weeks. My oldest was born at 38 weeks, and he weighed 6 lbs 13 oz.
My twins, however, were born at just 25 weeks, 5 days, so they fit in this category of Micro Preemie. My little guy was only 1 lb 7 oz, but his brother was a whopping 2 lbs 2 oz. Still, by the definition, they were Micro Preemies. While all babies that are born premature face many obstacles, these guys face special challenges being born so early and so small. They often spend a long time in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU,) and are very sick. They usually need a lot of assistance breathing, regulating their temperature, and are very sensitive to touch. They often have to fight infections, brain bleeds, and a whole host of complications from being born so early and so small.
I’ve shared a lot about my babies and their challenges on the blog. I share them to inspire and give hope to others who may be in the same situation, and also to educate people. Raising awareness is a powerful way to fight premature birth, and one of the reasons I’m such a strong supporter of the March of Dimes. The March of Dimes tries to raise awareness about Premature Birth, and to give every baby a healthier start in life.
Each Monday, I will share about a Micro Preemie(s) and their journey. Some are at the beginning, some are recently out of the hospital, and some have already grown into remarkable kids.
While each story is unique, premature birth is not. 1 in 9 babies are born premature, according to the March of Dimes research. The chance that you or someone you know has a premature baby is a very real possibility. These families need support, and to know they are not alone.
Today, I’d like to share about another family who is just beginning their life with Micro Preemies.
I met Renee in a support group on Facebook. Like me, she also has twin boys, and they were born at a very similar gestation. Unlike my twins, Renee’s each had their own placenta and sac, but there’s still a chance they could be identical. They will wait to have them tested until they are older. Here is Renee’s story.
1. Tell us about your babies.
Liam & Kaiden, born May 18th 2015 @ 25 weeks +4 days. Weight: Liam 1 lb 12 ounces & Kaiden 1 lb 11.5 ounces.
2. How long was your Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) stay? What was the hardest part?
Just started our nicu journey. So far it will be two weeks this Monday. The hardest part is not being able to hold and nurse my babies. I’m a very hands on, attachment parenting mommy. It’s killing me inside to not be able to nurture them.
3. Do you know what caused your babies’ premature birth?
One of my placentas abrupted, and then my water broke. It was guessed that there was some infection due to many yeast infections.
4. How are you and your babies doing today?
I am doing the best I can. My husband and I are closer than ever, and our other 3 babes (Emma 8, Austin 8, and Carter almost 2) are learning a new way of life. We travel 2 hours north of where we live to see our babies, and it’s been a big adjustment for us. We are still in the very new stages of our life’s transition into being a nicu family. Liam and Kaiden are fighting warriors. We’ve had set backs. Kaiden had a grade 2 & 4 Brain bleed and Liam had surgery 2 days ago on his bowels. They amaze me, from a clinical stand point, even with their scary problems, they are very stable and are doing really well given their circumstances.
5. What advice would you give to a new Micro Preemie Mom?
My advice thus far, since I’m just beginning this journey is, solely to trust in God and lean on him. Have hope even if it seems very grim at times, Cherish every single moment, reach out for help and let people help you in any way you need.
I would like to thank Renee for sharing her story, and ask that you all send your good thoughts, prayers, etc. to her and her family as they go through this journey. Please feel free to post any comments and/or questions for Renee, and I will make sure she reads and answers them, if she can.
I hope you’ll join us next Monday for another inspiring story.
And feel free to join me every day here on the blog for stories about my micro preemies!