We will close our World Prematurity Week with this beautiful post from Lindsay. Since her daughter’s birth, Lindsay has started her own foundation (the Vienna-Grace Foundation), and has brought dozens of gift baskets to families at the unit. We think we know where Vienna-Grace gets her strength from!
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Before July 1st 2013, I never knew that the NICU and all the amazing doctors and nurses inside the unit even existed. Let’s face it … I knew nothing about preemies, especially micro preemies and how hard a journey we were about to embark on.
Vienna-Grace Evelyn Smith was born at 24 weeks, 1 day on July 5th, 2013 at 1:37 am via emergency c-section. She weighed 1 lbs 4 oz and was the tiniest human being I have ever laid eyes on. I have never been more terrifed in my whole entire life and the worst feeling in the world was standing there looking at my tiny fragile miracle with all these wires, IVs, and machines, and knowing there was nothing I could do but pray.
Vienna has overcome so much in her short life. She was ventilated for almost 8 weeks and needed medication to come off the jet, she contracted pneumonia because of it which caused scarring and chronic lung disease, she was highly anemic and required 6 blood transfusions, she had a grade 3 brain bleed bilateral between ventricles, a pda/heart murmer which also needed medication to close, had a NEC scare but it was just a minor infection, and ROP. She also tackled breast feeding and was such a champ and wowed everyone. After 111 days in the Sunnybrook NICU we made it home 1 day before Vienna’s due date! Despite everything she has been through she is hitting all her milestones for her corrected age and I couldnt be more proud of her. She is my hero and my living proof that miracles exist.
I thank each and every person who has been there with us or offered words of encouragment or even a listening ear and who continues to support us. Without you all I never would have made it through.
Thank you Sunnybrook NICU doctors nurses and staff from the bottom of ny heart because without you all, my precious Vienna would not be here today.
The NICU journey is long and hard but very rewarding. It has totally changed who I am and made me not only a better person but a better mother, daughter and significant other. I have learned a new appreciation for life and i will never take anything ever again for granted.
Even though I would never wish this journey on anyone I am so proud to be a preemie parent and part of this wonderful, loving, and amazing community. I know by the grace of God and all the amazing NICU medical staff and professionals, our preemies will conquer and continue to shock the world with their excellence, and together we will make a difference.