Meet Belinda, Preemie Parent Mentor
My preemie(s) was born at: 28.5 weeks
Days spent in the NICU: 167
Current age of preemie(s): 3
Parent of Multiples: Yes
Our NICU Journey included: Loss of a multiple, feeding issues/feeding tube/breast feeding, multiple complications in NICU, lung issues, growth issues, PTSD, settling in at home.
As a micro preemie mom, I have experienced the loss of one twin to a cord accident at 27 weeks and watched my surviving twin, born at 28 ½ weeks, spend a grueling 167 days (5 ½ months) in the NICU. My life was undeniably changed. Living with the loss of my son and caring for his surviving twin sister who, along with being severely premature and small for her gestational age, also had her numerous complications (chronic lung disease/long vent use, bowel surgery/feeding issues), I realized I would have never made it through without having someone who could relate and understand how I felt and what I was going through. I would like to share what I’ve learned and lived through with other parents who may be going through a similar journey. No parent should have to experience the loss of a preemie. Friends and family may not know what to say or do, leaving you to feel more isolated and alone. Please know that you are not alone.
As a Grahams Foundation Parent Resource, I hope to help other parents who have suffered the loss of a baby, had a complicated/long NICU stay, feeding issues, breathing issues (apnea monitor, oxygen at home), amongst other new preemie and post-NICU concerns.
Having to say goodbye to a preemie far too soon is a tragedy that no parent should ever have to face, but sadly loss is a part of the prematurity journey, too. Nothing can ever ease the pain of losing a child but even so, many organizations, websites, and groups exist to help moms and dads cope.
On this page, you’ll find resources to help you move through the grieving process and connect with other parents who have experienced the loss of a preemie. We want to emphasize how important that connection can be and invite you to reach out to us directly if you need help of any kind during this difficult period.