Hand to Hold's Official Blog: Written by Parents for Parents

From Blog Writer to Book Author

Many of you have been reading our blog articles for some time now, but did you know many of the contributors are book authors as well?  Our experiences in the NICU or during a high risk pregnancy have caused us to want to share not only our experience, but the knowledge we have gained during these times.  If you are facing a high risk pregnancy, know your baby will need time in the NICU, are currently in the NICU with your baby, or have a friend or family member facing these times, see if one of these books will help. 

Beating Bed Rest

Beating Bed Rest By Angela Bickford

“Beating Bed Rest” By Angela Bickford.  Angela shares of her book, “In writing about the highs and lows of bed rest, it is my hope that you’ll find some hope and relief from your long days and loneliness.  Whether you’re reading about the horrors (like bed baths!) or hidden gems (like being waited on hand and foot), this book is sure to give you a laugh or two.” This is a great book for anyone facing or currently on bed rest.  Angela shares stories of how she and other bed bound moms coped and gives ideas on how to get through the hard times of being stuck in bed.

Angela is the mother of triplets born at 27 ½ weeks.  She did, however, suffer the loss of one of them at 49 days old.  Angela is a blogger who writes about life, loss, and finding the faith to overcome.  She is currently working on her second book “Loving on a Loss Mom”, is the Online Community Manager for Hand to Hold, and does other freelance work out of her home while caring for her survivors, both of whom have special needs as a result of their prematurity.

Angela’s book, Beating Bed Rest, can be purchased on Amazon.com.

Stronger Than We Thought

Stronger Than We Thought By Kaleena K. Berryman

“Stronger Than We Thought: Poetry for the Preemie Mom’s Journey” by Kaleena K. Berryman.  When a baby is born too soon, the journey is a difficult one for both the preemie and their parents. The feelings of love, disappointment, joy, pain, triumph and tribulation are often hard for parents to make sense of as they struggle to navigate life in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. However, at some point during the roller coaster ride, parents need to feel connected to other parents – to feel a sense of normalcy. Stronger Than We Thought – Poetry for the Preemie Mom’s Journey, offers a one of a kind look into preemie parenthood, through the experience of Kaleena Berryman, the mother of a 24-week preemie miracle, Jharid. The book is filled with poetry from the eyes of a preemie mom, and will surely resonate with all mothers who gave birth to their children long before they were due. From the day they were born to life after the NICU, the journey is special, filled with life lessons, and worth every milestone. The poetry in this book will surely touch your heart.

Kaleena K. Berryman is the mom of a 24 week preemie.  Her son spent 5 long, hard months in the NICU before finally coming home happy and healthy.  While her most treasured title is “mom”, Kaleena is also a writer, poet, mentor, and Program Coordinator for the Abbott Leadership Institute at Rutgers Newark.

Kaleena’s book of poetry can be purchased on Amazon.com.

Tiny Feet

Tiny Feet By Julie A Cruz

“Tiny Feet: A Journey Through The NICU” By Julie A. Cruz.  Full of advice and encouragement for families in the NICU and when they first come home, Tiny Feet was an attempt to share all she had learned through her journey.  Covering topics such as Kangaroo care, feeding, and understanding your preemie, readers will learn how different preemies are from full term newborns.  Inside are many stories of her own daughter’s experiences during their 5 week stay in the NICU.

Julie Cruz is a wife and mother of 4 – soon to be 5 – children.  Julie and her husband are in the process of adopting a child from Haiti.  Julie’s second child, Haley, was born at 29 weeks due severe pre-eclampsia and a placental abruption.  During her short 5 week stay in the NICU Julie learned many lessons and decided she couldn’t keep all that she learned to herself.  This brought on the book, Tiny Feet.

Julie’s book can be purchased on Amazon.com.

Growing A Rainbow

Growing a Rainbow By Lesley Donaldson-Reid

“Growing a Rainbow: The Premature Journey of a Two Pound Hero” By Lesley Donaldson-Reid. The gripping narrative within Growing A Rainbow shares the journey of Baby Torran, who was born three months early and weighed less than a pair of running shoes. He fought against incredible odds for his first breath.

Lesley Donaldson-Reid proudly parents a child with additional needs.  She enjoys traveling with her family and is a hobby medievalist.   Between 12 hour nursing shifts and 24 hour parenting shifts, Lesley, redefined herself as the author and publisher of Growing A Rainbow.  Lesley holds degrees in Human Biology and Nursing Science from the University of Toronto.  Lesley is also a speaker at BlissDom Canada 2014, a contributor to Preemie Babies 101, and a public speaker.

Growing A Rainbow is a fundraising venture for The Canadian Premature Babies Foundation.  You can purchase Lesley’s book on Amazon.com.

Hand to Hold and Preemie Babies 101 have been fortunate to have many bloggers through the years that have gone on to publish books, and many more that likely will. We all have different stories to tell, and yet we all have something in common: the desire to tell our story.  I hope that this list helps you not only learn more about us, but know where you can find books to help you through your time before, during, and beyond the NICU.

Julie Cruz About Julie Cruz

Julie Cruz (PA) is a stay-at-home-mom to four wonderful children and she enjoys spending her days with them. She and her husband are currently in the process of adopting a child from Haiti. She loves volunteering in the NICU as a mentor mom, conversing with other parents and bringing them special surprises. She is the author of “Tiny Feet,” a book about her NICU journey and things she learned along the way.

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