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

Journal Entry: 4 Months 1 Week Old

Dear Readers:  I pulled this entry from my journal to give you an idea of what many preemie parents face after bringing their baby home.  My baby at this time was 4 months and 1 week old actual age and had been home from the NICU for 4 1/2 weeks.

“(Baby Girl) has been doing so awesome lately.  She’s off of fortified breastmilk and I am only breastfeeding her.  She has continued to gain weight.  I have taken so many adorable pictures of her!  She weighs 10 lb 3 oz and is 20.5 inches long.  (My husband) and I have been weaning her off of oxygen and she has been amazing!  She was on 1/16 L for over a month and was on 1/32 L for 3-4 weeks and then we had her on 1/64 L for about a week before we started turning her off now and then, starting a few days ago!  Two days ago we had her off of 02 for 4 whole hours, and then she was on yesterday all day, and today she has been off for 8 hours!!  She is satting at 92 right now and is sleeping.  It’s so amazing how great she is doing.  She needs to sat in the 90s to be in good shape.  She has been from 92-96 most of the day!

Anyway, I have loved being home with little (Baby Girl).  We have taken her to the pediatrician 3 times and once to the hospital for an RSV shot that cost almost $3000!  We just got the bill today and about died.  It’s a good thing she is on Medicaid, we could never afford even a fraction of what she has cost us.  I think our medical bills for (Baby Girl) alone are probably in the vicinity of $300,000 or $400,000 and maybe more.  Her first day in the NICU cost $147,000, life-flight cost $25,000, ambulances, doctor visits were $500 a day in the NICU and that’s not even counting the general hospital live-in costs!  Anyway, Medicaid has been a huge blessing, and actually, after the first while our insurance has taken over and paid everything.  (Baby Girl) has been worth every penny, every day, and every struggle (my husband) and I have gone through in the last 4 months.  What a joy she is!  I want to have another baby :).

Afton Mower About Afton Mower

After Mower (UT) lost her firstborn son at 21 weeks.  Her daughter was born a year and a half later at 27 weeks.  The NICU was overwhelming and isolating and it was through those two experiences she was led to found this social hub for parents to find the support they needed. Afton also gave birth to another daughter, born two days overdue after four months of strict bedrest. She believes it is a tender experience to hold a special baby in your arms when his spirit returns to his heavenly home, a miracle to watch tiny babies survive the risks of prematurity and a blessing to hold a healthy full-term baby after months of difficulty and sacrifices.

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