Every expectant parent looks forward to celebrating the birth of a healthy baby. Round Eye and I were no different. But each year in the United States, more than half a million babies are born too soon. Our Pink Princess helps make up this statistic.
The March of Dimes has made defeating prematurity a national priority, and Round Eye and I are excited to work along side them to help save the lives of babies. Babies like our daughter--born 6 weeks too early. This year, I am serving as a Family Team Partner...and will be volunteering at various walk events around the city. This year, March for Babies is on Sunday, April 26th at the University of Houston Robertson Stadium.
Most of you know our story already. The following is a featured article that highlighted our story in the March of Dimes September 2008 eNewsletter.
With a two-and-a-half-year-old son as the love of our lives, we waited patiently and jumped for joy when those “you’re pregnant!” pink lines appeared in early 2005. We were thrilled yet very nervous and scared -- especially after having endured two previous miscarriages. However, things were going well and looking up for us.
Mid-July of 2005, diagnosed with placenta previa and preterm labor, I was placed on strict bed rest at home with around-the-clock medications to control the contractions. Then on August 2, while lying on the couch with my son, Mickster, I felt a strange sensation that warranted a trip to the bathroom. That strange sensation was caused by profuse hemorrhaging, which landed me on hospital bed rest for the duration of my pregnancy.
On the morning of September 19th, we welcomed our barely 34-week-gestation baby girl into this world by cesarean section. After a brief kiss, she was rushed to the NICU for more specialized care, while I needed some care of my own. Unfortunately, my placenta had adhered itself to my uterus, making it impossible to deliver, so an emergency hysterectomy was performed as well.If not hitting the desired 36 weeks, having an unexpected c-section and an emergency hysterectomy, and seeing your baby girl rushed to the NICU were not enough, Hurricane Rita was heading for southeast Texas, adding to our stress. Nothing could have prepared my heart for the immense emotional and physical pain of evacuating the city two days later without my precious newborn. We had to leave our baby girl behind. Who could do such a thing? How could we do that to her? Would she know that we didn’t have a choice? How could we get through this?
After enduring six long days of heart-wrenching pain by being miles away, we were reunited with our sweet baby girl at last. The next few weeks found us next to her Isolette every day, holding and nurturing her until she became strong enough to come home on October 6. Although the Pink Princess came home with an apnea monitor and oxygen to use during feeds, she made tremendous progress in the NICU due to the research and medical advances accomplished by the March of Dimes. Without their emotional support and invention of surfactant therapy, our Pink Princess would not be the happy, bouncy, healthy almost three-year-old she is today.
Without the March of Dimes, our lives with the Pink Princesswould not be possible. We know there are many, many worthwhile charities out there. In financial reality, we have to pick and choose the one or ones that are closest to our own hearts. This is the one closest to *my* heart. This is the one closest to *Round Eye's* heart. This is the one closest to *my families’* hearts. Prematurity does not just affect the baby - it affects the entire family! We all need to understand that placing resources with the March of Dimes...a time tested organization who's never failed a mission yet...will be an investment...not just in our families, but in our country's future.
If you would like to donate to the March of Dimes, March for Babies is a great way to do it. It is the largest March of Dimes fundraiser each year. Last year our family team, The Haynes Phamily raised over three thousand dollars with over 20 walkers! We would love to raise even more this year with even more walkers. Please help us reach our goal by donating on-line...click on the March for Babies widget on the right side bar. And, as if you needed another reason, your donation is tax deductible. If you would like to join our team - we'd love to have you walk with us as well!
This year, a very good friend of mine delivered a son born 12 weeks too soon. Cookie Bean was born weighing 1 pound, 6 ounces – and is currently in the NICU. This year we walk not only for our Pink Princess but also for Cookie Bean. We walk for Ava Marie who was blessed to be born healthy and full-term. We walk for a team walker, and a teacher’s unborn children and pray they get their full 40 weeks. We walk for friends who have yet to have babies…because EVERY baby deserves a healthy start.