Meet Amanda, Preemie Parent Mentor
My preemies were born at: 29 weeks
Time spent in the NICU: 8 weeks
Current age of preemies: 6 and ½
Parent of Multiples: Yes, Triplets
Our NICU Journey included: Higher order multiples, triplets, bed rest, placenta previa, gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, cholestasis of pregnancy, and coming home with monitors
After the birth of our triplets we traveled back and forth to the hospital each day to spend time with them and to learn how to care for premature babies that weighed 2 pounds 7 ounces, 2 pounds 1 ounce, and 2 pounds 3 ounces at birth. I pumped breast milk to nourish my babies and this gave me a sense of connection. Even so it was easy to feel isolated and like a third party looking in on the doctors and nurses caring for my children. What did they need me for? But it eventually became obvious to me that my children did need me – to be their advocate, their voice, and the familiar heartbeat that they once felt inside of me.
Bringing home three babies is one of the biggest blessings in my life, yet it was also one of the most terrifying times. Each came home on some medications and on monitors. Keeping the triplets on a schedule, finding our routines, and tending to individual needs is a balancing act that I still manage every day, even now as they are nearly 6 ½ years old and finishing kindergarten.
As a Graham’s Foundation Parent Mentor, I want to help other parents of preemies understand that their involvement and presence in the NICU are as important as the medications and care that their preemies are receiving in the hospital. I know from experience that talking with other parents of preemies that have also been through the NICU experience can help you work through those emotions. By reflecting back on our journey and sharing it all with new parents, I gain a sense of healing for myself.
Higher Order Multiples in the NICU and Beyond
Multiple birth and prematurity often go hand in hand, and higher order multiples are almost guaranteed to be born premature. Triplet birth, quadruplet birth, and other instances of higher order multiples are relatively rare – and sometimes all the more frightening because of that. Higher order preemie multiples can bring many times the struggles and many times the joys.
Connecting with other parents of higher order multiples like triplets and quads is so important when it comes to coping with prematurity and then thriving at home. The resources on this page are just for parents of preemies who’ve been blessed with triplets, quadruplets, or more. Check out: