The ramblings of a small-town girl about her prince charming and their miracle baby, learning to gratefully live the abundant life in spite of the storms along the way.
Verses to Remember
From birth I have relied on you; You brought me forth from my mother's womb. I will ever praise you.
Wednesday, March 2, 2011
A Blanket of Blessings!
I have learned a lot about preemies in the last few weeks, and I am currently reading about what we can do to prepare for Annie's delivery & hospital stay, and specifically what Jeff & I will be able to do to help Annie grow as much as possible once she gets here.
When premature babies are born, they are taken from either Labor & Delivery (for vaginal births) or the Operating Room (for C-sections) into a room known as the R Room, or Resuscitation Room (this is the procedure for our hospital, though most NICUs follow a very similar pattern). This room is kept warm & humid to help with their breathing, and the babies are placed on an incubator (also called an isolette) under a warming light, so their temperature stays stable while the docs & nurses monitor their status.
The incubators they use in the NICU are very versatile. They remind me of a gift box that can be unfolded to lay flat, or folded up to seal up tight. When the baby is first brought in the table is "open," meaning the top or "lid" is raised up high, above the doctors' heads, and the sides are folded down from the bed. Then when the baby is ready to be moved to their spot in the NICU (and no longer under the warming light) the sides are folded up and the top is brought down to seal the incubator. The sides have portholes that nurses, doctors and parents can reach through to touch and tend to the baby, but depending on the baby's age & needs the incubators are most often left closed until babies are able to maintain their own temperature. (Babies can be taken out of the incubator to be held skin-to-skin or be fed by parents once they are stable enough; this usually occurs within the first week, and can even happen if the baby is on a ventilator!)
The environment in the NICU is kept dimly lit & quiet to help prevent overstimulation of the babies, but still needs to be bright enough for nurses & doctors to perform their duties. Because of this, parents often bring blankets from home to cover the lid of their baby's incubator overnight or whenever the baby needs less stimulation. This also helps the baby's "area" or room to feel more like a real nursery, and less like a hospital. There are also blankets & positioning devices inside the incubator, but those are only used for the baby to lie on. Obviously anything that is thick enough to keep out some light & noise would work for a cover, but most parents like to use a blanket either from their child's nursery or that has special meaning to them.
In hearing & reading about this, a thought began to develop. If this blanket is going to be covering our baby during this critical time when she is trying to grow and finish developing, wouldn't it be great if it was something meaningful. Something scriptural, even. And I came up with this idea of creating a blanket covered with Bible verses; verses with God's promises to his children, verses of blessing, of protection and of peace. I just love the idea of Annie being "covered," literally, with God's promises while she is in the hospital.
So this is where you guys come in. :) I would love to create this blanket with verses that our family and friends find meaningful, hopeful or reassuring. You can either email or comment with verses that you think would be perfect for this purpose, or if you would like to actually write (or even embroider) your verse on a piece of fabric that will be added to the blanket, let me know that and I can give you the specifics.
We feel so blessed that our little girl is not only going to be surrounded by loving family and friends, but also that she is cherished & guarded by the King of the universe! And while we of course want to do everything in our power to keep her safe and help her grow, her Heavenly Father is actually the only one who can protect her fully! After all, he created every tiny part of her and has kept her safe this far! I trust that he won't stop now.
Hi there, I'm Julia, and my husband Jeff and I are the grateful parents to the sweetest tiny girl in the world, our adorable Annabelle Grace. Annie, as we call her, is our miracle girl because according to our doctors, she should not be here. But God had a plan for this little one, and He overcame every issue along the way. Annie had blood flow issues in utero, was born 6 weeks early and spent almost 2 months in a Level 3 NICU. Despite her long stay in the hospital and lowest weight of only 3 1/2 lbs, our little miracle is now home, happy, and healthy! It hasn't been easy, and we are still dealing with a cleft palate and associated feeding issues including a g-tube, but Annie is doing amazing and has no long term issues from her prematurity. We have a great team of doctors to handle her cleft, and will have surgery to repair it at one year. God is good, and we have a lot to be thankful for as we look back on the miracles of 2011, and look forward to the blessings in 2012.