Thursday, December 18, 2014

Quinn's NICU Grad Photo Shoot

Please enjoy Preemie Prints' families’ inspirational story & photos. 
Consider supporting our mission to share hope with families who have a baby born prematurely or critically ill. We thank our supporters, Preemie Prints volunteers, and donors for allowing us to continue touching the lives of NICU, preemie, and angel families.

We pray these special memories from Preemie Prints 
will help families heal and remember how strong 
they were in overcoming their NICU journey together.

“Our little girl Quinn was born on February 12, 2014. She was 2 1/2 months early. She weighed 3 lbs. 3.5oz. After an emergency C-section she was taken straight to the NICU where the nurses and doctors assessed her and gave her the medical attention she needed. It was a very scary time for us; little did we know that the next 3 1/2 months would be a complete roller coaster ride.

Quinn had very immature sick lungs when she was born- her right lung collapsed hours after birth. Watching our sweet little girl fight so hard to breathe was awful to watch, we couldn't do anything for her, we couldn't even hold her until she was a week old. We sat with her, talked to her, prayed with her. We changed her diaper and took her temperature, whatever we were allowed to do we did! The first couple of days in the NICU were tough, I was familiar with the NICU since I work at the hospital I delivered at and had been up there before taking X-rays of these sick little baby's. It's completely different when you are a parent of one of these sick little babies though. Quinn worked so hard and kept fighting, she was taken off the ventilator and put on CPap because her breathing was doing so great- this was all great exciting news! We loved holding her and talking to her- doing kangaroo care with her! We knew she would still have a long road but the progress she was making was unbelievable! When she was 3 weeks old we got a phone call early in the morning, the morning of my baby shower actually, informing us that our little girl has spiked a fever. We were so upset and, of course, rushed right to the hospital - she looked awful, the doctors and nurses weren't sure why she had the fever and thought maybe she had a stomach bug. The next 24 hours were such a blur to us, basically she progressively got worse and the doctors did a lumbar puncture and the results showed that she had meningitis, a very very bad infection. We sat with her and just watched the nurses and doctors give her fluids, meds, blood transfusions, platelets etc. It was awful, so scary to see our little baby girl fighting for her life. After a few days with IV antibiotics she started looking a little better and her labs were showing some improvements. She was on her 4th week of antibiotics when the neonatologist said he wanted to repeat the lumbar puncture to make sure the infection was gone before she stops antibiotics. We were not prepared for what came next...
The labs showed that her white blood cells in the fluid were extremely high, indicating an infection. They did an ultrasound of her brain and it showed that she might have a brain abscess. At this point things are now complicated and we thought it the best idea to have her transferred to Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP), after all it is the best hospital in the country and its only a 20 minute drive from us. Having Quinn transferred was very scary, we loved the hospital we were at, we loved all the staff in the NICU and had really developed relationships with them but we knew that we needed to do this for Quinn. So we arrived at CHOP and were greeted by friendly faces. They were going to do their own tests on Quinn and give us a plan, we were hoping that the plan would be the same one that she was doing, antibiotics for 6 weeks! Well were we wrong- Quinn had an MRI late on a Tuesday night and first thing Wednesday morning we were told she needed to go to the operating room for emergency brain surgery for an abscess. We were in shock. She was only 7weeks old, she should be sleeping snuggling with mommy and daddy, not going in for surgery! Her neurosurgeon had to go over everything with us- the good, the bad, and the scary! He had us wait with our family while he went and saved our little girl. I will never forget the moment he came down after he finished her surgery, he had a smile on his face; we instantly felt relief! He said she did so well and that it wasn't as bad as once thought. He said we had to watch her closely over the next few days but she did amazing! She is just unbelievable, so strong. Much stronger than anyone I know. The next couple days we just held her and loved her, letting her relax. Three weeks later she had to go in for her second surgery, this one was planned. She had developed hydrocephalus and needed a shunt placed. The same doctor operated on her and we felt very comfortable knowing she was in his hands; he is our hero! Quinn recovered like a champ after this surgery too! Now that the infection was gone we could focus on her normal preemie things such as maintaining her body temp, taking her first bottle and trying to come off of oxygen. She had really bad reflux and it was affecting her breathing so a few weeks later Quinn had her third surgery to stop the reflux and surgically place a feeding tube. After this surgery Quinn was able to come off of oxygen!! She is such a fighter and was really doing great, the nurses and doctors were actually talking about discharging her sometime in the near future! How exciting! On May 29,2014, after 3 1/2 months in the NICU, we were finally taking Quinn home!! It was the best day of our lives; it was the first time that it was just the 3 of us! Since being home Quinn is just doing great! We have lots of doctors’ appointments and she is still working very hard, but we are home and she is healthy enough to be home so we are happy!! She didn't have to come home on oxygen or a monitor!! She is now 7 months old and weighs about 18lbs; hard to believe she was only 3lbs when she was born! But the NICU stay is definitely a roller coaster ride and we couldn't wait to get off the ride and bring her home, but we always said if she could fight so can we!

A Note From Sarah:
"It was clear from the start of our session that this little girl is someone special. She and her family have been through so much, yet they are such a warm and genuinely happy family. You can feel the love they have for one another as soon as you enter their home. Quinn is truly blessed. I know she will continue to thrive with the fantastic group of family and friends she is surrounded by!"

Photos belong to our volunteer photographers, families, 
and organization please do not use for any purpose. 

Preemie Prints is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization sharing hope with NICU families through a variety of support programs. One of those programs is the gift of NICU photography and preemie photography. NICU families from across the US can request a no-charge photography session by a Preemie Prints volunteer. The family request from can be found on the right side of our website. These sessions are free of charge and for any NICU family, regardless of time spent in the NICU. The NICU photo shoot can take place inside the NICU or after baby is discharged and at home until their 1st birthday. Facing time in a NICU with a premature or critically ill baby is an extremely difficult time for families. Preemie Prints has a mission to share hope by letting families know they are not alone. Preemie Prints currently has over 100 volunteers nationwide. We are always looking for more volunteers to share in our mission! If you are interested, please email and visit our website at To date Preemie Prints and our volunteers have gifted over 400 NICU family sessions. 

This was a Preemie Prints NICU graduate photography session that took place near Springfield, PA.
We're thankful to the family for sharing their story & memories in support of other NICU families.

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