Thursday, October 15, 2015

Claire'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's name is Claire. She was born via crash C-section on 11/8/14 at 29 weeks. She weighted 2lb 6oz and was 15 inches long.
I was 29 weeks pregnant and I had noticed she wasn't moving very much. We had gone to a 3D ultrasound the night before and she barely moved which wasn't unusual for her. We always joked that she was just camera shy. This time for me was different though. That night, I stayed awake all night waiting for her to move. Finally, at 7:30am, she kicked twice! I was so relieved! I went about my day getting a hair cut and running errands. When I got home that afternoon I realized that I hadn't felt her since that morning. Dave and I decided to run down to the hospital as a precaution. I figured they would tell us we were nervous first time parents and send us home. The doctors did a non-stress test and Claire scored a 2. I knew it wasn't good but I figured worst case they would keep me overnight for observation. It never even came into my mind that they could deliver her this early. Next thing I know, a doctor and nurses are running into the room. The doctor says "we need to take her right now...". That is all I heard. I immediately went into shock because I didn't hear her finish the sentence with "...or we're going to lose her". Claire was born within 20 minutes of them telling us that they had to take her.

We spent 91 long days in the NICU. We had many highs and lows. The first week was terrifying. We were still in shock and anxiously awaiting test results (all came back clear!). Claire defied all the odds and is definitely our little miracle baby. Everyone thought we would be going home before her due date because she was progressing so well. Well that day came and went. Claire had issues with eating/breathing at the same time and would dsat a lot. We were on the "5 day spell watch" for over a month. She made it to day #3 a few times. It was so frustrating because we were so sick of being in the hospital and knew were so close to taking her home but just couldn't get there.

People say this journey is an emotional roller coaster and boy are they right! I would not wish this experience on my worst enemy. Going through a premature birth and NICU experience is extremely stressful and exhausting mentally. You go from being excited when you're pregnant to the terror when having an emergency c-section and praying your baby will survive to joy in celebrating milestones that might seem little for a normal full term baby but are huge for a preemie like the day I cried with joy when I walked in Claire's room and saw her in clothes for the first time. She was about a month old.

As scary and stressful as our journey has been, we have had it relatively easy compared to other premature babies and their families and I pray for them everyday.”

A Note From Sara-Anne:

"It took a while for our schedules to line up but I was so glad they did. I had the pleasure of meeting little miss Claire this past weekend and she was one of the best models I have ever had the pleasure of photographing. All smiles and cooperation from this little miracle. She is definitely a true blessing to her wonderful parents. Her parents and I worked very hard to meet up, and it took a few months to find a time that worked best for everyone. Definitely worth the wait, this little girl was born at 29 weeks and is a true survivor. Claire will do wonderful things in her life, she has a personality you want to know. I feel like someday I will be reading newspapers about the things she has accomplished. I am honored to have met this family and heard their story, and to be blessed to share in their journey."

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 Manville, RI.

We're thankful to the family for sharing their story & memories in support of other NICU families.

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