Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Josiah'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.

“Josiah is our first, so we were completely shocked when what I thought were Braxton-Hicks contractions at 29.5 weeks gestation turned into early preterm labor. In the middle of the night, Sunday, November 20th, we rushed to the hospital that we had yet to tour at, finding ourselves just minutes before he would be born. Just 10 minutes after we got admitted, I gave birth vaginally to our son who was breech and still in his water sac. Soon after they found the heartbeat, they discovered he had a rare birth defect - imperforate anus. He was quickly transported to the local children's hospital. Just before we got separated, I was able to hold Josiah for the first time. I will never forget the wave of emotions that flooded my heart as I stared at my tiny, tiny firstborn. Tears of gratitude mixed with fear of the unknown took over...how were we going to get through this?? Upon being discharged, I went to the children's hospital to see my son. As I walked up to the incubator, I just remember crying and crying. All I could see were wires and monitors. The medical team quickly informed us that he not only had an imperforate anus but that he has VACTERL syndrome where other organs also had issues in relation to his imperforate anus. He also had to go into surgery the day after he was born to create a temporary way for him to pass stool. What were the odds that all of these rare things were happening to our son? Those early days were a complete blur of emotions and tears. But slowly and surely, we began to find our own rhythm and routine at the NICU. We started to ask more questions, became informed of our son's condition. The medical team became like family...and the slow, slow days turned into weeks that helped us grow in confidence that we could raise our son well and that he would be a happy and healthy boy. We had so many friends and family who poured into us, who prayed for us, and helped us to declare that our son would be a miracle boy. And that is what he became...apart from the VACTERL syndrome imperforate anus birth defect (which he would have still had if he was born full term), he had no other major preemie issues. He was off of all oxygen support within the first two weeks...took all of his feeds well...and no other major issues or scares along the way. He grew and developed and was discharged a week and a half earlier than his original due date. On our last day in the NICU, one of our NP's did her final assessment of him. As we were talking about his NICU journey, she summed it up best,
"Honestly, for how early he was born and the fact that he didn't have any major issues...it's really a miracle. He's a miracle."
 I will forever hold that conversation in my heart. And though there is still a long journey ahead of us, we would never trade our miracle boy and his story for anything in the world.”

Josiah’s photo session was taken and donated by Preemie Prints volunteer photographer, Lisa King.

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 sherri@preemieprints.org and visit our website at www.preemieprints.org. 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 Kansas City, MO.

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

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