Totally out of the Blue someone you know has been thrown into the world of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). You probably didn't even know a place even existed before this baby arrived sooner than expected. Many mothers have been blessed with pregnancy's that provided them with no complications or surprises except for the big question at the end "When will this baby get out of here!" Now someone we know and love is asking the opposite question "Why did this baby come early?"
The next question you are probably asking is "What can I do to Help?" and that is an excellent question. Here are a few suggestions that are not clothing related (that will be included in the next Blog post).
This special journal is printed by Preemie Store and has been blessing parents for many years. Here are two reviews, from the oldest to the newest! There are 41 Five Star reviews in between. The journal is a great idea because it gives parents a place to write down all those new things that Doctors, nurses and other caregivers are throwing at them. There will be new terms, procedures, milestones and so much more that will be new and the journal is a great place to write them down and be able to refer to at a later date.
NICU Diary® - A Journal for preemie babies was designed especially for moms and dads who have babies in the NICU or Special Care Nursery. Social Workers and nurses often encourage parents to keep a daily journal. They know this can be a stressful time for you, or at the very least a change in your birth plans. This is your baby and every little bit of progress he or she makes will be important. The NICU Diary® gives you places to write weight gains, feeding changes, tests, oxygen needs and much more. You even have your own space for thoughts, feelings, and little notes. The NICU diary® records your baby's special start in life and gives you a treasured keepsake for years to come. ..Two detailed pages for each of 60 days. Extra pages for "baby's first" and Photos. Diary includes a gram conversion chart and a page to graph weekly progress. Sweet four-color cover. Special Spiral Bound Edition.
Preemie Milestone cards enable parents to visually capture critical milestones a premature baby strives to reach. Each card has a milestone specific to a premature baby’s unique journey; "My first kangaroo cuddle," "My first breastfeed," "No more CPAP for me," "My first bath." The back of each card includes space to write the date, age, weight, and gestation of the baby when they reached the milestone. We carry three different Brands of Milestone Cards: Miracle Mama, The Little One, and Every Tiny Thing. They are all great, so whichever one you pick they are a great way to capture all the big milestones in the NICU.
Another good gift idea is a small blanket, that can be kept by mommy to acquire her smell and then put in the babies bassinet to comfort them while she is away. We have Pink and Blue Proud Preemie Blankets just for this application. They measure 14.5 by 14.5 so are the perfect little size. Here is what one Preemie Mom had to say about her babies feelings about the blanket.
Everyone LOVES Gift Certificates! It's nice to be able to shop for what you like, and for a Preemie Mom that can be extremely exciting, it will give her something to look forward to. We have whatever options you would like listed under our Preemie Gear category.
The other suggestions I have are not available at the Preemie Store but are perfect for preemie parents. Gift cards to a local coffee shop, dinners delivered to the family, babysitting if there are siblings in the family, this type of support will be much appreciated. They will be spending many hours at the NICU, so anything you can do in the way of treats, like snacks, a new travel coffee mug (because I am sure they will be drinking plenty of coffee), magazines, books, soothing music, or even a cozy blanket would be welcomed. There will also be those times when they will need someone to talk to about the struggles of having a baby in the NICU, so listening may be all that is needed! It is difficult leaving your brand new early arrival at the hospital and going home, so the support we can offer is huge to these new parents.