Saturday, April 2, 2011

Marching for Healthy Babies

Some of you may remember that we participated in fund raising for the March of Dimes March For Babies last year.  We fully intended to participate in the walk too, but my back problems were making walking long distances extremely hard and we ended up skipping the actual event.  This year, depending on how tired I am, we will most likely attend and show off what handsome, healthy NICU graduates we have!  Thinking about how much they've grown and changed since those first weeks of life never fails to bring me to tears.  At the time, it was so hard to imagine the future when we'd have active, healthy little boys.  Today, it's hard to believe they were ever so small.

I'd like to share with you (a slightly edited version of) the post I wrote about this time last year about why I support the March of Dimes.  I hope that you'll also take a moment and give whatever spare change you have around your house - and I know that might not be much, given the current economy - to this very worthy cause.

I thought I'd take a moment and talk about the March of Dimes. I'm participating in the March for Babies in [35] days for so many reasons. The March of Dimes itself is a fantastic charitable organization with the goal of funding research for healthy pregnancies and providing support to families of premature infants and infants born with serious illnesses and birth defects. Their mission is to have every baby born healthy and give doctors and nurses the resources they need to care for the ones that are not! I think this is a lofty goal, but one that I can stand behind with my whole heart.

Many of you know that Eli and Jude are preemies. We were incredibly lucky to make it to 34 weeks gestation - just six weeks shy of their due date - when so many twins are born at 32, 28, and even a stunning 24 weeks. My perinatologist even awarded me a "bronze medal" when I made it to 32! March of Dimes has funded and pioneered research that helped me reach those milestones and also the research that helped Eli and Jude come home from the NICU four weeks earlier than the neonatologist originally predicted. I honestly believe that the work March of Dimes has done to educate doctors of the importance of kangaroo care had a huge impact on their NICU stay.

I also walk for my friends and family who have lost their babies before getting the chance to meet them. Recently I've met a shocking number of women who have lost babies late in their pregnancy or shortly after birth and it breaks my heart. These women - and their significant others - are everywhere and wear silent scars. I cannot imagine the pain they feel and can only hope that continued research will prevent other women from suffering such a loss.

The March for Babies is coming up fast and I'm working hard to raise money for this amazing cause. Seriously, who wouldn't support a group that strives for healthy babies? I'm not one who likes to ask for money but... DONATE PLEASE! I still have a long way to reach my goal but every dollar makes a difference. If you want to donate but don't want to give directly to me, please donate to my team - The Austin Moms of Multiples. You can click on the sidebar here on our blog, or visit my personal fund raising page here.

I too hope that one day, all babies will be born healthy. Please help me help the March of Dimes in their work to make that goal a reality.

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