Our NICU Story!
May 03, 2017
BENEFITING: Canadian Tire Jumpstart Charities
EVENT DATE: May 14, 2017
Matty & Drew were born in September 2007 at just 24 weeks' gestation and weighed 1 lb, 2 /12 oz and 1 lb, 6 oz. They spent their first 7 weeks in individual incubators at the Foothills Hospital NICU fighting to stay alive, then the next 8 at Rockyview's NICU.
During our time there, Matty was a little behind Drew in learning to breathe, and when he was finally ready to transition to a different type of ventilator, the nurses told us that Matty would have to wait until Drew was done with the equpiment because they only had one. The moment I asked why is when this Run became such a critical event in our lives. They only had one machine because it's not funded by the government but the Mother's Day Run had bought that one for them. Then I found out that the special convertible incubator that Matty had had his heart surgery in was also only there because the Mother's Day Run had supplied it. Heart surgery, at one week old, weighing less than one pound.
Once I knew the HUGE impact that this equpiment had on my boys' lives, and consequently my life, their dad's life, our family's lives, our friends, and then thought of all of the other babies and families over the years, I realized how important this event is, that raises money to buy this special equipment.
So EVERY Mother's Day that we have ever had together has started off with ten or fifteen thousand other Calgarians participating in the Mother's Day Run. Without the NICU saving these boys, I wouldn't be a mother today, and would have no reason to celebrate, so spending this day at this event is the best thing I could ever hope to do! We started off walking the 5km course together, with the boys in a stroller or carriers. Then once the boys got a bit older, I started running the race. I was NOT a runner, but I wanted to work hard to honour how hard hey had worked to survive all of those weeks in the NICU. Now for the 5th year, I'll be running the 10km course and raising as much money for the NICU as I possibly can!
Matty & Drew have been miracles since day 1. They defied the odds by making it through birth alive four months early. Then, surviving the first night was a huge victory. Making it through their first, second, third, and fourth surgeries - before they were even were supposed to have been born - they were miracles every time. So for them to be strong, healthy, happy, and TALL 9-year-old little men today is so incredible, there simply aren't words powerful enough to describe it.
This year, the Mother's Day run is splitting the pledge dollars between the NICUs that saved my boys, and Jumpstart charities. Both worthy causes, one that made a future possible for these boys, and one that can support a healthy future for them for years to come!