BENEFITING: March of Dimes Foundation
EVENT DATE: Sep 17, 2015
When you support the March of Dimes through Fund the Mission, you help real families in your community, like the Hilkin family. All proceeds help fund our mission: to give all babies a healthy start to life. Your 100% tax-deductible gift goes a long way towards helping tiny babies like Hannah. You also become part of a remarkable group of people whose efforts and generosity span more than 75 years, since our founding by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in 1938. Thanks to compassionate people like you who share our determination to protect the health of babies.
In early 2014, we were thrilled to be adding to our family. Not expecting anything out of the ordinary, our lives were completely turned upside down just before 24 weeks into the pregnancy. “On September 24th, 2013 at Penney’s 24 week appointment they discovered that she was contracting every few minutes. She was immediately admitted to Finley Hospital in Dubuque and placed on magnesium to try to extend her pregnancy. When labor continued, Penney was given a steroid shot to help develop the baby’s lungs, and then transferred to the University of Iowa Hospital and Clinics for further treatment. The doctors were hopeful that they would gain a few more weeks of pregnancy with bedrest and medications.
However, at 5:09am the morning of Wednesday, September 25th, our daughter Hannah was delivered, weighing just 1 lb, 7 oz. She was sent directly to the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, into Bay 1– the most critical part of the NICU. Over the next 105 days we experienced the dance of the NICU– one step forward, and two steps back. During her time in the hospital Hannah was treated for jaundice, retinopathy of prematurity, and respiratory distress syndrome– receiving nitric oxide and surfactant treatments. She also received treatment for her heart PDA closure, leading up to a PDA Ligation on October 17th. Against all odds, Hannah was discharged home with us on January 8, 2014.
Since her release, we have had regular visits to UICH for eye checkups and NICU follow-up care. Currently, Hannah has been given a clean bill of health, but continues to receive medications for her thyroid deficiency. Her prematurity will be a part of her life, and ours, forever, and we will continue to monitor her development as she grows up. Without the advancements in premature birth afforded by funding through the March of Dimes, Hannah’s story would have had a very different and potentially tragic ending. Together with the March of Dimes, we’re working towards a day where every baby is born healthy.”
~Tim, Penney, and Hannah Hilkin