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  1. GratefulFather

    Forever greatful parents

    How Ironic! I stumbled upon this thread as I was doing an internet search for gift ideas for our NICU Nurses. I'm so happy to find this website to help with ideas! Last year, my wife and I were given the greatest gifts that any two people could be given; our first pregnancy...and twins...a boy and a girl ( we named them Madeleine and William). While we were so excited to get that news, it was shortlived as we went into preterm labor at only 24 weeks 6 days. Thus began an amazingly long journey filled with both joy and tragedy. We lost our dear Son at only 18 days of age and if it hadn't been for the care and compassion of our wonderful Angels (some people call them nurses) I don't know what we would have done. Our beautiful daughter has been and continues to be a living miracle. She has overcome so many obstacles with the help of Our Lord and some instruments that he uses daily in the form of our NICU Staff of Doctors, NNP's, Nurses, Therapists, and support staff. We spent 117 days in our NICU and ran the gauntlet of complications from low birth weight (750 grams) to Grade 4 Bi-lateral IVH, to BPD, to PDA, to ROP, to club foot, and just the stress of being on the vent for 2 months. My wife even went through Hurricanes Gustav and Ike without power for a short time in the NICU...sleeping in the waiting area like the Nurses! I was away on Hurricane Duty as I am a member of the National Guard. After all of that, our baby girl came home while I was away and still on duty. (I thankfully got a short pass to drive her home from the hospital). Anyway...its been a long rode...but it has been full of miracles...ALL because of an exceptional group of true Angels. I cannot express...nor will I ever be able to adequately do so...my sincere, heartfelt gratitude and indebtedness to the wonderful people of our NICU. We've tried...and everytime we do something like bring food, or gifts, or just go up there for a visit...we feel so unable to repay our debt. There is no way that I could ever sit here and type into sentences what my heart feels. Every moment that we have with Maddy from birth...to now...and in the future...every laugh...every tear...every late night feeding....watching her sit up...watching her hold her own bottle...and every single milestone, is because the people that God placed in our lives to provide care for our children...TRULY CARED! We can get medical procedures, medications, and advice anywhere....but we received something so much more valuable and effective at our NICU. We received Love. I felt it when our babies were delivered...every evening when I arrived at the NICU to visit my children... It was never more powerful to me than when I raced to the hospital to hold my dying Son for the first time...only to arrive too late. I saw the tears...felt the emotion...of all of the people in the room who pour their passion and life into a "job" that I know is more about love than a paycheck. Most importantly...we felt it and saw it everytime Maddy made another step towards coming home. When she came off of the vent, when her PDA cleared up...when her ROP cleared up...when she drank her first ounce of milk by mouth...when her neurologist said her IVH stabilized...and finally when she came home! Even since we have been home these last 6 months...she's made remarkable progress. She's a Happy, Beautiful, Little Girl...and it's all because of Angels (nurses) just like you! We know that y'all feel things the same way that we do...that you develope bonds...and that you have the same ups and downs that we have...I wish I knew how you guys do it day after day... We have been so blessed to have had a group of people as wonderful as the Staff we had at the Baton Rouge General on Bluebonnet's NICU. We try to go by regularly and keep in touch with our Nurses to let them know how Maddy is doing...we even update our caringbridge blog pretty regularly (another healing tool that they told us about). If you guys can think of any way that we could truly show our guys and gals how much we appreciate them...and all of the moments they have given us...please let me know! You can e-mail me or visit our website to let us know what would be special to you. And by the way, THANK YOU FOR WHAT YOU DO! The Saint Family Baton Rouge, LA www.caringbridge.org/visit/madeleinesaint