Parker was born at 28 weeks and is now almost 9. Mum, Jacquie looks back on their journey through hospital, of living 100kms away, and dealing with chronic lung disease, and the strange feeling it was to finally come home after spending so long in hospital. As you can see, Parker is doing great. Jacquie says “his life is wonderful and he is wonderful, we are so proud of how far he has come.” She is sharing her story to give other parents hope that they too will be able to look back one day their own journey in the same way. With a sense of almost disbelief on what they endured, but also a sense of enormous gratitude.
“Parker was born at 28 + 6 weeks on the 05/07/2011 via an emergency cesarean due to me having severe preeclampsia. I was hospitalised at 27 weeks and the doctors held out as long as they could before he had to be born. He was 1054 grams (2lbs 5oz) at birth and dropped down to 854 grams. We spent a total of 121 days in hospital, 112 of those in the NICU at Monash Clayton and the rest at the SCN at our local hospital. This was hands down the scariest time of our lives. Everything was an unknown.
Parker came home on oxygen with Chronic Lung Disease but managed to get off this 6 weeks after coming home.
Looking back I don’t know how we did it, you kind of go on auto pilot and just get through the days of long hospital visits and long drives to the hospital. We were living just over 100kms away. Going home at the end of the day without your baby is hard, but it becomes your normal as strange as that sounds.
I remember how much we celebrated each milestone, your first cuddle, small things like weighing enough to have a bath, wearing clothes, being moved into an open cot (that was was fantastic!), being able to stop tube feeding, his 100 day quilt.
Bringing Parker home from hospital at 4 months old was a strange feeling, it’s so hard getting used to the quiet after the hospital noise.
Looking at Parker now, he’s 8 almost 9 it’s hard to believe he was ever so small and sick. The scars on his hands and feet are tiny now and only noticeable to me because I know they are there. Parker is in grade 3 this year and doing well, we have a great school. He has Autism and ADHD, we see a speech therapist, an occupational therapist as well as a psychologist who are all wonderful and help tremendously. He struggles with some things but his life is wonderful and he is wonderful, we are so proud of how far he has come.”