Dear NICU Mom

Dear NICU Mom,

I was there once. Well actually twice. Standing over your baby’s isolette. Not really knowing what went wrong and how you got there. Wondering what all those bells and alarms mean. Wondering what was going to happen to your baby. The baby that you spent these months protecting and dreaming of.


I was there being bombarded with medical jargon that flew over your head. Where the only thing you needed (wanted) to hear was that your baby will be ok.

I was there putting all my faith into doctors who took the time to plan, explain, and assure me that everything would be ok.

I was there throwing all of my trust into the nurses who would spend more time with my baby in those first days than I would. They would comfort, rock, feed, and bathe my baby when I wasn’t there to do so myself. They treated my baby as if he were their own. They cared.


I was there being sick myself. Putting my own health on the back burner because the only thing that mattered was that my baby learned to eat, gain weight,  and get better.

I was there beating myself up. Wondering what it was that I did wrong to cause this. That made my baby sick. Because somehow it had to be my fault.

I was there cheering on a baby who finally drank an ounce of formula. Who didn’t have a Brady episode while drinking his bottle. Who kept his blood sugar reglated for an hour. Who took his foot being pricked every 4 hours like a champ. Who was fighting and proving that he could do this.

I was there day after day longing to hear the words: “Your baby is ready to come home.” Those words that, at times, you don’t think you will ever hear.


I was there trying to split my time and attention, and love to another child who was confused as to why his baby brother wasn’t coming home. Who he wasn’t allowed to see.

I was there when my heart expanded and I learned that it is possible to love more than one child equally but different.

I was there when I saw two little boys fight. And fight hard. To get bigger. Stronger. Better.

I was there to see that miracles do happen. Even when they are in the midst of chaos and uncertainty.

I was there when I learned that all of the feelings and emotions that I was dealing with were ok. That had the right to be angry and sad and happy and angry some more.

I was there once. Twice.


I was there again when friends were welcomed into the unofficial NICU mom club. Where I told them that everything would be ok. That they were in good hands. That it was ok to be angry and sad and happy all at the same time. That it would get better.

I was there to tell them that these days spent in the NICU, whether a week, a month, or a year, would be over soon. Even though they couldn’t see the light at the end of the tunnel. Because that light isn’t what is important at the moment.

I was there to listen, understand, and support. To help get them through the minutes, hours, and days that were all too familiar to me.

I was there before and will be there again. Because I am a NICU Mom.

Because those memories of the NICU won’t ever leave us. The days we spent standing by our baby’s isolette will only appear as a hiccup on our road. Those memories shape us and make us the moms that we are today.

Because we are NICU Moms.


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  1. I was a NICU mom when my twins were born at 30 weeks. NICU nurses are my heroes. Not only did they take such good care of my children at Lankenau and then Paoli Hospitals, they took such good care of me. I learned so much from them about how to take care of my children.

  2. No words for how beautiful this is. I was only a NICU mom for a few hours, as a precaution, but the hole in my daughter’s heart still lingers, not (and God willing, never) causing problems, just a tiny spot. These little ones are here by grace and we hold and love them as best we can, as long as we can. I’m so happy your boys are healthy now!

  3. So scary. I’ve never been through this personally but did just watch a friend’s journey on FB and it tugged at my heartstrings, all the ups and downs. Your words of encouragement mean so much to NICU moms, I’m sure.

  4. I have so much admiration for NICU nurses and doctors. They perform miracles every day.

  5. I know plenty of babies who have spent time in the NICU. It’s always heart-breaking to see the moms who just want to have their babies at home, and the siblings that don’t understand what’s going on. NICU nurses and doctors are such heroes. And NICU moms are tough!

  6. We were blessed to not be in the NICU but I experienced the NICU with my niece and Nephew. There are some special nurses that care for those littles every day!

  7. My heart aches for parents going through the stress and worry about having a baby in the NICU.

  8. My middle child was in the NICU for a little bit (not very long), so I can’t even imagine if she were there for an extended period.

  9. I can’t even imagine how scary and hard it would be to be a nicu mom.

    This letter is beautiful. I’m sure it will touch many hearts.

  10. “Because those memories of the NICU won’t ever leave us. The days we spent standing by our baby’s isolette will only appear as a hiccup on our road. Those memories shape us and make us the moms that we are today.” – That was perfectly said!!! At the time it’s hard to imagine every leaving the NICU, but you do. And although my heart still aches when I think back to the emotion that was spent. It’s just another notch in my Mom belt.. I’m better prepared for the future speed bumps that these kiddos will take me over!

  11. I was an NICU Aunt. I had to be there to help with my Niece since she was pre-mature and had breathing problems and her parents were tired and sad. It drains you emotionally and financially but gives you hope when you see how much the child has grown in a matter of years

  12. My nephew and his wife just had their little one go right to NICU for a few weeks. It was scary and very unexpected. Happily, baby girl’s home now, but oh our hearts there for awhile! And you’re right, the medical jargo flies over your head, when all you want to really hear is it’s going to be okay.

    To answer the giveaway question, I became a mom 18. We have four kids. 🙂

  13. This is one of the most moving blog post that I have ever read. There is no feeling in the world that compares to being concerned for your child’s well being when they’re in the hospital. Thanks for sharing and being transparent. x!

  14. I’m so sorry to hear about your experience, but so glad you were willing to share. My deliveries were relatively uneventful, with the only health issues being mine, not my babies’. I can’t imagine how scary that must be.

  15. It’s wonderful to hear that everything will be ok. Life is rarely perfect, but it helps so much to hear that it’s going to be ok.

  16. I was 25 when I became a Mommy. I now have 2 boys and both have had a crazy ride to make it in this world. We weren’t a NICU family, but we were a CICU family. My oldest had heart surgery at just 7 weeks. Those are the days you won’t forget.

  17. Thank you for sharing this beautiful story. I love all the other ones that are linked up. Truly an inspiration this Mother’s Day!

  18. I was 30 when I had my daughter and 35 when I had my son, they were both early, 36 and 34 weeks, and both spent a little bit of time in the NICU, so I know how hard it is…

  19. I have stood in a NICU watching over my child, praying for her to recover and come back to perfect health. I have watched the tears of other mothers in rooms near my daughters and seen the joy when babies got better and the tears when babies got worse. It is a memory that never leaves one.

  20. I’m Not A Mom , But I Am An Awesome Aunt To 18 Nieces And Nephews That I Love Like They Are My Own.

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