Tuesday, August 24, 2010

NICU Reunion---A Time to Celebrate!

Upon entering the doors of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, it is immediately understood that you are in a special place.  Everyone has their own set of circumstances, and we all realize the importance and necessity of the NICU.  Experiences there are dependent upon your unique situations and the people you encounter there.  These encounters have changed OUR lives.  We feel the NICU reunion is a wonderful way to celebrate the memories we made there, whether good or bad.  We appreciate the chance to celebrate our successes, and reminisce with the contacts that began as staff/patient, but have long endured as friendships. 

A friend recently asked me if seeing all the old faces of the NICU brought back bad memories and old feelings.  Definitely not!!  I feel that the NICU reunion gives us a chance to "show off" our girls and prove to everyone how powerful the "power of prayer" really is.  Without each and everyone of the amazing people in that hospital, and without each and every one of your prayers our girls would not be where they are today.

I remember last year going to the reunion.  The girls had only been home for a little over a month at that point.  Terry and I thought that it may be a small gathering of a few hospital personnel and a few NICU grads.  Boy were we wrong!!  At that point in our lives we truly didn't understand how great of an accomplishment being a NICU graduate actually is, and that it IS something to celebrate.  Every year over 3000 grads, doctors, nurses and parents gather to celebrate surviving the NICU.  This year was no exception.  It was incredible to see some old faces and to reflect back on how far we have actually come in the last year or so. 

We had been watching the weather for a few days leading up to Saturday morning (the 21st).  The forecast wasn't looking so great.  Saturday was the one day in like a month that it was supposed to rain.  I got up Saturday morning to find it raining.  I turned on the news and the forecast showed that the rain should pass through by 9:00a.m. and it should be a pleasant day.  So we decided to head on out to the park.  It was sprinkling on the car ride there and we were wondering if we should take the girls out, since they are still getting over their colds.  But to our surprise, once we arrived at the park the rain cleared up and it was pleasantly cool outside.  It was a beautiful morning. 

The park was filled with bounce houses, seriously like 10 massive, full size bounce houses, vendor tents, games, pony rides, a petting zoo, and a kiddie train.  As we entered the festivities, we ran into one of our doctors from the NICU.  She immediately remembered us and kept commenting on how amazing the girls looked.  She asked me "didn't we tell you that she would never be able to walk" (referring to Addison).  I replied with "yes, and I'm so thankful that you were wrong".  The doctor laughed, gave me a hug and said that God is the only logical explanation as to why our girls are doing so well.  I agreed!

After chatting with the doctor and a few nurses, we decided to take the girls on their first pony rides.  The look on the girls faces were absolutely priceless.  Terry said that he's afraid that he might have to buy Addison a pony in the near future.  She loved it SO much!  Alexis liked the pony ride as well, but I think she was more intrigued by the fact that she was sitting on this huge animal and was trying to figure it all out.   Here are some pictures:

The above four pictures are Alexis.

The above four pictures are Addison.

Sadly these pictures do not do justice to show the excitement that the girls had while riding the horses.  I wish I would have been able to capture their huge smiles and the joy that riding these horses brought to them.  I think that it is safe to say that the NICU reunion will be something we attend for years to come!!


Robin said...

I saw those pictures on FB and wondered what they were from! The NICU reunion sounds like a great event :) I'm glad your girls had fun. They are gorgeous, as usual!

Amy's Blah, Blah, Blogging said...

What a fun time! Glad that you were able to make it and the weather held up so well for a great day. Such a celebration!

Emily said...

Praise God for joyful NICU reunions! My mom is a NICU nurse and absolutely loves seeing the graduates come back year after year. It truly is a testament to God's grace!

QuatroMama said...

So thankful that you're girls are proving medicine wrong! May God be glorified!

Thanks so much for leaving a comment. I wish we could have connected! Your girls are GORGEOUS! I think they deserve a pony for sure!