The Haley Family and The Spencer Family
The Haley Family Story (photo on left)
"All was going well with my first pregnancy until unexpectedly my water broke over brunch. We rushed toward the hospital not knowing what to pray for, but Lola could not wait. She was born at a Brooklyn intersection in our car at 24 weeks and 1.5 pounds. They told me she was stillborn when suddenly she gasped for air. CPR was performed until we could get her to the nearest hospital for intubation. After being stabilized, she was transferred to a NICU that could better support her critical needs. We were at the mercy of fate and in the hands of incredible doctors and nurses for 101 days while we rode the gut wrenching rollercoaster of prematurity. Three years later, Lola’s little brother, Hendrix, followed suit after I experienced a placental abruption and was also born too soon at 28 weeks. Two preemie warriors with very different stories and obstacles to overcome. As heartbreaking as it was to essentially watch both babies’ third trimester through an incubator and then go on to face developmental delays, we are forever grateful to be the lucky ones that have two preemie survivors. Lola is now 4 ½, Hendrix is 1 ½ and both are thriving. We march for all those babies fighting today and in hopes of a healthy tomorrow."- Marcie Haley
The Spencer Family Story (photo on right)
"We remember 3/22/16 as if it was yesterday. Nothing special going on, just hanging out in our White Plains Labor and Delivery room for about the 25th day. Hannah was on bed rest after a preeclampsia scare in late February (190/110 blood pressure and a steroid shot for Nolan)and we were into our routine. It was about 5pm when her placenta separated. Nurses assembled, 120+ years of experience in the room. They found Nolan’s heartbeat, but it was go time. Dr. Jesus Jaile-Marti told us if Nolan was breathing on his own we’d get to see him before he was admitted to the White Plains NICU. 15 minutes later, Nolan entered the world via an emergency C-Section. He was breathing on his own, all 2lbs 1oz and 14” of him. We both gave him a kiss to start his journey!
His stomach couldn’t process milk so he had to receive nutrients intravenously. At his size, he was anemic, slightly jaundice and we were told his eyes were not fully developed and needed monitoring – retinopathy of prematurity. He also had a “hydro-seal”, and ultimately had to have hernia surgery at 5 months old. We were not prepared for our new reality and had no idea when Nolan would come home. Our only solace came from the White Plains NICU nursing team who told us, “Nolan is up late at night trying to climb out his isolette and was always trying to take off his leads” – signs that he was a fighter and while not out of the woods, was fighting above his weight class.
Nolan met his milestones. He was growing, started taking milk through a tube after 3-4 weeks, then the bottle and nursed for the first time on Mother’s Day. We ultimately had to transfer from White Plains to Montefiore so that the pediatric ophthalmologist could monitor Nolan’s prematurity of retinopathy in real time. We were surprised by this comment from his Montefiore NICU nurse, “he has another eye appointment next Tuesday, do you want him to stay over the weekend or take him home?” Before she could finish, we were asking for the discharge papers and were home in 20 minutes. Nolan has never looked back. He’s a fighter and we are a stronger family unit because of him. The March of Dimes surfactant therapy research (steroid shot) helped him breath on his own from Day 1. That’s what making an impact looks like.
Today, Nolan is a fun loving, happy and entertaining toddler. He loves Paw Patrol, animals / nature, his family and friends. He’s already telling us what to do and we love it. We have been blessed and owe Nolan’s success to the hard work of so many and just want to share our story with the world"- Vincent Spencer