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Kaitlyn and Matt Gray

Why I walk

OUR PREEMIES ARE THREE YEARS STRONG!
Brynn and Harper came into this world at only 24 weeks gestation and weighing 1lb 6oz each (read the rest of the story below). They are now 3 and thriving!
Although we are eternally grateful to the NICU staff at St. Mary's Hospital for their outstanding care, we hope for a future where no baby is born prematurely.We support March of Dimes because of they fight for the health of all moms and babies. They're advocating for policies to protect them. They're working to radically improve the healthcare they receive. They're pioneering research to find solutions. They're empowering families with the knowledge and tools to have healthier pregnancies. By uniting communities, they're building a brighter future for us all.
The reason Kaitlyn and I are walking is because deciding to start a family should be a joyous time and one that you look forward to, not fear. Kaitlyn and I found out almost two and a half years ago we were going to be parents. We were so happy, it was hard not to want to share the news with the world. We then found out at our 12 week ultrasound that we were having twins and at 20 weeks, found out they were going to be girls! We knew there was a chance that Kaitlyn could go into labor before the 37 week mark, but everything was going so well. At a 23 week checkup everything seemed just fine, the heart beats were strong and they were growing as they should. At 24 weeks and 0 days our lives were thrown into a tailspin. On January 28th 2016, Kaitlyn went into labor. We made it to the hospital at 8 in the morning and she was already 3cm dilated. She was given steroids to help the girls lung development and magnesium to help slow things down. Our hope was to make it at least 6 hours. Kaitlyn held out for 11 and a 1/2 after the shots were given and at 8:30 that night we welcomed into the world Harper and Brynn Gray weighing only 1lb 6 oz each. That night our lives were changed in ways no one can put into words. You're scared, helpless, but at the same time so hopeful that your girls can fight, and fight they did. It wasn't always easy and in the first couple of weeks we didn't leave the hospital and stayed by there side all day, only really stepping away to eat and sleep, taking each hour at a time. There were ups and downs but while each day it seemed like there was a setback at the end of a week you would look back and see that they had grown or had a medication reduced. They were fighting and fighting hard.The weeks went by and they kept passing milestones and growing stronger every day. The weeks turned into months and looking back on it now it is kind of like a blur.
Our girls were in the NICU at SSM health for 101 and 106 days and finally were able to come home without oxygen or any other needs other than to stay on a high calorie formula.We were so fortunate we were able to have a hospital so close to us like SSM Health (Dean St Marys) and the staff there was truly amazing. The relationships we formed with them have made them family. The tools and work they are able to do and how they are able to help, not only the babies they take care of but the parents, are in large part due to the research the March of Dimes has been able to do because of the donations received. We were fortunate and our story is going to continue and we don't take that for granted, so we want to raise what money we can to help. If you are able please donate and help raise awareness. If you aren't able that's okay, thank you for reading our story, but please do us a favor, pass this along and maybe someone you know is able to. Every little bit helps.

With Love, Matt, Kaitlyn, Harper and Brynn (A.K.A. Thelma and Louise)

Your gift matters

By raising funds for March for Babies, you’re building a brighter future for moms and babies everywhere. You’re helping March of Dimes advocate for policies to protect them, support radical improvements to the health care they receive and empower families with programs, knowledge and tools. Every dollar you give today makes a real difference in your community and across the country.

$2,598
Fundraising goal: $2,000
Saturday, May 11, 2019
23 Donors | 1490 Visitors

Sponsor messages

Katie and Paul Selid
3 months ago
Love you guys!
Jerri Prem
3 months ago
So very proud of all four of you. Love you.
Jonathan baker
3 months ago
Rock On!
Pam Annen
3 months ago
What an awesome cause💕
Emily Helgeson
3 months ago
much love to you all! ❤️
Duane and Darcy Schauer
4 months ago
What an inspiring journey, Harper and Brynn!
Martha Kuehn
4 months ago
A gift in honor of Harper & Brynn, and their amazing parents!
Colin Miller
4 months ago
Love all you guys!
Lori Kleiber
4 months ago
For Thelma and Louise!
Lindsey Schnabel
4 months ago
We look forward to honoring these 2 warriors at this walk every year. We love you Harper and Brynn!
Kirstin Monroe
4 months ago
So proud of our NICU Grads!! Sending love from Minneapolis! ❤️
Cassondra Ruge
4 months ago
We love you girls! We're so lucky that we've gotten to spend so much time together. We've loved watching you grow and become smart, beautiful, little ladies full of spunk! Love, Cass, Kyle, and Milo
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