Julie FRANKLIN

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Remembering Caleb and the Babies Born Too Soon

When I gave birth to my son Caleb at 24 weeks, I joined the movement to create positive change for moms and babies everywhere, especially those most at risk.

I went into labor at 23 weeks. They were able to stop the labor and am so thankfulthe perinatal unit at Piedmont Hospital who took care of my while on bedrest in the hospital. I was not able to get out of bed at all with the bed positioned where my feet were elevated higher than my head. My baby's bottom had dropped into the birth canal so we started the agonizing waiting game hoping minimal movement and gravity would not let him drop any further. I had dilated too much for the doctors to perform a cerclage, a procedure where they literally stitch your cervix like a purse string to hold the baby in.

Caleb was born at 24 weeks and was a perfect little guy, he was just born too soon. He spent his life in the NICU with an amazing team of doctors and nurses. Truly the most compassionate and caring health professionals you will ever meet. Caleb did great for 3 days, but he suffered a double brain bled and his little bottle slowly started to shut down. We said goodbye and held him as he left this life. I think of my sweet baby boy with the cleft in his chin like his dad's every single day. 

I was 39 when I had Caleb and we were never able to determine what caused my preterm labor. He was very healthy and develped well for his gestation, for some reason my body decided it was time for him to be born - before his lungs were fully developed. There is a about a 50-50 chance for babies born this early to live and most that survive face life long health issues.

I had just about given up that Andy and I would be parents, when we found out I was pregnant. Through my high risk doctor, one of the best in the state, I participated in a progesterone trial which seemed to have promise to keep labor at bay for moms like me who had a history. I recieved a weekly shot at my doctor's office and was monitored very closely. Sarah was born at 36 weeks after bedrest from home as a precuation from July to November. Thankfully I was able to telecommute with my job - that really took my mind off the stress of "what if it happens again".  The progesterone trial was through the March of Dimes and is now standard procedure. I am so grateful to them and to my doctors who kept me as calm as possible and monitored me closely. 

With preterm birth and maternal death rates continuing to rise, I’ve decided to once again raise funds so that every family gets the best possible start. There is still so much to learn about pregnancy and preterm birth, even 16 years after I was pregnant with Caleb.

But I need your help.

Please visit my fundraising page to make a donation. Together we’ll be part of a movement to make America a more equitable place and ensure that every mom and baby is healthy. Without the March of Dimes and their research and trial, I truly believe I would not have Sarah today.

Thanks for ANY ammount you can give.  I am looking forward to returning to the March for Babies here in Atlanta.


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WE NEED TO UNITE, CONNECT AND FIGHT FOR FAMILIES

With preterm birth rates continuing to rise, the U.S. remains among the most dangerous developed nations for childbirth, especially for women and babies of color.

At March for Babies: A Mother of a Movement you're lifting up communities, creating connections and taking action to make America a more equitable place and ensure that every mom and baby is healthy.

Together, we’re marching to raise funds and awareness to transform the health of all families!

THANK YOU FOR YOUR SUPPORT!


$1,654
Fundraising goal: $1,600
Saturday, May 01, 2021
40 Donors | 264 Visitors

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