A different kind of Christmas

Christmas is such a special celebration reminding about Jesus`s birth, but also about the reason for His behind it. In our culture, Christmas is about giving glory to Jesus, bringing families and friends together, about traditions and kindness. The last place someone would like to spend such a particular period is in the hospital. However, it happens.

When we found out Victoria`s and Aurora`s due date, which supposed to be 10th of December, we dreamt for a magical Christmas. However, their premature birth forced our family to be in a hospital. They were three months old, still on a lot of respiratory support, cycling between CPAP and Vapotherm, and entirely fed by NG tube. For these, we did not expect them to come home very soon, but rather hoped they would be stable, without any colds or viruses.

It was a pleasant surprise to see the staff getting ready for the celebration and about Santa Clauses` visit, with beautiful presents. Just like the other parents from that hospital, we received a book about the journey of prematurity, a Nivea cream and some soft tissues. The girls received a knitted blanket, Santa Claus toy and a sweet. For Christmas Eve, my husband was in the hospital, and I was home with Maria. We could not get together because of the winter policy. Next day, both my husband and I took the first bus in the morning and went to the hospital. When we arrived, we found Aurora sleeping peacefully and Victoria awake, like she was waiting for us. They were delighted to continue their period of sleep on our chests. Following days turned into same days before Christmas. Same routine, same sleepless nights, same desire for the girls to come home, but more painful knowing they had to spend their first Christmas in an isolation room, without even seeing outside, without a Christmas tree, but most of all, being so sick.

December 2017
December 2017

Throughout those days, we realised that we are not the only ones, that NICU was filled with other parents and their children, some of them sick, some of them too small. We realised that nobody is rich or poor, while in the hospital and that we shared the same feelings. And then we thought that it was girls` first Christmas in hospital, but we prayed and hoped for many to come at home, which was very feasible. However, some families were aware that it was the last Christmas with their loved ones. How could somebody endure that thought?

Now, after two years, Victoria and Aurora are beautiful, clever, though and playful girls, who enjoy and get involved in everything means preparation for Christmas, from decorating the Christmas tree, to cooking or singing carols with their sister. Now, we look back and see our dreams reality, our miracles filling our lives with joy. It felt like they will never get here, but they did, we all did.

Aurora, Maria and Victoria (from left to right)
December 2019

From a NICU parent to all NICU parents being in the hospital now, I would kindly ask you to hold on to your faith, to your hope, to your strength. God never gives more than you can carry. This Christmas might be sad, but it is only one of so many to come yet. It is horrible to see your children unwell, but you would never be happier than when they will get better. After everything goes, you will think that there is nothing in the world your children cannot overcome. Look after yourselves. They need you healthy and strong. Your voices are their encouragement song. Your arms are their whole world. Your smiles are their best treatment. You are all they need for Christmas!


Ganduri pentru asistentele din NICU

Dragi asistente,

Cuvintele nu ar fi niciodata indeajuns pentru a ne exprima recunostinta si aprecierea, pentru faptul ca le-ati ingrijit pe Aurora si Victoria de-a lungul calatoriei lor prin NICU, si pentru ca le-ati ajutat sa creasca. De aceea, o sa spun doar ”Multumesc!”.

Multumesc ca m-ati invatat despre un alt fel de maternitate,

Pentru ca m-ati indrumat cum sa fac lucrurile necesare fetitelor mele, cu toate ca, mie mi se pareau atat de confuze si dificile

Pentru ca ati raspuns la fiecare apel  pe care l-am efectuat in mijlocul noptii si ne-ati linistit. Astfel, ne puteam odihni

Pentru fiecare data cand le-ati hranit pe fetele noastre

Pentru fiecare scutec schimbat

Pentru atunci cand le-ati tinut strans in timpul canularii, iar eu nu eram in stare sa le privesc

Pentru raspunsuri la cele mai ciudate intrebari pe care, un parinte, pentru prima data in NICU le poate pune

Pentru fiecare fotografie ce le-ati facut fetelor noastre, si mesajul superb pe spatele acesteia

Pentru ca ne-ati ascultat, atunci cand simteam nevoia de a vorbi cu cineva

Pentru toate incurajarile care ne-au facut mai increzatori

Pentru ca ne-ati aratat cat de speciali sunt cei mai mici bebelusi

Pentru ca le-ati facut prima baita fetelor noastre

Pentru ca ati trait impreuna cu noi cele mai intunecate momente, dar si pentru ca ati sarbatorit fiecare progres pe care Aurora si Victoria l-au realizat

Pentru fiecare cantecel, pe care l-ati cantat pentru ca fetele noastre sa adoarma

Pentru fiecare banda schimbata pe fetele lor

Pentru ca ne-ati pomenit in rugaciunile voastre

Pentru fiecare data cand inimile voastre erau sa iasa din piept din cauza fetelor

Pentru acele timpuri dificile, pline de incertitudine

Pentru fiecare zambet ce ne-a luminat ziua

Pentru ca v-ati ascuns fricile de noi, astfel incat, sa nu ne ingrijoram

Pentru fiecare tub ce l-ati inserat fetelor noastre

Pentru ca ne-ati pastrat speranta vie

Pentru precizia de care ati dat dovada, in administrarea medicamentelor

Pentru ca ne-ati invatat ca asistentele nu dau injectii doar, ci fac atat de multe lucruri esentiale, printre care, sa salveze vieti

Pentru ca ati impartasit cu noi traditiile si convingerile voastre

Pentru ca ati sarit in ajutorul fetelor noastre, inainte ca noi sa realizam ca ceva ar fi in neregula

Pentru ca ati fost vocile noastre, atunci cand noi nu puteam vorbi

Pentru ca ati pastrat legatura si v-ati interesat de starea fetelor si dupa ce au parasit spitalul

Multumesc pentru empatia, bunatatea si dedicarea cu care ne-ati coplesit mereu!

In calitate de parinti, trebuia sa facem majoritatea lucrurilor enumerate mai sus, pe cont propriu, in diferite imprejurari. Totusi, am primit sprijinul vostru si certitudinea ca suntem pe drumul cel bun. Am fost norocosi si onorati sa va cunoastem, si sa invatam ceva de la fiecare in parte. Insa cel mai important, este faptul ca Aurora si Victoria au fost binecuvantate de a fi in grija voastra!