Harper Grace Iannarelli

As a NICU nurse myself, walking into your anatomy scan already created a lot of anxiety. Throw in a pandemic, an IUGR diagnosis at 19 weeks (3%), and countless ultrasounds, umbilical dopplers, and growth scans, I knew a Nicu admission was in our future. At 27 weeks I was diagnosed with gestational hypertension, given betamethasone and right then I knew I was delivering early. Every OB counted me out at 30-32 weeks, they said I was weird and my situation isn’t normal as each week passed. I made it to my 35 week growth scan, and as they measured each limb, head etc. I told the tech the baby didn’t grow. Sure enough, we fell to 0.8% on the growth charts, and I was induced. Out comes my teeny tiny 3 lb 6 oz girl, Harper Grace ! All of the nurses would look at her and assume she was only 30 weeks, because she was the size of a 30 weeker. But her sassy attitude and determination she showed my entire pregnancy proved to them just how “big” she was. We spent 15 days in Abington’s Nicu: our goal was 4 lbs and learning to eat. An experience I never wanted from the other side, nor wanted my husband to experience. From being a Nicu nurse to now a Nicu parent, my perspective changed completely. I now look at these parents with even more awe and appreciate than before- especially those who are in the Nicu for months on end. It’s not easy - but it is so worth it!

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Donation Total: $100