Sunday, November 25, 2012

Welcome, Multiple Miracles!

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Project Sweet Peas would like to officially welcome new project division, Multiple Miracles! Project Coordinator Diane Hrenko started this division in honor of her sweet peas, Justin and Collin. Multiple Miracles delivers care packages to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.
For more information on Multiple Miracles please email Diane at
Justin and Collin's story:

"Let me start with this… this story has a very happy ending.

After dealing with infertility issues, my husband and I were ecstatic to find out that twins were on the way!! I was fortunate to have a fantastic pregnancy, and enjoyed every minute of it. At a routine checkup at 33 weeks, an ultrasound revealed that the fluid was low around baby A and I was having contractions. They admitted me to Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and I delivered our two little miracles via C-section at 33 weeks and 3 days. On December 11, 2008, our lives were changed forever -- Justin Keith and Collin Matthew were born at a little over 4 lbs each and admitted to the Beth Israel NICU.

While it is overwhelming enough for any first time parent, learning your babies cannot come home with you and need to stay in the hospital for several weeks is almost unbearable. Fortunately, our babies were relatively healthy and the majority of time spent in the NICU was just to grow and mature. We spent six long weeks travelling back and forth to the NICU and spending every waking minute with our boys. We would spend early morning to late evening sitting by the incubators and then bassinets. Luckily, my husband works at Beth Israel so he was able to sneak across and get a little work done during the day. We felt like we became experts in all the NICU terminology: learning about the feeding tubes, suck/swallow reflex, calorie counting, and the “spells” of heart rate dips which all became a way of life while they were there.

The doctors and nurses that we worked with at the Beth Israel NICU were amazing. Simply amazing! To say we have the utmost gratitude towards these people is an understatement. They are everything to us. They reassured us that our babies were going to go home and be healthy and strong children – they just needed to grow more. The doctors and nurses taught us day in and day out everything we needed to know… how to understand the machines the boys were attached to, what all of the beeping meant, bathing, feeding, pumping, nursing, etc. They were so patient with us when we called each night before we went to bed and every morning when we woke up to make sure the boys were still OK. They took pictures for us when we weren’t there and made signs for the incubators/bassinets.

Our life was very different for those six weeks and truthfully very lonely. Our stay was over the holidays so my husband and I spent Christmas with our babies, only sneaking off for dinner at a hotel restaurant across the street, while our families were all celebrating together. Our friends and family were extremely supportive during our stay in the NICU, always calling to check in on us. They tried so hard to be positive for us. One family that had been through the NICU before left handmade knit caps for the boys with a note saying something to the effect of “we understand what you are going through”. How nice was that! It touched us very much that someone made such a thoughtful gesture.

After six weeks, Justin and Collin were both home and all of a sudden life was… perfect! Every uneasy feeling, worry, and stress would not be a factor anymore. As long as the boys were home with us, life would be OK. This experience changed us because we learned that life is fragile and doesn’t always go exactly as planned. The care and support we received at the Beth Israel NICU is something that we cherish and will never forget. To express our gratitude, on the boys 1st birthday we donated 60 blankets to the babies in the NICU as a way to “pay it forward”. You never know how it feels to be a NICU parent until you have gone through it, and we felt the need to give back to others that are going through what we went through. We have continued this tradition each year around their birthday. In 2012, we joined Project Sweet Peas, and will continue to “pay it forward” by delivering care packages to the Beth Israel NICU under the very fitting name of Multiple Miracles.

Justin and Collin are healthy little boys and have an adorable new sister: Ashlyn. Life is good! "


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