When Maddie Spohr passed away at 17 months old, the blogging world erupted with sympathy and clamors to help the amazing family behind popular blog The Spohrs Are Multiplying.
Now you can do something for them -- and along with it, you can help thousands of moms who are lying in hospitals with high-risk pregnancies around the country.
The Friends of Maddie are making NICU packs to be sent to neo-natal intensive care units around the U.S., using the Spohrs' know-how on what moms need when they're waiting to deliver a high-risk preemie and in the days after giving birth.
The Stir talked to Maddie's mom, Heather Spohr, about their new project and what you should take when you're packing for the NICU.
Can you share a little background on Maddie for folks who aren't familiar with her story?
When your child is taken to the NICU, you are immediately thrown into an environment that is totally alien to you.
You want to be there for your child as best as you can, but you don't know how to do so in this new environment nor do you have the tools. This is very scary, and makes an already incredibly stressful situation even more so. Also, for many families the only NICU capable of caring for a seriously ill baby is located far from their home. This creates a set of additional problems such as the need to find local lodging, to take leave of work, and to cope without the support systems of family and friends.
What made a difference for you guys? Is there anything you'd suggest we do if a friend's child is in the NICU?
How did you come up with the family support packs?
Additionally, the nurses reminded us that if we were to be there for our baby, we would need to take care of ourselves too by staying hydrated and nourished. It occurred to us that if all of these items could be supplied to a family upon their arrival, it would make what's likely the most difficult time of their lives just a little bit easier.
The packs consist of:
- A large reusable bag
- A Tri-folio with a pad of paper for note taking, and an accordion file to help keep track of paperwork
- A reusable water bottle
- A disposable camera
- Antibacterial lotion
- A travel toothbrush with toothpaste
- Snack bars
How can people help with the project?
How do we get them to a hospital near us?
Do you anticipate a NICU stay?
Image from Heather Spohr