Ashley Willis / 31 Weeks

The Golden Hour

The Golden Hour is the uninterrupted skin-to-skin time experienced by mother and baby in the hour immediately following birth.

As mothers of preemies, we often wait for days, and sometimes weeks to hold our babies for the first time.

And though we’ve waited, when the time comes for us to revisit the golden hour we missed following our births, we feel just as bonded to our babies, and the moment is equally unforgettable.

Ashley shares her story.

During your pregnancy, when you thought about meeting your baby for the first time, what did you hope for, what did you see?

I hoped that he would be born and be immediately put on my chest so that I could love on him.

31 weeker preemie

The first picture of Alexander.

How many weeks pregnant were you when you gave birth?

31 weeks

What was your baby’s birth weight?

4lb 6.4 oz

Were you able to see, touch or hold your baby immediately after the birth?

I saw him for a second but did not get to hold or touch him.

When did you see your baby for the first time?

I saw him when he was born but didn’t really get to see him until he was 24 hours old.

Do you remember the first time you touched your baby?

Yes! It was when I saw him when he was 24 hours old.

The first time I got to touch him.

How many days old was your baby when you held him the first time?

I held my son when he was 7 days old for the first time.

How did it feel, to finally hold your baby in your arms?

It was overwhelming and scary. He had so many wires and tubes and was so small.

The first time I held Alexander.

What would you say to the mother, who’s just given birth prematurely and hasn’t held her baby yet?

Take pictures!!! You’ll treasure those forever!

This is us now!

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