The Golden Hour • Merrissa Shutt

28 Weeks 5 Days

Merrissa welcomed her baby girl prematurely after being induced due to preeclampsia.

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

I imagined immediately holding her and having skin-to-skin time. I was looking forward to begin breast feeding, bonding with her, and having that time to memorize every little feature on her face.

How many weeks pregnant were you when you gave birth?

28 weeks

What was your baby’s birth weight?

7lbs 15.5oz

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

No, I was not.

When did you see your baby for the first time?

I briefly got to hold her before they took her to the NICU to prep for transporting her to a higher level NICU hospital.

Do you remember the first time you touched your baby?

I was able to briefly touch her before they transported her, after that I was kept at the birth hospital for 2 days before I could go to the hospital she was at. Then the moment I was able to go see her, I was bombarded with doctors.

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

3 days

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

Overwhelming. Scared. There were tons of cords and wires and I was angry she was in pain.

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

That it’s ok to be angry, but your baby will know who you are. That even though it feels like a piece is missing right now, you will have lots of time to make up for it. Your baby will not forget you.