Juliets story, as told by her mother Marian.
I am the mother of a recently turned 15 year old daughter whose name is Juliet. She was born at Wellington Hospital at a gestation of 24.5 weeks and weighing 725gm. Following 98 days in the Neonatal Unit Juliet, weighing 2.2kg, was discharged to begin her life adventure. Whilst in the unit I spent each day tending to her needs, kangaroo cuddling her, expressing milk and agonising over her health and progress. Each evening it was so difficult leaving her behind in the unit.
15 years later I am finding it difficult to keep up with her – she is 8cm taller than me, rides in her school cycling team, plays saxophone for both the school jazz group and the orchestra; is learning and excelling at Japanese, French, Latin and English as well as all her other core subjects. She does wear glasses as do many full-term students.
Amazingly she does not have asthma or any other health issues at all. For her first 3 years we had to be careful with chesty colds and she did have pneumonia a few times. Our biggest health moment came 2 months after her discharge from the Neonatal Unit with Juliet being airlifted to Starship Hospital suffering from Bronchiolitis and collapsed lungs as a result.
When I think back to our time in the Neonatal Unit I had difficulty imagining her becoming such a normal well-adjusted wonderful kid, able and wanting to participate in life to the extent she does. She has played soccer, rugby, netball, hockey, she swims, can play tennis and has learned to sail.
Juliet has always been a very happy contented child. Being breastfed for over 4 years I believe has helped her overall, both physically and emotionally. She is now a picture of health and happiness.
*** Thanks for sharing your story Marian and Juliet ***
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