Thursday, 24 July 2014

Ray of Hope - Crafting for Premature and Poorly Babies

Gorgeous Ray of Hope Knitted Items
 Hi all,

I'm pleased to bring the update that Thomas and I are doing well and learning a lot about each other all the time. He's truly thriving and has increased from his birth weight of 7lb9ozs to an impressive 11lb6ozs. . . .   he is now a grand 6.5 weeks old!

He's grown out of LOADS of his clothes already and his feet and hands are already at the end of his 0-3month outfits! I've given him the nickname of 'cuckoo baby' after the rate Cuckoo chicks also grow! :)

I'm a big believer that children should not be plastered all over the Internet so I'll not be posting up photos of the chunky-monkey himself - other than this glimpse of him in his incubator below that is, with good reason of course . . . . . . . .

The items produced by the Ray of Hope volunteers makes such a difference
As I mentioned previously, Thomas was in the NICU  (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) for 9 days after he was born as he needed a little help with his breathing (due to fluid on his lungs which could have become infected). He also needed help to maintain his temperature, learn how to give cues (i.e cry to tell us he needed feeding etc), he needed to learn how to feed (as breathing, sucking and swallowing simultaneously just didn't come naturally to him at first) and his oxygen levels were a concern (due to breathing problems).

There were a few other issues but these were thankfully resolved quickly by the wonderful staff at Leighton Hospital here in Cheshire.

This was an incredibly difficult and emotional time however, whilst we were visiting Thomas, I noticed that there were lots of gorgeous knitted blankets, hats and cardigans about the place adorning lots of poorly little bodies. Also, under the babies heads, there were some lovely patchwork or vibrant fabric sheets/quilts to capture any sicky-leaks before they reached the bedding. . . . . . you can just about make out one of these in the above photo.

As soon as Thomas was on the mend I asked the staff if they needed any more of these making and they confirmed that they never have enough! It was then I was directed to crafty volunteers, the 'Ray of Hope' team.

As it transpired, this group of wonderful people make and donate loads of creative goodies to the hospital. It is with first-hand experience that I can say what a wonderful difference they make as a result. During the times when I was feeling down, the injection of colour and wonderful craftsmanship and kindness warmed my heart so I knew that as soon as Thomas was home, I would like to join in and give something back.

It will not make these babies better but these small square quilts make the place look much better, distracting the eye from all the medical equipment hooked up to these gorgeous, poorly babies.

I'm letting Thomas settle into more of a routine before I really get cracking on my donations (plus, I need to finish off his height chart too)  but I really wanted to promote this worthwhile cause to other fabric and yarn hoarders to see if I could raise some additional support.

For more information about the Ray of Hope volunteer team and to contribute your creations to this cause, please click on the above link. They have free patterns on there too for this purpose.

1 comment:

Lynette (NZ) said...

Congrats on your lovely boy and glad that things are getting better for you. I look forward to seeing your journal :-)