Maria Gartland, mother of ‘Neonatal Intensive Care Unit baby’ Angela, has donated $1,100 since her daughter’s birth to support Mercy Health’s perinatal care and research.
“As a first-time mum I was expecting everything to go smoothly and Angela’s birth was a wonderful, beautiful experience. Unfortunately, complications occurred afterwards; she turned blue, and we found out she had fluid in her lungs. I was just petrified.
“Angela spent the first two weeks of her life in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. I was really blown away by the staff; I greatly appreciated everything they did for my family. The nurses visited regularly and as I was breastfeeding, they guided me on how to manage when I didn’t have Angela with me. That was quite difficult — expressing and being an anxious mum. I particularly remember one of the Sisters could see I was struggling and she was very supportive.
“I’ll be forever grateful to Mercy Hospital for Women, especially when I saw what other mums were going through. Angela’s condition was only mild compared to other babies’. I remember one evening, a little baby stopped breathing and it was just… I get emotional thinking about it.
“Angela is doing really well; she’s now eight years old, very healthy and is the tallest in her class! She’s excelling at school; she was class captain last year and is very arty – in fact she’s learning guitar this year.
“Angela came back to the hospital for the birth of her sister Emily. I had gestational diabetes and high blood pressure and because of my conditions the staff went out of their way to make sure I was rested.
“I’m deeply touched by the dedication and the commitment of the midwives and doctors. My donations are a small gesture of my appreciation.”