Tonight I would like to introduce you to Janelle and her son Lucas. After having Lucas at 28 weeks, Janelle has gone on to create Early Buds, an amazing organisation that gives support, resources and essential products to families to help them through the journey of having a premature baby.
Read on to hear more from Janelle and how you may be able to help!
Hi, I’m Janelle, and this is my son Lucas.
Lucas was born at 28 weeks and it was here we began our journey into understanding the needs and challenges of welcoming a premature baby into our family. It was this experience which led me to establish Early Buds and our premature baby packs.
At 28 weeks I was told that I had a condition called pre-eclampsia which was discovered from an additional scan and traces of protein in my urine. Immediately I was injected with steroids which would mature my baby’s lungs and make it easier for him to breathe. Because of my severity and the fact that I was only 28 weeks pregnant we were taken to Waikato Hospital where I stayed for one night, but because there was no room, we were taken to Auckland City Hospital.
Our son Lucas was delivered by emergency C-section and weighed just 1000grams and was 37.5cm long. His head was only the size of a tennis ball he was tiny. When he arrived, he was whipped away to NICU and on day 5 we got to hold him for the first time. After a week in Auckland we were taken to Waikato again where we stayed about 30 days, then finally back to Rotorua where we stayed another 2 weeks. Finally, on October the 12th he came home, we were so over the moon to have him home after spending so long in hospital. I was so alone and scared through my journey, I was away from my home town away from my family and in fear of my baby’s life at times.
The Birth of Early Buds
I created Early Buds in 2010. I struggled to find the support and products I needed while in hospital with my fragile wee premature son Lucas. Most care packages and gift boxes that are out there today are designed for full term babies and contain products that are not suitable for premature babies. We have found that most products on the market that are specifically designed for preemies are garish, outdated and either pink for girls or blue for boys, we don’t see any reason why premature babies can’t be catered for in the same way as your average newborn baby with stylish, top quality essential products.
Early Buds care for Mums too. Not many gifting companies are considering the needs of Mums. There is plenty of evidence that mothers of premature babies are at a far greater risk of postnatal depression, not to mention most mothers of premature babies are not prepared or organised for their hospital stay that often comes out of the blue. We believe that supporting mums that bring these fragile babies into the world deserve a support, care and a bit of pampering too. Our Mums essentials premature pack has specially designed by Janelle. She has thoughtfully selected or designed the products that she feels are essential for parents of a premature baby, making our packs a perfect gift for any family having an early baby.
By choosing to shop with us you are supporting the Early Buds charity program. We support parents of premature babies currently in care by providing them with our free sampler packs, we have over 700 members in our create and donate group who tirelessly provide us with free knitted and sewn garment for these packs.
We also provide monthly donations of much needed beanies and blankets to baby units nationwide, as well as 10% of net profits which are donated back to the organisation.
If you would like to contribute to our organisation, there are a few ways you can do so. If you are a business and want to be involved you can by donating product to our free sampler packs, if you are an individual you may like to join our 'Create and Donate facebook group', or make monetary donation via our 'givealittle page'.
FB Create and Donate Group: https://www.facebook.com/ groups/earlybudscreate/?ref= bookmarks
Givealittle Page: www.givealittle.co.nz/org/earlybudsnz
FB Page: www.facebook.com/earlybuds