When a friend’s baby and my best little buddy was diagnosed with a lifelong disease that affects one in every million infants, it wasn’t easy to explain to others. Heck, it wasn’t even easy to pronounce! There’s a certain isolation and a heaviness that ensue when friends, even those with the best of intentions, don’t understand or know what to say in response to such scary circumstances. For those of you who have gone through or are currently dealing with some seriously taxing challenges, know you’re not alone. It probably feels daunting to endure a life-altering, draining experience. But, girl, we got you. P.S. There’s nothing wrong with believing in miracles!
WOMEN IN NUMBERS: 8 Years
Today, we’re talking about an experience that requires some serious resilience. When pregnant women have their babies preterm, defined as delivering before 37 weeks of pregnancy, babies can have all sorts of health problems, leaving parents feeling helpless and frightened of an uncertain future. Sadly, this situation is occurring more than ever, with the 2016 March of Dimes Premature Birth Report Card noting that, for the first time in eight years, the preterm birth rate in the United States has actually worsened. But there is hope. According to the March of Dimes, it comes in the form of better-mobilized resources and “driving best practices and policies to ensure that no mother or baby falls through the cracks.”
WOMAN TO WATCH: Nadine Bubeck, Founder of Mama B. Designs
Today’s Woman to Watch knows firsthand how terrifying such an experience can be, but she’s doing her part to help other moms be brave while suffering through the emotionally exhausting undertaking of birthing a preemie baby. Her name is Nadine Bubeck, and she’s the founder of a wonderful fashion business called Mama B. Designs that not only gives preemie parents a ray of hope, but also spreads prematurity awareness and monetarily supports the March of Dimes.
It all started when Nadine was pregnant with her first child. At about 20 weeks, doctors diagnosed Nadine with complete placenta previa, a condition in which the placenta covers the cervix. She was put on hospitalized bed rest and gave birth to her son six weeks early. Though he weighed a mere 4 pounds, 11 ounces, and spent a full week in the neonatal intensive care unit, Nadine knew he was a fighter and named him Nicholas, a fitting moniker meaning “victorious.”
It was a stressful time, but Nadine is a firm believer that even a bumpy journey can be a beautiful experience, which is why she founded Mama B. Designs, through which 50 percent of the retail price of every item in her Miracle Line of super-soft women’s, men’s and kids’ clothing is donated to the March of Dimes.
Mama B. Designs clothing, from flowy women’s sweatshirts to adorable infant rompers and Ts, is emblazoned with such inspiring phrases as “Believe in Miracles,” “Miracles Happen” and “Mama’s Miracle.”
For those who can’t get enough of Nadine’s spunky optimism, she dishes about parenting tips and products on her vlog, All Things Mama TV, and shares her remarkable story in her book, Expecting Perfect: My Bumpy Journey to Mommyhood.
Now a full-blown mompreneur with three sons, Nadine says her biggest challenge is tackling mom guilt. While she tries to give her boys 100 percent, that’s just flat-out impossible. But I love her advice to moms with similarly busy lives: When you’re looking—and feeling—good, take a few selfies with your kids, as those treasures will become some of your favorite photos for life!
QUITE THE QUOTE
In the spirit of childhood, let’s conclude with a quote from the author of Winnie the Pooh, A. A. Milne:
“Sometimes the smallest things take up the most room in your heart.”
This is Melinda Garvey signing off until next time. Remember, ladies, empowered women empower other women. Share On the Dot so more women can have a voice. Thanks for getting ready with us.