When Katherine went into labor at just 24 weeks, naturally she felt anxiety and fear. She spent five days in El Camino Hospital before giving birth to twin boys. Finn and Ethan weighed only one pound ten ounces and one pound seven ounces, respectively, at birth.
Immediately after birth, the twins went into the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) and were put on life support. Katherine didn’t see her babies until hours after she delivered them and when she was finally able to meet them for the first time, it was only for a few minutes. Katherine and her family were given the difficult news about the life expectancy for 24-week babies as well as the statistics regarding their future health prognosis. Every week was a roller coaster ride with some days being tougher than others, but it didn’t take long before she found great comfort knowing that her babies were being cared for by highly skilled nurses and doctors.
“It felt good to know that the nurses and doctors cared so much about our babies,” recalls Katherine. “They snuggled, spent time with them, and took care of them when we couldn’t.”
During their 94-day stay, Katherine developed strong relationships with the medical staff, which made it easier for her to trust them with the care of her precious little babies. When the time came for the twins to be discharged from the hospital, Katherine says she was happy to be going home, but sad to be leaving her extended family.
Since leaving the NICU at El Camino Hospital, Finn and Ethan have defied all the odds. At 18 months old both are developing normal communication and cognitive skills. The twins are regularly crawling, running around, and playing with one another.
“My advice to anyone in a similar situation to ours is to listen and trust the doctors and nurses. They’ll tell you when to worry and when to be calm, and just trust them,” said Katherine. “Take it one day at a time, and hopefully, you will come out the other end with a great outcome. We certainly did.”
Katherine and her boys Finn and Ethan were the Silicon Valley ambassadors for March of Dimes’ 2016 March for Babies walk.