NICU Boot Camp
how to survive the NICU - guidance for preemie parents and NICU parents about how to get through the NICU
Welcome to NICU Boot Camp!
This page will be constantly undergoing improvement - it's still really rough - but I want to get it published and available ASAP so brand new NICU parents like you have the resources available.
For a comprehensive list of topics that NICU parents often ask about, NICU for Beginners contains dozens of links to the stuff you want to know more about.
But now, let's get started with the stuff every NICU parent should know about right from the beginning.
Here's what boot camp will cover:
1. Navigating the NICU
Who everyone is, how you fit into your baby's care team, and what to do if you don't get along with one of your baby's caregivers (yes, many times you can & should "fire" him or her)
2. Those Crazy, awful, totally normal NICU emotions
Feeling guilty, jealous, angry, depressed and more? You are NOT alone - read on to understand why it's normal to feel these feelings, and learn how to cope
3. Yes, you need support - here's how to find it
You're in a whirlwind right now, a tornado of confusion, sadness & worry - you need some help. Whether's it's from your partner, your hospital staff, another NICU parent or support group, here are ways to get some help.
4. How to find joy & celebrate milestones in the NICU
Every new parent deserves to celebrate and find joy in welcoming their baby to the world. But it can feel difficult, if not impossible, to see anything joyful about the NICU. "Normal" babies don't have the same milestones as preemies and NICU babies. Small victories in the NICU are the kinds of things other parents won't appreciate, but you can & should honor your baby's unique journey by celebrating and commemorating these special moments. Here are some creative ideas about how to go about finding joy and celebrating NICU acheivements.
5. I know you're sick of hearing it, but you must take care of yourself
Knowing that the NICU asks ridiculously difficult feats from parents - pump all the time, but rest!" "Be in the NICU with your baby, but sleep a lot and take time for yourself" it can feel impossible. Here are some simple, time-tested ways that NICU parents take care of themselves during this journey.
6. Worried about finances?
Finances, unfortunately, worry many parents when they're in the NICU. Here are some very important tips on what to know and how to get help.
Let's get started...