Months of preparation, reading, classes and research couldn’t have prepared these two first-time parents for what we were about to endure. Minutes after our daughter, Amelia, was born, we were informed of her fragile state and that Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin was en route in the sky.
Amelia inhaled meconium in the womb, which resulted in serious lung problems. Our hometown hospital was doing as much as they could, but wasn’t able to give Amelia the care she needed. When the Transport Team from Children’s Hospital arrived, we were confused, exhausted and terrified — and they could tell.
Each of them took the time to consult with my husband and I, walking us through all the steps they were about to take to save Amelia’s life. They were realistic, yet reassuring. In the midst of all the fast chaos of consulting with her doctors, preparing her for the flight and giving us the many details of what was ahead, they stood quietly by as we had Amelia baptized and tried to find peace in what could have been our only minutes as a family of 3. We touched her for the first time as we said goodbye, and a member of the Transport Team cried with us. She told us they would work hard so we’d be reunited once again.
Upon arrival at Children’s Hospital, a doctor who was a member of Amelia’s Transport Team called my hospital room to tell me about the flight. “For future reference, she gets a little cranky during helicopter rides,” he softly joked. He gave me a full report and assured me that her care team was working feverishly to make sure I’d get to see my little girl alive again and that she was in the best hands. He was right.
Throughout Amelia’s 18-day stay in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit, Transport Team members came to visit and check on her progress. We owe everything to her care team at Children’s Hospital. The expertise and world-class care they provide are the reasons we now have a healthy and happy 7-month-old. Their kindness, compassion and concern for the well-being of our family was unexpected and unmatched. One thousand lifetimes wouldn’t be long enough to express my gratitude.
– Sara Montonati, guest blogger
Sara is the mother of Amelia, a former patient of Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin’s Transport Team and Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.