Brian and Tara Debeltz walk in the Brainerd March for Babies in honor of their children, daughter Ivy and twins Brody and Bryleigh, all born premature. Daughter Ivy was born five weeks early and was fortunate not to require any extra time in the hospital. It was a different story for their twins.
Born six weeks early in Nov. of 2011, Brody and Bryleigh needed time to grow bigger and stronger in the newborn intensive care unit (NICU). It was hours before Tara could hold her new babies.
“They felt so teeny-tiny and fragile,” said Tara about the babies two weeks in the NICU. “There is nothing like giving birth and then heading home without your babies. My heart was heavy and I made the one hour trip every day to be with them.”
March of Dimes was there for the Debeltz family with the NICU Family Support Program at St. Cloud Hospital. NICU Family Support brings information and comfort to families while in the NICU and during the transition home. Through NICU Family Support, families have the opportunity to learn infant CPR, scrap book and bond with other families and receive a special photo session while in the NICU.
“The March of Dimes was an amazing support system,” said Tara. “We are blessed to have three healthy children. Let’s work together for stronger, healthier babies. Please donate generously to the March for Babies!”
The Debeltz family is serving as ambassadors for the Brainerd March for Babies on Saturday, April 21 at Forestview Middle School in Baxter. March for Babies, the March of Dimes largest fundraiser, helps fund lifesaving research and educational programs aimed at helping moms have healthy babies. The goal is to raise more than $40,000 to support research, education and advocacy to improve the health of babies. To register, visit www.marchforbabies.org.