Such a big miracle in our tiny precious baby girl.

picture3She’s so beautiful! When we look at our daughter Victoria now, and we can’t even put it into words how far she has come. She is a miracle and a sight to behold. When she was born she had it rough, but our little girl was a feisty fighter.

My wife and I were so excited for the birth of our first child. I was your typical soon to be first time dad; nervous, happy, excited and really trying to figure out the best way to help and support my wife without being too obsessive and making her crazy.

At 23 weeks my wife was showing signs of high blood pressure and was sent to Children’s Hospital where she was diagnosed with Preeclampsia and admitted to the hospital. (Preeclampsia is a pregnancy complication characterized by high blood pressure and signs of damage to another organ system, most often the liver and kidneys.) The only cure for her preeclampsia was the extreme premature delivery of our baby, the pregnancy could not continue.

For the next two weeks, I traveled back and forth from our home in Olean, New York (about an hour and a half away) and slept in a chair by my wife’s bedside. The stress, lack of sleep and worry was overwhelming.

picture2-cropprdTwo weeks later on August 31st at just 25 weeks, our daughter Victoria was born. She weighed 1lb 2ozs. She was so small and very fragile. Our daughter was given only a 45% chance to live and if she did live, we were told that she could be faced with many issues. We just couldn’t wrap our minds around such a thing, we’re not sure any parents could.

Our little Vicky was immediately transferred to the NICU and her battle was just beginning. There were so many machines and gadgets, so many beeps and low lights, drips and wires and tubes and a main breathing tube. It was  just overwhelming to see her in this state and we felt so helpless.  It was hard to balance it out in our minds.

picture-1-croppedRuth and I had to be close to our daughter. The thought of not being with our daughter every day at the NICU was not an option. That was when our Social worker referred us to the Buffalo Ronald McDonald House. It seemed impossible that such a place was there for us.

We really didn’t know what to expect, but the sense of relief we felt walking into the foyer of the House was totally unexpected. It was so welcoming. We were exhausted, scared and feeling lost and the staff understood what my wife and I had been experiencing. Our immediate priority: hot showers and sleep. They showed us to our room immediately where we slept in a comfortable bed for the first time in two weeks. At about 5’10” sleeping in a chair did not facilitate a good night’s rest.

Although our immediate family and friends were not close by, the staff and volunteers at the Ronald McDonald House became our family. Everything was taken care of for us so we could focus on our daughter. The House itself is a very beautiful place to rest and heal. My wife and I were very comfortable and at home, with everything we needed, food, rides to the hospital, hot showers, comfortable bed and someone to listen when we needed to talk , we wanted for nothing.

victoriaWe are so grateful that my wife and I were able to stay at the House for the four months Victoria was in the hospital. I don’t know what we would have done without the Buffalo Ronald McDonald House. We are forever indebted to Buffalo Ronald McDonald House for their kindness.

We are amazed at Victoria’s growth. Today, Victoria is almost 10 pounds and doing so well. Our daughter is very happy, alert and very chatty in the baby conversational way. Our daughter lights up our house and our hearts. We are forever thankful to God for healing her and gifting her to us and we know He has a good plan for her.

– Willy & Ruth Rotich