Sophia's Thank you letter to her Neonatologist -

Sophia was born premature at San Pedro Hospital, Davao City, Philippines, last February 22,2011.  She weighs a mere 2.1 lbs at birth and stayed at the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit ), for 54 days.  This is her thank you letter to her Neonatologist, Dr. Joel Gallardo ;

                                                            THANK YOU ! 


Dear Dr. Gallardo,

I am now a year old.  As I say my thanks to the Lord for giving me life, I also say;

         “Thank you Dr. Gallardo …
          thank you for taking good care of me when I was at the NICU  “

 Because of your care, and with the Lord’s blessing, I survived.  

I’m sure you do not recognize me anymore.  I certainly don’t look like the 2.1 lbs.  baby who stayed in the NICU for 54 days. This is how I look then;

Just a glimpse ...
A year ago, February 22, 2011, to be exact, Dra. Tuazon scope me up from my mom’s belly and gave me to you. My mom was just 7 months pregnant then but she has no choice, Dra. Tuazon found out that I was not taking nutrients for a week already because I so twisted my umbilical cord that no food could pass thru it. But that's ok, Dra. Tuazon has been assuring my Mom that she got me the best Neonatologist in town. 

I'm glad you woke up so early that morning and were there when I came out. I came out to this world sooo .... small; I needed your expert care.

Ah ! we were not friends for  a while; I didn't like the poking of course and the cold touch of your instruments on my body. I didn't like it also when you put me in a room by myself.  I cannot understand then why all the other babies were in one room while I was alone in the NICU, it could have been fun crying in chorus with them. 

I cannot understand too when you insist on putting me to sleep in my belly; you see, I like moving around. I cannot understand then why you wanted me to preserve my energy. And when you have to limit my milk ... aah, that's the most that I do not like. 

Yes, I do not see you as my friend then. But I am glad you insisted on your way. I was born " very very small " and you did your best to help me survive. 

I remember, you would visit me everyday to make sure that I am ok, and if I have gained weight. Well, I put on some weight but not as much as you wanted. I am not sure if you labeled me  a “failure to thrive”, but I do remember that Dr. Alegarbes suspected I had hirschsprung. Grandma however, said " God just needed more time" to finish my stomach.

 You could have been disappointed when I went home because I was just 1.3 kilos then, you said it was very risky, but Mama and Papa … they took the risk.

At home, my Grandma would bring me to the window to catch the sun rise. I so loved this moment because while she prayed, she would tickle me with her  soft circling massage on my stomach.

Oh ! Mom and Dad, they prayed really hard too and would hug and sang me lullabies. There was no moment anymore when I would be alone and lonely.

The good Lord must have answered their prayers immediately, because, a week after, when we came back to your clinic for a checkup, you found me already a 1.7 kilo baby. After that visit, you never saw me again. There is this Pedia near our house and Mama thought, we should give you more time to attend to babies that are more in need; the babies in the NICU.

Now, I am coming  back to say:

Thank you doctor, may our Lord continue to bless you with a steady hand and a caring heart and send you to babies that needs your help, babies like me.

Rain Sophia Gamboa

P.S. I asked my Grandma to do the typing for me, you see, I could already stand on my own, and do what other full term babies can do like ; close/ open; bye-bye;  up/down;  saying Ma and Pa, points to my head, nose, ears, mouth, etc. but there is still one thing that I cannot do; I still cannot write.

By the way, the last time I weigh, I am already 18lbs quite a feat huh !