PREEMIEWORLD: Why did you choose your current profession?
SHERRY: I have a daughter who was a NICU baby 30 years ago, and the support that I received from other parents through Family Connection of SC was priceless! We had wonderful friends, family, and professionals caring for our daughter and for us, but the support we received from other parents who had also experienced what we were going through (juggling responsibilities, dreams interrupted, finances, surgeries, procedures, and all the other medical ups and downs) really helped us find the comfort and hope we needed to dig in and move forward in this unexpected journey that we initially felt so unprepared for! So once my daughter was stable, I became a volunteer at Family Connection and soon after, an employee. I had found my purpose and realized that my daughter was my most important teacher!
PREEMIEWORLD: What do you want other professionals to know about what you do?
SHERRY: Providing emotional support, encouragement, and information for families while their baby is in the NICU and throughout their baby’s first year after discharge.
PREEMIEWORLD: What advice do you give to preemie parents?
SHERRY: Get connected with a support or social group for preemie parents online or in person!
Self care is important for you and your baby!
Everyone copes and adapts to the unexpected differently and that is okay!
Accepting help is okay and does not mean that you can’t do it yourself, and is an excellent way of expanding your “village”.
Saying no to things that add to your stress and unneeded responsibilities is okay! It is called self care!
Pay attention to your body and your mental health and don’t be afraid to talk with your doctor if anything doesn’t seem right!
I could go on and on….
PREEMIEWORLD: Fun Facts: Tell us a fun or quirky fact about you.
SHERRY: I have a terrible laugh!!
PREEMIEWORLD: Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?
SHERRY: I feel so blessed to have the opportunity to meet these amazing families and walk beside them at the beginning of their baby’s journey!