Adventures in Attachment Parenting: Selfless Acts by Allison Silver
Several months ago when I asked my husband what attachment parenting meant to him, he replied with, “putting your child’s needs ahead of your own needs.” This idea of putting your child’s needs first requires parents to do selfless acts on a daily basis. This can be difficult, especially during times of high stress.
Hurricane Sandy packed a much larger punch this week than many had predicted and, living here on the West Coast, we only saw television reports or heard specifics from family and friends. One report that has really stuck with me is the evacuation of the NYU hospital. One of the units the hospital had to evacuate was the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU). Nurses from the NICU were required to walk down nine flights of stairs by flashlight while manually squeezing respirators for these fragile babies. Can you imagine having to do that?
Talk about a selfless act! The evacuation of these babies required the nurses to forget about their own needs during this stressful time and put all of their energy into moving these babies. We tend to forget that medical personnel are people too. Each one of these nurses has a family that they were probably concerned about. But instead of worrying about their own needs they put the needs of these helpless babies first.
The parents of these babies also had to commit a selfless act by trusting in the nurses to properly evacuate their children. Can you imagine what kind of stress these families have had to encounter? First, they gave birth to a premature infant, that in itself is highly stressful! Then add on a hurricane and on top of that an evacuation because the hospital is flooding and has lost power. I really don’t know how any of these parents were able to hold it together. I would have been a crazy woman! Our daughter was born five weeks early and thankfully we only had to spend one night in the NICU. However that one night was very stressful so I can only imagine what type of stress these families in New York had to encounter.
From the news stories that I have read and seen on the television, all of the babies in the NICU were evacuated successfully and taken to other hospitals. This is absolutely remarkable. It truly amazes me how people come together during times of crisis and can put their own needs on hold to meet the needs of others.
As a parent I really commend the action of the nurses, doctors, first responders, and families in New York City. I strive to commit selfless acts on a daily basis and yet these heroes didn’t give a second thought to putting their own needs aside and focusing on what mattered most, the well being of these infants. This is a good reminder to me to apply focus to what matters most in my life, the needs of my child, and not to get so caught up in the everyday.
To all of you who were affected by hurricane Sandy, our thoughts and prayers are with you and we pray for the safety and well being of you and your family.