GRAND JUNCTION, Colo. The March of Dimes has been preparing for months and their biggest event of the year, The March for Babies, is finally here. The organization is expecting about 3 million people to walk nationwide tomorrow.
One Grand Junction family has three very specific reasons for walking tomorrow. Dr. Aaron Birch and his wife Brooke will join with friends and family to honor their two young boys that were born prematurely, Hunter and Paxton, and their soon-to-be baby girl.
"It's been overwhelming the support that we have had,” Brooke said. “We have family coming in from out of state to walk with us tomorrow."
About nine years ago Aaron and Brooke were expecting their first child, but what they weren’t ready for was for him to come six weeks early. Aaron was finishing up dental school in Fort Collins when he received the call from his wife.
"I got a phone call from her and she had said that she was really sorry, but they couldn't wait and they had to take the baby through a C-section,” Aaron said. “So I missed the birth of my first son."
At that moment their relationship with the March of Dimes began. Aaron and Brooke learned that their future babies would most likely be born prematurely too. They went through the same experience with their second son Paxton who was born 5 weeks early.
"It’s just not anything that you prepare for,” Brooke said. “The baby came and it took a while to hear any noise from him. They whisked him away to the NICU and I didn't even really get to see him."
Now the family is expecting a baby girl and Brooke has been working closely with her doctors and March of Dimes. She is getting progesterone shots regularly, a recommendation from the the March of Dimes, in hopes that their third child will be born even closer to the due date.
"I certainly didn't plan on having premature babies and once they were here it was nice to have the March of Dimes research.
Dr. Birch's entire dental office will participate in the walk to support Aaron, Brooke and their boys. The entire team is very tight knit and they got matching shirts to wear tomorrow.
Brooke will not be walking tomorrow, but she will be at the event. She decided to play it safe and do everything she can to keep her baby growing as long as possible.