From NICU to NICU: Baby Sawyer


September 24, 2021
Sawyer with the whole family.

“As new parents, we’re so appreciative to the team at Humber for teaching us so much. From how to bathe Sawyer or how to burp him, the nurses were always there for us when we had questions.”

We’re sharing with you Baby Sawyer’s story. Sawyer was born to dads Brian and Andrew. During his first week of life, Sawyer had already been treated at two different NICUs. Brian tells their family story below.

“Our son Sawyer was born via surrogacy and my husband Andrew and I were terrified because he was born way too early.

Sawyer wasn’t due for another 7 weeks when we received a call that our surrogate’s water had broke. We’re from Toronto and she lives in Ottawa. As soon as we got her call, we jumped into the car and got to her as quickly as we could.

When Sawyer was born, he was immediately whisked away to the NICU at the Ottawa hospital we were in. After a few days, we were transferred to Humber’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit via private medical transport. We were happy to be back in Toronto.

At first, we were really disoriented to be in a different hospital, but everyone was so nice. Dr. Jay Dahman was the paediatrician who came right away to check on Sawyer and made sure he was doing okay.

After a stressful few days in Ottawa, we were happy to be in a single-patient room in the NICU with our baby. While we couldn’t stay overnight due to the COVID-19 restrictions at the time, we knew when we left each evening that Sawyer was in good hands.

Integrated Bedside Terminal IBT

“The Integrated Bedside Terminal (IBT) in our room was really helpful too. It let us call a nurse when we needed one and also let us stream a YouTube playlist of lullaby music to help Sawyer fall asleep to.”

When we were there during the day, we took advantage of the recliner in our room to feed Sawyer in and did lots of skin-to-skin contact with him. When it was time to learn how to give him a bath, we were grateful for the incubator which kept him warm and cozy.

The Integrated Bedside Terminal (IBT) in our room was really helpful too. It let us call a nurse when we needed one and also let us stream a YouTube playlist of lullaby music to help Sawyer fall asleep to.

Dr. Dahman came back every day to check in with Sawyer. It was nice to have the same doctor and we felt like he really got to know us throughout the week and we got to know him. We also met with Dr. Sally Kenawy who was amazing too.

Sawyer sleeping at 4 weeks old.

“Sawyer grew so much and ate so much while he was in the NICU. Now, he’s been home with us for a week and he’s doing so well.”

As new parents, we’re so appreciative to the team at Humber for teaching us so much. From how to bathe Sawyer or how to burp him, the nurses were always there for us when we had questions. We also learned how to perform CPR on a child and exercises you can do with your preemie baby to make sure they’re getting a strong start to life.

No parent wants to be in the NICU, but we had a very positive experience at Humber. We felt taken care of and the team was so knowledgeable. Sawyer grew so much and ate so much while he was in the NICU. Now, he’s been home with us for a week and he’s doing so well. We can’t imagine life without him!”