This dad-to-be wanted to cheer his wife up while she stayed in the hospital as her water broke at 20 weeks during the pandemic.
A supportive husband is someone who stands beside you during the toughest times. They know how to cheer you up and make you feel good. But, most importantly, they show up over and over again for you. One man in Illinois showed his pregnant wife, who had to stay in the hospital in the middle of the pandemic and without visitors, how much he loved her. He made special efforts to liven up her day even from a distance.
Robert (Bob) Conlin and Shona Moeller had the shock of their lives when at 20 weeks pregnancy, Shona's water broke, giving their boy, Forest, only a 1% chance of survival. She was told that she should either terminate the pregnancy or wait and watch.
"I, of course, just like was inconsolable. Just buried my head in my hands and Robert was enveloping me. Those first few weeks we kind of just played a wait and see game," the 41-year-old mom told NBCChicago. At 23 weeks, she got admitted to the hospital for the long haul until her baby was scheduled to be born through a C-section at 32 weeks.
During her stay, she was not allowed to have visitors since it was all happening in the middle of a pandemic. So Bob started visiting her three to four nights a week and Saturday nights became "date nights." He maintained social distance though. He brought her signs and food that he would drop off at the hospital for her, and he would sit outside so she could see him from her window.
"Shona and I have been married almost three years and date night is something we always did anyway. And it seemed like this would be a way to keep the tradition going and still connect and be with each other," Bob told CBS News. "It kind of occurred to me 'Oh, I should ask her out on a date,'" he said.
Due to COVID-19 restrictions, this man could not visit his wife in the hospital who was waiting to give birth. But he didn't let that stop him from being there for her. He decided to bring date night outside her window, reminding her of how much he loves her! So thoughtful! 😭❤️ pic.twitter.com/VkhRvmE9VL— LightWorkers (@LightWorkers) June 2, 2020
She assumed it would be over a video calling app until he brought the treats for her and set up a table for himself outside on the lawn of the hospital. "I wanted her to feel special and loved," he said. "She's in there by herself and she can't even leave her room. She's going to be there, we're hoping for just three months. We're halfway there," he said in May.
She had to go and stay at the hospital since she could go into labor at any moment. Fortunately, Bob will be able to attend the birth of his son and will have to move into the hospital once she goes into labor.
"At about 34 weeks the baby is safer out of the womb than in," Bob said. "So in a situation like ours, which is very rare, they would induce and have the baby born," he added.
The couple work as relationship coaches and Shona is also a teacher. She had been teaching online while at the hospital and on the last day of school, Bob got her a gift, a pinata.
Their story had garnered attention online and he said that it was a "humbling" thing. "All we've done is just share our love for each other in such a scary time for us and it helped to share our story and what we were going through," he said. "And so many people lifted us up in every way imaginable."
The couple became parents one day before Father's Day when their baby boy Forest was born. They have been updating the status of his health through a GoFundMe page. Bob shared some personal moments on Facebook on June 21. "Momma meets Forest for the first time. He immediately started rooting as soon as he got near her. We were moved to the mother baby unit saying goodbye to Shona’s home for the last 69 days," he wrote.
"The Neonatologist said 'Forest blew us away' with how well he’s doing. Things can change quickly so we celebrate this now," the 45-year-old dad shared. On their GoFundMe page, he said on July 6 that their child was moved to Level II after only a few days in Level III. "He no longer needing any supportive measures. He is learning to nurse and he is eating when he is hungry. Sometimes he needs to be reminded to eat but most of the time he lets us and the nurse angels know," the devoted dad said.
Meanwhile, Shona is back home and the couple is waiting to bring their child home. "Shona has finally come home after 73 days in the hospital. Forest likely has a few weeks left until he gets to come home to his nursery and all his forest friends," the dad had said on June 27.
Here's hoping Forest gets to see his momma and poppa soon!