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Our daughter Fiona was born 11:15 p.m. January 24 weighing 2 pounds, 6 ounces.

She was crying with strong, healthy lungs immediately and has been feisty ever since. She is in the NICU, and she’ll be there for a long time. Kelli and I are expecting that we won’t be able to take her home until around her mid-April due date. She has a long, difficult road ahead of her, but she is in very good shape for being so premature. And she is in the care of some truly amazing people.

Kelli had a very rough night Wednesday. She was unbelievable, just as she has been since being admitted to the hospital Sunday evening. She went to hell and back this week. She is healing up quickly, and we are finally getting some time to breathe.

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The two of us are living here at UW Medical Center while Kelli heals. And even after we can go home, we’ll spend much of our time in the NICU with our amazing new daughter. We are very lucky to be surrounded by so many loving people and to have access to such incredible health care.

Avid readers may have noticed the blog go silent this week. Things happened so quickly and unexpectedly, I didn’t have any plan in place to keep things going. I know it might seem silly to worry about a bike blog amid such huge family changes and challenges, but I take this work seriously and appreciate all of you who make it part of your day. I also appreciate all the site’s advertisers and all of you reader supporters who dedicate $5–$20 every month to keep this work going.

In the seven and a half years I’ve been writing Seattle Bike Blog, I’ve spoken with many parents who have lost children in traffic collisions. I always feel a deep gratitude that they are willing to share their most painful stories with me, and am amazed by their strength in the face of tragedy. They gave me strength this week as our family faced some traumatic scares. If they can persevere, we can, too.

I have also spoken to many survivors of terrible traffic trauma, and they taught me about how the physical injuries are only part of the challenge of coming back after such a major event. I am so grateful to them for sharing their stories with me, because I know my family will also need to be patient with each other and seek help if needed as we work through the emotional and mental trauma of this week.

Given how long Fiona will stay in the NICU and how unpredictable the next few months will be, I wanted you all to know why posting here will be sporadic. I am going to prioritize family over this blog.

But this blog is also fun for me to write. So while it is my work, it is also how I relax and process the world around me. It’s meditative for me, in a way, providing a rhythm for my days. So I will keep writing when it works into my days.

Perhaps the biggest change is that I will not be quick to post about breaking news. I will also be much slower to respond to reader emails and tweets, and I have closed comments on all posts older than 60 days.

But it’s not going on hiatus. I have some great guest reporting already lined up, and I may have plenty of time to sit in the NICU with my laptop, pondering the pure wonder of life and writing about bikes.

Thank you all for reading, and take care.

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32 responses to “Fiona”

  1. Svend

    Tom, congratulations to you and Kelli! I wish your daughter the best.

  2. Drew

    I saw that purple glow and it all came rushing back. I have twins that were born very premature, coming in at 2lbs 1oz and 2lbs 2oz. My wife and I were at the nicu every day for 82 days. Our twins turned 3 in December and you’d never know they were born so early. The NICU nurses and doctors are AMAZING (we were at Swedish). I found that, for me, work was a necessary distraction. I hope nothing but the best for your family. I’m sure you’ll find out all about it, but skin to skin care (kangaroo care) was crucial for everyone involved.

  3. Mr. Fucoloro, I don’t know you, but you and your family have all of my love and best wishes. How cool is that? I look forward to seeing Fiona out and about on the trails.

  4. Joan

    All my hopes for your family 💜 <3

  5. Donna ME

    Congratulations! and best wishes in the months ahead. Be strong!

  6. Darby

    Tom and Kelli,
    Congratulations on the arrival of Fiona! All of us here at SDOT and Project Development are thinking of you and sending our best wishes. We look forward to riding with you and Fiona soon!

  7. kommish

    Tom, you and Kelli have given so much to this community. Thank you. Kelli and Fiona will be in my thoughts as they heal and grow, and I am so sorry you are all facing this challenge. Sending you all so much love and light.

    1. Shelly Bowman

      Congratulations. Happy to hear of baby Fiona’s arrival. I know of another eager arrival this past year. We watched on FB as she went from a very small being held in the small of a hand then little by little, ounce by ounce, grew to full healthy baby that took two arms to hold. A miracle to watch and all it took was time. Enjoy all your moments of joyous growth together. Love to you both.

  8. Scott

    Thank you for sharing Fiona’s story. Sending happy thoughts to you and your family.

  9. Jim

    Thanks for sharing. Peace to you and your young family.

  10. Apu

    Love and best wishes to all of you!

  11. Thanks for all your work. And best wishes to you and your family.

  12. Ansel

    What Doug said. Welcome to Seattle, little Fiona!

  13. Stuart

    Best wishes to you and your family.

  14. Hannah

    Tom, you’ve done so much to raise the level of discussion about cycling in Seattle. Thanks for sharing your big news. Your audience will be thinking of your family, rooting for you all, and happy to see any bike-related news or not in the coming weeks.

  15. Law Abider

    Sending good thoughts to you and your family. Fiona is in the hands of some of the best doctors in the world!

  16. Fish

    Thank you for all your hardwork and sending positive thoughts to you and your family.

  17. maria

    Little tiny hugs to little baby Fiona and sending strength to her parents. Take your time and we will be here when you get back!

  18. Melinda

    Welcome, Fiona! Congratulations to you and Kelli, and I hope she grows up strong.

  19. Gary

    Wow! Congratulations! And what Doug said.

    Yeah you should always have the comments closed after 60 days. If there is something new on an old subject, just open up a new discussion. Would love a “+1” option as well.

  20. Dave

    Mazel tov, may she grow up healthy, happy, brilliant, beautiful, and to come of age in a post-car world!

  21. Nate Todd

    Tom F, thanks for sharing. Thoughts and prayers. I know what it’s like to be cooped up in the NICU, best of luck to your family.

  22. Good vibes from the east side headed your way.

  23. bobco85

    Relatively new here (to Seattle and this blog), but I wish you and your newborn all the best.

    Just a thought: in order to maintain a regular rate of posts on this blog, have you considered having guest posts? It might help to keep the blog active while you care for your daughter.

  24. Tracy @ WSB

    Envisioning strength and health for your daughter – and her parents.

    If there is anything we can do for you & SBB over here in West Seattle while you are on restricted duty – a photo, maybe? – let us know.

  25. Kevin Futhey

    Congrats and best wishes to the three of you from everyone here at Commute Seattle.

  26. Jeff Aken

    Congratulations Tom, Kelli and baby Fiona. Sending my best to all three of you.

  27. Neel

    Welcome Fiona – your parents are awesome and so are you! Best wishes!

  28. Liz

    I bike right past UW hospital every day, and I’ll be praying for feisty Fiona as I go by. Congratulations on your precious daughter.

  29. Barb Mathewson

    Tom – congratulations on the birth of Fiona. I just wanted to chime in as the mother of twins boys who were born at 29.5 weeks (3 lbs 2oz and 2 lbs 15 oz) at the U.W. almost 20 years ago now. If I learned one thing from that long experience it is that babies are very resilient. You are in good hands, the staff at the U.W. are a wonderful and caring bunch. All the best to you, your wife and your precious daughter!

  30. ronp

    Congrats and hang in there, and may baby Fiona grow quickly strong!
    I will look for a donate button on the site and send some dollars.

  31. bob

    Hi Tom y Kelli,Fiona is Equally fortunate,blessed and ‘lucky’ to have such nurturing,caring,loving,great and kind parents as you both are to have her ! GRATEFUL you shared your amazing journey thus far….thank you 3 for Inspiring ! Bob

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