A woman carrying a baby experiences many heightened emotions, which is just a bit crazy considering how sensitive she is at this time in her life. She’s excited and elated to be pregnant, terrified and worried that something could go wrong, and she is certainly impatient to meet her baby but worried that it will be too soon and her baby will not be viable. For the mother of Mallory Marconi, a 24-year-old nurse in Newark, her mother went through each of these emotions. When she went into labor with Mallory in 1990, she was only 26 weeks pregnant. That’s more than three months before her due date. Terrified, she gave birth to a tiny two-pound daughter who spent 8 weeks in the NICU at Newark Beth Israel Medical Center in New Jersey. The NICU nurses and doctors were able to keep her healthy so that she would continue to develop and grow, and she has managed to do just that. Today, it’s not uncommon for babies born this early to survive without issue. Back then, it was not as common.
Today, Mallory Marconi is back in the hospital at Newark Beth Israel, but this time she’s come full circle. She is now a nurse employed by the same hospital that once saved her life. The young woman has been back to the hospital many times over the year to attend celebrations for NICU patients who made it successfully home and through life. She says she’s always happy to come back and attend and show the people who saved her life just how far she’s come in her own life.
The decision to go into the field of nursing was a simple one. Her mother and aunt both work as nurses, and Marconi said that it’s something she’s always wanted to do. After graduating college, she took a chance and applied for a position at the hospital and she was hired. It was a delightful surprise when she ran into Ruth Benko, a nurse who took care of her 25 years ago when she was born. Benko says that getting to work with her former patient before she retires after 35 years as a nurse is something that means a lot to her. She often never sees her patients again. It’s a lovely story of a young woman whose life has come full circle already.
Photo by Christopher Furlong/Getty Images