For fans of This is Us, the anticipation had been building since last week, when Kate’s water broke near the end of the episode. After holding our breath all week, Tuesday's episode required several boxes of tissues and more waiting. As we all cried tears of relief after Kate and Toby’s baby was born, parents took to social media to share about their own premature baby stories.
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The heart tugging episode found the entire Pearson family gathered at the hospital. At only 28 weeks pregnant, Doctors did all they could to delay Kate's labor. However, true to life, things don't always go as planned. After an emergency c-section, Kate gave birth to a baby boy. And, from Toby announcing to everyone "he's here," to Kate telling Toby “I want to name him Jack," to her emotional plea to her dad, we are certain we could hear the sobs of viewers across the globe.
As with many episodes of This is Us, this particular one hit home for many viewers. Soon, parents and now grown premature babies took to social media to share their own stories. Since about 450,000 babies in the United States alone are born early and 15 million babies are born preterm around the world, it’s no surprise that Kate and Toby’s storyline struck a chord.
The strength of NICU babies and their parents is exceptional and it was incredibly inspiring to see so many amazing posts.
Chrissy Metz even joined in on the Twitter love (like we need another reason to adore her!)
Awww! Look at your adorable fighter, thriving!!!❤️ https://t.co/wIUX7rgNJ6— Chrissy Metz (@ChrissyMetz) March 13, 2019
It is moments like these where we see the best of people, coming together to uplift and support one another. And, let's be honest, we could all use more of that!
This is Us executive producer, Isaac Aptaker, stated that they will be keeping the medical parts of the story as realistic as possible, “We will be spending a good portion of the rest of our season dealing with these story lines for Kate and Toby. Just like in real life, if this happened it would be all-consuming, so it is the same way for our characters on the show.”
Personally, this episode took me back to six months ago. Our daughter, although not a preemie, was born weighing only four pounds and had to spend one week in the NICU. We met some incredible parents in our short stay, and we never took for granted how lucky we were that our stay was brief.
The strength of preemie babies and their parents is incredible and, although it likely won’t be smooth sailing for the new family of three, we will be cheering on baby Jack (and Kate and Toby) the entire way.