Locust Grove residents Erik and Deanna Osakue with their sons, Chace and Grayson.

STOCKBRIDGE — A long stay in the neonatal Intensive Care Unit prompted one family at Piedmont Henry Hospital to write a book about their experience.

Erik and Deanna Osakue welcomed their second child, a boy named Grayson, at just 22 weeks gestation. He weighed just 1 pound, 2 ounces, resulting in a four-month stay in the NICU.

Erik went home and began his research into what other families had been through and to learn what he and his wife could expect.

“There weren’t a lot of people who had babies born as early as we did, but through my research I found there was a light at the end of the tunnel,” he said.

As his son’s first birthday approached, Erik said he wanted to plan something special.

He and his wife wrote “I Can’t Wait! Grayson’s Micro Preemie Story.”

The couple said the goal of the book was to be educational and accessible to family and friends. The book is written from their son’s perspective. It doesn’t contain medical terms, but conveys to the reader an understanding of what a stay in the NICU is like and the magnitude of the situation.

In March, Grayson will celebrate his second birthday. Erik says he’s doing well, but still faces an uphill battle, remaining on oxygen and attending therapy several times a week.

“He’s always in good spirits,” he said.

“We’re very proud of this family and how Grayson is progressing,” said Kimberly Pace, manager of the NICU at Piedmont Henry. “This book was a wonderful way to share their story and encourage other families in their journeys.”

“I Can’t Wait! Grayson’s Micro Preemie Story,” can be found on Amazon.

To learn more about maternity services at Piedmont Henry, visit piedmont.org/maternityservices.

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