Karsey Mueller has spent more time in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unity (NICU) than she did being pregnant. “Our daughter Bexley was born pre-mature at 28 weeks, and as of today, we’ve been by her side in the hospital for 39 weeks.” Karsey and her husband Adam reside in Montfort, Wisconsin, about 120 miles away from Bexley who is receiving care at UnityPoint Health St. Luke’s Hospital in Cedar Rapids. Adam balances visits to see Bexley with work while Karsey has stayed at the Ronald McDonald Family Room since Bexley’s birth.
Since arriving at the St. Luke’s Family Room, Karsey couldn’t begin to imagine how she and Adam would have been able to see their daughter, “The amount of money and time we’ve saved because of the Ronald McDonald Family Room is incredible. Hotel rooms, fuel, and going out to eat every night would be a stress on our finances and would’ve been more time away from Bexley. Now, I’m literally just down the hall from her and that makes us sleep better at night.”
Karsey hadn’t been home to Montfort for over 3 months, so the special home cooked meals every night at the Family Room mean the world to her. “Hot meals like casseroles make me feel at home, and the opportunity to relax and drink a cup of coffee helps keep my sanity” joked Karsey. While Ronald McDonald House Charities of Eastern Iowa and Western Illinois may have not been at the top of her list of causes to support before Bexley, it definitely is now. Karsey explains, “Adam and I never thought we would need the Ronald McDonald House Charities, but experiencing this place firsthand has opened our eyes. When you donate to RMH, you see exactly where your money goes. Your support could go directly to help your neighbor, or someone in your community who needs to be close to their child.”