The Washington, DC area is full of amazing moms: working moms, stay-at-home moms, single moms, moms of multiples, etc. We want to highlight some of those moms! Each month we will feature one special mom as the mom of the month. Know a fellow amazing local mom here? Nominate them here!
Jami Guerrina: September Mom of the Month
Jami Guerrina is 38-year-old Leesburg mom of four kids, ages 8, 7, 5, and 2. She met her husband, Ben, after college while pursuing her second degree in nursing and has worked in a local NICU for the past 12 years. Shortly after Jami met Ben, she was diagnosed with invasive breast cancer at the age of 25. After a year of chemotherapy and surgeries, Jami has been cancer-free since 2008.
Jami and Ben got married and adopted their first son after experiencing chemotherapy-induced infertility. They were surprised with three subsequent biological children. Jami is an advocate for preventative medical care because of her BRCA-1 mutation. She has undergone 8 surgeries over the last 12 years to lower her risk of cancer, including a complete hysterectomy in 2019. Jami and Ben love any day surrounded by water and time outdoors with their kids. Jami also loves to travel to see friends and family and to focus on fitness and nutrition. This fall, Jami is embarking on the homeschooling journey for the first time like many other families across the county.
Here is our Q&A with Jami:
What encouraging words would you give a mom who is battling something right now?
Find the people who you can lean on and ask for their help. Social media and the world sets moms up to fail by portraying a life that is never hard. But life can be pretty challenging and messy, and it’s ok to lean on someone. You are strong and brave, especially when you reach out to your village and don’t go through these times alone. Every hard time or bad day feels impossible. But this too shall pass. And sometimes the hardships bring opportunities and greater joy.
What have you learned from being on the front lines in the NICU that you’d like to share with others?
The NICU is an emotional and magical place. We get to witness babies take their first breath and we get to be there when people turn into parents. We meet these parents on their knees, during the scariest time in their lives. Add a pandemic to the mix and take away the opportunity for their families and friends to meet their babies—it is really difficult. I am honored to be there, to take care of their vulnerable and sick babies, and witness their miracles go home. No one plans to have a NICU baby. These parents and their babies are my heroes.
What is something you have tried to instill in your children during this pandemic?
This life is unpredictable and sometimes cut short and frequently rushed away with to-do lists and places to be. The pandemic has reminded my family to live. To spend as much time outside exploring in this great big world as possible. To spend more time together, playing games, eating meals, talking, and having nowhere to be. We hope our kids remember how important each other is and how we have so much to be grateful for. We also hope that they learn how to look out for our neighbors and community and how isolating, wearing masks and helping those in need truly make a difference.
Do you know an amazing mom that would be a great mom of the month?Nominate them here!