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premature babies

OriginalAll photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

Chloé was born at 32 weeks.


Every single day, babies across the world are born prematurely, which means that they're born before 37 weeks of gestation.

In Canada, about 29,000 infants are born prematurely each year, roughly 1 in every 13. But in the United States, around 400,000 to 500,000 are born early. That's about 1 in every 8 to 10 babies born in the U.S.!

Red Méthot, a Canadian photographer and student, decided to capture the resilience of many of these kids for a school photography project.


He's the father of two prematurely born kids himself, so the topic is important to him.

"My son was born at 29 weeks and my daughter at 33 weeks," he told me in a phone interview. "These are the kind of pictures I would like to have seen when my first child was born — they've been through that, and they are great now."

Méthot said he knows not all preemie stories have a happy ending — one of his photos features a child whose twin passed away after they were born prematurely — but for so many kids who come early, they go on to experience a great life.

Meet several of the beautiful kids he photographed!

infants, United States, U.S.

1. Lexiani, born at 25 weeks

Original. All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

Red M\u00e9thot, project, photographer

2. Noah and Nathan, born at 32 weeks

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

kids, children, health

3. Margot, born at 29 weeks

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

medicine, doctors, early birth

4. Thomas, born at 23 weeks

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

early, healthy babies, fresh

5. Samuel, born at 36 weeks, and his sister Alice, born at 27 weeks

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

lively, normal, tough

6. Éva, born at 29 weeks

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

strong, able-bodied, recovery

7. Charles, born at 26 weeks

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

physically fit, full of life, bright-eyed

8. Chloé, born at 32 weeks

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

society, community, parents

10. Felix, born at 23 weeks, and his brother Alexis, born at almost 33 weeks

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

improvement, rehabilitation, restoration

11. Noah, born at 32 weeks; his twin sister, Victoria (on the left in the framed picture), passed away when she was one month old

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

arts, pictures, miracles

12. Juliette, born at 30 weeks

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

darling, happy, successful

14. Olivier, born at 31 weeks, his sister Ariane, born at 33 weeks, and their brother Noah, born at 34 weeks.

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

family, parenting, therapeutic

15. Émile, born at 26 weeks

Orignal.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

development, recovery, repair

16. Théo, born at 25 weeks

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

modern science, technology, p

17. Charles-Antoine and Mara, born at 27 weeks

Original.All photos belong to Red Méthot, who gave me permission to share them here.

Méthot's school project originally consisted of 10 photos, but the reaction has been so positive and he's enjoyed taking them so much, he continued adding to the collection.

Currently, he has captured 50 images. (You can view them all in the album on his Facebook page!). Méthot told me that his favorite part of the project has been meeting the subjects.

"Each time I meet a new person, I [learn] about a new story," he said.

And I think we can all agree that Méthot is a wonderful storyteller through his photography. Between his photos showing the bright future so many premature babies have and his photo showing the loss, he captures reality beautifully.


This article originally appeared on November 6, 2015


Ask anyone who has lost a loved one — grief creeps up at the most random times.

It doesn’t matter how many months or years it has been, all it takes is one second for those memories and heartache to rush back. For me, all it took was an awkward moment to remind me that grief never goes away.

I was recently at a routine appointment. As the woman walked into the room, she smiled and said, “How are the kids?” I gave her a puzzled look, wondering if I heard her correctly. As a mother of one surviving triplet, I’m not used to hearing the plural form of “kid.” She repeated herself and that’s when I realized — she didn’t know that two of my children died.


My heart began to race and my breathing became faster as I explained that Abby and Parker had passed away within two months of being born. The tears erupted as my mind instantly flashed back to three years ago, when I said my final good-byes to two of my children.

The woman felt terrible and rushed up to hug me. As awkward as I felt, I know she must have been mortified. It was the epitome of a “foot in mouth” moment, and here I was, a grieving mother brought to tears.

I left the office in a daze, my mind stuck on that awkward dialogue.

During the first year after my triplets were born, that was a common question. Some people weren’t aware that two of my babies had died and often asked how the triplets were doing.

Because it’s been three years, this time caught me off guard. I assumed most people knew my situation, or if they didn’t, they thought Peyton was an only child. I may have been surprised by the conversation, but I wasn’t mad or upset. All it takes is a simple mention of my children to bring me to tears. That’s part of living life after loss: the grief never goes away.We may moved forward in life, but we never forget. I wear those tears with pride, a sign that a piece of my heart will always be with Abby and Parker.

There is no perfect handbook on how to grieve the loss of a child.

The same goes for comforting a grieving parent. While a simple hug can go a long way, I was more comforted that day by how the conversation ended between me and the woman.

After mentioning that I only had one survivor, the woman went on to ask about my two angels. She repeated their names as I told her about sweet Abby and her peaceful face. And she listened intently as I shared stories of Parker and Peyton in the NICU. She asked about Peyton and I happily shared how strong and healthy she is today, a far cry from her NICU days.

I may have cried at my appointment, but I left that office with a full heart. As parents who've lost a child will tell you, one of the most comforting things people can do is to say your child’s name. Hearing the woman say “Abby” and “Parker” was a beautiful reminder that they existed, and sharing stories of them warmed my heart.

When I explain to people that my daughter is actually a triplet, their smile turns to shock before a sad look takes over their face.

It’s a common expression that I’m accustomed to seeing. A parent is not supposed to outlive their child, and when people realize that I’m the parent of two angels, it often becomes uncomfortable for them. Grief is a hard topic to talk about, especially when it involves the death of a child.

The awkward encounter I faced is something so many of us parents of pregnancy and child loss experience and it’s something I know I will face often in my lifetime.

While it can stir up emotions and memories that have been tucked away for years, there is something positive that can come out of it. I like to think that each time I’m asked about my children, it’s a sign from above. It’s Parker and Abby’s way of saying, “Hi, Mom,” from heaven. And while the other person may feel uncomfortable, they are actually giving me the best gift of all: the gift of remembering and embracing my children who are no longer here on Earth.