500 grams is approximately 1.1 lbs. It seems like a very tiny amount, but it is such an enormous milestone when it comes to premature birth.
Before having my twins, I had always measured in pounds and inches. It wasn’t until I started having complications that I realized how important every single gram was.
I will never forget when a doctor told me that my smaller baby would never survive to viability, 24 weeks, and if he did, he wouldn’t weigh enough, 500 grams, for him to be saved.
So, I carried that magical number with me for every ultrasound, praying that my little twin would somehow make it.
And he did.
It was at my 24 week ultrasound that he passed right over 500 grams. I was then admitted to the hospital until both of my babies would be born.
Now, it’s not to say that babies born under 500 grams can’t survive and thrive (because we all know what strong babies micro preemies are!) but once they meet this milestone, the doctors and statistics give babies a greater chance.
Today’s amazing fighter weighed exactly 500 grams at her birth. I’m so happy to introduce you to Mila, as told by her mom, Fallyn.
1. Tell us about your baby.
Mila was born at 25 weeks 6 days, weighing 500 grams.
2. How long was your NICU stay? What was the hardest part?
Our NICU stay was 84 days. Mila’s Due date was November 25th, 2017 and she came home on November 9th, 2017. The first 10 days of Mila’s stay she was doing great then things started to go downhill. She had to have exploratory surgery because they thought she was showing symptoms of NEC. She went in for surgery and they did not find anything. Mila ended up having a Pseudomonas infection which was very scary. She was requiring 100% oxygen support from the oscillator at that point. Including many days of antibiotics. It was not looking good at that point with how sick Mila was. Our miracle recovered from that terrible infection and things started looking up. She did great with her feeds and started requiring less and less oxygen support. Also, Mila was gaining weight very nicely and ended up leaving the NICU on 11/9/2017 weighing 1800 grams ( 4 lbs ).
3.Do you know what caused your premature birth?
Mila is my first child. She was born prematurely because I developed Severe Preeclampsia and HELLP syndrome. Before becoming pregnant I was perfectly healthy and had no signs of high blood pressure. After Mila was born I had to take blood pressure medication & shortly after my levels started returning back to normal.
4.How are you and your baby doing now?
Mila is doing wonderful at home. Even though we have a lot of doctor’s appointments, they are all very impressed with her. She is gaining weight very nicely and growing like a weed.
She has been home 2 months now and is almost 8 lbs. It’s amazing how much she has changed, she looks like a completely different baby. A few months ago I could have never pictured how much she would change and how well she would do. It’s amazing how going through something so traumatic and scary can change into something great. We wouldn’t be here without the wonderful NICU staff.
5. What advice would you give to a new preemie family?
I would tell a new preemie parent to stay as positive as possible! I really believe your baby can feel if you have negative thoughts/ energy. It helps to stay positive and always keep faith. Even though you may have a bad day, there are good days ahead.
It really is a rollercoaster ride for sure! I would take lots of pictures so you can really see how much your baby is progressing.
Thank you so much to Fallyn for sharing sweet Mila with us. Please leave any supportive comments or questions below.