I, for one, am happy that it is Monday. The long weekend was great, but I’m ready to get back to our weekly routine. I’m especially happy to have you back here for Micro Preemie Monday. If you haven’t been here for a while, you can go back and read my post from last Monday about Taliyah HERE, and the week before’s post about Nicolas and Lucas HERE.
On this last Monday of November, we meet Stella. Her mom, Shannon, tells us all about her birth and what she is up to now. At the end of the post, I will be sharing a few facts about Prematurity with you, since it is the last day of Premature Birth Awareness Month. I hope you’ll share those facts, along with this post, to help raise awareness. You can also read my post about World Prematurity Day.
Now, let’s meet Stella.
1. Tell us about your baby.
My daughter’s name is Stella Grace. She was born at 26+1 weeks. She weighed 1 lb 6 oz and was 12 inches long.
2. How long were you in the NICU? What was the hardest part?
Stella spent 87 days in the NICU. She split her time between two hospitals. The hardest part was the wait to take her home. I really hit a wall towards the end. We were told she’d be going home, but then she’d have a setback. The last couple of weeks were very difficult.
3. Do you know what caused your Premature Birth?
I delivered early due to preeclampsia and HELLP Syndrome. It progressed very quickly. At my six month check up on December 20, I was fine. No issues at all besides some swelling. By Christmas Eve, I was near death. On December 27, I was having an emergency c-section to save the two of us.
4. How is your baby doing now?
Stella is doing well now. She’ll turn 10 years old in December. She is visually impaired due to ROP, not that you’d ever know it. Her left eye never healed properly after laser surgery, leaving her blind in that eye. She also has nystagmus and strabismus. She struggles with behavioral issues. She was recently diagnosed with executive function disorder. They believe that too much O2 during her first few weeks damaged her frontal lobe. Despite this, she’s smart as a whip. She loves dinosaurs and wants to be a paleontologist when she grows up.
5. What advice would you give a new Preemie parent?
My advice is to find a strong support system while you’re in the NICU. If your hospital has a support group, take advantage of it. Join preemie groups on Facebook. Somebody out there is going through something similar. It’s so much easier to get through this if you have somebody to talk/vent to.
Liz Mays says
I hadn’t heard of ROP, and I didn’t realize that was what Stevie Wonder’s blindness came from. I’m glad Stella still has vision though. She’s a doll!
It is so encouraging to read these stories of premature birth. What a beautiful Stella is now!
Zully Hernandez says
Thanks for sharing Stella’s story – I definitely learned a thing or two about prematurity and how it can effect a child. Thank goodness for NICU services and technology!
Kim Munoz says
What a blessing she is! And a fighter too!
Awe, she is gorgeous! Glad to see she is growing into a beautiful little princess!
Shamira West (@shamirawest) says
This is such a great story! thanks for sharing! She was so tiny omg and so cute! I am glad she is doing well. I have heard a lot of premature baby stories that don’t end well. She grew up to be such a beautiful little girl!
Joan Harrington says
So inspiring and such an awesome share! Everytime I read your Monday posts on preemies and the story behind them just makes me smile because to see how they all turned out is such a blessing! Thanks so much for sharing these stories of inspiration 🙂
Thank you for coming to read them every Monday, Joan. 🙂
Pearliza Paguio says
Oh my! I’m really glad she grew healthy and strong. She’s gorgeous like her mom. 🙂
Becky @ Disney in your Day says
She looks beautiful! I love that she’s so into dinosaurs and wants to be a paleontologist 🙂
So happy to see that Stella grew up to be such a beautiful, healthy child.
What a great story. Inspiring for others Moms.
Ashlyn @ A Mom In Training says
What a beautiful post! This is my first time visiting your blog and I love this series you have! Wow, she’s a beautiful girl and I love her sense of style! Thank you for sharing her story with us. It’s always so amazing to see preemies grow into beautiful children. 🙂
Thank you so much for stopping by. I appreciate it.
Beautiful <3 She's so cute now!! Thanks for sharing this with us <3
Katie @thebrooksielife says
She is a beauty!! I am always so amazed with these stories! Truly a blessing!
Clare Speer says
Stella is adorable! What a miracle and thanks so much for sharing your story with us!
Jennifer C. says
What a great story. Little Stella is adorable!
Erin Finnegan Soto says
Beautiful little girl 🙂 It seems like yesterday I was at the NICU with my oldest…also due to preeclampsia! I wish I had gone to the support groups!
Wow! Look at that baby smile! And now she’s so grown up! Thanks for sharing her story!
I hadn’t heard of ROP before. Also, it’s amazing how many babies are born premature!
Thank you for sharing Stella’s story! She’s such a beautiful girl, with such a strong mama!
Corina Ramos (@NotNowMomsBusy) says
I love her name! Stella Grace has grown up to be a beautiful little girl. Thanks for sharing your story with us! I wish her and her family all the best!
Bismah Abdelgawad says
She is such a beautiful and intelligent looking little girl! I am so happy that she and her mom pulled through the delivery. Her mom must have been so strong to get through the early months after. Hugs to them both xx
Great post, what a beautiful girl <3
Thank you for sharing Stella’s story- she is a gift and a blessing!
Val Jones says
Thanks for sharing Stella’s story. What a difficult time parents of preemies have. The pictures just melted my heart. What a sweetie!
Stefanie / The Monarch Mommy says
Thank you for sharing Stella’s story. What a strong little girl!
Justine Y @ Little Dove Creations says
I’m totally with you on wanting to get back to routine! And Miss Stella Grace is so sweet, what a long way she has come!
She’s so precious! Some friends from college had a daughter at 23 weeks! Her due date is in a week and they’re hoping to be able to take her home by then!
That’s awesome! Congratulations to them!
Kaitie Creator of Fuchisa Freezer says
what an inspirational story. It still surprises me when I read your monday posts how many preemies there are and how each family goes through different but similar struggles. I’m glad to hear everything turned out for the better!!
It really is amazing. Thank you for stopping by and reading 🙂