Smaller and Stronger
Today’s Micro Preemie was the size of a 19 weeker when she was born. This is significantly smaller than a baby normally born at 25 weeks. Because of this, doctors did not think she would survive. However, in addition to being smaller, she was definitely stronger than they anticipated.
I’m so happy to be able to bring you, Naomi, today’s Micro Preemie Miracle, and her story, as told by her mom, Angela.
1.Tell us about your baby.
Our daughter Naomi was born on July 1st, 2015 by emergency c-section. At birth, she was 12.86 ounces. Her chances of survival were slim. Our NICU managed to squeeze a breathing tube down her throat and she made it out of the delivery alive, something none of us had anticipated. The journey over the next few months was incredibly hard. Many days we wondered if she would live or die, but she slowly but surely overcame all obstacles her prematurity threw at her. She slowly gained weight, had multiple surgeries, recovered from a fracture, and started blooming. Naomi has been home for just over 100 days. She is happy and thriving, with a few health issues which are very manageable.
2.How long was your nicu stay? What was the hardest part?
Leaving my son at home and my daughter at the hospital was the hardest part. I would cry on the way to hospital, and I would cry leaving hospital. It felt abnormal to have to say goodbye to one of your children every day.
3.Do you know what caused your premature birth
A condition called IUGR (intrauterine growth restriction) and I had severe form of preeclampsia called HELLP syndrome. The day I went for my emergecy c-section she was struggling to stay alive. Her heart rate was dropping drastically. In addition my preeclampsia was heading towards critical.
4.How are you and your baby doing now?
Good! She’s a delight. We are slowly crossing off doctors appointments of our list. There are so many! We just had her heart checked last week and the cardiologist told us to “never come back” she has a perfect heart. Naomi is still on oxygen due to chronic lung disease and we live at high altitude in the Sierra mountains. We estimate another six weeks before we can bid farewell to the cannula and “the tank” as we call it. Tank has been our fifth family member! She’s an easy happy baby. I struggled with isolation the first few months at home due to lock down over flu and rsv season but as the weather slowly turns I look forward to getting outside with my kiddos.
5.Do you have any advice for new parents?
If people want to help, let them. We had to swallow our pride that we could do it all. It felt like we had friends and strangers carrying us through our nicu journey. Let them. It makes life so much easier when dinner is waiting for you, or a babysitter is lined up for you child, in addition you feel loved by so many during a traumatic season in life.
Thank you so much to Angela for sharing precious Naomi with us. It’s so wonderful to hear how she’s doing now. I remember that first winter of isolation well, but you’ve almost made it through, so just hang in there.
Please send any encouragement and well wishes to Angela, Naomi, and the rest of the family in the comments below.