Our journey with Lené started a few months after we got married. Soon after wanting to start a family we found out that i have PCOS, and really struggled with infertility. A year and a half later, on the 14 of April 2017 we found out that we are expecting.
It was a rough journey from the start. At 11 weeks I started bleeding really bad and was hospitalised for a week. Just before my release, the bleeding happend again so i stayed a few days longer.
On the night of 22 September 2017 my water broke on the Farm where we live. It is about a 1 hour drive (gravel road) to upington and the nearest hospital. At firts I thought it was a dream, I mean how can this happen at 26weeks. Pre term labour and micro preemie baby, are words I have not heard before or knew the meaning of.
We got to the hospital and was admitted immediately. My Doctor did a scan and was really honest and explained everything…. There is a heartbeat he said….. Words that stil bring me to tears.
Upington at that time did not have a NICU to support a 26week old baby, cape town was to far and my Doctor advised us to drive to Kimberley. He arranged everything even before we were near Kimberley.
We got to Kimberley Medi-Clinic. The Doctor did a scan again to see if there is stil a heartbeat…. And there was. I have never prayed so hard in my life. Wishing for life.
The Medical team tried to keep her in for another week at least. At that moment every day counted for something to develop a little bit more. On September 23 Lené was born via emergency c-section. I had a Placental Abruption. That is when your placenta separates from your womb wall before delivery.
She was born and weighed 910grams 35.2 cm long. She was te smallest little thing I have ever seen. She lost weight to 780grams.
She was on the CPAP for 25 days and on the nasal cannula for 18 days.
This was the most traumatising place I have ever experienced. The personnel are exceptional at what they do. We dit kangaroo care everyday for as long as possible. Somehow the only thing that kept me calm was having her so close to me…..
And then the beeping of the machines go off, and she turns grey. This happened alot with us. Felt like every hour at the beginning. It is because she is so little and the hole in her heart, that she was born with(most preemies are) and they forget to breath. They stop breathing on your chest. The Nures rushes over and tell you not to worry, and calmy show you how to get her breathing again. Oh if it was not for calm nurses. My heart jumped out of my chest every time she stopped breathing. It is an overwhelming feeling of hopelessness you can not explain.
They struggled to get her to breathe on her own and did a two day brain scan monitoring. She was exclusively breastfed and they had a pump the in the NICU so I could stil be there al day even I do not get to hold her for that 2 days. It took a while to get her of the CPAP, she had bleeding behind her left eye because of al the pressure of the oxygen.
In these times you realize what prayer and family really means. It’s all the prayer and support that carry you through. The celebration of 50grams up in weight, or getting the feeding tube out of her nose and family celebrating every small good thing with you and praying for every setback. God lives in a NICU!
Words to describe a Micro- Preemie