Dealing with a Tough Diagnosis since before Birth

My Twins are 6 months old, and when people ask “How are the Twins?” I usually start by saying “they are good, but the lack of sleep….blah blah blah” . I find myself quickly complaining about something. Sometimes it takes a miracle to realize how blessed you really are.
I learned about a miracle baby just recently, and I can’t help but think how incredible she is, and I wanted to tell her story. Her name is Kallie, also 6 months (just a week younger than my girls), and her mom Samantha complains way less than I do despite having unique challenges. Samantha has Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS) , and was told she would probably never have kids. After 9 long years of fertility issues she was finally pregnant, and there was a miracle baby waiting to be born.
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At 13 weeks they had an ultrasound to meet her miracle baby. Samantha and her husband were so excited, but they did find a complication. A rather serious one at that. In the initial ultrasound there was a visible issue and they were told it was a Gastroschisis. Then on her 20th week the anatomy scan confirmed the issue was actually a Omphalocele. An Omphalocele Is an abdominal wall defect in which the bowel, liver and other abdominal organs protrude out of the abdomen and into the the umbilical cord. You can see it clearly on the ultrasound.

Kallie’s case was pretty extreme, as they later found out that the Omphalocele included her stomach. At this point the doctors had advised Samantha that the baby had a poor chance of survival and termination would probably the better route. The possibility of losing her baby was very real, and in fact the doctors said it was probable. “I was heartbroken, and I cried for hours” Samantha said. She didn’t consider an abortion, but she was afraid she was going to lose her miracle baby every day. Over time, she continued her pregnancy as usual and watched her baby grow. All along she knew she was going to have to get used to the idea of a long road ahead.

13231242_1189709974397341_319628066_nAmazingly Samantha never lost her smile and her excitement about her miracle baby continued to grow. At 37 weeks Samantha had her scheduled c-section (here she is just the night before), and Kallie was deliver13181058_1189715594396779_1528323583_ned.

She needed special attention immediately so she was quickly taken away to the NICU. Kallie was a miracle at conception and a miracle at birth. Just like the ultrasound showed she was born beautiful but her stomach and organs had protruded quite a bit. She had to be treated immediately with Silvadine (a drug use to kill bacteria and infection) and a gauze wrap to start the process. Known as the paint wait method.

Kallie had to spend 43 days in the NICU, and she was feeding through a tube. On the 43rd day she got to go home with her mom – still smiling and over joyed that she didn’t listen to any of the doctors. To this point Kallie has not had surgery, but has been hospitalized 6 times, and still feeds through a tube. Her needs far exceed those of an average 6 month old baby. Samantha has had to stop working to take care of Kallie around the clock. I asked Samantha “How do you keep a smile on your face every single day?” and she replied saying that Kallie has never been a burden to her. Since learning about Kallie I have followed her story on her facebook page, and I have fallen in love with her smile. Her face is ADORABLE. If you would like to learn more about Omphalocele- click here . If you would like to help Samantha and Kallie – Click here
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