KicKee Pants' NICU for YOU- Baby Anya

Christiana Hospital

Attn: NICU

4755 Ogletown Stanton Rd

Newark, DE 19718

Referred By: Jennifer Leigh

Hello!  I'm Jennifer and my daughter Anya is my amazing 5 month old preemie.  Although she wasn't a micro preemie and only 6 weeks early, she was and is an incredibly rare case.

It all began when her father and I went to an anatomy scan in his home country of South Africa (where we both were living.)  It was there they discovered at about 21 weeks that my healthy baby girl was either an ectopic pregnancy or I had a complete bicornuate uterus and she was not in the main horn.  In complete disbelief, we rushed to the states wanting a second opinion from the doctors I originally saw during our early weeks.  

After a few ultrasounds and scary quiet looks from specialists, I was sent for an MRI.  The MRI came back inconclusive.  It only showed a very cramped baby at 23 weeks and tissue that was very very frail around the baby.

The specialists made a call and said that because the tissue is so thin I was at such high risk of rupturing, I had to check into the hospital until the rest of my pregnancy.  Meanwhile, my daughter's father had to return to work in South Africa where he remains now.  And my new home was right next two an operating room in their high risk unit.

Ten and a half weeks later, after many nights of wondering and worrying if all is okay with her and myself and after growing many bonds with residents, nurses and doctors, we delivered a very small 34 week old baby, 14.5 inches and 3 lbs 6 ounces about the size of a 28-30 week baby.  The operation was extensive and was in the main operating room of the hospital with about 45 people in attendance. It was determined there that she was not in my uterus. She was in a rudimentary horn and I have an anomaly called a unicornuate uterus. It's so rare that at around 20 weeks there's a 95% chance of rupturing.  My little miracle really wanted to be here and beat some major odds to get here.  

Our NICU stay was longer than most 34 weekers.  We were there a week past our due date on December 2nd.  She ended up getting very sick with RSV which prolonged her stay.  While she was sick and in isolation, I would have nurses that cared for her come by to check on me and cry with me when I needed a shoulder to cry on or just needed a hug.  Her father did his best to support me from a distance but I had never felt so scared and so alone.  With the rarity of my pregnancy and the unknown, people figured that was the hard part.  That was the easy part for me - seeing my little girl, so small and vulnerable, that for me, was the terror.

So many nurses I have been able to say were my rocks when I arrived.  Christiana Hospital High Risk is where our story began and the NICU is where our story will always be heard.  I am so grateful for every person who came into our care to get us to where we are today.   However, I feel that even though they are a level 3 NICU, because they cover such a large area I feel they aren't able to do that much for the families other than provide a room to stay the night sometimes (all of northern and southern Delaware, some of Maryland and New Jersery.)  

She is now 5 months old, ahead of her chronological age developmentally and she's even on the 35 percentile for 5 month olds! 

We are now doing awesome and getting ready for our victory walk at the end of April for the march of dimes.  I would love love to help our local NICUs or other mothers and families who need the extra pick me up!  

Help us Celebrate and Support NICU Babies

Every day thousands of babies are born too soon, too small, and often very sick. We are here to celebrate them as well as raise awareness for NICU support nationwide. 

This donation campaign is very special to us as we have chosen to give back to the NICUs that mean something to you. Help us give back to them so they can make the stay of a future family a comfortable one. 

We are encouraging, YOU, or amazing KP fans, to send a gift, big or small, to this NICU or another one of your choice from our approved list , referred by the 25 KP followers who have shared their courageous stories with us. On behalf of these little ones, let's pull together and SPREAD THE LOVE!  We will be matching every single donation that comes in 1 for 1, until April 25th. Let the giving begin! 


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