Kelley’s water broke at 22 weeks (about 5.5 months), and she was put on bed rest at home for two weeks. BC Women’s sent antepartum nurses to her home every day to monitor the baby’s fetal heart rate and ensure Kelley was doing well. “It’s an amazing service that the antepartum nurses provide,” she says. “They’re such caring and compassionate people – they kept us calm through a very scary time.”
As Owen’s delivery approached, Dr. Shelagh Anson from the BC Women’s Newborn ICU visited Kelley. When asked what her “gut feeling” was, Dr. Anson said, “There are many steps still to come and I can’t guarantee anything, but I think you’re going to have a ‘take home’ baby.” Dr. Anson’s words meant the world to Kelley and her husband Mark, and gave them hope.
After a smooth labour and delivery, Owen was brought straight to the NICU. “He weighed 1,270 grams, about 2.5 pounds, just a little bit bigger than a one kilogram package of flour” says Kelley. “It was so surreal seeing my baby in an incubator bubble with tubes, monitors, sensors, and everything beeping, but we knew Owen was in the safest place possible.”
The day after Owen was born Kelley developed a cold and couldn’t visit him for two weeks, so one of the NICU nurses – Hilary – brought a photo of Owen up to Kelley in her room. “The NICU nurses updated us every single day and did everything they could to help us along the journey.”
Owen was brought home after 11 weeks in the NICU, and today is a healthy little 13 month old with a smile that lights up the room!
Kelley and Mark hope people realize what an important service BC Women’s Hospital offer to families and babies born all over BC. “The hospital deserves every bit of support people can give,” says Kelley. “The Newborn ICU helps babies from all over the province. Without the nurses, doctors, and staff, Owen might not be here with us today. We are so grateful.”