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My daughter Riley was born at 25 weeks and 5 days gestation. I had an emergency c-section after being hospitalized for preeclampsia which developed into HELLP syndrome. At two weeks, she had a PDA ligation done and immediately started to thrive. Before that, she had moved between vents almost daily. At one month, she was extubated and put on a CPAP. After ninety days in the NICU, we were sent home. She was on an apnea monitor, feeding tube and oxygen. All were removed two weeks later. She's doing wonderfully today. Most people would never even guess she was a preemie, but those who do know her, think she's a miracle. She walked within a few days of her first birthday and graduated from all therapy three months later (gestationally 1 year). She is a testament to modern medicine. The last picture of her shows her PDA scar.

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  • What a BEAUTIFUL little girl!  Thank you so much for sharing her with us and making me smile!  I really really needed that!


  • Riley has come a LONG way. She is just a beautiful little girl and a testament to the hard work of researchers and medical practitioners who have all contributed to the art and science of neonatalogy!   What a great success story!

  • Riley is beautiful - how blessed you are to have such a little miracle!  

    My daughter was born at 24 wks and she too is doing wonderfully now - we have both been blessed!

  • It is so hard to imagine our preemies turning into beautiful, happy, energetic people when we see them laying so still in their NICU beds.  AT this time, the future can be a scary idea to entertain.  

    Riley is a gorgeous girl!  A preemie growing up strong and full of life.  What more can an NICU parent ask?!  

    Your family has come SO far!  WOW!



  • She is beauitful as well.  I am so  glad to hear of her success.  You are right you can hardly tell she was a preemie.  God Bless you and your family

  • Hey there it's Ericka -Abby's mom. Thank you for responding, Riley is beautiful and a little miracle. I will keep you posted and am going to try to get a blog started and get some photos uploaded also, might need the help of the hubby, i'm not so good with computers!! Talk to you soon! Ericka

  • wow! I thought my Kaitlyn was a tiny baby!  How much did your Riley weigh?  It's amazing to me that babies can grow to do so well, no matter how they started :) What a testament.  You're the first person I talked to that actually knows and has heard of HELLP... even my primary care physician needed me to explain it to him (luckily, he's not an OB!)  Us HELLP girls need to band together!!! Have you thought about having anymore kids? I've heard some Dr's say you shouldn't if it was severe the first time around and some say it's a gamble. My Dr. asked me if it happened again, and I had the same result, would it be worth it.  That seems like a no-brainer! But then again, Kaitlyn recovered really quickly.  Keep in touch!

  • Julie you taught me to dance in the rain!    And for the past year that is what I have been doing!   So thank you   It is a lesson that keeps me going everyday.

  • Thanks for responding to my story. There are not many resources for mothers who have lost a baby so it was comforting to come across this site. I have suppressed my feeling for so long because I felt relatives and friends could not relate. As I was reading some of the stories, it brought me comfort to know those feelings that I had years ago were not uncommon but normal feelings when losing a baby. So glad I found this site and know that others can relate to my experience.