Birth stories: Our preemie miracle

Haydn still had another three months left in the womb when he was born by emergency c-section in Week 26. As a preemie, he had a tough start to life but pulled through. Here mum Emma shares the story of his birth and the scary time afterwards.

BABYBJÖRN Magazine – Birth stories: a premature baby boy.
Haydn was born in Week 26 and weighed just 750 grams.

I was diagnosed with a kidney condition in 2000, so when I became pregnant with my daughter in 2011 we were made aware that I wouldn’t make it to full term. After being heavily monitored during my pregnancy, I was induced with my daughter at 35 weeks.  She weighed 4lb 3oz but was perfectly healthy.

This is the birth story about our preemie baby boy Haydn.

In September 2015 we were delighted to find out we were expecting a little brother or sister for Jessica. As before, I was under close care of the Renal and Paediatrician teams at the hospital.

Our baby boy was due on the 8th June 2016. However, at 26 weeks I developed complications and was rushed, via ambulance, to the John Radcliffe hospital in Oxford. It was an incredibly scary time as we didn’t know how our little boy would be.

It certainly wasn’t the way you hope your little one enters the world.

We were shown around Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) so we could see where our preemie would be taken to after delivery – this was quite daunting but reassuring at the same time as we could see everything and everyone on hand to take best possible care of all the sick babies.

Read also the birth story “Hang on, I’m not ready!”

Born three months too early

I was heavily monitored for a few days and then Haydn was delivered by emergency C-section on the 8th March 2016, exactly 3 months early. Everything happened so quickly as the baby was starting to show signs of distress. It certainly wasn’t the way you hope your little one enters the world … but we knew he was in the best possible hands. He let out a tiny cry and was then rushed off to Intensive Care. He weighed 1lb 10oz (750g).

BABYBJÖRN Magazine – A preemie baby boy is cared for in an incubator.

Our preemie was so tiny but just perfect.

Seeing Haydn for the first time was heart-warming and heart-breaking at the same time. He couldn’t breathe for himself so was ventilated with various other tubes and lines. Our preemie was so tiny but just perfect.

He seemed to be doing well for the first few days but then took a turn for the worse and whilst the hospital was doing everything they could, we were told how sick he was and it was unsure whether he would be strong enough to pull through … it was the worst time but we had to stay strong and just hope he had the fight in him.

Thankfully after a few days he started to show some improvement and exactly a week old I had the first ever cuddle – I don’t think I moved an inch in case I knocked out his ventilator, tube or wire! It was the best feeling after such a rollercoaster week.

BABYBJÖRN Magazine – Mum Emma cuddling her premature son Haydn.
Little Haydn was one week old before his mum was able to cuddle him properly for the first time.
Photo: Private

Haydn spent almost a month in NICU in Oxford and then got transferred to our local hospital where he was then cared for, for another two and a half months.

Reading tip! “After giving birth – newborn baby care”

Haydn had such a tough start to life and had so many obstacles to overcome but our preemie miracle fought every one of them and we couldn’t be more proud. After spending three and a half months in hospital we were overjoyed to finally get him home at the end June.

We now have two amazing children … we recently had our first Christmas as our complete family and it was lovely!

Text: Emma Cozens-Landsey

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Emma Cozens-Landsey

I live with my husband Rob, daughter Jessica, son Haydn and my mum Joan. We live in the county of Berkshire, in England. I was working in administration, however we have just made the decision that I will now be a full-time Mummy.