My daughter, Katelyn, was born at GUH on Nov 16, 2003 at 25 weeks gestation weighing only 15.5 oz. She suffered many of the complications that are presented to micro preemies (PDA ligation, ROP, ventilated for 2 months, blood & platelet transfusions, Grade I IVH, cerebellar bleed that destroyed her left cerebellum, and so on). She spent 159 days in the NICU and came home on O2, an NG tube, monitors, neb treatments, 10 different medications, and 16 hour a day nursing care.
Once she got home she thrived. We removed the NG tube when she was 9 months old and we got of rid of the O2 when she was 18 months old. She didn't start walking until she was 3 and talking until she was 4, but you would never know that now. She has mild CP on the left side of her body and has developmental delays and learning difficulties. Despite these things she is progressing beautifully and has turned into a very active, loving, and caring little girl.
Katelyn will turn 7 in November and loves to run, jump, play, ride her bike, play soccer, swim, and pretty much just about everything a typical 6 year old loves to do. She served as the 2009 National Ambassador of the March of Dimes (www.marchofdimes.com/katelyn) to help the March of Dimes with their prematurity campaign. Our family spent the year traveling all over the country to raise awareness of prematurity. We also formed the Katelyn Hall Foundation (www.khallfoundation.com) to help others who have been affected by prematurity.
We will be forever grateful to all the doctors and nurses at the GUH NICU who helped save Katelyn's life. My husband and I are proud members of the NICU Parent Advisory Board and are looking forward to giving back and helping others who currently are or have been in the NICU.