Waylon's Story, 25 Weeks

Miracle Mum, Simona shares Waylon's story.

"It was Monday night, May 4, 2020 and I was 25 weeks pregnant with my first baby. I noticed that my bladder was becoming weak and I was urinating frequently. I complained to my partner that I had to keep going to the toilet for a wee even though I had just gone two minutes before. Settling into bed at 10pm I found myself straight back to the toilet all through the night and at about 3am I woke to cramping in my pelvic region. I was worried and contacted the midwives at the Katherine hospital. The midwife listened as I explained to her what was happening and she said it wasn’t anything to be too worried about but recommended that I go into Katherine hospital if it continued on later into the morning.

I laid back into bed at around 3.30am and drifted off to sleep, then a hour later I was awoken again but to the feeling of my bladder about to burst. I quickly jumped out of bed and rushed to the bedroom door when suddenly my water broke. I screamed out to my partner that something was wrong and he flew out of bed and rushed me to the toilet where I lost more fluid. I contacted the Pine Creek clinic nurse and told her exactly what had happened. She advised that I contact Katherine hospital and let them know to expect our arrival. I quickly grabbed my handbag and we were out the door.

Trying to keep our calm, we realised we didn’t have enough fuel in our car to drive the 90kms to Katherine and there were no fuel stations open at the time, so I contacted the Pine Creek nurse again to tell her I needed transport. She was quick to respond and I was picked up outside the clinic and we were off on the Stuart Highway to meet the Katherine paramedics. We met them about 45kms between Katherine and Pine Creek, where I was transferred into the second ambulance.

We arrived at Katherine hospital by 6am. I was wheeled into the maternity ward where I was met by the doctor who, after tests, confirmed I had ruptured membranes and was going into labour. I was confused as to how this could be happening and I asked the doctor if my baby was going to survive being born this early. The look on his face wasn’t what I wanted to see and he just said that I would be transferred to the Royal Darwin Hospital via Careflight.

I contacted my partner to let him know to prepare to drive 200kms to Darwin. I was then taken in a third ambulance to Tindal RAAF base to board the plane. I rested during the 45 minute flight, which arrived at the Darwin airport at 12.30pm. From there I was transported in a fourth ambulance to the Royal Darwin Hospital and taken into the delivery suite.

By 2pm my partner had arrived. I was scared and overwhelmed by the constant testing and check ups by midwives and doctors, but relieved after each monitoring of baby’s heart beat, knowing he was fine is all that mattered. An ultrasound was done to check the fluid level and confirmed it was very low, however bub remained calm and I wasn’t contracting as bad anymore because of the medication given to delay the labour.

On Wednesday night, my partner was allowed to stay the night in the delivery suite with me and we slept through the night. Come the next morning everything was okay, bub was fine, and doctors were happy to have me moved into maternity for strict bed rest. Minutes after I settled into bed I started to cramp again, but even worse; my lower back ached so much I didn’t notice I lost more fluid. This time the fluid showed signs of a possible infection setting in.

I was rushed back to delivery and given steroids to speed up baby’s lung development. It felt like my whole body was on fire the entire 15 minutes. It was during that time on the dreadful drip we agreed on baby’s name, Waylon Dwayne.

The doctor examined me and confirmed I was 4cm dilated but was concerned the baby was too small to be born naturally and an emergency c-section was crucial, so within minutes I was wheeled into theatre. I can remember being met by so many more different doctors and nurses in theatre. I was transferred onto the operating bed and given an epidural. I couldn’t feel anything below my chest, all I could feel was a bit of tugging, then all of a sudden, I heard my baby’s tiny little cry. Born at 25+2 weeks gestation on 7th May at 2.39pm and weighing a tiny but big 900grams, Waylon entered our world.

It was the most beautiful but terrifying feeling at the same time; hoping and praying that my baby will survive. I watched from the operating bed as the doctors intubated my son, I could see his tiny little arms and legs kick and move about. As soon as they successfully intubated Waylon he was rushed to NICU with his Dad right with him, ready to begin his three month journey. I was taken to recovery.

The first few days were definitely the hardest, looking at my baby through the incubator and not feeling him move around in my belly anymore completely shattered me. I hated myself, I felt so much anger and regret that I thought I had done something wrong to cause this all to happen. Upon speaking with the doctor about their investigation of my placenta, there were no obvious signs as to why I had ruptured membranes, and that sometimes it can just happen to anyone. I didn’t ever think this would happen to me as I was being so careful with everything I did and ate while pregnant.

All the what if’s didn’t matter anymore, I had my baby and he was already out in the big world fighting to survive and he wasn’t going to fight alone. Every night and day I was able to be by my baby’s side thanks to relatives who supported me with accommodation. It took many hurdles for our boy to overcome, and he fought through it all like the true warrior he is. From intubated, CPAP, High Flow, to showing us he no longer needed breathing support by pulling off his own prongs without alarms sounding off. He had one blood transfusion, he had Retinopathy of Prematurity disease in both eyes, which thank God resolved without treatment, and upon a brain scan there was evidence found he had a small bleed and as amazing as a little human’s body can be, it healed itself. There were also two Code Blue announcements called for him when he stopped breathing due to oral medicines he didn’t like. He had the whole room filled with doctors within seconds. Oh how he frightened the lot of us!

We were finally discharged two weeks before Waylon’s actual due date which was 17th August 2020. We continued with regular check ups at the hospital and weekly weighs at the clinic.

Waylon is a very happy, healthy, social baby who loves playing, eating and getting all the love and attention from his family. He currently weighs almost 8.5kgs and will be celebrating his first birthday in just two days."

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