We are pleased to introduce you to our little miracle Harper Charlotte! We've reached the next stop on a long journey, and we're finally reaching out for help.
In her early 20's Sarah's doctor found precancerous cells on her cervix and uterus. After numerous procedures and a miscarriage, she was sure that she couldn't have kids. Her doctors confirmed her fears about 3 years ago.
Knowing this, Sarah and Charles had become very excited about becoming foster parents, and possibly adopting a child (or several!) through the program. After getting married June 1st of this year, they started gathering information and doing paperwork to get the process started.
On July 3rd, a few days late and just a few days after saying goodby to her 19 year-old cat, Chloe, Sarah took a precautionary pregnancy test. YOU WON'T BELIEVE WHAT HAPPENS NEXT! <CLICK HERE TO FIND OUT>
Still in disbelief, they went to a local doctor, who told them that she was 4 weeks along, everything looked great, and she'd never have known about all the procedures and dire comments from the previous doctor.
A few months later things started getting complicated. In early November Sarah had a serious bleed, leading to an ER visit. She was told to take it easy, perhaps it was caused by a sinus infection she was recovering from. A second visit, resulting from another bleeding incident prompted more serious prescriptions: a few days bed rest, then no exercise.
<== CONTENT WARNING ==>
The doctor was able to diagnose the problem. She found a succenturiate - or accessory - lobe on the placenta. It had been hiding on the ultrasound, but finally showed itself. It was irritating her uterus and causing the bleeding. The good news was that it was manageable and Sarah just needed to take it easy.
On December 7th, Sarah woke up at 5 am and felt wrong. She got up and found the bleeding was the worst it had been to date. She hesitated to wake Charles, who had a final exam later that morning, but as the bleeding continued, she did. They went to the ER and Sarah was admitted for monitoring for 5 days.
In addition to the succenturiate lobe, she was also suffering from placenta previa (placenta covering the cervix) and a partial abruption (separation). Though incredibly rare - Sarah's doctor already had a patient with a double uterus, but had never seen this - none of these issues was affecting the baby. After a few days monitoring, she was discharged to complete rest.
The next week things seemed to be normalizing, but on the morning of Decmber 17th, she experienced a huge bleed that warranted another trip to the hospital. After a day of monitoring, they were told that due to the issues, she'd need to have a c-section at 36 weeks - and had been admitted to the hospital until then...5 weeks out.
Sarah and Charles settled into the idea and made necessary arrangements. Then, just two days later, Sarah experienced a full abruption. The staff at Harris Methodist was phenomenal, kept them calm and told them what was about to happen. The baby would be 9 weeks premature, meaning that - among other things - she'd have very underdeveloped lungs and would likely need help breathing. If she doesn't cry when she comes out, don't be alarmed.
<== CUTENESS WARNING ==>
About 2 and a half hours later they delivered a squirming, screaming baby girl!
She was 3 lbs 8 oz, 16" long, and feisty! She will be in the NICU for quite a while doing whatever it takes to grow big and strong. She's already making an impression on the world. She can breathe without assistance 2 weeks ahead of schedule, and has a voice that carries throughout the NICU.
From Sarah and Charles:
For now, Harper gets skin-to-skin time (kangaroo care) twice a day, which is pure gold, and our favorite part of every day. We don't know how long she will be in the NICU, that is up to her. We are very optimistic because for those of you that know us well... we Joneses fight for what we want and she's already following suit.
We will keep you posted as she makes more progress, and hits her milestones on the long road to coming home.
If you have any questions please feel free to reach out to us directly. Sarah is home now and on bed rest for a while to recover from the emergency c-section. Please know that as much as we are being optimistic and looking forward to our future, this is a very hard time for us so if we don't reach out/respond/etc... right away, please understand.
We love you all. Thank you for the continued well wishes and prayers!
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