Team Tiny, but Tough Elliott

Hello, Family and Friends.
  As many of you may already know, my daughter and son in law, Christina and Darren Fields, are going through a very difficult time. 
  They have been spending every day in the Neonatal ICU with their baby boy, Elliott. As you can imagine, Elliott's hospital stay is going to be very expensive, and future care expenses unknown.
  Christina and Darren are homeowners, and both have two jobs; military and civilian, but they need to be with their baby as much as they can, so money is going to be tight for a very long time.
Let's all band together to help this amazing couple feel less stress when the bills start rolling in.


After 2 1/2 years of waiting: in early May we found out we were finally pregnant after struggling with infertility due to polycystic ovarian syndrome. In June we had an ultrasound at 8 weeks and that’s when we were told we were expecting twins!
In August we had our gender reveal party; and that was the day we found out we were having a girl and a boy- we couldn’t have been happier, and this just made us more excited for our future together.
It wasn’t until September 12th, when I went to my first high risk OB appointment, that I was given the devastating news: at 19 weeks gestation, my cervix was shortened, dilated to 2 cm, and my baby girl’s water bag was bulging through my cervix. To say that my soul was crushed would be the understatement of the year. I was immediately put on bed rest and was told if everything went well I would continue to be on bed rest for the remainder of my pregnancy.
Life had other plans for us I suppose, and at 19 weeks and 6 days, I was taken to the hospital by Darren because I started bleeding. I was told when I got there that I was dilated to a 6 and that my babies would be born sometime that day. Babies are not considered viable until 23 weeks of gestation (or if they weigh 550 gm) so I knew that my babies had no chance of survival even if they were born with a heartbeat. That was just one part of the hardest days I’ve experienced in my entire life.
That evening, September 16th at 8:38 pm, I gave birth to my beautiful baby girl, Eva Noelle. She was born with a heartbeat and lived for 4 hours.
For reasons still unknown, after I gave birth to her, my labor stopped completely. This meant not only was her placenta still attached to my uterus, but my baby boy was still right where he was supposed to be.
After 72 hours post delivery, we were told by my doctor that our situation was called “Delayed interval delivery” and that in cases of pre-term delivery with multiples, this situation only has a 4% chance of happening. She told us that she had spent the last 72 hours since we delivered speaking with 10 other doctors in the Columbus area about what her next step should be given our odd circumstances. We were told that the best chance for the survival for our second baby, and prevention of infection, was to have a cerclage placed around the entrance to my cervix in an attempt to keep it closed. (This wasn’t possible for us before, because the success rate of the procedure with multiples is next to none).
We were sent to another hospital where I would meet the doctor who was willing to perform the procedure for us.
Most OBs and High risk OBs won’t preform a cerclage because of the associated risks of blood loss or rupture of the membranes; however, that Wednesday following Eva’s birth, I had a successful cerclage placement.
I was sent home on Saturday to continue on with my bed rest and to hope and pray for the best for the baby and myself. We had gotten through almost a whole entire month together. This was the first time I felt hopeful and happy since Eva was born because we were days away from our goal of 24 weeks gestation.
On Sunday morning, October 8th, I started to have extremely intense contractions. I went to the hospital and was told I was dehydrated, and that the Ketones in your body work similar to Oxytocin in the way that they make you have muscle cramping. They decided after 2 liters of fluid that I was okay to send home, but I continued to have intense contractions the remainder of the evening.
At 8pm I spiked a fever of 102.5. I went back to the hospital, was given Tylenol and told that they were unsure if I had an infection, so they were going to send me back to see the doctor who performed my cerclage. I was told in the early morning the next day that he believed that not only was I showing signs of active labor, but that the baby and I had developed Chorioamnionitis; which if left untreated, can be fatal for babies and mother’s. I had no choice but to deliver him that day.
Our one saving grace is that he was 23 weeks to the day when I had to deliver him, so he was eligible for resuscitation if they were able to fit the vent tube down his throat. They removed my cerclage at 11am, and by 12:50 I was dilated to a 9. They took Darren and me back to the OR with our huge team of Nurses, Doctors, and our Neonatologist; and we all waited.
At 1:09pm our beautiful little baby came into the world with two big cries! Darren and I just fell to pieces- hearing his cry was the most beautiful thing we’ve ever heard, and it was more than we could have ever hoped for given the situation. Our doctor handed him to the Neonatologist and his NP’s, and they went to work on his vent tube. They were able to insert it after 2 minutes or so. I swear those were the longest 2 minutes of our lives.
The Neonatologist that we have is the sweetest man, and we have been so blessed to have him as Elliott’s Doctor. He let Darren come over and take pictures of him before they wheeled him up. He leaned over to Darren after the delivery and said “This little one has an angel watching over him.”
Our life since Elliott was delivered has been a roller coaster of emotion. We want to rejoice in the good luck that we’ve had so far, but it’s terrifying how much longer we have to wait until we are out of the danger zone with him. He has already had a few small hiccups, which is to be expected with a baby his size, but over all he has done well. It’s just a waiting game now to see what the future holds for our tiny family.
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Traci Stock Hall 
Canal Winchester, OH
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