Isabella Virginia was born at 33 weeks due to her Mommy having complete placenta previa. She was born on November 24, 2009 weighing in at an amazing 5lbs 2oz and 19.5 inches at Allegheny General Hospital in Pittsburgh via emergency c-section. Bella did great in the NICU at first with no huge complications. But then one day we walked into the NICU to see the DR and others standing around her incubator. Bella had developed NEC.
I have never been more scared or felt more sick than I did at that exact second. After that we had weeks of x-rays, prayers, tears, and more prayers. Everyday was a fresh new wave of fear and asking if the xrays showed any improvement. Bella had really small veins, and they had a very hard time giving her IVs. She needed one in her head as a last resort......worst image I have ever seen.
Due to it eventually leaking she was transferred to Children's Hospital. The IV team got an IV in her within minutes with no problems. Amazing people. Then we learned she needed a blood transfusion asap. I have never felt so helpless in my life. Here was my tiny miracle and all I could do is stand there and pray.
After many many visits to the hospital and tons of guilt when we left the hospital (we have a 5 yr old son at home) the day came when they said we can resume feeds!!! It was medical NEC and she did not need surgery. I have never been so happy in my life! Scared too because it could happen again. Feeding was frustrating because she had to learn how to do it. By this time it was December 2009. The hospital brought in PT to help her learn to eat. She was slowly getting it, but not eating enough. She would spit up a lot too.
Her big brother finally got to meet her on Christmas Day. There are no words to describe that moment.....it was one of the best moments of my life. She just looked up at her brother in awe....and they have had a special bond ever since that day.
Once Bella was doing well in every aspect except feeding they decided to move her to the Children's Home and Lemieux Family Center. That place is so wonderful, it was like heaven for us. The nurses are angels. They took so much time to work with Bella on feeding. A week...ONE WEEK....after arriving there our baby girl came home!! January 4, 2010!!!
Isabella spent a total of 6 weeks in the NICU. I know there are lots of babies who spend a lot longer and who have/had more complications then Bella, and I pray for those babies everyday. Bella was a rainbow baby....we had a miscarriage before we had her. That is what makes her so much more special :). She came into this world a fighter and she still is....she is so spunky and does things her own way. She is now 2 years old, 30lbs and perfect! I thank God everyday for how lucky we were with our daughter. I thank him for both of our children. I hope you enjoyed reading Bella's story.
We would like to thank all of the families that submitted their children's stories. Please know that each of your children are so inspiring and are the reason for what we do. We are honored that you chose to share them with us. If your story was not highlighted this month we encourage you to resubmit next month