Kirsty Mizon’s hopes were not in vain when, at just 13 weeks of pregnancy, her water broke.
Though doctors told her she would miscarry or her baby would be stillborn, the Burton, England mother clung to the tiny, 1-percent chance that her child would survive, the Derbyshire Telegraph reports.
Because she refused to give up hope, her baby girl, Lacey, is alive today. Though still in the NICU, Lacey is doing well, and her parents said they hope to take her home soon after the New Year.
“When I found out I was pregnant I was so excited and started buying stuff right away,” Mizon remembered. “I was 13 weeks pregnant when I woke up in the night. I thought I had been sweating because it was hot so I changed my pyjamas and got back in bed.”
When she noticed blood, however, she went to the hospital. There, doctors told Mizon that her water had broken, and she would miscarry her baby within the next several days, according to the report. But she never miscarried.
Doctors repeatedly suggested that she consider an abortion, but she refused. Even when doctors told her that her own life might be in danger, she said she clung to the hope that her child would survive.
Mizon said she was told that she was carrying a boy, and his chances of survival were 1 percent, at best.
“I planned his funeral and I couldn’t be in public places as being near babies just filled me with fear and sadness,” she remembered. “At times I felt like I was breaking. The bleeding was so bad, I was passing 10cm blood clots. I didn’t know if I was strong enough to go through it but I couldn’t give up on my baby.”
At 29 weeks, she went into labor and gave birth to a 3-pound baby girl, according to the report.
When Mizon heard her daughter cry, her hope was renewed.
“It was the best feeling ever, the greatest sound I have ever heard,” she said. “I couldn’t believe it. I had kept her in there without fluid for almost four months.”
Lacey still is in the NICU at Leicester, but she is doing better than expected.
“She is doing really well,” Mizon said “… she only has one problem which can be fixed with physiotherapy. I am still in shock. I just can’t believe I have a baby. A beautiful baby girl.”
Mizon encouraged families not to give up hope.
“I know it doesn’t happen to everyone and there is not always a good outcome but hang on if you can because there can be a happy ending,” she said.
Thanks to modern medical miracles, premature babies are surviving at a rate greater than ever before. Recent studies out of Duke University and the New England Journal of Medicine found that a growing percent of premature infants are surviving as early as 22 weeks of pregnancy. The research recently prompted the British Association of Medicine to issue new guidelines encouraging medical treatment for babies born at just 22 weeks of pregnancy. Previously, the guidelines did not recommend treatment until 24 weeks.
The smallest recorded surviving baby weighed less than 9 ounces at birth. Born in California in December 2018, baby Saybie was deemed well enough to go home in May.
The earliest known premature baby to survive outside the womb was born at 21 weeks and four days of pregnancy. In 2017, the journal Pediatrics highlighted the girl’s survival story.