Hand to Hold's Official Blog: Written by Parents for Parents

Melissa’s Story: Part 5

This is the last of five posts dedicated to sharing one young mother’s experience with severe preeclampsia and an ultimate delivery of a 27-weeker to save her own life.  This is Melissa’s story.

As I regained my strength over the next few days I would make the trip up to floor 7 to see my baby and then back down to floor 4 to my room very regularly. I was in the hospital for about 2 weeks and when it was time for me to go back home, leaving my baby in the NICU was so hard to do. We stayed at my sister’s house for a few weeks which is about 30 minutes from Oklahoma City, and then we went back to our apartment that is an hour and a half away from Oklahoma City. It was so hard to go back home without her and to see her empty crib and to not feel her moving inside me anymore. We would go to visit her every other day. It was such a bitter-sweet experience when we would go to see her. It was so wonderful to walk into her room to see how well she was doing and to know how many ounces she had gained, but it was so hard to just leave without her again and again. After 2 months we were finally allowed to take her home! And she has blessed every day since then with her sweet spirit. I consider myself the luckiest mom in the world and love my girl more than I ever thought was possible.  She is so precious to me!

Have you had any experiences similar to Melissa’s?  Please share in the comments, for Melissa’s benefit and for all of ours.  Thank you!

Begin with Melissa’s Story:  Part 1, or view Part 2, Part 3, or Part 4.

Afton Mower About Afton Mower

After Mower (UT) lost her firstborn son at 21 weeks.  Her daughter was born a year and a half later at 27 weeks.  The NICU was overwhelming and isolating and it was through those two experiences she was led to found this social hub for parents to find the support they needed. Afton also gave birth to another daughter, born two days overdue after four months of strict bedrest. She believes it is a tender experience to hold a special baby in your arms when his spirit returns to his heavenly home, a miracle to watch tiny babies survive the risks of prematurity and a blessing to hold a healthy full-term baby after months of difficulty and sacrifices.


  1. Gina marley says:

    melissa, This is gina marley. I too have had a 27 weeker 7 years ago. she weighed in at 1 lb 10 oz. I too had preeclampsia, and hellp syndrome. When I had finally gone into the hospital it was too late to wait any more. my kidneys were failing and my liver had shut down. It is soooo difficult to go through and the twists and turns that they make while in the hospital. It is emotionally wrenching. It took 4 months to get our daughter home. But when you go home you are stronger than most moms will ever be to any bumps and bruises other kids face. My daughter is 7 almost 8 now and is very tiny but healthy and she was my first child. I also have 3 other children. My second child I also had preeclampsia with but the doctors were aware of my condition from the very beginning and so I was put on bed rest for 7 months. I delivered a second little girl at 37 weeks. But know that every day after you hit the 27 week mark you will wonder and hope that you make it. my 3rd one came at 38 weeks and my fourth at 41 weeks But with the fourth I began again to have the tale tale signs of preeclampsia. I guess I will always have issues but they are worth it if you have the right doctor. There is only one doctor in town that will even consider seeing me because of my high risk. If there is any thing that you need, information, a shoulder from someone who has been there, anything just let me know. My Email is madmanmarleys@live.com. I know that it seems like an up hill battle but you were created strong enough and so was your daughter.

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