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

Sarah’s Birth Story

The following is a story shared by one of our readers.  I appreciate all those who are willing to share their story for the benefit of others.  Thanks Annie!

The story of our precious daughter starts with a battle with infertility. After treatments we conceived on our fourth cycle of Clomid. After trying so hard to get pregnant I thought the pregnancy would be a breeze. I soon learned I was very wrong!

On March 16 I worked my normal 12 hour shift at work. I noticied that I was really swollen but thought it was just from being up on my feel all day. I went home and took it easy. The following Thursday when I went in to work I had a terrible headache & was very dizzy. I spent the night in the hospital & had some pre-eclamptic testing done including a 24 hour urine collection. The next day I went home still not feeling very good.

I spent the next two days with a terrible headache & very dizzy. It was the most miserable weekend of my life. On Sunday my head hurt so bad that I had become terrified of what was wrong. My husband and I decided it was time to go back to the hospital. When I got there my blood pressure was through the roof, I had bad dizziness & my vision had started to get blurry. My 24 hour urine came back & I was spilling 300mg of protein in my urine. That evening I was started on Magnesium Sulfate and transferred from our small community hospital 50 miles to the regional referral center.

On Monday morning I was seen by the high risk MFM doctor. I was prepared that our baby would probably need to be delivered sooner rather than later. The short term goal was to get 24 hours past my second dose of steriods to help mature her lungs. The Magnesium was continued to help prevent a seizure. That evening my second 24 hour urine collection came back & I was then spilling 2100mg on protein. The next two days were a rollercoaster. My headaches continued with no relief & my vision continued to get worse.

On Wednesday morning the decision was made to deliver the baby. I had eaten breakfast, so we scheduled surgery for 4pm. At 1 my vision had gotten so bad that I could not see anything clearly. The c-section went from urgent to emergent & before I knew it I was being prepped for the OR. After my spinal was in my husband joined me. It was the most nervous I have ever been in my life. I felt very disconnected from what was going on all around me. Like it wasn’t happening to me at all. All around me there was a sea of people in yellow gowns and masks. There were four doctors operating on me, two OR nurses, three nursery nurses, 3 NICU nurses & two neonatal nurse practitioners.

Sarah Paige was born Wednesday March 24, 2010 at 2:19pm at just 28 weeks. She came in to the world screaming! She weighed 2lbs 5.1oz and was 13 3/4 inches long. She was breathing on her own but working a little too hard to breath. She was intubated to help her rest & so she could receive surfactant. She initially spent about 12 hours on the ventilator and was then weaned to CPAP.

We are so blessed to have such a strong little girl. I never imagined the love I could feel for another person. In an instant our lives have been forever changed.

Comments are appreciated from those who have been through something similar, or who just want to shed some encouragement!  I hope to have an update on baby Sarah in a few weeks, so check back occassionally :).

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. Thanks for sharing your story. This must have been very scary.

    Wishing you and your family the best.

  2. HI, I suffered with pre-eclampsia as well and had to have an emergency c section on the 17/03/2010. My pre-eclampsia was like a silent disease, I had no headaches or dizziness just the swelling that got worse as the weekswent on. My baby is healthy and although he was only 800 grams he is strong and is a fighter.

    I believe that faith and prayer is what we need to have to make us strong for our babies and also to strengthen our little miracles.

    Sarah’s mum stay strong and I will keep you all in my prayers.

  3. Your Pre E story sounds just like mine I had my children at 27weeks and 29 weeks and I am happy to report they are now 2 almost 3 and 1 years old! and very healthy 🙂 Congrats on your new baby enjoy 😀

  4. Jennifer says:

    My daughter was taken by emergency csection due to preeclampsia at 28 weeks. Such a scary event. Hope all is well with you and your little one.

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