Madeline was born weighing just 810 grams.
Madeline was born weighing just 810 grams.

‘It was like our world was crumbling’

WENDY Maney did not believe her daughter was going to live when she was born prematurely at just 26 weeks.

The young mum had never heard of the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) when she arrived at Gold Coast University Hospital almost three months before her due date.

She and husband Mike were at home with their eldest daughter Bella, 2, when Wendy went into labour.

"I thought the moment my waters broke that we weren't going to make it," she said.

"I thought a premmie was a 35-week-old baby. I didn't think they could even survive at 26 weeks.

"The biggest ray of hope for me was the moment I was bawling in the labour ward and one of the neonatal doctors came up to talk to us. It was like our world was crumbling and she gave us hope."

Madeline was born weighing just 810 grams.

"We didn't have any first meeting or hold," said Wendy.

Things are looking up for this little family. Photo: Supplied
Things are looking up for this little family. Photo: Supplied

"She was just out and off to the NICU, and then we met her at 5pm the next day."

Now seven weeks old, Madeline has a congenital heart defect and jaundice, and is awaiting results to see if she has a chronic neonatal lung disease.

Her official due date isn't until January 27.

But things are looking up for the now 1700g tot, who last night moved from a humidicrib to an open cot for the first time.

The past several weeks have been traumatic for both parents, with Wendy admitting some days it is difficult to pick herself up off the floor emotionally.

They didn’t think Madeline had a chance. Photo: Supplied
They didn’t think Madeline had a chance. Photo: Supplied

"It's really heartbreaking because I know what it should be like," she said.

"With the birth of my first daughter it was exciting and everyone was saying 'congratulations'. We were in this happy, joyous bubble.

OTHER NEWS

More than a dozen Gold Coast flights cancelled by Jetstar

Thieves steal 25,000 litres of drinking water

NZ police: 'Volcano risk has not gone'

"We still love Maddy just the same but the memory (of her birth) is a traumatic one now."

Despite the trauma, little Madeline won't be alone in NICU this Christmas, with about 110 other babies suffering the plight. Throughout the year, the ward has treated 1250 premature babies.

To donate to the Gold Coast Hospital Foundation's Christmas Appeal and help the NICU, visit www.gchfoundation.org.au/donate.

 

GOLD COAST NICU'S CHRISTMAS WISH LIST

* MRI Compatible Ventilator - $62,000

An MRI compatible ventilator that allows ventilated infants be transported to an MRI scanning suite while maintaining optimal respiratory support.

 

* Kanmed Baby Bed for twins - $17,948

Specially made baby bed for premature babies requiring treatment and medical monitoring.

 

* Laryngoscope Size 0 blade - $6700

The smallest size attachment for a Gold Coast Hospital Foundation funded Laryngoscope, a piece of equipment used to painlessly and quickly examine a baby's throat.

 

* Digital Monitoring System - $58,322.33

Allows for continuous monitoring of carbon dioxide levels in newborn babies. Measurements are made painlessly through the skin without any need for blood taking.


BUSTED: Raid uncovers alleged stolen motorbike, leaf blower

Premium Content BUSTED: Raid uncovers alleged stolen motorbike, leaf blower

Two men will face court after Murgon police caught them in possession of several...

ELECTION PLEDGE: New dams to create 5000 Wide Bay jobs

Premium Content ELECTION PLEDGE: New dams to create 5000 Wide Bay jobs

LNP Leader Deb Frecklington said the new Cooranga and Barlil weirs were a key part...

The Gayndah cafes ‘flourishing’ post-lockdown

Premium Content The Gayndah cafes ‘flourishing’ post-lockdown

Two Gayndah cafes are busier than ever, despite the off-season and border closures...