Raelyn’s story is filled with faith and love. When 22 weeks pregnant, her mother Ashley began experiencing complications due to premature rupture of the amniotic membrane. She was rushed to Erlanger where she was told Raelyn would be born within the next 24 hours.
Ashley knew Raelyn’s birth was going to be life-threatening. Doctors warned her that babies born at 23 weeks had only a 10% chance of survival. However, at 24 weeks Raelyn’s chances for survival would increase to the 30th percentile, but there was still a 20 percent chance of severe brain bleeds, blindness, deafness, and many other complications. Ashley was determined to make it to 24 weeks.
Through faith and determination, Ashley and Raelyn made it to 24 weeks. On June 6, 2001 at 9:33 p.m. Raelyn was born and immediately taken to the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) where she was intubated. She was so tiny that Ashley and her husband Adam’s wedding rings could fit on her arm and up her leg. At just a month old, Raelyn was held by her parents for the first time.
Raelyn is truly a miracle. She defied all the odds put in front of her and only had one surgery, a PDA surgery that closes up the heart valve. After 108 days in the NICU and before her original due date, Raelyn arrived home for the first time.