There were joyful scenes in Belfast recently as one delighted mum got to bring home her little baby girl after she was born prematurely at just 23 weeks last October.
The grateful joyful mum named Fionnuala McArdle got to take her little girl Meabh home recently after she spent the past five months at The Royal Maternity Hospital. Little Meabh Northern Ireland’s most premature baby defied the odds and a bravely battled for her life after she was born with pneumonia and was surrounded by toxic fluids.
The little fighter reportedly weighed just 480g, when doctors at the Royal Maternity Hospital’s neonatal unit gave her between zero and one per cent chance of surviving.
A emotional but delighted mum Fionnuala told UTV: “When I looked at her and she was so fragile, she really was badly bruised and she just looked so sick, but I just loved her. “It was scary because she was so small. She was the size of my hand. It was just [like] ‘how are you here’?”
A brave Fionnuala who went though many sleepless night worrying about her daughter, told reporters she will never forget the moment when her baby tried to grasp her hand in the hours after she was born and knowing her daughter would survive.
The new mum also revealed that she named her daughter Meabh, because it means the cause of great joy. The severely premature newborn reportedly went through four operations, including a major one on her heart and two on her eyes.
There were many, many setbacks along the day but i will never forget the moment i was able to hold my little girl for just a few moments five weeks after she was born, Fionnuala said.
“It was literally about a minute, if even, because she couldn’t handle it.” “She was still on a ventilator at the time so she was put straight back in. But it was the most amazing minute of my life.” However little Meabh still requires oxygen, and is still being tube fed and she may have further complications in the future the mother revealed, but for now she is just happy that at the fact that she was allowed to do what she thought was once unthinkable.
The happy new mum finished by saying: “I am absolutely over the moon, I finally felt like a proper mother because I was able to take the baby home.”