Original Article: LifeSiteNews
June 4, 2013 (MelaniePritchard.org) - Meet Celeste. Her name means “Heavenly”. This was a fitting and perfect name for a child born at 22 weeks weighing one pound, one ounce.
About a month ago, my friend Corinna began experiencing contractions at 22 weeks in her pregnancy. Her husband Kemi rushed her to the hospital where doctors informed them the baby was coming. Doctors tried tactics to delay the labor hoping to extend delivery to 24 weeks where babies are more able to survive outside the womb. Celeste was eager and nothing could stop her.
My husband Doug arrived at the hospital a few hours before delivery to comfort and support his best friend (and God-father of our daughter) Kemi and his wife Corinna. I arrived about an hour later and entered the hospital with my phone in my hand receiving a confirmation to a text that I sent two of my priest friends urging them to rush to the hospital and to be prepared to baptize. I entered the hospital room prior to labor and hugged Kemi tight and then I went to Corinna in her hospital bed and made the sign of the cross on her forehead and told them I would be in the lobby storming heaven with prayers and that a priest was on his way.
Doug and I sat with Corinna’s family and Kemi’s brother Ike as we anxiously awaited news. We were praying feverishly that either Celeste would stop her pursuit of being delivered early or that God would make her lungs develop enough to live a long life. There was a sense of somber helplessness and, at the same time, trust and hope.
Corinna’s mom received a text that things were in motion, meaning Celeste was on her way. The family left to wait outside of Corinna’s room while my husband and I stayed in the lobby praying. Minutes later, Fr. Muir, my dear priest friend and friend to the family, entered the hospital alongside Corinna’s original doctor (who did not have privileges at this hospital but came to offer support). Their timing couldn’t have been more perfect as Celeste was born soon after and baptized Catholic by Father within minutes of her birth.
While Corinna was delivering, her family, Ike, and Doug were in the hallway crying, praying and holding each other tight; it seemed as if everyone was holding their breath to hear the outcome. I was in the back and dropped to my knees begging the Lord for a miracle. The doctor came out with a look of sadness knowing from experience what was likely to happen next. He told us Celeste was born one pound, one ounce, was breathing, was even a little feisty and was now laying on Corinna’s chest bonding. I asked the doctor if there was a chance for the baby to survive and he shared that the baby would probably live for another hour. My heart sank, but I held on to hope!
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