Becky Frolek was still 23-weeks pregnant when she felt something was wrong and eventually delivered her baby way too early than expected.
Her baby boy, Trevor, was born nearly four months premature weighing only one pound and six ounce. The baby from North Dakota was so small that his father, Bo, could fit his wedding ring around his foot. He was also so fragile and underdeveloped he required surgeries for his eyes and heart.
Developing babies undergo crucial growth during the final months and weeks of pregnancy and many organs of the body including the lungs, liver and brain need the final weeks of pregnancy so they can fully develop. Babies who are born early face increased risks for disability and even death.
Because of his condition, Trevor spent nearly his first year of life at the hospital. But finally on Friday, after spending 345 days at Essentia Health St. Mary's Children's Hospital in Fargo and being surrounded by doctors and nurses, Trevor is now back home with his parents and sister Brookelyn.
Trevor will also become a big brother soon because his mother is expecting a new baby.
Becky said that Trevor making it this far is a miracle and that their little boy has proved everybody wrong by being able to do what medical textbooks did not predict. She admitted that she is excited albeit nervous.
Erin Kuehl, a neonatal intensive care unit nurse, said that there were a lot of days when they were not sure if they would be able to see the child again. She said that seeing Trevor do well is the best reward that they could ask for.
The nurses at the hospital's NICU appeared to have grown attached to the baby, who was with them for many months, that they threw a going away party for the child's family.
Vicki Holtan, another NICU nurse, said that the place will feel different now that Trevor is no longer there although she expressed her happiness for the family.
"Understatement to see miracle, a lot of prayer and faith intense from the nurses," said Scott Mutchler, a physician at the Essentia Health Neonatology. "It is a nonstop screaming ride."
The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) says that preterm birth affected over 450,000 babies in 2012. The number is equivalent to one in nine babies born in the U.S.