What it is like to be the mum of a premmie baby

October 12, 2016

I screamed at them to do whatever they had to do to get him out

Former contortionist and contestant on Australia’s Got Talent Jodie Hollis-Tobin knows the limits of her body, but the recent premature birth of her son certainly put her lithe frame to the test.

When baby Tobias decided to enter the world at just 25 weeks gestation at the end of June, 20-year-old Jodie was terrified knowing her baby was in distress.

Already two centimetres dilated and having regular contractions as she checked into the Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital, (RBWH), Jodie recalled how frightening the experience was for her and bub.

“His heart beat was dropping to 45 beats per minute and I was worried. I screamed at them to do whatever they had to do to get him out,” says Jodie.

“Whizzed to the theatre, all I can remember is having a mask over my face and kicking the doctor because I was so panicked.”

Tobias enters the world

img_6780Tobias was delivered via an emergency forceps delivery and was put straight on a ventilator. He weighed 866 grams and was 33 centimetres long – the average birth weight for babies is 3.5 kg and around 51 centimetres.

While doctors aren’t sure yet how the premature birth will affect Tobias in the future, he is currently making good progress in the neonatal unit of the RBWH.

In fact, Jodie, who at just 14-years-of-age showed off her contortionist skills on Australia’s Got Talent, thinks her little man may have inherited her extreme acrobatic skills. (You can watch Jodie’s performance – here).

“Basically he came out neck first with his arm twisted behind his back!” says Jodie.

Premmie baby research

img_7326Fortunately baby Tobias is born in an era when the best medical attention and advances are available. He is among a number of pre-termers at the RBWH.

Premmie research currently underway is focused on the development of pre-term babies’ brains and what treatment therapies could be introduced to bring the development in line with that of a full-term baby. It’s one of the key projects that mums and bubs in RBWH’s Neonatal Unit are involved in.

Funds raised at the RBWH Foundation’s annual Butterfly Ball at the Hilton Brisbane on 22 October will go towards this important research work.

The Foundation Butterfly Ball is $200 per ticket, tables of ten are available and the event runs from 7.30pm to midnight. For more information or to book, click – here.

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