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Her legacy
Kayleigh's Story  


On Friday 1 October Kayleigh Siobhan Erceg was born weighing 1034 grams (2lb 4oz). I saw her very briefly before they whisked her away to the neonatal unit. It wasn't until the next day that I could get out of bed and go and visit her, by that time she had been put on a ventilator to help her breathe and was being given phototherapy to help treat jaundice. She had also been given chest x-rays and blood test and she had tubes and wires coming out of everywhere. A scan of her heart showed that a valve hadn't closed properly but the doctors were hopeful that it would fix itself. On Sunday 3 October the news wasn't good, Kayleigh's weight had dropped to 884grams (1lb 15oz) her colour had changed and her breathing was worse, it was a very worrying time but things did improve. When Kayleigh was a week old she was taken off the ventilator and put onto CPAP, the phototherapy was also turned off. On 9 Ocotber, the day after she was taken off the ventilator, I was able to have my first cuddle. I didn't want to put her down. By Friday 15 October Kayleigh was taking 2 mils of milk every 2 hours through a tube. 
We got Kayleighs blood test results back and was told that she had a chromosome abnormality, ring chromozone 22. We had to go and see a genetic specialist on 10 November and we were told that she would grow up with severe mental disabilities, it was heart breaking but we still had a beautiful baby girl that needed us more than ever now.  Kayleigh had good days and bad days over the next week but on 17 November she was put on low flow oxygen and taken off CPAP, she need to stay on oxygen because the ventilator had given her lung disease. She carried on doing well and on 21 November (7 weeks and 2 days old) she had her first bath, which she really enjoyed. After her bath she was put into a cot for the first time (instead of an incubator). It was so nice to be able to go in a pick her up when ever I wanted. On Tuesday 23 November we were able to transfer her to our local hospital in Whakatane which was great, I hadn't been home in 8 weeks. Everything was going great and the Doctors were talking about sending her home but then on 11 December she got pneumonia and ended up back in an incubator. She had to have an oxygen box (which is like a big helmet) put over her head. After a dose of anti-biotics she was on the mend again and was well enough to take home, on oxygen, on Christmas Eve. That was the best Christmas present anyone could ever get.
The next three weeks were great, Kayleigh seemed to be doing better and better, she was feeding every 4 hours, mostly from a bottle but also from the odd tube feed. Then at 2.00am on Friday 14 January 2000 I was in the kitchen preparing her night time feed, Stefan was working nights, when I heard her apnoea alarm going off. I ran back into the bedroom and she had stopped breathing. I turned her oxygen up full and started giving her CPR. When I couldn't get her breathing I phoned an ambulance and then I phoned my mother-in-law so she could get hold of Stefan. I carried on with CPR until the ambulance arrived. We got to the hospital and there were doctors and nurses all over the place, I don't really remember much else until Stefan and my in-laws turned up, that's when we were told that Kayleigh had died, she was 15 weeks old. We took Kayleigh home and she stay with us until her funeral on 18 January 2000. We had her cremated and her ashes are in a beautiful white box in our home, where she always has beautiful fresh flowers


A beautiful little princess forever in our hearts.  

Kayleigh's Birth stone  


Opal - Purity, hope and health

For Our Princess  


 A Rose
A rose once grew where all could see it.
Sheltered beside a garden wall and as the days past,
it spread its branches straight and tall.
Then one day a beam of light showed
through and it had spread wide.
The rose bent gently toward the warmth,
then passed beyond to the other side.
Now, you who deeply feel the loss, be comforted.
The rose blooms where its beauty
is even greater nurtured by God's own loving care.

Author Unknown

My blond haired, blue eyed Angel  

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