Hands the size of quarters and weighing only one pound, a baby born about three months early aboard a cruise ship in the Caribbean is expected to live.
A Utah couple, Chase and Emily Morgan, were on a seven-day Royal Caribbean cruise with their 3-year-old daughter earlier this month. What was supposed to be a relaxing vacation to celebrate their daughter’s birthday quickly turned into a nightmare when Morgan went into early labor on the family’s second night aboard.
Morgan’s due date wasn’t until Dec. 19, but her son Haiden had other plans.
Between Florida and Puerto Rico, Morgan’s labor pains began, KSL-TV first reported. At first, Morgan thought the spasms could be false labor, but when she and her husband saw blood, they called the medical staff, the Associated Press reports.
“At 1:20 a.m. the doctor came over, looked at me and said, ‘keep your legs closed, don’t push because we are not porting for another 14 hours,'” Morgan said. “And I said, ‘I am pushing because this baby is coming, I know!'”
The baby was born 30 minutes later. The doctors on board told Morgan that she had miscarried and her child had died. When she asked to see the baby, they refused.
Then, she says, came another shock.
“About 45 minutes after I had delivered, the two doctors came back in and said the baby was still alive, however, they didn’t expect him to live very long.”
The Morgans wrapped the baby in towels and nestled him between heated saline packets to keep him warm, the Associated Press reports. When the ship’s captain learned that the baby was alive, he sped towards San Juan, Puerto Rico, arriving as black spots were starting to appear on Haiden’s extremities, indicating a loss of circulation.
After a few days in Puerto Rico, a jet flew the family to a hospital in Miami where they will stay for at least another month until Haiden is strong enough to be moved.