Miracle baby Royce Cannon was born premature at just 30 weeks gestation after his mother, Felice Renfroe, was diagnosed with preeclampsia. Royce was delivered via emergency c-section at Akron Children’s Hospital.
“I had protein in my urine and they were scheduling me to take steroid shots,” Renfroe told Fox 8. “The first day I was fine, then the second day I went to take another steroid shot and they ended up admitting me because of my high blood pressure.”
Baby Royce weighed just three pounds, two ounces at birth, and since his lungs weren’t fully developed, he required oxygen. “I thanked the nurse and I thanked the doctor,” said Renfroe. “And he was like, ‘Don’t thank me. It was only by the grace of God.”
Royce is now a month old, and excluding the first hour after his birth, his mother, who is a nurse’s aide, has never left his side in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
“I think that makes such a huge difference in babies’ development and how well they do in the NICU when their parents are there all the time,” said Stephanie Sykes, a neonatal nurse practitioner.
Little Royce is gaining weight and doing well, but he must be able to eat by mouth eight times a day, continue to gain weight, and maintain a certain temperature before he is able to go home. It will likely be weeks. “He’s just soaring, he’s just doing what he’s supposed to do and I’m just blessed I got a chance and I do have a chance to be here every day,” said Renfroe. “… I think he’s my miracle baby because he, just like I said, he’s striving every day.”
Babies the same gestational age as Royce have an amazing chance of survival, thanks to advances in modern medicine. According to current research, after 28 weeks, babies have a 96 percent rate of survival. If they weigh less than three pounds, four ounces like Royce, they can face a tougher fight and are more at risk for disabilities than babies who weight more. Despite the fact that these babies are capable of surviving outside of the womb, it is still legal in the United States to kill a child this age through abortion.