If baby Rory had decided not to make his way into the world early, he may not have made it at all.
The little boy was born at 30 weeks on October 4, 2017, after his mother Angela Chau, 29, went into labour.
“I was feeling weird pains and they ended up being real contractions,” she said. “I had steroid injections and after a 48 hour labour, he let out a little cry and I burst into tears.”
Rory weighed just 1398 grams and measured 38 centimetres – not much bigger than a one litre bottle of juice. His tiny hands could wrap around an adult finger.
Ms Chau’s placenta was about to detach, which would have cut the baby’s oxygen supply.
“He was smart enough to get out,” she said. “Otherwise I would’ve bled out and he may have been stillborn.”
Rory needed support with his breathing and was fed through tubes. After 52 days at RPA hospital, he was transferred to St George Hospital.
Now weighing eight and half kilograms, he is fast catching up.
More than 48,000 Australian babies are admitted into neonatal and special care units every year.
On October 28 the Oatley family is is taking part in an Australian charity event for Life’s Little Treasures Foundation Walk for Prems. It aims to raise money for premature and sick babies who are immediately placed in neonatal intensive care.
In the past nine years the foundation has raised $1.4 million for sick and premature babies, and hopes to receive $300,000 in donations this year.
“It was the toughest thing we had to go through but we watched our baby fight daily battles,” Ms Chau said. “This is why we are doing the walk to raise funds for other families having to go through similar experiences.”
The walk is from 9.30am at Sydney Park, The Village Green, Barwon Park Road, St Peters.
$27 for adults, $15 for children and $8 for babies.