Hold Tight

Celia was born at 27 weeks. She weighed in at 1 pound 11 ounces. She was diagnosed with lung immaturity and apnea of prematurity, a condition in which breathing repeatedly starts and stops. As a result, she needed to be on a ventilator for several weeks.

“Fortunately, none of Celia’s complications were too severe,” says neonatologist Francis Poulain, M.D. “However, she did remain at UC Davis Children’s Hospital in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) for 93 days.”

Her mom, Perla, visited every single day. Her father, Ahn, captured the early days at the hospital with photographs and video, including this sweet moment when Celia grabbed his finger for the first time.

“It was so important to me that somebody saw and held her every day,” says Perla. “We were told that the more we visited, the more she’d know we were there and the more she’d fight.”

Today, Celia is a bright and bubbly 7-year-old. She is learning karate, piano and computer coding. She speaks Spanish, loves to read books and is already reading at a sixth-grade level. Her parents say they are thrilled at how well Celia is doing and they are thankful for the life-saving care she received at UC Davis Children’s Hospital.

Photo: Ahn Truong
University of California Davis Children’s Hospital; Sacramento

To view more photos visit Children’s Hospitals Photo Exhibit.

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