Devils Lake couple’s baby has large “fan club” supporting her tough beginning
DEVILS LAKE - Miss Anwyn Mae was born on June 20 to Devils Lake’s Nathaniel and Turi Leiphon at Children’s Hospital in Minneapolis. However, this was not the beginning of her journey at Children’s.
At 25 weeks gestation, Anwyn had intrauterine surgery to repair a lesion on her spine due to Spina Bifida. The condition can cause mild to severe disability. The surgery is expected to increase Anwyn’s chances of walking from 10 percent to 80 percent. Due to the delicate nature of the procedure, three surgeons were assisted by some 20 medical personnel.
“Half of the team was there for Anwyn, and the other half was working on me,” Turi said. “The doctors asked most of them to stay in the hallway until I was under sedation, because he thought the whole group squeezed into the room would freak me out.”
Baby and Mom came through the surgery well. Intrauterine procedures can lead to premature births, so do
ctors had Turi stay in the hospital on bed-rest and monitoring until the baby was born. Turi passed the time by making adorable baby caps for Anwyn and as a gift for other babies in Children’s Neonatal Intensive Care Unit.
“The hope was to extend the pregnancy to at least 37 weeks to give Anwyn the best chance,” Nathaniel said. “We were surprised when she made it all the way to induction at 37 weeks.”
The little girl has amassed a large “fan club” of friends and family – and their friends – who are following her progress on social media.
“We have been overwhelmed by the love, prayers and support for Anwyn,” he said. “We are very grateful and humbled to see just how many people care about our little girl. We constantly think about how many people are out there supporting her, and just how lucky she is already.”
Anwyn is quite the little fighter. She has been doing well, though they have kept her at Children’s Hospital since she was born. The baby underwent surgery to repair a lesion on her back, also related to the Spina Bifida, with the entire original team present. She came out of that with flying colors, but her back is not healing quite as well as they had hoped.
It looks like they could be at Children’s Hospital for the next couple of weeks to keep an eye on .Anwyn’s back, before her next surgery in August.
Costs for the surgeries, hospital stays for Mom and baby have been great. A GoFundMe.com page has been created, called Help Turi and Nathaniel Leiphon’s Baby. You can also follow her progress on Caring Bridge for Turi and Nathaniel’s baby at caringbridge.org/visit/turinathaniel .
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