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Meet Baby Jayden: Breastmilk, Kangaroo-care & love saved her life

Posted by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 6:18 PM
  • 7 Replies

I got this story from the Moby FB page, hope you all enjoy :)

Meet Baby Jayden: Breastmilk, Kangaroo-care & love saved her life

by Moby® Wrap on Tuesday, September 28, 2010 at 12:12pm

Read about Baby Jayden and how you can help her.



Jayden was born cocaine and alcohol addicted, with congenital syphilis, at 31 weeks gestation. She had no skin on the palms of her hands or feet and had to have skin grafts. They could find no formula that Jayden could tolerate well, but settled on the one that she had the "least severe reaction to."

 When she was about eight weeks old, she was assigned a foster parent, who came to do kangaroo care with her for eight days before she took her home.  Jayden was completely blind and profoundly deaf, and would need to be accustomed to "mom's" smell and touch before they sent her home. When she went home, she was the most critical discharge they have ever had from that NICU, which routinely sees the sickest of babies.  Basically, with tears in their eyes, the nurses sent Jayden home to die. Jayden was insulin dependant (with critically unstable blood sugars, typically either below 60 or above 400), on oxygen 24 hours a day, and set off her apnea monitor 6-10 times a day. In order to set off a monitor, she would have to not breathe for many seconds at a time. She had gained and lost the same three ounces since birth, and was no more than four and a half pounds.

 Her foster mother asked over and over again of anybody who had authority why this baby couldn't be on breastmilk, shouldn't this baby be on breast milk, what did she have to do to get this baby on breastmilk? Over and over, she was basically told that this was a medicaid baby and that the state wouldn't PAY for banked milk (which costs a minimum of 4 dollars an ounce, and has been pasteurized) for a MEDICAID baby. Finally, one day, when Jayden was literally activly dying, an infectious disease doctor looked at her foster mom (who is a friend of mine because of foster work and doula work) and said, "I won't tell you NOT to give her breastmilk. We know that it would give her the best chance!" So, we got her some frozen breastmilk.

 With her first bottle of human milk, Jayden's blood sugar regulated.  She is typically somewhere around 120 now. Within the first three weeks, she regained her sight and hearing. Her new pediatrician says that when somebody is actively dying their brain will shut off all non-essential functions--and hearing and sight are non-essential functions. The first week on breastmilk she started to only set off her apnea monitor during the night's deepest sleep...and only then typically once a night. Within three weeks, they took it off of her completely, because she just didn't set it off any more. The first week she gained and KEPT ON four ounces. The next week three. The next week SEVEN.  At this point, the new pediatrician put her arms around the Foster Mom's shoulders and said, "If you hadn't given that baby human milk when you did, she would be dead today.  You are a hero."  Eight weeks later she had gained nearly four pounds. When she was nearly nine and a half months old she was eleven and a half pounds! We now have full cooperation with her new pediatrician and the state to give her donated human milk, no questions asked.

Baby Jayden at 10 weeks.

Jaydon at 16 months. Thriving.

We heard about this story because her foster mom used a Moby Wrap. Would you like to help? 

On October 2, 2010 join other local nursing mothers at Baby Be Loved in Grand Rapids, Michigan to compete for which geographic area has the most breastfeeding babies (as a percentage of the birthrate). “Latched on” at 11 AM local time.  This challenge is to celebrate breastfeeding and demonstrate promotion, protection, and support for breastfeeding women and their families.

 Come at 10:30 AM to register and for some socializing with other moms like you.

Earn 15% off certain products in the store by donating at least one ounce of breastmilk (bring the milk that day or use the Symphony pump at our store) for Jayden.  More information here:

by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 6:18 PM
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Replies (1-7):
by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 6:57 PM
If I was still nursing I would donate. Who knows maybe ill try to relactate.I still make 1- 1 1/2 ounces.
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by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 7:26 PM

That story brought tears to my eyes.

by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 7:27 PM
what a sweet amazing thing to do...I think it is just so important that mothers realize where their local milk bank is. There is one in Plano, Texas...for those north texas mothers!
by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 10:10 PM

What a great story! 


by on Sep. 28, 2010 at 10:13 PM

YAY! I coordinated this Grand Rapids drop off!! :) So happy to see this post!

by on Sep. 29, 2010 at 9:21 AM
Bump for later
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by on Sep. 29, 2010 at 9:41 AM
Im going to start pumping for her once a day when I get enough bottles, I emailed her and did not get a response yet :-( I live 20 min from a drop point
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