After 118 days in hospital, premature baby Fynn is heading home
MOST people did not even know Annie Lyttle was pregnant when she went into labour.
At 23 weeks, she had another four months for her belly to swell as her body nurtured her baby, allowing her baby's eyes to finish forming, his lungs to grow big enough to support breath and for him to triple in size.
But at the crucial 20-week scan, it was found Ms Lyttle had a shortened cervix, putting her at risk of early labour.
Bed rest was ordered, but was lifted after a week when it appeared the problem had corrected itself.
It was a false alarm.
A few days later, the 23-year-old's waters broke at a friend's wedding.
She was taken to the Mercy Hospital, where baby Fynn would spend the next 118 days.
"I was really scared at the start," Ms Lyttle said.
"The chances of a 23-weeker surviving was really slim -- 20-30 per cent."
"But when he was first born he let out a cry, which is rare for that age."
Fynn was a tiny red doll of a boy weighing 723g.
His father, Sean Spruhan, said it was overwhelming to see his son so small that he could fit in the palm of his hand.
Mr Spruhan said he had tried to maintain a positive persona during the ordeal to take the pressure off his partner.
"That was the hardest part; inside I was feeling exactly like she was," he said.
"It was a shock . . . but now when we look at him, we don't see all the tubes, just our son.
"He's had setbacks here and there, but he's just battled through it.
"I honestly believe he is a complete miracle."
It took several weeks before they knew the colour or shape of their son's eyes.
Fynn has retinopathy of prematurity, an eye problem that means the blood vessels have not formed properly, but it is repairing itself and they hope it will not affect his eyesight in the long term.
He will go home almost 3kg heavier than his birth weight.
Last night, the first-time parents had a trial run, staying in the hospital to care for their son.
Today they will take Fynn home -- three days after his due date.