The world’s smallest baby is finally heading home!
Saybie, who was born at just 8.6 ounces, or 254 grams, is the tiniest baby ever to survive, according to the official Tiniest Baby Registry, maintained by the University of Iowa. She was born at 23 weeks and 3 days, weighing only as much as a juice box at birth.
Saybie “graduated” from the NICU in mid-May after a five-month stay at the Sharp Mary Birch Hospital in San Diego, California, the hospital announced Wednesday. When she went home, Saybie weighed a healthy 5.6 pounds.
“It was the scariest day of my life,” Saybie’s mother said in a moving video posted to YouTube by the hospital on Wednesday. The family has chosen to stay anonymous.
Saybie’s mother was taken to the hospital after experiencing complications during her pregnancy and was subsequently diagnosed with preeclampsia. The doctors decided they had to deliver Saybie right away.
“I kept telling them that she’s not going to survive, I’m only 23 weeks,” the mother said. A typical pregnancy lasts 40 weeks.
“At 254 grams, there’s reservations on survival,” Sharp Mary Birch NICU RN Courtney Akel said in the video.
But despite the low odds, the nurses and Saybie’s parents kept fighting for her.
“They told my husband that he had about an hour with her, and that she was going to pass away,” Saybie’s mother said. “But that hour turned into two hours, which turned into a day, which turned into a week.”
“I just want her to know how strong she is,” said NICU nurse Emma Wiest. “I mean, if she can start off where she was and do as well as she can be, there’s nothing she can’t do.”
“She is the smallest baby,” Saybie’s mother added. “But she’s mine.”
Saybie is going home just two months after the world’s smallest baby boy went home. The little boy, who has not been publically named, was delivered in Tokyo, Japan, last August via C-section and weighed 268 grams (9.45 oz) after he failed to gain weight in the womb.