‘Miracle’ Noah born 14 weeks early ready to start school

‘Miracle’ Noah born 14 weeks early ready to start school

Dalby mum Jodie can’t wipe the smile from her face as she watches her son Noah prepare for his first day of school.

Born 14 weeks premature at Mater Mothers’ Hospital in South Brisbane on 21 September 2017, little Noah weighed just 936 grams and spent almost 100 days fighting for his life in the Neonatal Critical Care Unit.

Now six years old, Noah, who is autistic and non-verbal, is looking forward to meeting his new classmates at Dalby South State School, in the Western Downs.

Across the state, an estimated 12,000 Mater babies are expected to start school on Monday (22 January).

Jodie, 37, said her “miracle son” Noah was diagnosed with hyperlexia, a condition where children start reading early and surprisingly beyond their expected ability.

Hyperlexia is often accompanied by an obsessive interest in letters and numbers, which develops as an infant.

“He is a very smart boy,” Jodie said.

“He loves to learn, and numbers are letters bring him joy.

“When he was three years old he was spelling the words elephant and dolphin via an app on his iPad.”

Each year nearly 2,000 very sick and premature babies receive round-the-clock specialist care from the multidisciplinary team at Mater Mothers’ Neonatal Critical Care Unit.

Jodie said she was in awe of her son’s determination since his birth.
 
“I went into preterm labour and was flown by the Royal Flying Doctor Service from my local hospital to Mater Mothers’ before Noah arrived at 26 weeks into my pregnancy,” she said.
 
“He was on the bigger side when he was born but had a pneumothorax in both lungs (collapsed lungs) and needed a chest tube. 

“During Noah’s time in hospital he also required three blood transfusions.

“He was on oxygen for four months when he came home from hospital, but he’s just kept fighting.”

Jodie said Noah attends the Mater Health and Wellness, Feeding therapy services every fortnight to assist with his continued sensory issues.

“The Mater therapy team is trying to get him to try new foods as he’s on a specialised formula,” she said.

“Despite the numerous medical appointments, Noah is a very happy little guy. He’s so social and he’s absolutely going to love making new friends.”
 

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Mater Babies
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For urgent assessment at any stage of your pregnancy, please present to your nearest emergency centre or Mater Mothers’ 24/7 Pregnancy Assessment Centre in South Brisbane.

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