The amazing Angie Waas and Louis Keith (29 months). Angie discovered she was pregnant with Louis while still in high school and she had an easy, healthy pregnancy until she spontaneously went into labor in the middle of the night at 25 weeks 6 days. When she arrived at the hospital she was 4cms dilated with bulging waters and had to deliver immediately via emergency cesarean. Louis was taken directly to NICU for care. Angie didn't really have time to think but was scared for what this meant for her and her baby. With her baby in NICU she also didn't have much time for recovery, it was the first time she'd ever had surgery but she needed her boyfriend to help her get around the first week but healed well.
Louis had a brain bleed the day he was born that caused hydrocephalus. At 7 weeks old he developed meningitis and she was told that he wouldn't make it and would be on hospice care by time he was 4 months old. Louis was able to pull through and came home after 3.5 months in the hospital. He underwent brain surgery and had a VP shunt at 6 months old and is doing great today. He is currently working on sitting independently and is practicing using his legs in a stander. He was diagnosed with cerebral palsy at age two and has therapies weekly but most importantly he is happy, healthy, growing and doing so much better than everyone predicted.
Angie was able to finish out her junior year of high school while Louis was in NICU and tried to begin her senior year but found that it was all too much to handle along with mothering him. She plans to get her GED once Louis begins preschool in a few months. Being a teen mother of a child with special needs hasn't been easy but Angie has navigated it with grace and cultivated an amazingly supportive community around herself and Louis. She is an absolute inspiration.