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‘I gave birth to a child I’d never seen’: A mother’s miracle COVID journey

Published: Nov. 12, 2021 at 10:01 AM CST|Updated: Nov. 12, 2021 at 1:58 PM CST
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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - A celebration of life and survival Friday for an Alabama mother who delivered her second child while fighting COVID-19 from a hospital bed.

Lynlee Nichols was released from rehab at Brookwood Medical Center after she was hospitalized for 105 days with COVID-19.

Lynlee was admitted to a Montgomery hospital on August 4, and gave birth to her son, a healthy baby boy, named Riley, on August 8. But Lynlee couldn’t even hold her child because she was COVID positive. He was 9 weeks old when she finally got to meet him. She describes the moment they brought her baby boy, Riley, to her for the first time.

“When they came in the door I just broke down. I was worried I wasn’t going to have a bond. I gave birth to a child I’d never seen, never held. When he showed up I was overwhelmed. And at this point I was so weak I could barely lift my arms up,” Lynlee said.

Lynlee was asked about giving birth and not being able to see her son. “I expected to deal with the physical aspect, but dealing with the anxiety and the overall PTSD, is the only way I can describe it, was something that I was not prepared for.” Lynlee said her nurses and health team are the ones who recommended she see her baby.

A Mother's Journey - Lynlee Nichols
A Mother's Journey - Lynlee Nichols(Brookwood Baptist Health)

But her fight wasn’t over. Lynlee spent 45 days in critical care in a Montgomery hospital. After that she was transferred to Brookwood Medical Center where she was placed on ECMO to help her lungs. She spent an another 45 days in CCU, CVR/CVSU before being admitted to Brookwood’s Rehab Unit.

“It was uncharted territory. Studies have shown ECMO is not helpful after the first week of ventilation. Which is why we were a little bit anxious to be putting her on after six weeks of ventilatory support,” Ronald M. Roan, M.D.

Her doctors said they thought Lynlee would need a lung transplant, but she recovered and no longer needs one.

Brookwood doctors and staff call Lynlee’s journey a COVID miracle story that they are excited to share. To celebrate her discharge the hospital staff planned a parade to honor Lynlee’s journey home.

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