We are sure you are wondering who “we” are! Hi there we are Ryan and Brittany Rhoden. We are the parents of two amazing little boys, Konlin and Kanner, who each have their own miraKle story.
Konlin was born a micro preemie, here is his story. After a eventful pregnancy and over 2 weeks of emergency bed rest in the hospital and going into labor at not even 22 weeks pregnant our son Konlin was born October 13, 2011 at the brink of “viability” long before his January 30, 2012 due date. Our son Konlin was born at 24 weeks and 3 days gestation, he blessed us with his presence about 4 months too early. Konlin weighed 1 pound 12 ounces and was 14.2 inches long, just perfect for the palm of our hand. We knew that it was not going to be an easy journey, it was going to be a very long, exhausting, and draining one but little did we know about the blessings we would see along the way. We spent 101 days total at the hospital, 89 days in the NICU. Konlin suffered many complications from being born as a micro preemie. He suffered from apnea, bradycardia, anemia, and chronic lung disease. When we were thrown into what everyone called the “NICU rollercoaster” little did we know what to expect. There were many bad days and not so many good days, we choose to cling to the good and remember them through the bad. Konlin could not breath on his own and would often times just simply stop breathing, the term “fight for your life” was being played out right before our eyes. Konlin was intubated on a ventilator to breathe for him or help him breathe for over 5 weeks. Konlin was on many different medications to help him survive. All the nurses said he was a stubborn little thing and he was a fighter for sure. Konlin fought the fight and survived his NICU journey defying all of the odds that were given to us, that he most likely would not even survive and if he did he would have many lasting complications. Konlin did not have any surgeries and left the NICU with his only lasting complication being chronic lung disease which is something he should continue to outgrow.
Our son Kanner has a story of his own to share as well. After a experiencing a terrible loss of a miscarriage at 10 weeks in July of 2013, we found out in November of 2014 we were expecting another sweet baby. By first measurements we were due August 13, 2014, but by last menstrual cycle we were due July 28th and this is the date that would be our due date. As soon as we found out we were pregnant, our lives began to change. Brittany could not lift Konlin, do house hold chores, walk any amount of distance, among other things. In January of 2014 at 12 weeks a preventative cerclage was placed in hopes to keep Brittany from dilating early and avoiding pre term labor, after the cerclage was placed Brittany was put on 2 weeks of strict bed rest. Just a few weeks later at 16 weeks Brittany was put on weekly shots to also help with pre term labor. In and out of doctor appointments and trips to labor and delivery for contractions, Brittany was finally put on full bed rest around week 28. After over 20 trips to labor and delivery, 11 weekly shots, over 3 months of strict bed rest, stress tests, and too many ultrasounds to count a c-section was scheduled for July 8, 2014 at what we thought to be 37 weeks pregnant. Since Brittany had a classical emergency c-section with Konlin a repeat early c-section was necessary. When Kanner was born on July 8, 2014 at 10:10am weighing 5pounds 15 ounces and 18.9 inches long- he was not able to maintain his oxygen, his oxygen saturations were in to 50-60s, after nearly 25 minutes of trying to get his levels up and a quick kiss for his mommy, he was taken to an all to fimiliar place, level 3 NICU. If Ryan and Brittany could not hold Kanner in their arms they knew this was the place they felt most comfortable to have their baby. Kanner was on a CPAP to help with his oxygen for 6 hours, IVs to help his sugar levels, warmers to help him keep his temperature up, and lots of his big brothers NICU nurses by his side he spent a little over 24 hours in the NICU before being able to return to the room with Ryan and Brittany. After just 48 hours Ryan and Brittany were able to leave the hospital as a family and go home to big brother
Konlin is now an almost 3 year old fun, life loving, energetic, strong willed, and still stubborn little boy. He has only had one eye surgery since leaving the NICU, is in therapy to make sure he reaches his milestones, and is followed by many specialist. Kanner is almost 3 months old and is doing very well after a rocky start and rough patch after coming home. Kanner made two trips back to the hospital once for low temperature and his jaundice levels and once for an ALTE (Apparent Life Threatening Event) when Ryan and Brittany woke up to Kanner choking and not breathing, after calling 911 he was taken by ambulance and was at the hospital for a couple days. We are so thankful for each day we get with our boys we know that they are some we may not have ever gotten if a miraKle did not happen. Continue to follow our ministry and our blog site to stay updated on all of our ministry events and to keep up with Konlin and Kanner!