Peyton Michelle Williams was born on Oct. 12, 2012, to Brandon and Rachael Carpenter Williams. Rachael had been hospitalized for a condition called pre-eclampsia during her pregnancy which made her blood pressure go up very high. Since the doctors could not get her pressure down, they had no choice but to deliver Peyton. She was born at 26 weeks and six days gestation, weighing in at 1 lb., 14 oz., and was 12.5 inches long. The air flow was 5ml and 30 percent oxygen via nasal cannula. Intravenous fluids were given to keep up Peyton’s calories. Her weight dropped to 1 lb. 8 oz. She was in a heated incubator because premature babies are unable to regulate their body temperature. She has been constantly monitored to watch for sleep apnea and heart rate, oxygen saturation and respirations.
At almost seven weeks, Peyton now weighs 2 lbs., 15 oz., and is 15.8 inches long. She is off the high flow air and is breathing on her own. The nasal cannula has been removed. The calories she is now getting are from her mother’s breast milk via a feeding tube inserted in her nose. She has just started getting a portion of those feedings orally by bottle. On Tuesday, she drank 7ccs from a bottle. The incubator is no longer heated and her temperature has evened off since she began wearing regular baby clothes. She is still being monitored for apnea, heart rate, oxygen saturation and respirations.
Brandon and Rachael [ages 17 and 19 respectively] have been by Peyton’s side since she was born at Mission Hospital in Asheville. Because of their ages, (17 and 19 respectively) a stay at the Rathbun Wellness Center was not an option. Brandon’s parents, Mike and Susan Williams, have been staying with them at a motel and taking them back and forth from the hospital because they don't drive. On Nov. 2, the Baby Peyton's Care Fund website was set up to help raise funds so Rachael and Brandon could stay in Asheville with Peyton. The website can be accessed on Facebook and also has pictures and posts of Peyton’s progress.
“We have a lot of family and friends that are praying for Peyton,” said Vickie Carpenter, Peyton’s grandmother. “We know that is why she has done so well. She has touched a lot of people’s hearts. We are proud of her, she is such a little fighter. Peyton is our little miracle. She was born breathing on her own and was never put on a ventilator. Only one percent of babies born as early as she was never end up on the ventilator.”
Donations from family, friends, and even a Sunday school class have made it possible for Brandon and Rachael to stay in Asheville by Peyton's side. Life Church has now taken care of their motel room up to Christmas, so housing is not an issue at this time. They will still need help with food and other expenses. Susan Williams is in the process of setting up an account at Macon Bank for donations. The family wants to thank everyone who has given from their hearts to keep the family together. They said, “Without your support this would not have been possible. We could not have done it on our own.”
They are hoping Peyton will be able to come home for Christmas.