“Some days I really didn’t think this would happen," said mom Dana Graves.
This story was originally published on PEOPLE.
Dana and Arkell Graves, whose pregnancy announcement after 17 years of infertility went viral, have finally taken their son Kaleb home after 355 days in intensive care.
“At this very moment, all of my men are asleep under the same roof,” Dana wrote on Facebook Wednesday night. “Some days I really didn’t think this would happen.”
Kaleb, affectionately known as “baby buns” to the hundreds of thousands who followed his progress online, was born 16 weeks premature in October 2015. The boy was delivered via C-section after doctors told Dana that the pregnancy caused nearly fatal high blood pressure and warned her that to carry the baby any longer would cost her her life.
‘The doctor told me, ‘If you continue to carry this baby, you’re going to die,’ ” Dana told PEOPLE in March.
The Virginia woman insisted on carrying the baby until he reached a point where he would have the best chance of survival, despite her doctor’s recommendations.
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“She refused to go on with the delivery until it was a time where they could actually take care of him in the neonatal intensive care unit,” Dana’s husband, Arkell Graves told PEOPLE. “I’m going to tell you, just looking at my wife, it was the most selfless thing I have ever seen somebody do.”
Both mother and baby were in critical condition following the delivery.
“Day two they told me he was not going to make it through the night,” Dana recalled. “They told me I should hold him and say my goodbyes. It was so heartbreaking.”
But Kaleb made it through that night – and 355 more. On Tuesday, Graves family celebrated Kaleb’s “graduation” from the neo-natal intensive care unit and brought the 11 month old home in a limo.
It was a long road home for the young boy who weighed less than a pound at birth and underwent heart surgery and intubation for a chronic lung disease. Still, his parents never gave up hope on their “miracle” baby.
“The first time I heard him cry, it was like music,” Dana said. “Everybody sees that he is a miracle – everybody recognizes it.”
Before Kaleb, Dana and Arkell struggled with infertility for 17 years, suffering the heartbreak of four miscarriages and one stillbirth before adopting their son Keelyn, now 14.
Dana captured Arkell’s tears of joy at her pregnancy announcement in a video that has been viewed on YouTube over 10 million times.
Since then, Dana and Arkell have shared every one of the baby’s milestones on a Facebook page where 188,000 people have tracked his journey.
“I’m just so grateful because the page let me know I was not alone,” Dana said.
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