Lynlee Boemer had a rough start at life facing a health challenge that could've killed her in the womb. She was saved by a risky surgery and her parents believe God's hand was on their baby girl and them.
"Through this entire experience we have trusted in God to get us through each day," her parents, Jeff and Margaret Boemer, said of the long and traumatic ordeal on their GoFundMe page.
When Margaret was four months pregnant with Lynlee, doctors noticed something ominous on her ultrasound: a tumor on the baby's tailbone.
Weeks later, the tumor had grown so large it was killing the unborn child. The tumor was as large as the rest of the baby's body, and was requiring so much blood, it was causing the baby to go into cardiac failure. Doctors said she would be dead in a matter of days.
Margaret and Jeff were running out of options.
"At one hospital, we were strongly encouraged to terminate the pregnancy due to the extremely large size of our baby's tumor and the risks to my health," Margaret recalled.
"Texas Children's gave us a more positive yet realistic option of having Open Fetal Surgery to remove a large portion of Lynlee's tumor to try to save her," she explained. "They told us she had a 50 percent chance of making it with the surgery. Jeff and I were in agreement that termination was not an option and we wanted to give Lynlee a chance at life by going with Texas Children's and having Open Fetal Surgery."
At just 23 weeks and five days, Dr. Darrell Cass and Dr. Oluyinka Olutoye, surgeons at the Texas Children's Fetal Center in Houston, performed a caesarean section to remove the tiny one-pound, three-ounce fetus and the gigantic tumor attached to her.
According to ITV, Cass said the tumor was so large that a huge cut was needed to get the baby out of the uterus/
"So it ended up that the baby was hanging out in the air. Essentially, the fetus is outside, like completely out, all the amniotic fluid falls out. It's actually fairly dramatic," he said.
During the surgery, the baby's heart stopped, but was successfully restarted. She also required a blood transfusion.
Doctor were able to remove 90 percent of the tumor. Then they put Lynlee back into her mother's womb and sewed up the incision.
"It's kind of a miracle you're able to open the uterus like that and seal it all back and the whole thing works," Cass said.
The rest of the pregnancy was filled with prayer and a lot of bed rest. At 36 weeks and five days gestation, Lynlee Hope Boemer was born "again" by caesarean section.
Eight days after her birth, doctors removed the remaining portion of the tumor.
Now, nearly five months later, Lynlee is happy and healthy and her parents are grateful to God for their miracle daughter.