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Couple’s babymoon takes tragic turn

Julie Ryan Evans is an editor and writer who has covered everything from Capitol Hill to the politics of preschool. A mother of two, a runner of races, and a gourmet chef wannabe, she currently lives outside of Orlando, Florida.

Family ‘trapped’ overseas after twins are born prematurely

Kim Kirzow Spratt and her husband, Fred, were looking forward to one last relaxing getaway before the arrival of their twins. So, like many parents, they planned a babymoon. Unfortunately, things didn’t go as planned at all.

The couple did everything they thought was right, including getting their doctor's approval for the trip to Portugal. Kim was 13 weeks away from her Aug. 25 due date and pregnant with twins, but with no complications, their doctor gave them the green light.

Kim told USA Today, "The doctor gave me 100% clearance, and we got total reassurance. We even got a letter for the airline in case there were any problems."

But there were problems they never expected. During a sunset cruise, she started feeling some cramping and generally unwell. As her symptoms progressed, the coupled headed to the nearest hospital. After some delays due to language barriers, Kim was admitted.

Just 11 minutes later on Mother's Day — May 11 — she gave birth to her son, followed shortly thereafter by her daughter. Hudson Charles weighed just 1 pound, 12 ounces and Hayden Grace, even less — 1 pound, 7 ounces. Tragically, Hudson passed away on Memorial Day, and the family has been "trapped" there ever since as Hayden continues to fight for her life.

My heart aches for this couple. My son was delivered by emergency C-section at 27 weeks, weighing 1 pound, 15 ounces. He stayed in the hospital nearly three months before finally coming home. It was the most terrifying time of my life, and we were home when it happened. To imagine all of that, plus the stress of being in another country with no family and friends around is unfathomable.

While this couple did everything to ensure they were safe to travel, it does raise a question about babymoons and how much of a risk parents are willing to take. While most times with a doctor's OK, these getaways are a fantastic way for parents to relax and reflect before a baby (or babies) changes everything, there is always a risk if you’re traveling away from home. It’s up to each couple and their doctor to decide, of course, but stories like this — and my own unexpected early delivery — make me think there's no place like home when you're pregnant.

A GoFundMe page has been established to raise money for the Spratt family to help pay for the expenses the family is forced to incur while living in a foreign country. Hopefully, they will be able to head home soon.

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