A Kansas City woman is celebrating Mother's Day this weekend even more so than most because doctors say it's a miracle she and her baby are alive.
"Going home sitting in my chair with my baby was the best feeling ever ... just sitting there," Meghan Jolliffe said.
Jolliffe felt a lot like other moms do when they first get home from the hospital with a newborn, but getting to this point with baby Sullivan was much different than it is for other moms.
"She called out for me and that woke me up, and, then instantly, she coded right then," new father Jeff Jolliffe said.
"The only thing that everyone did know was that she was there one minute completely normal healthy having an induction, and the next minute, she was dead," OB-GYN Dr. Kristy Weaver said.
It was the day after Valentine's Day and Megan Jolliffe's heart stopped beating for 14 minutes while she was in labor. Doctors at Overland Park Regional Medical Center say she suffered from an incredibly rare complication called amniotic fluid embolism.
"The thought is that the fluid around the baby enters mom's circulation and then ends up getting trapped in the lungs or even the brain and completely shuts down her breathing, her heart and so forth," neonatologist Dr. Tom Lancaster said.
It was after that surgery when Meghan Jolliffe developed even more complications with severe bleeding. She received more than 100 units of blood.
Sullivan had been inside his mother with no oxygen for seven minutes.
"Friday, the day after it happened, the pediatric neurologist told me he was brain dead," Weaver said.
But, doctors wouldn't hear of it, instead, insisting they at least try to put the newborn through what's called "whole body cooling," lowering the tiny boy's body temperature to 92-degrees for three days before slowly rewarming him.
The first two days were OK, but, then, Sullivan's heart, lungs and kidneys started to shut down. They started the warming process one day earlier than usual. and hoped for the best. They got better than the best.
"It's why I do what I do, to be able to look at babies come through such a dark tunnel," Lancaster said.
And as for his mother? She pulled through too.
Meghan Jolliffe doesn't remember anything before she stopped breathing. She doesn't remember the first couple of times doctors and nurses showed her her newborn son, but she's here now.
"I'm getting there. I'm getting stronger every day," Meghan Jolliffe said.
And that's all that matters for this family that is so eager and feeling so fortunate to share Mother's Day together.
"Truly one of the miracles I have seen in this profession ... two people that really should not be sitting here at all, and the fact that they're both here and both completely healthy and normal is nothing short of a miracle," Weaver said.
At two months old, doctors say Sullivan is progressing perfectly hitting all his milestones as any baby his age should.
Copyright 2018 KCTV (Meredith Corp.) All rights reserved.