We are the Spinda family (John, Shanna & Stella Mae) from Murray, KY... on February 1, 2011 at 10:27am our beautiful baby girl, Stella Mae Spinda, was born at 26 weeks gestation. She weighed 12.34 oz and was 9 in long - Stella suffered from Intrauterin Growth Restriction (IUGR) which caused both her extremely small size and her being born premature. Stella spent five days in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at Norton/Kosair Hospital in Louisville, KY. She passed away late on February 5, 2011 from complications of her extremely small size. This blog was started when she was 23 gestational weeks old and we discovered her condition. It's original purpose was to keep family and friends updated on Stella's journey - we now hope to use this blog as a way to continue Stella's journey by honoring her memory and also as a way to support others who are struggling with infertility or have lost a pregnancy or baby.

Friday, January 21, 2011

No news is good news...

Hey everyone,
Its been a few days since we've been on here, but thats not a bad thing. Things have been pretty quiet here. Shanna is resting comfortably (now) and I am feeling good and positive overall. We are waiting on our Friday ultrasound here this morning.
To recap briefly, Wednesday we were admitted, got monitored and things looked really bad at night. The belief was that the cord blood may be having issues, causing birth quicker than desired and lowering her odds. But, with constant monitoring (Shanna basically couldn't sneeze without moving the ultrasound off Stella), things were looking better Thursday and so was the prognosis for Stella's birth. Last night, things again looked good and quiet overall. In other words, as we were told to be prepared for, its a big-time roller coaster ride.
I never cried like I did Wednesday when a sobering reality wsa sinking in. But I can say that I had a great day yesterday emotionally. Similarly, Shanna is doing well (after being a wreck Wednesday night like me) and having her moments, as I still am.
Here is what gets us through (at least me, I just tell Shanna), "Stella is alive today". Every day she is alive, she should grow, especially with the great care here in Louisville. Every day she grows, her odds improve.
But here is what this week has reminded me of: (1) You can't predict the future. If you told me Sunday morning before I left Pittsburgh how this week would play out, I would have been shocked, (2) Things can turn on a dime, anytime, anyway. We could walk into that ultrasound into grim news today. I am trying to prepare myself as much as I can for the swings that seem inevitable. (3) My relationship with my wife is stronger than I even knew it was. We keep each other together and are going to face whatever happens here; good or bad. (4) I have a special relationship with my daughter Stella, who is barely 6 months old. I've seen her, I've seen her fight, and I know she is giving it her all. Shanna and I have memories of our excitement for her, reading to her, talking about her growing up, and so on and so forth. NOBODY can ever take that from us, even if something awful happens here. We are just faithful that these are the beginning of the great times with Stella.
I am in a good place mentally. I even got my classes rolling online. I got faith in everything right now it seems and that feels great. I am trying to be strong for my wife, who is doing great. Just keep praying and hoping that Stella keeps doing great.
Thank you everyone for your continued support.


  1. John you hit the nail on the head with your "reminders" above. :)

  2. John - thanks so much for keeping us informed on how you, Shanna, and Stella are doing. You are regularly in my thoughts and prayers! I hope you guys can feel all the positive thoughts and love being sent your way. Take good care of each other! We love you guys!

  3. Your love for each other and for her is so strong. I know Stella is fighting because of that love.