A Michigan woman who was diagnosed with cancer made the ultimate sacrifice for her unborn child – she gave her life up for her.
Carrie DeKlyen gave birth to her daughter, Life Lynn DeKlyen, on Wednesday, and had her feeding and breathing tubes removed only one day later – on Thursday. The woman had been in a coma since July and gave birth to the baby girl via an emergency cesarean section.
This decision was one the 37-year-old mother from Wyoming, Mich. had made back in May when she was conscious but still very sick with terminal brain cancer.
Doctors advised her that chemotherapy or a clinical trial would almost certainly prolong her life, however, either option would mean terminating her pregnancy.
Her husband, Nick DeKlyen, said he wholeheartedly supports his wife’s decision for their family and expresses his confidence that they made the right choice.
“She chose to have the baby. That’s what she wanted, and I supported her. She had the baby, and now it’s time to go home. She’s going to heaven. She’s going to be healed,” he said.
On Saturday, just three days after giving birth to her sixth child, Carrie DeKlyen passed away with her family by her side at the University of Michigan Hospital in Ann Arbor.
“I’ll see you in Heaven,” Nick DeKlyen said were some of his last words to his wife just before she died.
“We stayed by her until she took her last breath,” he said. “It’s in God’s hands now.”
As far as it goes for baby Life, she was born prematurely, at a mere 24 weeks and five days, and weighed only 1 lb. 4 ounces at the time of birth.
But, her dad said the doctors say she will be just fine.
“She’s going to be fine,” he said. “She’s going to be here for four or five months, but we expect her to be a healthy baby … The doctor just said the timing (of the birth) couldn’t have been more perfect,” Nick DeKlyen said.
He also noted that the future is looking bright as she is gaining weight and “almost breathing on her own.”
The couple has five other kids who range in age from 2 to 18 years old.
“My wife loves the Lord and she loves her children more than anything,” Nick DeKlyen said on Friday.
“It’s painful,” he continued. “But this is what she wanted. She wanted to protect this child.”
The couple discovered Carrie DeKlyen was pregnant only two weeks after she was diagnosed with glioblastoma. Prior to her death, she underwent two surgeries to remove the tumor. However, she ultimately decided – with her husband – to forego a clinical trial to protect the baby.