Photo contributed. A photograph of tiny baby Ruby Gollan with her tiny finger touching her father’s hand.

Family rallies around ‘micro-preemie’

Salmon Arm couple could use support during baby’s long stay in hospital.

Baby Ruby was supposed to be a New Year’s baby. Instead, she opted for a September birth.

Ruby is the wee daughter of Ali and Rod Gollan of Salmon Arm, born on Sept. 18 at 25 weeks gestation through an emergency C-section.

Ali’s sister Carla Dewald explains that Ali and Rod have a blended family, each with daughters, Adysen and Emily.

Adysen and Emily both just turned 10, one in August and one in September.

Ali’s pregnancy with the first child between them had been difficult from the beginning, with several hospital visits and a C-section scheduled for Dec. 31.

“Little Ruby had other plans (about her birth). ‘You know what, I’m going to be in the summer with my sisters,’” quips Dewald.

Ali began bleeding heavily on Sept. 16 and was rushed to hospital in Salmon Arm. Doctors didn’t like what they saw and she was flown to BC Women’s Hospital in Vancouver.

Ruby was born at 650 grams, about the size of a cob of corn, Dewald says.

Dewald has started a GoFundMe page, as the couple is staying in Vancouver to be with their preemie. Ruby must remain in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit until she’s attained her birth weight, which is expected to be in three months.

“The family is split now where Ruby needs them in Vancouver and their other two children are in Salmon Arm. Costs are mounting as they are away from home and have a household in Salmon Arm as well. Currently no one is working so any support that you can give this family would be amazing,” writes Dewald.

Dewald lives in Airdrie, Alberta and communicates with her sister daily. She praises the Salmon Arm community for all the support it’s given the family as they go through an emotional roller coaster of medical successes and challenges.

“Your community’s really awesome,” she says.

“It’s kind of hard to get in your mind how small a preemie is. When you see preemie diapers, you see her dad’s thumb and her tiny little finger – you see the pictures and your eyes keep welling up with tears…”

If you would like to donate to the GoFundMe account, go to ‘Micro Preemie Baby Gollan Needs Help.’

You can also contact Dewald at carla.dewald2013@gmail.com.