MAUREPAS, LA (WAFB) - A toddler in Livingston Parish is considered a miracle and not just by her parents. Doctors expected the little girl, age two, wouldn't survive after birth. Now she's been named a March of Dimes ambassador in the parish. Her parents say she's here because of the power of prayer.
Brittney Williams, the toddler's mother, is a first grade teacher at the Maurepas School. Being surrounded by children is a passion for her, seeing them so excited about learning. But it wasn't that long ago when she was the one learning some pretty tough lessons, and not in the classroom sense.
Thursday marked two years that she gave birth to her little girl, at 24 weeks pregnant. Full term pregnancy is 40 weeks. But on March 13, 2012, Blayke Leigh Williams was born.
"Blayke was born at 12:45 in the morning. She was 16 ounces and dropped to 14 ounces. 11 inches long ... the tiniest bundle of love you could imagine," said Brittney Williams.
It was four days before she saw her daughter. Brittney had preclampsia, her blood pressure had skyrocketed. While she was on one side of the hospital recovering, her daughter was on the other side in the NICU. Her husband, Bobby Williams, spent his time running back and forth to check on both his girls.
When Brittney was able to see Blayke, she could only touch her with one finger.
Blayke underwent blood transfusions every day and had three blood clots in her heart. Doctors did not expect her to survive.
"When she was in the hospital, we had birthdays every Tuesday because we didn't know how many we would have," said Bobby.
After five months, the Williams family left the hospital as a family of three.
"She overcame the odds and she's here today," Brittney said. "How old are you?" she asked Blayke, smiling. "Two! Yay!"
Thursday, Blayke celebrated her second birthday. Part of her festivities were at the school where her mother teaches. The school sponsored "Blue Jeans for Blayke." For a dollar, students could dress down to raise money for the March of Dimes, the organization that helps moms to have full term pregnancies. Blayke is the Livingston Parish Ambassador.
Seeing how much the students care about her little one, Williams says that's something that can't be taught.
Having doctors tell them Blayke wouldn't survice, they say taught them the power of prayer.
And while Brittney Williams will always be a teacher at heart, she and her husband have learned that the biggest lessons come in the smallest packages.
"Enjoy all the smaller things, don't let the big things bother you. Our motto is someone else always has it worse," said Bobby Williams.
The family also planned to celebrate Blayke's birthday at the hospital where she was born, something they plan to do every birthday.
The Maurepas School raised $5,000 for the March of Dimes.