Josie Brooklyn Duggar experienced sunlight for the first time on Tuesday, April 6th, when she was discharged from the neonatal intensive care unit of Arkansas Children’s Hospital in Little Rock.
The 19th child of Jim Bob Duggar and Michelle Duggar was born via emergency C-section on December 10, 2009 at just 25 weeks gestation, nearly four months before her anticipated due date of March 18, 2010. She weighed 1 lb. 6 oz. and was considered a micropremie. She suffered a bowel perforation on her 8th day of life and it was touch and go for several months before she began to slowly flourish.
The youngest Duggar now weighs 4 lbs 9 oz. and no longer needs oxygen. She is fed every three hours and is stable enough to join the rest of her family at their rented home near the hospital.
The majority of the family moved into temporary housing, a mile from the hospital, shortly before Christmas in order to be near the littlest member of the family during her extended time in NICU. Older siblings Josh, Joseph and John David remained at home to run several family businesses.
Michelle Duggar will be baby Josie’s primary caregiver for now. She indicates that the family will remain close to the hospital, delaying a move back to the family home in Tontitown, Arkansas – some 200 miles from Little Rock. Doctors have cautioned Mrs. Duggar to keep the baby from unnecessary germs. This may prove to be a challenge as the smallest family members include Jackson, 5, Johanna, 4, Jennifer, 2, and Jordyn, 15 months.
Unfortunately Josie was whisked back to the hospital just a few short days later when her vital signs began to deteriorate in the middle of the night. The baby has remained in the hospital for the last month. The good news is that she weighs 6 pounds.
The family appears on the TLC reality show 19 Kids and Counting. The episode dealing with Josie’s homecoming will air on Sunday, May 9, at 8/7 Central.
More family photos and a sneak peek at the TLC homecoming special below:
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