This little preemie's smile is making everyone's day

The photo inspired others to share their stories and photos of their premature babies.
Author:
Updated:
Original:

The smile of a little Minnesota girl who was born too early is giving hope to a bunch of families with premature babies.

Lauren Vinje recently shared a photo of her daughter Freya on the Love What Matters Facebook page, where at just 5 days old Freya is smiling the biggest smile. (It's the photo above.)

At 3 pounds, 14 ounces, "she was just happy to be alive," Vinje wrote, noting she'd look at the photo to help her get through "the ups and downs of our NICU days. Life is so precious."

The Facebook post has been shared more than 300,000 times since being posted Sunday, and has inspired others to share their stories and photos of their premature babies in the comments.

Vinje also wrote about her pregnancy and Freya's birth on the Birth Without Fear pregnancy blog, where she explained that after showing signs of preeclampsia (a condition during pregnancy characterized by high blood pressure, the Mayo Clinic says), she gave birth to Freya when she was about 34 weeks pregnant.

Freya was born on Thanksgiving Day 2014, and remained in the NICU until Dec. 21, 2014, ABC News reports. Now Freya is "thriving" ahead of her second birthday.

More on preterm births

Preemies, or preterm birth, is when an infant is born before 37 weeks of pregnancy, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says.

It is the leading cause of infant deaths, with most of these deaths happening to babies born very preterm – or before 32 weeks. It's also the leading cause of long-term neurological disabilities in children.

In 2014, one out of every 10 babies born in the U.S. was a preemie, the CDC says.

Next Up

covid saliva test

Minnesota opening its 7th saliva testing location in St. Paul

The tests are free and open to anyone regardless of if they have symptoms.

pete stauber - qunn nystrom CD8

Election 2020 preview: Minnesota's 8th Congressional District

It's a race between incumbent Rep. Pete Stauber and Democratic challenger Quinn Nystrom.

coronavirus, covid-19, icu

Minnesota's COVID-19 hospitalizations increase by 27.5% in 24 hours

Bring Me The News confirmed that the dramatic increase is not a numbers error.

fire, flames

Lives saved as passerby, city workers rescue from 3 from Golden Valley fire

The Golden Valley Fire Department responded to the fire Wednesday morning.

Caribou Coffee Holiday 2020

Caribou Coffee rolls out holiday cups, menu early

The holiday season is underway at some Twin Cities stores, with a nationwide rollout planned for Nov. 5.

Malik Beasley

Charges: Timberwolves' Beasley pointed assault rifle at family on a home tour

The family was on the Parade of Homes tour when Beasley allegedly pointed the gun at them, telling them to get off his property.

aldi grocery store

Aldi is opening its first store in Winona next month

The new store is part of Aldi's $5 billion expansion across the U.S.

coronavirus, COVID-19 test

COVID-19: Minnesota planning rapid testing for young adults

Health officials are in the planning stages of launching a rapid testing option for 18 to 35 year olds.

grocery shopping

Money Gal Coaching: 15 money-saving tips you should consider

Kelly Blodgett started Money Gal Coaching after paying down nearly $50K in debt in 18 months.

Related

This dad is teaching other dads how to do their daughters' hair

23 dads learned how to do hair and nails at a free class.

This Canadian woman really, really loves Prince

Christmas is usually a green and red affair. Not for this Prince-loving Canadian though.

This dad's Dementor drone is downright dastardly

A crafty man in Wisconsin attached a fake Halloween skeleton to his new drone and for those who are a safe distance away – its hilarious and awesome.