You may have noticed CTV Ottawa’s health reporter Kate Eggins has been off the air for several months. Her latest assignment has been full-time mother to a baby many are calling a miracle child.

When Kate publicly announced her pregnancy, her work family and the community at large celebrated with her.  Shortly after, and nearly four months early, Kate found herself in labour.

“I remember when I was delivering I was like ‘not today; please don’t come yet.’”

But Jack was ready to make his life-saving debut.  Doctors say he had a better chance on the outside.

“The reality is that he wouldn’t have lived if it wasn’t for him coming early,” said Kate.

Kate had developed a growth on her placenta. It was giving Jack too much blood and his heart was working overtime. Doctors say he would have suffered a fatal heart attack inside her womb had he not been born prematurely.  Still, his early introduction to the world came with severe consequences.

“In the beginning, when he was first born, it was hour to hour,” said Kate. She often worried whether or not he would be alive an hour from when she last saw him or even the next day. It made it difficult for her to leave his side to accomplish things we take for granted like eating and sleeping.

Kate and her husband, James Cudmore, made the Ottawa hospital’s neo-natal intensive care unit their temporary home.

“Jack was a very sick baby,” said his nurse Charlene Shanks. “Basically, I looked after him for a full three and a half months… I’d have to sit at bedside with Jack.”

Jack’s tiny lungs were some of the sickest nurses had seen. He weighed 864 grams – not even a couple pounds of butter.

To say constant care and supervision was necessary would be an understatement. Jack stopped breathing 29 times over the course of his 110 days in hospital.

Kate calls the staff at the neo-natal intensive care unit “angels.”

“They carried him through it. They carried us through it,” said Kate.

Now, Jack’s condition is a far cry from where his life began. Aside from being tethered to an oxygen tank, he is like most baby boys his age –noisy, happy, and filling out his onesie.

“Look he has a muffin top just like mommy,” joked Kate during her interview with friend and colleague Joanne Schnurr.

The circles under her eyes and the worry lines have gradually disappeared. Her tears are filled with joy now – not anxiety – as she witness her baby embrace life after death pounded at his door.

“Life is amazing. Sometimes I just go in and find myself staring at him sleeping,” said Kate.

Kate’s role as reporter is on the back burner -- for now.

She thanks everyone for their concern and well wishes.