A Michigan woman who went to the doctors because she thought she had a hernia went home with something completely unexpected -- a baby.
10-pound, 1-ounce Kimberly Kay Ackley was born on Feb. 8 to Linda and Mike Ackley. She's the first child for the couple who have been married for 24 years, the Jackson Citizen Patriot in Jackson, Mich. reported. They told the newspaper that they previously thought Linda was unable to conceive so they never used protection.
"I was happy and shocked at the same time, and scared," Mike Ackley said.
How 44-year-old Linda was unable to tell she was pregnant can be traced back to February 2011 when she was diagnosed with necrotizing fasciitis, otherwise known as the flesh-eating bacteria. Mike initially thought she was having a stroke, but a hospital test confirmed that the bacteria was in her abdomen, she wrote on the National Necrotizing Fasciitis website. She was put into a medically-induced coma and ventilator to help her survive the bacteria.
Linda was lucky because she didn't have to have any of her limbs amputated, but some of her stomach muscles were removed because of the infection. She explained to the Jackson Citizen Patriot that whenever she felt something strange in her stomach, she thought it was expanding and contracting nerves and muscles due to her surgery. She never thought it was a baby moving around.
In addition, she didn't gain any significant weight, was not in any unusual pain besides the "hernia" and has always had irregular periods. So, when Linda went to the doctor because of some bloating in her abdomen last week, she was expecting the doctor to tell her she had a hernia.
But, a CT scan revealed that she was pregnant.
"I wish someone would have taken a picture of my face," Mike joked.
At first doctors thought Linda had three to four weeks to go, but a second ultrasound confirmed that she was full term. The hospital scheduled a C-section and delivered a healthy baby girl that night.
"I got to get used to saying mommy," Linda said.
Linda's sister Rosie Konopka told the Jackson Citizen Patriot that her sister would have been too excited to keep the baby a secret and believes she really didn't know.
"They always wanted children," Konopka said. "So, I am so glad they have one of their own."
The couple lives in an apartment with their pets, and they were unprepared to bring home a new family member. Luckily, people and groups have been giving them donations to help with the infant.
Said Mike, "Some people have nine months to prepare. I had (15) hours."