Two weeks ago, Dylan Benson lived through the best and worst moment of his life: As he welcomed his first child into the world, he said goodbye to his unconscious wife, who was taken off life support after the birth.
On Saturday, the Victoria man provided an update on what has become known around the world as the story of Baby Iver. Now “a hair over three pounds,” Iver Cohen Benson is 90 grams more than his birth weight and is gaining weight every day, Mr. Benson wrote on his Facebook page. As of Wednesday, the baby no longer needed to use an IV and on Saturday, for the first time, he wore clothes: a tiny onesie with moons, stars and swirls and a little white hat.
“I love him more than words can explain,” Mr. Benson wrote in a post accompanying a photo of his son. “I am one proud papa.”
The Bensons made international headlines after local media reported on their situation. In late December, a pregnant Robyn Benson, 32, complained of a headache and asked her husband, also 32, to go to the store for some painkillers. When he returned, she was unconscious on the bathroom floor.
“At the hospital they discovered that my wife had a fluke random type of blood leak into the centre of her brain and that there was so much blood and damage that it is not reversible,” Mr. Benson wrote in a blog post dated Dec. 29. “My wife is now essentially legally brain dead.”
The two were high school sweethearts, having just married this past summer, friends say.
Mr. Benson and the doctors at Victoria General Hospital decided to keep Ms. Benson on life support so their unborn baby could grow stronger. On Feb. 8, when Ms. Benson was in her 28th week of pregnancy, doctors delivered the baby via a cesarean section. Ms. Benson died the next day.
“I miss Robyn more than words can explain,” Mr. Benson wrote in a post the day after her death. “I could not be more impressed with her strength, and I am so lucky to have known her. She will live on forever with Iver, and in my heart.”
An online fundraising campaign through which Mr. Benson hoped to raise $36,000 – or roughly one year of his wife’s salary – to go toward bills, baby supplies and other expenses has raised nearly $200,000.
Rod Phillips, a friend of Mr. Benson who also helped raise funds through the Liquor Plus stores where he is director of buying, said the new father is overwhelmed and grateful for the support.
Follow me on Twitter: @andreawoo