Eloysa and Roy Vasquez always wanted a baby, but doctors were pessimistic. Eloysa suffers from osteogenesis imperfecta, a genetic bone disorder. At 38, she stands just 3 feet tall and weighs 37 pounds.
Doctors feared a pregnancy could harm Eloysa and jeopardize her fetus.
"There was a possibility that the baby wouldn't fit, you know, for very long, and I could have breathing problems. I could have heart problems, " Eloysa said.
Eloysa and Roy defied the odds, and on Jan. 24, Eloysa gave birth to a healthy baby boy, Timothy.
"As Timothy grew inside the womb, the womb itself protruded out beneath the ribs and above the pelvic bone so the growth of Timothy was unimpeded," said James Smith, an obstetrician at Lucile Packard Children's Hospital at Stanford in California.
Doctors had to weigh how long Eloysa could handle pregnancy against how Timothy would do as a preemie. Timothy was born by Caesarean section, and is doing well. He did not inherit his mother's genetic disorder.
As many as 50,000 Americans suffer from osteogenesis imperfecta, but only a handful of women with severe cases give birth each year. There is a 50 percent chance that children of a person with the disorder will inherit the disease.
Melissa and Ken Davert of Flint, Mich., understand the disorder's unique challenges. Melissa has OI and stands just 2 feet, 10 inches tall. The couple's children, Austin and Michaela, also inherited the disease. At 7 years old, they weigh 20 pounds each and are just over 2 feet tall.
"We have to do things a little differently during the day," Melissa said. "We have the same joy of any parents. I mean it is the best thing in the world to be a parent."
Eloysa and Roy have the same upbeat attitude about the future.
"I just couldn't believe how big he was and how he could fit inside me," Eloysa said. "I'm happy that he'll be able to do all the things that I could not do."