A man whose brain-dead pregnant wife was kept on life support until their baby was born has finally found love again – and is engaged to his new partner.
Robyn Benson, 32, was 22 weeks pregnant when she collapsed on the bathroom floor while husband Dylan, now 41, went to the shops to get his medicine for an ailment of head.
Dylan called an ambulance and Robyn was rushed to hospital where doctors discovered she had suffered a cerebral hemorrhage – a bleed in the brain.
She was declared brain dead that day after doctors discovered she was suffering from a blood leak in the center of her brain.
Doctors said there was no chance Robyn would survive, but they could keep her body alive until her unborn son, Iver, was old enough to be born.
She was kept on life support for six weeks until Iver was 28 weeks old and Dylan remained in hospital by her side.
Iver was born on February 8, 2014, weighing 2 pounds, 13 ounces, and Dylan had five bittersweet hours where he welcomed his newborn son and said goodbye to his wife.
His life support was turned off just five hours later, and Dylan began life as a widow and single father.
Sales analyst Dylan from Nanaimo, Canada feared he might never find long-term love again, but now, almost 10 years later, Dylan is engaged to partner Marico, 35.
They met in 2020 and they are considering a future together, after his proposal on October 21, 2020.
He said: “I had a five hour period where I met my newborn son and said goodbye to my wife.
“I spent the next 12 weeks in hospital, my son was in NICU until he was normal size, I took him home three days after his due date.
“Robyn’s family is still a big part of my family, with the help of friends and family and the support of strangers around the world.
“We have received many nice messages.
“For the past few years, I had a failed relationship, but it allowed me to have a second son, Bodhi, who is four years old.
“Finding true love has been a saving grace for me, my partner is very supportive of me and my story.
“I thought that after being a widower with two children, I had given up thinking that I would be alone forever.
“Two years ago I met my new girlfriend, met her on Instagram, we fell in love and got engaged in three weeks.”
Robyn was admitted to Victoria General Hospital on December 28, 2013, after waking up with a headache at 22 weeks pregnant.
Dylan went to the store to get some medicine for her, and when he returned, Robyn was lying unconscious on the bathroom floor.
Dylan called an ambulance but was told she would not survive that day.
“When the doctors asked me if we were going to try to save Iver, I had a conversation with Robyn’s parents and they said they would respect my decision anyway,” he said.
“For me, it was a real-time decision. It was an easy decision, and there wasn’t a thought in my mind not to try.
“They called me at the hospital and told me today was the day, I waited in a room in intensive care and they did the procedure.
“They came back upstairs and took Polaroid pictures for me.
“One of the doctors even took a video of Iver’s heartbeat.
“It was amazing to see him for the first time, I was blown away by his small size, the whole time I cried – it was really amazing.
He met his partner Marico on Instagram after dropping her a message and after exchanging messages, they exchanged numbers and spent over 100 hours on video calls for three weeks before meeting on October 11, 2020.
Dylan said after three weeks they knew they were meant for each other and he moved himself and Iver from Victoria to Nanaimo 68.9 miles and moved in with Marico and his daughter Isla , six years.
He said: “It was a tough decision as all my family are in Victoria.
“I acknowledged it was quick, my biggest worry was telling Robyn’s family and they said if you think it’s the right thing to do then it’s the right thing to do. do and they have supported me ever since.
Dylan that Iver has always been a “lovely boy”, and Dylan is doing everything he can to keep Robyn’s memory alive.
He said: “Iver has always been a wonderfully nice guy, he’s super nice to everyone and I always insisted the chat window was open so we could always talk about it.
“We are visiting his memorial site and I am trying to get printed photos of his friend and family to show Iver.
“He’s always been great with life transitions, I can’t say enough about having a partner who supports me through this difficult time.
“The holiday season is always hard enough for me, I feel survivor’s guilt that Robyn isn’t here to see it.”
Dylan said he’s in a “much better place” mentally and is using his experience to support others by hosting a call every Tuesday with a stranger who is going through challenges.
He said: “You never know what someone else is going through.
“Now I’m in a much better position mentally, I’m very open about my journey.
“I try to use it to help motivate people and show that there is light at the end of the tunnel.”