I had a fantastic pregnancy, no morning sickness, worked up until 34 weeks, if that was anything to go by I would have gladly gone through it a thousand times. Until i was measured wrong at 32 weeks and sent for a scan just to check bubbas growth, that’s when my world was turned upside down.
The Sonographer done the scan and saw that my little girls heart was pushed to one side so I was sent to a specialist Fetal Medicine Unit in London. That was when I was told that Jaimee-Rose had a right sided Congenital Diaphragmatic Hernia and she was given a 75% survival rate as she was otherwise healthy, however they wanted to induce me at 38 weeks so they were prepared. Our beautiful little girl was born at 03.06am on the 16th December 2011 by emergency c-section, the plan was to place Jaimee-Rose on the machines and medicines she needed until she was stable enough for the operation she needed, to repair the hernia. However, after 36 hours the hospital became concerned because treatment was not going to plan. So, the only option was to send her 276 miles away from home, to a fantastic hospital in Newcastle called The Freeman, to be placed on a specialised machine called ECMO. With the fear that she was only 25% likely to make the long journey, it was a case of give our baby every single chance we could or stop now, we chose from that moment on we would fight for every chance possible for our determined angel.
Our little fighter proved doctors wrong and made it there. My partner and me drove the whole way the following morning when i was discharged, despite the advice of doctors and the pain of my section incision, I just wanted to be with my baby. She was such a fighter, she under went surgery on boxing day, with only a small chance of making it through, and she come back fighting once again. However developed a bleed because she was on blood thinning medication, so once again Jaimee-Rose was taken down to theater for an exploratory op, and came back fighting again.
She was finally strong enough to come off ECMO on the 1st of January 2012 and fought the whole night, she was fighting strong until 08.00am on the 2nd of January, J just could not carry on fighting her SATs dropped so low there was no coming back. We was then taken into THAT dreaded Room to hear the awful sentence that I will never forget ‘There is just no more we can do, this is Jaimee-Rose saying enough is enough, we are sorry.’
We was then faced with a choice, one that no parent should have to choose, to stand back and wait for J to completely give in, maybe when one of us was catching some air or in the bathroom, or take J off the monitors, finally hold my baby, make her comfortable and let her fall asleep in my arms with her daddy holding her hand. We choose what was right for our little girl, one that we feel was the best, I finally got my cuddle at 03.15Pm, she was finally comfortable with her mummy and daddy and she drifted off.
We had no family or friends around us as we were so far away from home, we only had each other. Although we was blessed with some fantastic nurses around us that became our family, one of Jaimee-Rose’s regular nurses was on that day, she was amazing and strong for us. She helped us bathe, dress and hold our little girl until we was ready to let go. We took so many pictures and took hand and foot prints but most of all we just enjoyed our private time. The team gave us so many great words of advice and I, in time want to share them all with you.
We then visited J in the chapel of rest the next morning before we made the long journey home, again with the support of that special nurse, who has such a loving sense around her and i can not thank her or any of them enough for those precious days they gave us with our girl and the memories they helped us build.
We then started the funeral arrangements a few days later and had our little girl cremated on the 19th January, we released doves, we chose beautiful songs and had all our family there. We wanted to give our angel the send off she deserved and most of all we wanted to make her as proud of us as we are of her. We chose to have her ashes here with us, and we are planning our return to Newcastle for our little girls birthday. We plan to make it a yearly thing, to help us feel close to her.
I miss her so much and everyday I remember something new. We have pictures up – all the teddies she had in her cot on a shelf, with her ashes. Me and my partner both had Jaimee-Rose’s actual hand and foot prints tattooed on us so she is with us everyday.
My aim for the future is to embrace all those memories, show my appreciation to the fantastic team that looked after J, and mostly make my gorgeous daughter proud and stay strong for my partner and family.
So that’s me and my story, I hope I have helped you all feel some connection even if it is just a small one.
Please visit back for my next post to hear how I try to find inspiration, to overcome the anger everyone in this situation might encounter and to allow the memories to be surround us.
Sending all my love,