When I fell pregnant in August 2012 with my first child I dreamt about the day I would get to meet this perfect little baby I had been waiting for for what felt like a lifetime.
The first trimester went quite smoothly with what seemed to be the "normal" pregnancy symptoms - morning sickness, tiredness and as the weeks went by the excitement started to grow. I remember hearing the heartbeat for the first time and tearing up, I was having a baby!
As the second trimester approached I started to feel a little better and a little belly began to show. When 20 weeks came around my husband and I decided we had to find out the sex. A boy! My husband especially was over the moon and I still remember the squeal he made when we were told we would be having a boy. Christmas Day approached and I was 23 weeks pregnant and excited for a holiday with my husband and family and some relaxing time at the beach showing off my bump that I was oh so proud of.
And then it all changed. I went to the toilet and noticed a small amount of blood on the toilet paper. (Yes for some reason I checked the toilet paper every time!) I panicked and told my husband and he reassured me all would be fine as did my brother and mum. I couldn't brush off the doubt I had so called my midwife. I apologised for disturbing her Christmas Day but just needed some peace of mind. She told me she would call ahead to the delivery suite and I could go up there to be checked. I didn't wait. My husband and I went straight up there and as much as I tried to stay positive I knew something wasn't right. Now the next little while is a blur but I remember a doctor calling in another doctor once she had done the initial check and my husband holding my hand so tightly, he knew something wasn't right either. "You are 4 cms dilated and have bulging membranes" I remember being told. What does that even mean I thought? Well it meant I was off to Auckland hospital quick smart in a helicopter.
I felt numb. I can't remember if I cried or if I was so confused it felt like it was all a dream. (I wish.)Once in Auckland my husband and I were put in a room and told the odds. If I was to have my baby now there was no way he could survive. I remember having a scan and seeing this gorgeous little boy wriggling around, alive and well in my tummy. It was hard to fathom that he would not survive but he was not ready for life on the outside world. The plan was if I made it to the next morning I would get a cervical stitch put in and fingers crossed this would keep this precious baby inside. Well the stitch held for nearly 2 more weeks, I got up one morning to go to the toilet and my waters broke. I was 24+4 weeks. I was planning on getting to 26 weeks and then I would have been sent home on bed rest. Of course my husband had gone up to Whangarei for the night so when he heard the news he had to turn around and come right back! I've never asked if he drove fast but I bet he did. Our little boy stayed inside 2 more days and was born on January 7, 2012 (due April 22nd), he weighed 870 grams (1pd9oz) and was 35cms long. Now I wish I could tell you that he was perfect but I didn't get a chance to see him. He was whipped away so fast I didn't even catch a glimpse of him. My husband went with the doctors and nurses and whoever else was there to help try and save our sons life. He wasn't breathing on his own, he had to be resuscitated and we owe everything to the doctor who got him to breathe. We were in hospital for 20 weeks with our little miracle, our little fighter who amazed us with how strong he was. It was the hardest, most emotional time of mine and my husbands life and at the time I never thought we would get through it. Here I am however, writing this story to share with others to hopefully show you that miracles do happen. We were very very lucky and owe so much to the doctors and nurses who looked after not just our son but us as well. Max is now 5 years old and is excelling at school and is loving life as a healthy happy much loved little boy. Our hero always.