Little Baby Edward

Edward Thomas Kirton was my first baby. I had been diagnosed with PCOS so the doctor said I might struggle to get pregnant naturally. But as soon as I came off the pill I fell pregnant almost immediately, which was a real shock but I was delighted! The pregnancy was straightforward, I had the usual sickness during the first trimester but after that I was well and really looked forward to the arrival of my first baby. I got everything ready but wasn’t expecting him to be early but then, when I was 37 weeks pregnant I went to bed on the Saturday evening and woke up an hour later and my waters broke much to my shock! I went straight into the hospital, but they sent me home as I wasn’t in active labour. Frustratingly, nothing then happened for 48 hours until the Monday evening when the contractions came fast. I went into hospital and was already 6cm dilated but when they examined me they realised he was breech so I was sent for an emergency caesarean, much to my dismay, as I desperately wanted a natural birth but the midwife wouldn’t allow it. So, after 3 nights with no sleep, at 3.36am Baby Edward was born. He was perfect, 7lbs 7 oz and absolutely beautiful. I adored him.

Sadly, at exactly 24 hours later a midwife noticed his blood sugar was low and he was taken to NICU where they found an infection. He was very unwell, the infection was probably caught in the time between my waters breaking and his birth. He was put on very strong antibiotics and was kept in an incubator. It was heart breaking but I was so proud of him for fighting the infection and after a week in NICU I was allowed to bring him home. It was wonderful and, despite being utterly exhausted, I was delighted to have my son at home with me. He was just so beautiful.

Dear Edward suffered from reflux which meant feeding him was a challenge as he was sick all the time. This  meant he didn’t sleep and also he wasn’t putting on weight. I was under a consultant who recommended aged 4 months putting him on solid food as it would be easier for him to digest. After that he was a different baby, happy, contented, smiley, giggly, and just made me the happiest lady in the world. I am so so glad we had those happy 2 months.

When he was 6 months 4 days old we went to stay with some friends for the night. Edward had been lovely in the day as usual, and I was very proud of him. I put him to bed in their cot at around 7pm and he went to sleep. His dad then went in and fed him when he woke around 3am.

I woke up around 5.30am as that was the time Edward usually woke up but I couldn’t hear him so I thought maybe my friend was treating me to a lie in so I went back to sleep. When I woke at 6.30am I thought I would just check on him. When I walked into his room I knew immediately what happened. I screamed and my friend ran in and called the ambulance. The rest of that morning is a blur, thankfully, as I couldn’t go through it again.

People think losing a baby is the worst thing that can happen to you, and all I can say is that it is infinitely worse than anyone can ever imagine. The physical loss as I used to hold him all day, the emotional loss of never seeing him again, and the social loss as it changes all the relationships around you. It is truly hell on earth and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone.

The Lullaby trust were the only thing that got me through. Being able to speak to someone who understood was vital to me as while my friends and family tried, they didn’t really know the depths of the pain. I also found the CONI scheme invaluable when, very luckily I went on to have my 2 other children, Barney and Sarah.

I will never, ever get over losing Edward. He is and always will be my first born and he is as important to me as my other children. But, through them, I have found some happiness again.

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