My son Bradley was born by emergency caesarean section after he stopped moving at 29 weeks. A scan revealed he was in great distress, my amniotic fluid was low and he had an abnormal heart rate. He was born silent, and was resuscitated, weighing in at 2lb 15oz.
He was very ill and had to spend seven weeks on NICU. During this time he suffered from Necrotising Enterocolitis (an illness where tissues in the intestine become inflamed and begin to die) and at one point we thought he might have water on the brain. I got septicaemia following my caesarean section and was also seriously ill. Following the ordeal I was also diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder.
Bradley is now a happy, healthy one year old.
I decided to write the poem for Bradley’s birthday, as all the emotions and memories came flooding back and writing seems to be my own form of mini therapy. I am currently training to be a Bliss Parent Representative and would love for my poem to help others who struggle with dates such as birthdays.
My beautiful boy, a whole year has already passed.
Here's hoping that this one is more peaceful than the last.
I've every reason to be happy, and smile on this day,
But some of the memories are hard to fade away.
This date brings back the worst time of my life,
Memories of thinking I'd lose you will always be rife
I'm struggling to push these thoughts to the back of my mind,
I spent so long wishing we could rewind.
Back to the beginning when I had my pregnancy hopes and dreams,
But unfortunately things aren't as easy as it seems.
When I look at your smiling, cheeky face every day,
I find it hard to believe you've come all this way.
Obs, cares and long lines are thankfully long gone,
Your fighting spirit simply shone from day one.
Mummy really struggled, and sometimes still does,
After all why did this have to happen to us?
Now I'm starting to understand why,
You were truly a blessing sent from the sky.
I'm thankful for every giggle and kiss,
Not a single moment do I want to miss.
You've made me the luckiest Mummy on earth,
I got to meet my hero at his birth.
NICU mums and dads carry their scars till the end,
I'm not sure our hearts ever truly mend.
So darling boy, when you blow out your candle this day,
There's so many things I'm wanting to say.
Thank you for fighting and not giving in,
As our life as a family can truly begin.
The flashbacks and fear will never go away,
But with smiles and laughter they'll fade every day.
Today Mummy will shed quiet tears and thank God above,
Because of you Bradley my life's full of love.
Happy 1st Birthday Bradley our darling little boy,
Thanks for filling our lives full of joy.
If you, like Alex, suffered from PTSD or any other health problems after the birth of your premature or sick child, please call the Bliss helpline for support.
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