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Inspirational Interviews

Lisa Norman shares her story on the premature birth of her son Neil!

Lisa Norman shares with us her heart wrenching story about the difficulties and trauma they went through when their son Neil was born prematurely. Lisa is an amazing woman as you will read from her story, she has also set up her own business Presents for Preemies to help others with premature babies.

Guest Blog

My introduction to motherhood was a quite a shock from how I had it all pictured in my head. I pictured a radiant pregnancy glow, my reality was feeling tired and nauseated all the time. I pictured the prefect bump, my reality was that you couldn’t tell I was pregnant until I was about 28 weeks. I pictured a calm water birth, in reality the exact opposite happened!

Early in my pregnancy I was told by the midwife that I had PAAP-A. In short it is a protein deficiency in the placenta that can cause various issues in a pregnancy. I was told not to worry though as they were unlikely and that from 30 weeks I would have extra scans to check my baby was growing as he should.

I was so uncomfortable as my baby boy was sitting really low and he was putting a lot of pressure on my hips and spine. I was attending aqua antenatal classes and pregnancy exercise classes as well as regular acupuncture. I was miserable and was really looking forward to my baby arriving. What I wasn’t expecting was that he would be arriving early and urgently. 

I arrived at the hospital for my first routine scan at exactly 30 weeks pregnant. There was no parking so my husband dropped me off and I went in for my scan on my own. The sonographer soon told me to tell my husband to park in the 10 minute bay and quickly left the room to tell security she had instructed him to park there. 

My husband entered the room, sat down and we were given the news that our baby had a lot of fluid on his tummy that shouldn’t be there and his heart was beating too quickly. The sonographer had already sent the scan up to a team to assess. We were asked to wait while she went to get the results of their decision. It felt like an eternity! 

The sonographer entered the room and said I was going up to theatre now! She was practically

running down the corridor and I was struggling to keep up, she saw this and slowed down. I was in tears and as we got in the lift my husband gave me a huge hug, blocking me from the sonographer who was crying herself.

I was rushed into theatre for an emergency c-section. My husband had been warned while they were prepping me for surgery that they didn’t think our son was not likely to survive delivery. Once he was born we didn’t hear a thing, the room was silent. No baby cry and no staff talking. We were then told that our son was alive and that we could see him for a minute before they took him away. We weren’t allowed to touch him, just look through an incubator window.

In that minute I was so in love and in awe of the tiny little thing trying to look back at me. Then he was gone. We spent the next 73 days on 2 different neonatal units whilst they treated my son, Neil, for Supraventricular Tachycardia (SVT) and Hydrops. The first 4 weeks we didn’t know from day to day if he was going to survive. The fifth week was the turning point, Neil was now under more specialised doctors who tweaked his medication and miraculously this tweak worked.

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Pictures provided by Lisa Norman 

Neil went from strength to strength and we were eventually told that there was nothing they weren’t doing at the hospital that we couldn’t do ourselves at home. We were finally going to go home! It was strange at first but felt so right. Four days later though disaster struck. Neil was in my husband’s arms and he suddenly went limp. He was completely lifeless and turning blue. 

My husband is a police officer and regularly trained to do CPR. Neither of us thought we would ever be performing this act on our own child though. My husband started with the rescue breaths whilst I rang 999. Initially we didn’t think we were going to get Neil back but just as the ambulance turned onto our street Neil whimpered with a sign of life. We were blue lighted back to hospital where we would spend a further week. This was to be Neil’s first battle with bronchiolitis.

Neil is now 2 and although his heart and lung condition mean many trips to the hospital for both routine appointments and urgent children’s ward access he is getting bigger and stronger every day. I haven’t told my story for sympathy or to scare anyone. I have told my story because all this took its toll. It may not surprise you that I was diagnosed with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) and anxiety. Being a mum is amazing and the best thing in the world. It is also quite scary at times. I hear so many mum’s who put themselves at the bottom of the to-do list. I am here to say to those mums please don’t! It’s such a tough job but it’s even tougher if you don’t look after yourself.

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Pictures provided by Lisa Norman and taken by Forever Green Photography

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) was the right route for me and after many sessions I felt a lot better and was able to handle things much better. I went on to set up my own business, Presents For Preemies and most recently I have become an Amazon number 1 best-selling author. I don’t profess to always look after myself the way I should but by putting myself a little higher on my to-do list just for a few days has made me a much better mother and reminded me I can also be Lisa occasionally too!

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Pictures provided by Lisa Norman and taken by Forever Green Photography

Links

www.presentsforpreemies.co.uk

www.facebook.com/PresentsForPreemies

www.instagram.com/presents_for_preemies

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Pictures provided by Lisa Norman and taken by Forever Green Photography

Why not take a look other inspirational interviews –

Interview with award winning glass engraver Steven Lee

Interview with Cat at Cat Creation

Interview with children’s publisher Justin Davis

Cassandra Farren’s heartbreaking story ‘I’ve lost my mum’

Some of my post contain affiliated links to products where I may receive a small fee if these products are bought

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