As every dream pregnancy happens we had 2 lines on a clear blue and ‘pregnant’ on a digital. That moment was the happiest moment, even though I was adamant I wasn’t pregnant just sick, but soon got proved wrong. The whole pregnancy was going brilliantly: the scans were showing he was growing perfectly, kicking and stretching away at all appointments and heart beat of a trooper. I was so happy to be a mum again and his brothers were happy to not be the only two boys. I was working whilst pregnant and had everything in place ready to be leaving and the general safety checks whilst there, etc…
On Monday 8th May I woke up slightly concerned on his movements as he hadn’t been kicking me as he would normally. Thinking I was being a paranoid mum we went to get checked, but I got more nervous as his dad normally feels him at night and didn’t. We sat in the waiting room which felt a while, but not as long as it felt them looking for a heartbeat: they tried the ECG, Doppler and Pinard horn which is when I got told I was being sent for an immediate scan. That’s when I knew something wasn’t right. I was in floods of tears and had Michael and my eldest son Reuben with me, so to keep Reuben calm Michael nipped to the car to get his juice and something to play with whilst I was waiting to be called through (which was a couple of minutes later). Before Michael even walked back through the doors to the maternity ward I was already on the bed waiting for the scan to proceed, when walking through I was in floods of tears and probably scared every woman that was awaiting a scan to see their precious life they had created. I wanted to wait until Michael and Reuben had got back before I had the scan, but she continued and didn’t wait. As soon as she scanned me I hoped the machines and hearing were wrong, as I seen my baby but nothing was happening: he wasn’t moving and had no heartbeat. I kept thinking he was just resting/needed a chill. I was 33+5 days pregnant and how wrong was I: he was asleep but it was permanently and there was nothing they could do. I couldn’t breathe or stop the floods of tears, I felt I did something so wrong the guilt was killing me! Michael walked in and instantly knew I hated that they didn’t wait for him.
I was rushed up to labour ward; one walk I was hoping not to do yet. I sat on the bed and spoke to a midwife who discussed what was happening and all I kept saying was ‘stop me breathing and save him I’ve had my life why can’t my son have his!’ The worst thing you could possibly imagine as a parent is the thought of burying your own baby/child before you. They had given me oral misoprostol to try and start off my labour naturally and they said it could take a few days to start anything, if it worked, so I was booked in to give birth on 10th May for induction, if that didn’t kick start anything. I got offered to go home and sort out any arrangements of what we want him to wear, get organised and all the normal things you do for an induction, but it didn’t feel right: I knew I’d go into a hospital with a baby and come home without one; I had a million and one questions but couldn’t say one word. We went home to sort out his stuff and pick a lovely outfit and make him happy that way. We went out on the Tuesday 9th to pick an outfit went in various shops, but nothing was standing out until we seen this one outfit that said ‘sleep well little one’ and it seemed to fit the occasion perfectly, but still wasn’t right. Went into another shop, but told Michael not to be long, as I was in emotional and in physical pain; something wasn’t right and, sure the pessary should not have started this fast, we went home so I could sit down and calm down as much as I was able to, but my labour had started and I spent an hour laid on my bed, in labour, being sick and with a ambulance on the phone as Michael didn’t want to risk taking the car; so we waited what felt like a lifetime! I was in the ambulance (when it finally arrived) and it got stuck in traffic as it seemed no one wanted to let it through; but when I finally got to the hospital and back in the same room I had the tablet in, the midwife was getting me prepped to have a canula in my hand, but I knew I was in labour. I was pushing and felt his head coming out. By the time the midwife had a chance to see he was out, she had to pretty much catch him before he fell off the bed. I was in labour a total of 2 hours and in hospital 10 minutes before my special little boy made an appearance. What made it worse he weighed 5lb 3.5oz and looked perfect, so how could he have been asleep! I was angry upset and felt like giving up myself. I couldn’t let him go, nothing was right, everyone was wrong: he was going to wake up, he just needed a cuddle as I had seen the miracles that happen when a baby is on the mummy’s chest, so why wasn’t mine waking up? What had I done so wrong? WHY ME!!!!??
We were able to take him home in a special cuddle cot that kept him cool so he could stay with us a little longer. First family in Lincolnshire to take our sleeping baby home which felt like a pleasure as he was still my baby, we stayed in hospital a few days before we took him home to ensure I had no infections ect. I couldn’t care less for myself, for the fact I was willing to take his place just so he could have his life. I felt so guilty I didn’t know what to say to Reuben, I was scared if he would hate me for not bringing home his baby brother to play with.
We managed to get it arranged that we took Jaxon to Nottingham in our car to our choice of funeral director in Beeston with a woman called Adele. We had to alert the police to ensure we knew we wouldn’t get pulled over or if a crash occurred they knew he didn’t go to sleep from that; we had valid paperwork and they had it confirmed by the hospital themselves too. We just contacted them when we were leaving, and when we had arrived in Nottingham then they could close the case – if that’s the right word to use, I don’t know how but we managed to speak to Adele about most of the arrangements on day 1 which was the hardest, but I knew if we didn’t do it sooner than later we might not have made any plans at all. The funeral was arranged for the 24th May which seemed like ages, but yet not long enough; but if we had left it any longer Jaxon would just be more and more uncomfortable and I couldn’t bear that thought. Michael was brilliant: helped me every step of the way and was my rock; if it wasn’t for him, I wouldn’t have sorted out anything for the cremation for Jaxon. I just didn’t feel strong enough to do anything. I held Jaxon as much as I could; he was still my baby and Michael held him and did things with him to ensure he could get through every day and still be there for me and Reuben. He had a beautiful casket light blue and padded out for a prince, my boy, even got a pillow in it; he looked so perfect, but it was still not sinking in.
The day before the funeral we managed to take him back to his Grans house so we could have the family say there last goodbyes and leave for Bramcote Crematorium the next afternoon. Having him back for a whole night was amazing we had to ensure the room was really cold to mimic the conditions he had been in; obviously it was never going to be perfect but it worked for him. Our baby finally had to leave us for good, it was time for the cremation and me and Michael both carried him in, as we brought him into this world so I believed it was only fair we got to help him and let him know it was okay to leave. I couldn’t have a stranger do it. He had the most precious send off: it was such an emotional time, but we made him proud. His brother Cyrus made us really proud too, as I wasn’t sure how he would react to obviously going through it, but he made us so happy with how he responded and how much he shown his dedication in supporting us all and even kept Reuben happy which was a massive help. Considering it was the worst time in our lives, every help made it feel like we weren’t alone and it felt amazing having such support from everybody there.
I just want to thank all the midwives from Pilgrim hospital in Boston including the Chaplin who did a service for us in the room he was born. Thank you Adele for helping us through the hardest time we had to go through and showing us emotional support also. Thank you to bereavement midwives I have Nikki and Christa both from different hospitals but have supported me every step of the way and helped me and Michael. There is so many people to thank, but I genuinely struggle to remember everybody.