Babyzoid and I have been on such a journey over the past 19 months. Even before she was born 13 weeks ahead of schedule we both had to fight in our own ways for the day the day when she would eventually come into the world. It had taken quite a while to conceive – 14 months in all. I would tell myself that it was nothing compared to so many others, indeed I worked with one lady who took 4 years to conceive.
My partner and I were so overjoyed, so utterly over the moon when I found out I was expecting. We were due to go to Bath for a few days away the next day. I was so disbelieving that we’d finally done it that I did a third pregnancy test as soon as we got into our B&B room.
A couple of weeks later and the joy turned to misery as I was struck down with what turned out to be severe form of morning sickness, Hyperemesis Gravidarum. I spent all day every day unable to get away from the bathroom. Eventually I was so sick and weak that I couldn’t even make the bathroom most of the time and had to have a bowl by my bed. My muscles wasted and I became skeletal. I had weighed a slim but healthy 8st 7lb, but I soon plummeted to under 7 and a half stone as I couldn’t even keep a sip of water in my system.
The weaker I got the more devastated I became at what seemed like a major injustice. I wasn’t sure I could carry on. At times, I wanted an abortion. I had been so desperate to start a family with the man I loved, it had finally happened for us, and it had turned into a nightmare. I also loathed myself for considering ending my pregnancy. How pathetic was I? How could I even consider terminating the life that I had wanted to create above all else? She was fighting in spite of the fact that I couldn’t give her proper nutrients, in spite of the fact that I was incapable of taking folic acid. I would never forgive myself if my inability to keep down food made her ill or disabled once she was here.
But somehow I stopped pitying myself so much as I realised how much I wanted to be a parent to the little creature growing inside of me; to make up for the awful start I was giving her.
Of course when it came to it I couldn’t even hold on to her for the full 9 months. We never found out why Babyzoid came early, but my placenta was obviously deficient from the state of it once it came out. I probably had an incompetent cervix too. Who knows? But my little girl has had to overcome a lot, both in utero and out.
Now I am the proudest Mummy alive. She fought her way off the ventilator after 2 days in the NICU, then she fought her way through High Dependency, graduating to SCBU, and eventually home – 2 weeks ahead of her due date. I was so proud. And I’ve never stopped being proud. I’m so proud that my little girl has caught up her height, weight and then some. Proud that everyone says how irresistible cute she is with her angelic blonde flicky-outy hair and her large green almond-shaped eyes. Proud that she goes for what she wants in life at only 18 months old. She wants food? She’ll grab her bib out of the baby unit (creating chaos in the process) and bring it to her Dad or me. She wants a kiss? She’ll lean in and nearly head butt us. I’m proud that she is such a rough and tumble tomboy who seems to have no fear. Proud that she has such a wonderful sense of humour and an infectious giggle that melts the heart of everyone who hears it. Proud that so many people have said that she seems advanced and has ‘been on this earth before’.
I know rationally that every mum is proud of their little one, but I feel it with every bone in my body that my little girl is special, that she is a fighter, that she was meant to be here and that nothing is going to stop her achieving whatever she wants to achieve. I thought it meant the world to me to be a parent, but it means everything to me to be her parent. I feel I won the baby lottery and if I never achieve anything else of note in my life, then that is OK.