The Early days – Our story of Love & hope : My birth story

We spent 3 months living in 3 different hospitals, Whilst our daughter fought for her life.

Here is our story.

Hiding away at the very end of the maternity ward there is a completely different world. It’s almost as if it’s being kept a secret from the unsuspecting parents to be coming to give birth, you never imagine that this place exists let alone that you could potentially end up sleeping on the surgical ward waiting patiently on the fate of your own child.

1:15 am Tuesday 16th December 2012 weighing just 1lb 15oz Olivia Blossom Koropisz was born.

Preemie baby

Due to pre-eclampsia, Olivia was born 12 weeks prematurely.

Rewind a couple of hours Me and my partner Michael was getting ready to go Christmas shopping, having no idea by midnight we’d be parents. My midwife came for a routine checkup & I was soon rushed to hospital where the nurses couldn’t believe I was up walking around due to how high my blood pressure was. We were swiftly taken to the delivery floor where I was admitted. The next couple of hours were a blur, even the look on everybody’s faces still did not register to me how serious this was.

It wasn’t until I was given a dose of steroids to help strengthen her lungs that I started to panic.

Being wheeled into a surgical theatre is surreal, I will never forget how it looked or the smell. Even to this day when I go to hospital the smell almost knocks me off my feet & my palms begin to get clammy.

I spent 3 days on bed rest a combination of pre-eclampsia & having a C-section. I was given a photo of Olivia & I remember looking at this blurry blue picture knowing it was my daughter, but I didn’t feel this connection that people talked about, I didn’t feel anything which scared me a lot so I didn’t tell anybody. For 3 days I was terrified I wouldn’t love & bond with my own child.

Being on a neonatal ward is something I can’t really describe & I don’t think anybody will understand unless they’ve been there themselves. It’s terrifying, it’s intimidating, all the Drs & Nurses are brutally honest and it’s difficult to stay hopeful.

We spent our 3 months at 3 different hospitals, 2 being specialists in premature birth. You become accustomed to that life, your life before no longer exists especially when like us you live at the hospital. It’s  impossible to imagine anything past that day you’re currently at. Micro preemies are unpredictable, which we soon discovered.

20th Jan 2013 ~ 35 days old.

Olivia’s bowel became septic, a serious illness called Necrotising enterocolitis (NEC) The next few days would be critical. 16 days later Emergency surgery on her bowel saw her lose 12cms of perforated intestine & she was left with an ileostomy for the foreseeable future.

During this period a routine MRI discovered she had suffered irreversible brain damage periventricular leucomalacia (PVL)  which would result in Cerebral palsy at the time severity was unknown.

14th March 2013 ~44 days later weighing just over 5lbs.

We were ready to go home. 3 months watching The amazing NHS staff save our little girl, we were ready to be a family. I almost ran out of the NICU nursery.

And so our new life began.