Real stories from real parents.
A Father's Tale
On Sunday 5th May at 00.25am my little girl Cienna was born. She was our fourth child however our first premature baby. Born at 33 weeks this was all new to us.
Living in Boston, and Cienna being born in Lincoln, made life more difficult than we could have imagined with having 3 other children to look after at home. Thanks to the support from my family and the neonatal unit in Lincoln and Boston they made our lives easier.
Cienna spent only 1 day in Lincoln before being transferred to the neonatal unit in Pilgrim Hospital, Boston. This made it easier for us to juggle seeing Cienna as much as possible as well as looking after our other children. Everyone on the neonatal unit were amazing, and for what was a pretty scary time for us as a family, they gave us reassurance and explained everything in great detail. This made us feel more at ease and we cannot thank them enough.
Cienna made great progress on the neonatal unit and had several visits from her siblings who were really excited to meet her. After spending 9 days on the unit we got the great news that Cienna was ready to come home. We were over the moon that we could get back home and get back into a routine that would keep all the family together.
My wife and I cannot thank the neonatal unit enough for the support they gave us and also for the care they gave to our daughter. Without the support of the ward we would have felt lost in what is a very scary time for parents who have had a premature baby.
We have now been home for 1 day and Cienna had a great first night and is now settling in to her family home.
Thanks again to the Neonatal Units both in Lincoln and Boston
The Boy Who Lived
Hearing the words “you’re only 1 cm dilated”, my heart sunk. If I was only in very early labour, why did it hurt so much? Why wasn’t the pain going away at all and instead just getting worse? Why couldn’t I get comfortable at all? And why did I feel the need to push already?
I think I will always remember the look of understanding and compassion on my midwife’s face when I clutched her hand and said “something’s wrong”.
Listen to Isobel’s Story
Hypnobirthing; Calm and Positive
The midwives were really supportive of my wish for a natural birth.
Through both my pregnancies I had hypnobirthing, which I found fantastic and really helped me to have a positive birth experience.
Listen to this story.
A Neonatal Journey
There’s a huge NICU community out there and so many organisations are starting to come together to help families like ours. Don’t suffer in silence, talk to someone, use your own experience to make a difference for future families.
This is the UK’s first neonatal awareness week, let’s make it count.
Listen to Jo’s Neonatal story.
A Homebirth Story
A birth is always beautiful but a homebirth, if you can have one, is the birth of a family in a deeper sense. I firmly believe that our bonds are far deeper because we were all in it together from start to finish.
Listen to Georgina’s story.
You are not a failure, you nourished and grew that baby for however long that your body let you. You did nothing wrong throughout your pregnancy.
Listen to Rachel’s story.
I'm Going to be a Dad
Sam Raynor: I tried to do everything I could to make her pregnancy easier
“I’m going to be a dad”.
Those words hit me so hard. It’s all I’ve ever wanted!
The Value of Children's Centres
I think the pressures from society and feeling the need to breast feed led to my post natal depression. It didn’t come easily which led to my 2 day old daughter being re-admitted due to weight loss. I was an emotional wreck and felt as though I’d failed which caused her to become poorly.
It took months before we realised it wasn’t a normal behaviour and booked a doctors appointment to discuss post natal depression. He confirmed that was what I’d been suffering for the last few months.
I regularly accessed the children’s centre groups which gave me more confidence and allowed me to escape the feelings from the depression. I wish I’d known about the breast feeding groups before my daughter was born and that I could have accessed them while pregnant.
I would highly recommend any new mothers take that first step and join some groups in the centres as I have made valuable friends from attending which, five years on, are still close to me. It helped me to tackle the negative feelings and talk openly with other mums to make me realise it was normal to struggle sometimes but we helped each other out.
I now work in the children’s centres as I felt they were so amazing I wanted to be part of it. I trained after my second daughter and during maternity leave so I could apply for future jobs as an early years educator. I have been in the role for almost a year and it’s the best decision I ever made.