A Portlethen mum who had to say goodbye to her prematurely born son only moments after saying hello is looking for support to comfort other parents in the similar agonising situation she found herself and her partner in two years ago.
Kirsty Mills-Bishop went into early labour with twins in December 2010 at only 24 weeks.
The 32-year-old went through what she describes as 78 “terrifying and painful” hours of labour before giving birth to twin boys.
The former Portlethen Academy pupil named the boys Aiden and Kai and at 25 weeks, Aiden weighed only 1lb 9oz and twin brother Kai weighed 1lb 10oz.
Both sons were immediately whisked away to two teams of neonatal doctors and nurses to be cared for.
Miss Mills-Bishop said: “After an agonising wait we were delivered the devastating and life changing news that our precious son Aiden had not made it and passed away whilst with the staff, we were heartbroken.”
The couple’s other son Kai went on a rollercoaster journey whilst in Aberdeen Neonatal Unit.
He had infections, blood transfusions, a double hernia operation and almost constant oxygen support to name only a few, and after 14 weeks, Kirsty and her partner Jack Cox were finally able to take him home.
Whilst the couple spent time anxiously in the unit awaiting news on their new arrival, they looked at photos on the walls of other babies who had made it home and read encouraging stories on the Friends of the Special Nursery web site which Kirsty said gave them hope and comfort that there were others who had been in the same situation as them and also gave them hope that they might get Kai home.
They did, and Kai will be celebrating his second birthday in December.
Kirsty previously told the Leader: “Kai would not be here without the Doctors and Nurses from the Neonatal Unit. SANDS (Still Born and Neonatal Death) Aberdeen and Friends of the Special Nursery have also been such a great help with helping me cope with what happened to Aiden.”
Now, Kirsty has put the two ideas that helped comfort her in hospital together and come up with an idea.
Kirsty has started work on making up scrapbooks to be filled with photographs and stories of babies who have spent time in Aberdeen neonatal unit to give comfort to other parents going through any situation where their baby is being cared for in the unit.
Kirsy said: “Everyone’s story is so very special and we hope that sharing them can give some hope and inspiration to others in the same position.”
For this to happen, Kirsty has come together with Aberdeen Neonatal Charity - The Friends of the Special Nursery - to look for stories and photographs of babies who have been in the Aberdeen Neonatal unit and helped along by the hardworking nurses and doctors.
Kirsty said: “It would be great to get some families who have been in the unit either now or years ago. For example if their miracle babies are now in school, university and so on, or even now have families of their own now.”
The scrapbooks will then be available for other parents to look at and be comforted by if they find themselves in the Neonatal Unit.
If your baby was a “miracle baby” in Aberdeen Neonatal Unit - no matter how long ago - or if you know someone who was (with permission) and would be willing for it to be featured in Kirsty’s creative idea, she would be happy to hear from you.
Kirsty can be contacted through email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.