Weʼre raising £1,000 to the Royal Devon & Exeter Hospital Neonatal Unit
- Exeter, United Kingdom
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What I'm doing...
It is with immense sadness that I tell you all after a few months of training, I pushed myself too far, too fast, and gave myself ITBS. ITBS is a common injury in runners that has various outcomes. Unfortunately in my case, after a long rest, physiotherapy of rehabilitation my condition was no better. I am so gutted and frustrated with myself and frankly embarrassed after starting this fundraiser.
Rest assured I will be doing something equally as epic that I can prepare myself, which I am yet to confirm...but open to any ideas you may have! Thanks for all of those who have sponsored so far, you will hear from me soon...
Why I'm doing it...
The birth of most couples first child is said to be one of the best moments in anyone's life, but our story was a little bit different. On 26th December 2013 whilst celebrating Christmas with our family in Plymouth, my wife Gemma said to me hadn't felt the baby kick, in fact she couldn't recall him moving all afternoon at all. Her "Mother to be" instinct was that something wasn't right...we called the hospital, and they advised to have a hot drink and a cold drink (which normally gets baby moving)...still no movement.
I drove Gem to the hospital, we were both upset, but I kept a brave face and told her everything would be alright. When we got there, Gem got hooked up on a load of machines to monitor various things; baby's heartbeat, oxygen in baby's blood, and contraction frequencies etc. Baby's heartbeat would be healthy and every 5-10 minutes his heartrate would drop very low, almost nothing. The gap between heartrate drops got shorter and shorter, and more specialist doctors got called in for their opinions.
After around 2 hours of monitoring, Gem had a massive bleed, to which she thought her waters had broken. I was absolutely terrified, frightened beyond belief. Who's blood was it? What does it mean? Just as quick as I told Gem not to look down, the doctors threw a clipboard on Gemma's lap, turned the bed, and we all started jogging down the hall whilst they told Gem to sign the form. Within 30 seconds of the bleed, Gemma was wheeled down the hall with an entourage of Doctors in white coats, I was told that the baby had to come out now, I gave Gemma a kiss, wiped my tears and was escorted into a side room down the hall whilst Gem and the white coats bundled into theatre..............
At 1:50am on 27th December 2013, our son, Oliver was born by emergency C-Section weighing 3lb 2oz.
The Doctors report confirmed that the reason for the premature birth was a placenta abruption. Oliver's heartrate was dropping due to the lack of oxygen that he was getting, before finally the placenta became detached thus causing the bleed...in other words he was suffocating.
If we didn't go to the hospital when we did, and the bleed came when we were at home, there is a good chance I could have lost both of them...
Although he was born in Plymouth where the staff were faultless, 24 hours later he was escorted in a private vehicle with 3 dedicated staff to our home town Exeter where he (and we) received the most fantastic and attentive level of treatment and emotional support from all the staff in the Neonatal Unit.
Oliver is now a completely healthy 4 year old, and has a little sister called Maisie. I just want to let the staff in the Neonatal Unit at the R,D&E Hospital know how grateful we are, and give something back so they can continue to help other children like Oliver.
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James Rayner started crowdfunding