Darla's Story
Darla's Story
Darla's Story
Darla's Story

Darla's Story

A Preeclampsia survival story
Category

Croydon Hospital

I was only 32 weeks pregnant when I first went into hospital. My pregnancy was pretty straightforward at first but suddenly I had pre-eclampsia and it all took a turn for the worse.

I spent Christmas in the hospital as the medication I was taking as a type 1 diabetic was not working with the swelling. 

I started to have contractions but the consultant was convinced it was fine and that I could go home now that my medication was working.

After a day out of the hospital, at 33 weeks gestation, my waters broke suddenly at home. After rushing to the hospital, we found out that I was already 5cm dilated. Everything was happening so fast! 

After trying to deliver her for 10 hours, the decision was made to take me down to the theatre for a forceps delivery and possible C-section because the baby’s heart was dipping a lot. Within the hour our daughter Darla was born.

She was born after a great struggle and she was born unresponsive. My worst fear had happened. After about 60 seconds, I finally heard the cry that I had dreamt of hearing.

Darla was very very poorly. She was on a breathing machine, treated for sepsis and sadly the forceps had caused Darla Erb's palsy on her right side. At first, we were not sure if she would be able to use any part of her right side. 

Darla was finally taken off to the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) to be cared for. I was dying to meet her but I knew that she was being looked after.

The following three weeks were the most emotional three weeks of my life. I was watching her progress and also take steps backwards. I visited the hospital daily because due to COVID-19 we were not able to stay with her.

Every day I visited the unit I  cried my eyes out. The team were unbelievable with Darla and keeping me going!

After three weeks Darla was finally allowed to come home to us. If it wasn’t for the amazing team and for the Ickle Pickles Charity my little girl wouldn’t be here today well and safe.

I went through one hell of a rollercoaster with Darla over the last two years and also welcomed her brother prematurely 6 months ago!

Darla is now two years old and she is thriving in life! She is so clever, so happy and it is like nothing ever happened! 

I cannot thank the neonatal team at Croydon University Hospital and of course Ickle Pickles enough for all the support and love through this hard time! What an amazing charity - I wish I could give everything I have to them.

Ickle Pickles has purchased neonatal equipment ranging from milk warmers to privacy screens for breastfeeding to sound ears for noise regulation and reclining chairs for kangaroo care cuddles for the neonatal unit at Croydon Hospital. The list of equipment needed to treat premature and sick babies as Darla goes on.

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