Mom to Ryleigh Jayne

Born at 14 weeks 6 days on April 24th, 2006

England, UK

I found out I was pregnant with Ryleigh on Sunday 5th February 2006 in Mcdonalds toilets – I remember the time, it was 11:30am. Me and Stuart had been trying for a baby since August 2005, we were both sure that the test would come back negative and very shocked but happy when it came back positive. When I came out of the toilets Stuart could tell just by the big grin on my face and then i passed him the test and he had a big grin on his face. I was so shocked that I could not stop shaking and could not eat my Mcdonalds as I felt too sick with mixed emotions. After Mcdonalds we went to a shop and bought two little baby grows for our growing bean and some mittens, we put them in our baby box once we arrived back at mine.

A few days later I made my first appointment to see the GP but I had to wait three weeks, I asked to see the midwife instead but she had an even longer waiting list so I went with the three week wait, that took us into the beginning of March. My first appointment was good, I was just prescribed the normal folic acid and told what to do next.

I think inbetween then and my 13 week scan I had normal checkups, blood pressure, urine, bloods etc with the midwife.

Then I received the letter to say my first scan was on Tuesday 11th April 2006, I went to work on that day but left early so I could go home and get ready for the hospital. I remember sitting in the waiting room and telling my mum that I was really nervous and scared, she asked why and I told her I *felt* like something was wrong.

I was right… when our bean first came up on the screen, she was bouncing around and even gave us a wave, she was very active and me and Stuart couldn’t stop smiling but then the sonographer told us there seems to be a *problem* but not to worry just yet, she went out to find a senior sonographer but came back saying she was busy THEN she went on to tell us what she thought was wrong, she said there seemed to be too much fluid on top of the babies head but again she said not to worry just yet.. At first me and Stuart thought that fluid on the head was nothing to worry about we never thought it was what it was. Anyway the senior sonographer came in and they both looked at it together and were WHISPERING to each other (… like hello this is MY baby your talking about) I didnt look at my baby on the screen I just watched their mouths as I wanted to know what was going on then the lady turned and said “Yes there does seem to be too much fluid on top of the head, now we move on to stage 2…” then explained what stage 2 was basically talking to the consultant and then being referred for a more detailed ultrasound at a better hospital.

We (Me, mum & stuart) went into the consultant room and he explained to us what fluid on the head means, which was worse then we thought, he also told us our baby had cystic hygroma (which the fluid on the head meant) and fetal hydrops. We asked him what it *meant* and he said that if it is true and as bad as it looks then it would be best to end the pregnancy. I cried all the way home from the hospital.

The next day i got a phone call from the *better* hospital they told me my scan would be in a weeks time on Tuesday 18th April 2006 which was also my 19th Birthday. It was easter so they couldnt get me in any faster.

18th April soon approached.. instead of waking up feeling excited it was my birthday I woke up throwing up with nerves knowing that it would be the last time I would see my baby alive. Travelling to the hospital I was scared. Once we got there we registered at reception then they put us in the waiting room with all the pregnant, happy mothers waiting to see their babies, after about 20 minutes of sitting there the receptionist realised what we were there for and put us in a back room to wait on our own.

A man came in and asked if we had any questions, Stuart asked “what is the possibility they could of got it wrong?” and he said judging by the report they faxed through they havent and its bad, he then went on to explain that if the scan shows what the report says we could have an amnio test etc.

We went into the scan room and he started scanning me, talking to the lady while she wrote things down he told us he would explain to us after what everything meant. I knew it wouldn’t be good because our little baby wasn’t moving on the screen and her heart was hardly beating. He went on to tell us she was still measuring at 13 weeks and had not grown since the last scan. He said the cystic hygroma was the worst you could get in size and the position etc and because of the fluid all around our baby it had stopped her lungs from developing. She had 5% of making it through the rest of pregnancy then 0% of making it if she was born.

Our sweet baby girl was born sleeping on 24th April 2006 @ 8:50am after 13 hours of labour.

After I had her I did not want to see her so the midwife took her away and put her in a basket with a blanket and gave her to my mum. I had to go to the toilet and walked past them but did not look. I asked mum what she looked like, if she had fingers and ears, nose etc and she said yes. I decided to have a look and she was beautiful & perfect. She had two little ears, a sweet button nose, two little arms and two perfect hands, two little legs and two perfect feet, tiny knee caps, tiny bones. she was perfect to me. Im so glad that I saw her, and I held her too. I  have a photo of me and her together which I will treasure forever.

I sat up in my bed with Ryleigh and the midwife came in to take her away, I looked up at her with tears in my eyes, I didn’t want my baby girl to go yet, the midwife said we could have a bit longer – to be given permission to be with your baby for a little longer is horrible :-( not having a choice about her staying. She came back about 20 minutes later and took my baby away, I watched as she walked out the room, that was the last time I saw my baby.

I had to have surgery to remove my placenta as it did not detach from my body. When I returned to the room the midwife had taken pictures for me to keep, she asked my mum “do you think she will like them?” yes I did like them but I would of liked even more to be taking my baby home.

I had to stay over night because of the surgery, I got to go home the next day, I was sent away with an envelope, which contained ryleighs wrist band and cot card, and her photos too. I felt so numb in the car on the way home, after arriving at the front door and going in the house I just sat on the chair not knowing what to do next.

I went into hospital with a baby and came out empty. My life from that day forward was never the same again.

It was found out our baby had Mosaic Turners Syndrome, a rare from of Turners Syndrome.

You can contact Sarah at

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