Heaven & hell
Baby Owen was born in the early hours of the morning after a fairly quick but draining and exhausting -for Louisa- labour.
Pretty quickly it became obvious that he was struggling to breathe so he was taken round to neonatal where they passed a feeding tube into his oesophagus and x-rayed it. The tube curled up and confirmed that he had oesophageal atresia, the cause of Louisa's polyhydramnios and meaning that anything swallowed, even saliva, was going nowhere, coming back up and blocking his trachea. So here he is in his incubator being monitored while we sat by his side waiting for a space to be found at a specialist unit.
That specialist unit turned out to be the Royal Manchester Children's Hospital. In the meantime he was finding it harder and harder to breathe for himself until ultimately he had to be ventilated and transferred urgently to Manchester by a specialist team with Louisa in the ambulance and me following in the car.
One of the hardest journeys of my life.
Thankfully when I arrived the transport team had done a brilliant job with him and he was stable in a side room, ventillated and monitored and already handed over to the PICU staff who immediately inspired our confidence. We then spoke to the surgical team who got him onto the emergency list for theatre and arranged, as he was relatively stable, for the repair to be performed the day after with full surgical support.
All this before he was 15 hours old, talk about a long day!