TRUE LIFE – SILVER STAR STORY
We aim to publish a new story each quarter; this is obviously dependent on whether families are willing to share their experiences.
If you are willing to share your true-life Silver Star experience/story of birth and being a Silver Star Mum or Dad then please get in touch with us. We would love to include your experience on our website/in our newsletter.
Victoria Furze’s Story
I have had both my children under Silver Star. My Silver Star journey began in January 2016. My husband and I were ready to start a family, but due to medical problems I was advised to have pre- pregnancy counselling first. We spoke to Dr Lucy McKillop who gave us really helpful advice and told me that I'd be under the Silver Star team, due to weight problems, blood clotting issues and Hypermobile Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome, a connective tissue disorder. I managed to fall pregnant in March 2016, which was almost a surprise as I was told to expect it would take a little longer!
In pregnancy I have to inject blood thinners twice daily, so I had regular follow up appointments to check my anti- XA levels (that my blood was appropriately thin enough), to keep an eye on my weight and blood pressure. Unfortunately from about 6 weeks, I had Hyperemesis Gravidarum, I was vomiting 30 times daily. I was admitted to hospital several times in early pregnancy for IV fluids and medication, and later in pregnancy to Level 6 under the Silver Star team, as I was constantly dehydrated. I even started vomiting vast amounts of blood at one point because I tore my oesophagus, and due to injecting blood thinners, it looked like a scene from a horror film! I also started to faint, and developed some issues with my heart (thought to be linked to my hEDS) and Silver Star arranged Heart Echoes and really looked after me.
Many a time I was admitted to level 6 for rehydration, and I sat and cried to the midwives and assistants about how miserable I was and how I hated my pregnancy, and they always listened, cheered me up and improved my mood. It was hard because not many people understood how difficult HG is, not even my friends and family! They also kept a regular eye on my unborn baby with CTG's, as by this point I had lost almost 2 stone in weight. I was worried every day about my little girl, but Grace olivia was born in November 2016 at 38+2, (after a brilliant induction) at 5lb 6.5oz, a little small and slightly jaundiced, but very healthy.
I can't thank the Silver Star team enough for looking after us both during pregnancy, and during a risky labour. (Due to problems with anaesthetics, risk of tearing and dislocation). I had a second degree tear and a retained placenta, but the theatre team were excellent and I recovered well.
My second pregnancy, just last year, I had severe SPD due to hEds and struggled from very early on. I also developed a huge, multiple bilateral pulmonary embolism in my lungs (despite injecting blood thinners twice daily through pregnancy) by 35 weeks, had a 6 day stay on level 6 at the end of September, returning home on Oxygen for the last 3 weeks of pregnancy. If it wasn't for the amazing Doctors in Maternity Assessment, neither myself or my baby boy would be here. Labour was difficult, I was again induced, but I had fetal ejection reflex, so he just shot out in the end and I didn't need to push. It was a nice ending to a very difficult pregnancy! Barnaby William was born last October at 38+2 at 6lb 12oz, absolutely perfect.
I have been advised not to have any more children, but we have completed our family and I am feel so happy and lucky to be here and have healthy children. We can't thank the Silver Star Team enough.
WHERE ARE THEY NOW
Don’t they grow up quickly!
If you would like to send in a picture of your Silver Star baby whatever their age now and tell us a little about what they are doing that would be great. It’s heartwarming to see the Silver Star babies growing up despite the difficult start that some of them may have had.
Here are John and Margaret Brown’s girls, Louise and Jennifer; as little girls and as young women, one of whom just got married. John is the founding Chairman of the Silver Star Society; read their story here.