Thursday, 30 October 2014

The Day That Changed My Life Forever


Thursday 26th June 2014 was one of the best days, but also one of the worst days, of my life. It was the day that I made a whole family's dreams come true by giving birth to their beautiful little boy, Julian Noa. I was ever so fortunate to have been trusted to be his keeper and carer for 9 months until he was ready to come out and meet his Mummy and Daddy and when he arrived he was everything I hoped he would be, perfect in every way and he continues to thrive to this day.  Being a surrogate was an amazing experience and I will carry it with me for the rest of my life. If you want to read more about my journey you can do so here.

That day was also the day I found out I suffer from a condition called Pulmonary Hypertension, a potentially life-limiting and scary heart and lung condition that I had never even heard of before, let alone knew I had myself. It basically is a problem with the pressure in the valves of the lungs and heart, and cannot be cured unless a lung transplant is carried out although it can be managed in most cases with therapy and medications. Right now my PH is mild, I am able to walk, talk, climb stairs, work, look after my kids, walk my dog and do everything else I want to do but there are thousands of people out there who's PH is so severe they cant do any of those things. People who's lives will actually end due to the condition. I am a lucky one. The Drs don't know for sure if I have always had PH, although they suspect I developed it after Grace was born as a side effect of a medication I was taking.  

The even more scary thing about finding out about my having PH (at 39 weeks pregnant) is that pregnancy is not recommended AT ALL for women with the condition..this is an extract from the PHA (Pulmonary Hypertension Association) website:

"Becoming pregnant when you have pulmonary hypertension (PH) is dangerous. The life of both mum and baby are put at great risk. The risk of pregnancy-related death in women with PH is between 25% and 50%. This risk is related to the changes that take place during pregnancy such as increased heart rate and changes to the immune system"

Quite frankly, I feel lucky to be alive. I also feel blessed to have my children, and to have been able to give Julian to his wonderful family.  From now on I am going to seize every opportunity that comes my way and live my life to the full, because if my whole surrogacy journey taught me anything it is that life is precious and you need to grab it with both hands.

Last Sunday I took part in the Great South Run, fundraising for PHA UK, and I am pleased to say I completed the run and managed to raise nearly £300 for this amazing charity.  You can read more about PH and PHA UK here. 

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