A young mum-of-five whose daughter was born 15 weeks early has praised the nursing ‘angels’ who cared for them on the ward over Christmas.
Casey Nickson, 27, from Layton, who has had serious health problems during previous pregancies, was not expecting little Annabelle, now 12 weeks old, until the new year.
Her daughter’s arrival, on October 1, was an even bigger shock as she only discovered she was pregnant five days before she was due to be sterilised.
Annabelle, who was born in Preston but moved across to Blackpool Victoria Hospital as she grew stronger, will stay on the ward until she is ready to go home.
Casey, whose four sons – Scott, seven, Jack, five, Charlie-George, three, and Louie, 11 months – were born early too, said she owed everything to staff at the Vic.
She said: “The only way to describe the staff is they are angels.
I have been here on the Neonatal Unit in Blackpool three times now. We can’t thank the staff enough. It’s hard to put into words just how grateful we areCasey Nickson
“I have been here on the Neonatal Unit in Blackpool three times now. We can’t thank the staff enough. It’s hard to put into words just how grateful we are.”
Casey needed heart surgery at the Lancashire Cardiac Centre in Blackpool in 2011 when she was pregnant with Jack
Louie, who turned one yesterday, was also cared for on the unit.
His baby sisterweighed just 1lb 3oz when she born – only 2oz more than he did when he arrived on Boxing Day 2015.
Casey’s husband Ross, 33, who works for Fylde Borough Council as a HGV driver, said he was surprised, scared and delighted as the couple hadn’t planned on having any more children.
Casey said: “Ross is a fantastic dad. He’s besotted with Annabelle. He has always wanted a girl. We’re both from big families so we’re happy to have five children.”
But despite the excitemnt, there was concern when the family learned she was pregnant again as her health issues could have put
her at serious risk.
Casey, who previously worked as a registered nurse, explained: “When I had my second son Jack I didn’t know I was poorly.
“I found out that I had a hole in my heart and I had a condition called Guillain-Barre Syndrome [a disorder in which the body’s immune system attacks part of the peripheral nervous system].
“I also had serious health problems during some of my other pregnancies.
“I’d had Louie at 24 weeks and I had infection after infection. I was very poorly. I got sepsis.
“Louie spent eight and a half weeks at Preston and eight and a half weeks at Blackpool.
“I wanted to be here all the time when Louie was in hospital but I had three other children at home. It was heart-breaking but still joyful at times.”
Despite the best efforts of hospital staff, Annabelle arrived early and will be on oxygen until she is strong enough to return home.
Casey thanked the staff who had helped her:“You don’t just take away memories of people who have cared for your babies – you take away friends for life.”