Preparations for Life

Preparations, can we be prepared for everything in life, and are there some things that we need to start to discuss, in case it happens to us?

‘Nathan was born at 23 weeks. If I’d known then what I do now, I’d have wanted him to die in my arms’

Alexia Pearce adores her ‘gorgeous’ three-year-old son, yet she is aware that his life – a life blighted by cerebral palsy and chronic lung disease – is unlikely to last long into his teens. In this moving account, she asks: are we always right to save
premature babies? Alexia-Pearce-and-Nathan-007
That was the introduction to an article written in The Observer on 20th March 2011

Over the past few days I have seen it going around on facebook, the full article is here. In the article a Mother writes about how she wishes that she had been allowed to hold her premature baby in her arms, whilst he gently slipped away. Unfortuantely her premature baby was treated by the medical staff, and now she has a severley disabled child which she knows has drawn a very short stick in the life stakes, and will be subjected to numerous hosital visits, and tests and procedures, no douby many of them painful, before his life comes to a premature end. She loves her son very very much, but how differently she wishes it had hapenned.

It is every pregnant woman’s nightmare scenario, to think that at the end of her pregnancy she will not hold a perfect healthy bouncy baby in her arms. But it is by no means every mother’s experience. More and more babies are being born prematurely, and more and more are being “saved” but at what cost.

As a McTimoney Chiropractor I see some of these children end up in my clinic. On examination  I discover that they have very misaligned spines. My guess is that on their way into the world, their tiny ill-formed spines have been put under enormous pressure and so they have ended up with an in-abilty to react and interact with their world via a healthy nervous system, which is after all housed within the spine. The main nerve highway, the spinal cord, is housed within this crooked spine, and the messages being passed up and down are not getting through as good as they could be. This link shows where in the body nerve pathways go and at what level in the spine they leave the spine.

No parent-to be wants to consider losing the child that they are carrying, but should we do more to prepare them for the slim chance that they may have to make a decision about the future of their child? 24 years ago I was in that place. I was 24 weeks pregnant and  my waters had broken. For 3 days my son remained where he was, but at 6 o’clock on a Monday evening, just as the BBC News was starting I called the midwife to say that I was experiencing pains that were becoming uncomfortable. The doctor was called, and I was told “Your baby is on it’s way”. Nobody asked me what I wanted the medical staff to do. It was assumed that I wanted them to do everything in their power to save my baby. But they were wrong, and I was strong enough to say “Please do not do any heroics! If my my baby is not meant to survive, then he is not meant to survive” The relief on the paediatrician’s face, when I gave him the ok not to put tubes down my baby’s throat, to save his life regardless of the long-term consequences was visible, even now I can see that releif floding his face, as he was relieved of the burden of putting another premmie through the pain and suffering that they go through.

So I can totally see and feel where this mother is coming from, and I applaud her for speaking out.I think I would be thinking the same things too. I was fortunate that I was able to hold my baby in my arms, briefly. I was able to take photographs and have those treasured memories, however painful they may be. Stories like this just serve as a reminder to where I might be right now. Instead I chose to pursue a career helping women to take care of themselves during pregancy, to get their pelvises checked to make sure that the organs, muscles and ligaments are attached with the right amount of tension, to ensure that baby stays inside. There is research that says that Mums that undergo Chiropractic treatment during pregnancy have a higher chance of going full term, and I am living proof of that. My second pregnancy I had McTimoney Chiropractic care throughout, and went full term and gave birth to a healthy baby girl 🙂 I wonder if Alexia has been so lucky?




6 thoughts on “Preparations for Life

  1. They were my feelings too whilst pregnant with my first child.I am so thankful that my strength was never tested..and I am thankful for your gift to my second child whilst she was pregnant with her daughter.
    I have cared for a child affected the same way as Nathan from a birth that took him from his mother’s womb far too soon.The care is very demanding and it can over ride the fun and joy that being a mother should be .
    I can’t help but question what is the correct decision-both for the baby and the family the little life is being born into? I think if this were my quandary today I would stand by the decision I hoped I would have made 30 years ago…but how much harder would my decision be to make as for the past 5 years I have the pleasure of knowing two-unrelated- beautiful young ladies-one aged 8 and the other 5 both born earlier than 28 weeks gestation .I am sure had they been born at the time I was becoming a mother-neither would have survived,but both these children are (after a slightly slower start than their peers) healthy,lively and bubbly little girls and I just can’t imagine their families without them.

    • Thank you for sharing your thoughts Gillian. It is a very hard decision and one that can only be made by those in the situation at the time. I wasn’t in the place at that stage of my life to care for a new born, and God had the grace to not put me through the test that this lady is going through. I love treating these babies/children now as a McTimoney Chiropractor, and I admire you for dedicating your life to caring for these children. If you have any influence in the care that they get, then please get them seen by a McTimoney because miracles have been observed in my clinic. Children confined to wheelchairs are now walking. God’s Blessings Joy x

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