When I found out I was pregnant at the age of 17 it was such a shock, I didn’t know what to do, but I knew I was definitely going to have my baby. I was so terrified to tell my family and put it off for weeks I just didn’t know how to tell them. But when I did they eventually came around.

I had a pretty easy pregnancy. I only had a little bit of morning sickness, well actually afternoon sickness and really bad heartburn but other than that things were great. I split up with the baby’s father about 3 months into my pregnancy. I knew being a single mum wasn’t going to be easy but I was determined to do it.

At about 26 weeks into my pregnancy I was admitted to hospital because I had bad back pain which turned out to be contractions. I was given pethadine to stop them and was discharged two days later. After that I still didn’t think anything of it even when the pains continued I just thought it was because I was still working at McDonalds and had to stand up all day.

Three weeks later I woke up and had a bit of discharge, I didn’t mention it to anyone for a while, but then decided I should go to the hospital to get checked out and lucky I did. The doctors confirmed my waters had broken. I just started crying and couldn’t believe what was happening, I was only 30 weeks.

I was rushed in an ambulance to the Mater in Brisbane with my contractions two minutes apart, I was given medication to try and stop the contractions which worked. When I arrived to the Mater a doctor came around and told me what the chances were for my baby’s survival which was pretty good news considering.

I just laid there and couldn’t believe that this was happing to me, I had such a good pregnancy and did everything the right way but yet this was happening. I was shown around Intensive Care and shown a baby the size mine was going to be, it was so heart breaking being in there seeing so many tiny babies hooked up to machines.

Everything settled down for about four days when one morning in hospital I woke up and my waters broke again properly this time. I knew this was it and was taken to the delivery room at first I wasn’t really in much pain but as time went by the contractions became worse the doctors checked my cervix and I hadn’t even dilated, I just thought to myself all this pain for nothing. The midwives were thinking about sending me back to my room because they didn’t think I was going into labour. But then it all started up again this time it really hurt. I was in the shower to stop the pain and started pushing, 30 minutes later my beautiful baby boy named Tye Daniel Campbell was born weighing 1.6 kilos (3.5 pounds). I had no pain relief and remember thinking I am never doing that again.

It was such a relief to hear him cry, I got a quick hold and he was taken to Intensive Care. I felt really blessed because he had nothing wrong with him apart from being born two and a half months early.

When I was discharged from hospital my dad and I stayed at the Ronald McDonald House, we spoke to families that had been staying there for months with their premature babies and it made me feel so lucky. After two long weeks in Brisbane Tye was able to be transferred to the Lismore Base hospital, it was so nice to be home. Only my mum and dad were allowed to visit Tye in Special Care because of infection’s which was hard because I wanted my friends and family to see him.

I used to go back and forth from the hospital all the time I would go there just so I could change his nappy and take his temperature. After 6 weeks in hospital Tye finally came home. The staff at the Lismore Base Hospital were great, they helped me so much and taught me a lot and I greatly appreciated it.

I still think back on everything that has happened and think that I am so lucky. I know that I am only young and a lot of people look down on me for that but I know in myself that I’m doing a good job and that nothing will ever break the bond I have with my son. Tye is now 6 1/2 months old and doing great he has stacked on the weight and is so chubby now you would not even think he was born premature.

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