New life

William’s parents were expecting a baby. We were all looking forward to meeting her sometime in late October. But things suddenly got dramatic, Sarah got whipped into hospital, and the focus changed to keeping Sarah and the baby stable for – please – just a few more weeks. Or failing that, a few more days.

But the baby was born on 7th August, at only 28 weeks old. She weighed 1.19 kg. (that’s 2 lb. 10 oz. in old money). And so far, all is well, with both mother and baby. I went to meet Zoë (for such is the baby’s name) today.

I was a little wary to tell you the truth. What would I feel about this little scrap, wired up and screened from us in her little plastic incubator, surrounded by a phalanx of monitors, recording graphs and banks of numbers?

It was easy. I fell for her, instantly. Those delicate attenuated toes with their tiny nails! Those gently waving arms! Those slowly blinking, unfocussed blue eyes! She’s a proper little person. We can’t wait to get to know her.

And hooray for the NHS. Between Ellie and this little baby, our family has had its money’s worth.

40 thoughts on “New life”

  1. Congratulations to all concerned. Our Jasper was born in Penang at 34 weeks, a giant by comparison, and was 1.65kg. It sounds really stupid but I couldn’t imagine how small he really was even though he was approaching 3kg when we met him for the first time. I think new babies are very moving and tiny ones even more so. We hope all continues to go well and look forward to more pictures.

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    1. I’m so moved to see how perfect she is – at 29 weeks, everything’s there – nails, hair, the lot. She has to be fattened up of course, and slowly learn to feed and so on. But there’s a lot to feel positive about.


  2. What a tremendous relief after what must have been an incredibly anxious time that both Sarah and Zoe are doing well and good care is available. Lovely that you have been able to see her. Hope they can both go home together soon.

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  3. Wow–how scary and wonderful! Your family has benefitted a lot from modern medicine and the NHS (too bad the US can’t learn something about universal healthcare!) Zoë will be cared for so carefully and well–I do hope the drama is over now and the next stages of her life are happy and placid!

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    1. Thank you. Our under-funded and overstretched NHS is a National Treasure, which our family has much reason to be grateful for. It’s doing a fine job for Zoë just now.


      1. Enchanted is the right word. I don’t know why it should be surprising that a newborn baby’s foot is perfectly formed and ready for a lifetime of walking but I remember being enchanted by the feet of each of our babies in turn.

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  4. You must be so thrilled, and yes I’m always fascinated by the tiny feet and hands. John’s niece had a tiny premature baby just over ten years ago, and she’ll be staring at Elgin Academy tomorrow. Time goes so quickly. Enjoy every moment. Xx

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  5. So exciting…and congratulations! We went through a similar experience when our youngest grandson was born four months ago with a hole in his lung. They look so fragile, and you worry so much that they are not strong enough, But they are strong and feisty little people, and blessings from above are very helpful, too. Have fun with that new little girl…oh, and I am in love with that name Zoe!

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  6. Thank you. So glad that things seem to be going well for your grandson too. I’m amazed at how resilient these little babies are. Let’s keep hoping for good things for both of them!


  7. Oh how shocking and frightening for everybody. So relieved as I read down that all is under control and the future is looking positive. All the luck and best wishes for little Zoe and to you and all the family. A long, long time ago my maternal grandfather was born in Lewisham Hospital before the NHS. How lucky we are nowadays – long live the NHS!

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  8. Oh Margaret, I am so pleased to read here (and on your latest post) that little Zoe and her mum are doing well. What a tumultuous time of emotions this must have been. Wishing baby Zoe and all the family well as she grows and thrives 👣 💕

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