Photo-features managed to sell Jenny’s real life story to Reveal Magazine. She has already appeared in the Daily Mirror and was happy to have her story published a second time in the top selling celebrity magazine Reveal. Read Jenny’s full amazing baby story below:
Jen had lost her only son in tragic circumstances, holding three funerals for all his body parts, only to then be told she was now infertile and would never be a mum again.
Now after ten years of trying and £40,000, she has just given birth to the child she was told she would never have.
Grasping Kevin’s hand, I looked searchingly at the consultant.
‘I’m afraid it’s not good news,’ he began.
My hubby Kevin and I had been trying for a baby for a year with no luck. But at just 25 I’d assumed we’d be told just to relax more and things would happen naturally. However…
‘You’ve developed a condition that has fused your tubes together.’
‘But there’s something you can do?’ I asked.
He shook his head: ‘I’m afraid you’re infertile.’
It took a few moments for his words to sink in. And then it hit me – I had more chance of having a baby than winning the lottery.
‘I can’t believe it,’ I said as Kevin and I drove home in silence. ‘I have to have another child, I just have to.’
I’d been a Mum before, you see. Had a little boy called Jack. I’d split up with his dad shortly after he was born and although a single mum at 21 wasn’t how I’d planned it, I couldn’t have been happier. Jack was my life.
But then, just a few weeks before second birthday, he fell ill. He went off his food and was lethargic and clingy, not himself at all.
The doctor prescribed an infection and sent me off with some antibiotics.
‘He’ll be fine in a day or two,’ he said as he dismissed us.
But as the days passed he got worse, not better. One evening as I tucked him up in bed I noticed he was boiling hot and I couldn’t seem to rouse him.
Frantic, Mum and I drove him to Wexham Park Hospital. But I was told to take him home and just keep taking the antibiotics.
Only just a few hours later, Jack got even worse. His eyes were glazed and sunken in his deathly white face and he was struggling to breathe. ‘Call 999!’ I shouted to Mum.
An ambulance rushed him to hospital where a team of doctors raced to greet us. As I was ushered into the Relatives Room I heard the word ‘meningitis’ mentioned. I paced the room waiting for news. And finally:
‘Jack’s had a heart attack,’ a doctor explained. ‘He’s on life support. It could be meningitis. You might want to think about calling your family.’ And I just knew. He wasn’t coming home.
Jack passed away three hours later, just weeks before his second birthday. ‘No!’ I sobbed as my world came crashing down.
An inquest was opened and adjourned for me to bury him. ‘Sleep well, darling,’ I whispered as I said my goodbyes.
But a week later there was more bad news. The inquest revealed Jack’s brain hadn’t been buried with him and was at another hospital. It was a huge shock. I had to hold another funeral for his brain to be buried with his body. As if that wasn’t enough, then more body parts were found at another hospital and I had to hold a third burial for his organs.
Finally assured Jack was in his resting place, I was able to move on. I found love again with my best friend Marie’s brother, Kevin. It helped that he’d known Jack too. ‘I want more kids one day,’ I told him.
‘I can’t wait to be a Dad, too,’ he agreed. So we started trying almost straight away, even before we got married the following summer. Only after a year with no joy, we decided to seek help.
And now this. Not only had I lost my only child but now I was being told that I’d never be a mum again.
Of course, it opened up all the old wounds. In fact, it made Jack’s even loss harder to bear. He’d been my only chance to have a child and I’d lost him…how would I ever get over that now?
‘Somehow, we’ll find a way,’ Kevin soothed.
We asked to have my fallopian tubes flushed. Sometimes this can help remove blockages and increase the chances of conceiving. Only, unfortunately not in my case. There was nothing more they could do. But still, I couldn’t accept it.
We talked about booking a holiday, taking some time out. But then a few days later:
‘I’ve had an idea,’ Kevin said. ‘We could cancel the holiday and use the money for IVF instead.’
We were so hopeful – at first. Only four attempts and £25,000 of our hard-earned cash later and I still hadn’t fallen pregnant. It was like being on a roller coaster – one minute we were up, the next heartbroken as another attempt failed and again our dreams of being a proper family were dashed.
And then to top it all off I developed Bell’s Palsy, a temporary weakness of my facial muscles. It developed suddenly, on one side of my face, and looked like I’d had a stroke.
‘It could have been stress-induced,’ the doctor said. ‘You need to start looking after yourself.’
He was right. We’d had four cycles of IVF in as many years. Everything – our relationship, our careers, our lives – had taken a back seat to having a baby. It was time to take a break.
The next three years we started to do more coupley things. We went on exciting holidays, spent romantic nights in without the pressure of trying to conceive or invasive treatments.
But still, the yearning for more children never went away.
Then in 2008, a friend of mine suggested we go and see the doctor at London’s Assisted Reproduction & Gynaecology Centre (ARGC). The statistics spoke for themselves. We signed up for another course of IVF straight away.
I couldn’t believe it when, just weeks later, we discovered I was carrying twins. We were over the moon.
‘This is it!’ I squealed as Kevin and I hugged each other.
But then six weeks later, I miscarried. We were devastated.
‘How many more times are we going to have to go through this nightmare?’ I wept to Kevin.
I was 33 now and having spent £40,000 on IVF we both agreed we couldn’t take much more.
‘One more time,’ Kevin said. ‘And then we’ll call it a day.’
We had two frozen eggs left and decided to spend £14,000 having them thawed and implanted for our final attempt. It was our first frozen egg cycle so we were apprehensive – especially when one of the embryos didn’t survive the thawing process.
But the other one did. It was implanted and two weeks later we were astonished to learn I was pregnant. This time though, we were careful not to get our hopes up. It was early days.
And then, a few days later there was that warning blood stain in my knickers..
‘Please, not again!’ I prayed as Kevin drove me to hospital. But deep down I knew it was over. Our last attempt was trickling away.
The consultant confirmed it. I’d developed a blood clot inside the womb. It was bleeding constantly.
As the radiographer smeared jelly on my tummy I could barely bring myself to look at the monitor, to see the end of our dream all there in black and white.
‘There’s a heartbeat,’ she announced.
Yes, it was weak, but it was definitely there.
‘Please hold on,’ I begged the tiny shrimp-like figure.
There was nothing we could do but sit and wait. It was horrendously stressful. Every day lasted an eternity. And every day my knickers were spotted with fresh blood.
We had daily scans and every morning my heart was in my mouth as we waited for to hear that faint heartbeat.
‘It’s not going to happen you know,’ I told Kevin as we drove home.
‘Wait and see,’ he said.
But I shook my head. Why get our hopes up only for them to be dashed yet again? We’d been here before. I had to prepare myself for the worst.
Only as we reached three months, something changed. The blood clot was getting smaller. And our baby? It was growing bigger and stronger.
‘A little boy,’ we were told at 14 weeks.
I was delighted but anxious too. I couldn’t bear to lose another son.
Everyone kept telling me to relax and take things easy but it was easier said than done. I willed the weeks away.
And then, at 34 weeks and five days I was lying in bed when my waters broke.
‘He’s early,’ I told Kevin, scrabbling for my hospital bag.
At the hospital our baby was given injections to boost his underdeveloped lungs. I was in labor for nine hours before Tiernan was delivered by emergency C-section. He weighed just 5lb 10oz and was whisked off into special care before we even had a chance to hold him.
When I finally held him the next day, I burst into tears. He was the image of his big brother. The nurse popped him inside my nightie It felt surreal. As I counted his tiny fingers and toes I could hardly believe I was a Mum again.
‘Ten years I’ve waited for this,’ I beamed at Kevin, tears running down my cheeks.
All I wanted to do was bring him home and get on with being a mum. But there were complications. Tiernan was born with jaundice, a hole in his heart and had problems feeding. But they were minor problems after everything we’d been through.
Eventually, at 18 days old, he was discharged. Finally, we could bring him home.
‘Doesn’t it feel great being a family?’ I said to Kevin as we shut the front door behind us.
‘The best feeling in the world,’ he agreed.
Now, Tiernan is now 12 weeks old and the spit of his Dad rather than his brother. But Jack is never far from our thoughts. I always tell people I have two sons and his photo rests proudly next to those of Tiernan. He’s been part of his life from day one and Tiernan will grow up knowing all about his special big brother.
Looking back, I can hardly believe everything that’s happened. It’s awful for any woman to be told they can’t have kids but to lose a child and then be told that they were your one and only chance of being a mum…well, it’s like losing them all over again.
But Kevin and I never gave up on our dream to be parents and then ten years later Tiernan arrived. Never mind we paid out more than £40,000 to get him, I honestly feel like I’ve won the lottery.