Ella-Mae and fiancé Giovanni’s non-identical twins, Bella and Ruby, were born 14 weeks early weighing a mere 910 grams and 900 grams respectively.
At her 20-week scan, Ella-Mae was told to prepare to lose the babies as she had already started dilating. With medical intervention and almost seven weeks of bed rest, against the odds, the girls survived and were born on 31 October 2018.
Due to their prematurity, the girls had Chronic Lung Disease and needed 24-hour oxygen. They were kept in hospital on the neonatal ward until mid-January 2019 during which time they, collectively, had 10 blood transfusions and had several serious complications. Once the twins were discharged, they required round the clock care and oxygen for another eight months.
Ella-Mae contacted Rainbow Trust after reading about their support on the neonatal ward at Guys and St Thomas’. After an assessment, Ella-Mae and Giovanni were assigned Fiona, their own dedicated Family Support Worker.
“Fiona gave us emotional support during the hardest time of our lives. We had no certainty the girls would make it, and this support made the world of difference to us. The magnitude of difficulty and the overwhelming rollercoaster that comes with having two sick children is unimaginably hard. We are eternally grateful to Rainbow Trust for helping us get through.”
Fiona provided Ella-Mae and Giovanni with emotional and practical support and helped the couple with moving the girls back home. She also took them to hospital appointments and helped with the girls’ oxygen. Fiona also provided Ella-Mae and Giovanni with some much-needed respite.
“I couldn’t do it without Fiona and Rainbow Trust. Having her visit for a couple of hours is like coming out of deep water and being able to breathe again. Having someone to talk to and who is good with the girls is amazing. She’s incredible,” says Ella-Mae.
Rainbow Trust Family Support Workers support the whole family as everyone is affected when a child, let alone, two, are seriously ill. So many mums feel that they can’t or shouldn’t ask for help but the truth is that at a time when their worlds feel like they are falling out from under them, help is vital.
“If you feel worried to ask for help you shouldn’t be. Rainbow Trust has experience with various families and always made us feel that our voices were heard. They are the kindest people with the warmest hearts and we are eternally thankful for their support.”
“The support from Rainbow Trust has made my journey easier and cushioned the blow at the hardest time of our lives.”