I was forced to choose between my baby or his mother’s life

A father recalled the impossible choice he was asked to make: choose between his wife and his premature baby.

Michael Gerry Fotheringham McConnell, 33, from Scotland, was forced into an unimaginable position last year when his fiancee Stephanie Brown, 29, started losing amniotic fluid at 18 weeks pregnant and was rushed into surgery emergency.

After the first health alert and further tests, doctors thought the baby’s heart was “too big” – and then referred the mum-to-be to a heart specialist.

Michael Gerry Fotheringham McConnell and Stephanie Brown suffered a tragic loss.
Jam Press/Michael Gerry Fotherin

The analysis tragically revealed that the baby’s lungs were too small for his body and out of proportion with the rest of his organs.

The excited parents, who tragically miscarried a few years earlier, have been told the heartbreaking news that their baby will not come to term.

Brown was told to carry her pregnancy for another six weeks to give their son – whom they later named Mickey – the best chance of survival, before being transferred to Wishaw General Hospital to give birth.

Stephanie Brown and her baby boy Mickey, who tragically passed away on July 24.
Stephanie Brown and her baby boy Mickey, who tragically passed away on July 24.
Jam Press/Michael Gerry Fotherin

However, the predicament got even worse when McConnell received a call from the hospital, informing him that there was a serious complication when the umbilical cord had collapsed.

It was then that McConnell was asked the impossible.

“The doctor who was going to give birth took me aside and asked me: ‘If things go wrong, who will survive? Mom or the baby? ” McConnell told Jam Press.

McConnell said he was “terrified” when he “saw all these people and their faces”, which told him everything he needed to know about “the seriousness” of his partner’s condition.

Mickey weighed less than a bag of sugar when he was born.
Mickey weighed less than a bag of sugar when he was born.
Jam Press/Michael Gerry Fotherin

“When I learned that my fiancée’s life was in danger, my heart froze – all I cared about then was that she was okay,” he said. declared.

According to the Cleveland Clinic, the complication must be treated immediately so that the fetus does not press on the cord, cutting off oxygen.

Despite this, they wanted to deliver their baby boy, but many advised that he might not make it happen.

“Everyone was skeptical about her survival, especially since the weeks leading up to her birth were a real strain on Stephanie’s body,” he explained.

The father shared the heartbreaking moment he was asked to choose between his fiancé and his baby.
The father shared the heartbreaking moment he was asked to choose between his fiancée and his baby.
Jam Press/Michael Gerry Fotherin

“I’ve been by his side through the worst and scariest times of my life and with his fluid loss, having to hold my boy in his body for six weeks – it was exhausting, physically and mentally,” said McConnell.

The placenta was stuck on Brown’s stomach and bladder, meaning a C-section delivery was the best way to deliver their son, who was born weighing just 1 pound, 3 ounces, in November 2021.

“There were so many people in the theater and my heart was in my mouth the whole time,” McConnell recalled.

The baby deteriorated when he was only a few months old.
The baby deteriorated when he was only a few months old.
Jam Press/Michael Gerry Fotherin

“They took my boy off the operating table and everything was calm – all I remember is the first time he used his voice. We were in awe, it was so clear and so loud At that point, the relief was huge,” McConnell said.

Mickey spent three months in the neonatal intensive care unit before being transferred to a hospital closer to home. However, as doctors prepared to move him, his condition began to deteriorate.

“The doctors at the hospital called him ‘blue bends’ and said he might not make it,” the devastated father explained, saying there was “a miscommunication and we got together. felt gravely disappointed by the care he received at this time.”

A GoFundMe page has since been set up to help support the family during this difficult time.
A GoFundMe page has since been set up to help support the family during this difficult time.

“To this day, we still do not know the reason for its deterioration,” he added.

Doctors said Mickey was in end-of-life care after his body grew too large for his lungs.

The little boy died on July 24 in his mother’s arms.

A GoFundMe page has since been set up to help support the family during this difficult time.

“He was the brightest star I have ever known, I will never forget the impact my boy had on this earth, he was truly a warrior,” McConnell said in a tribute to his young son. “He was in pain, now he is at peace, shine my little warrior.

“Rest in peace our beautiful son.”

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