Michael’s Story

Margot & Michael Curtin

Michael 08/03/06 (D)

Edward’s Syndrome

Hello there. My name is Michael Finbarr Con and although my Mammy and Daddy live down there on earth and I am up here in Heaven, we are always together. I’m with them every day, from the moment they wake up in the morning until they go to sleep at night. Mammy asked me to help her write our story because she needs divine inspiration to put it into words and everybody says that I’m an Angel!!

Mammy says she never wanted an Angel though, just a little baby for herself and Daddy to love and to cherish. There are no certainties in this world though and my fate was determined from the moment of conception. Nobody knew it then but I had Edward’s Syndrome and it was going to be a struggle for me to survive. I was already on my way to Heaven.

Mammy and Daddy were ecstatic when they discovered Mammy was pregnant with me. Disbelief that finally their prayers were answered. Mother Nature had been given a helping hand. It was combined with modern science for us by Dr Waterstone and his miracle co-workers at the Cork Fertility Centre. Our fourth attempt at IVF was successful and I was going to be Mammy and Daddy’s first baby after fourteen years. I was a very special baby right from the start. My expected arrival date was April 18th 2006.

Following an initial scare, all the scans confirmed that the pregnancy was progressing well and at our eight week scan Daddy got very excited when he spotted my heartbeat flashing on the screen. He was thrilled and I continued to show off for the camera at every opportunity after that waving my hands etc. Mammy has the photos as proof!!

Then during a routine ante natal appointment at 28 weeks Mammy and Daddy where stunned when Dr Waterstone told them he was very concerned about the size of my tummy. It was much smaller than what it should have been for 28 week and he referred us to Professor Higgins at Erinville Hospital for a more detailed fetal assessment.

Mammy and Daddy were devastated when Professor Higgins discovered that only one side of my heart was working. I also had a huge amount of fluid around me which explains why Mammy felt my kicks were more like tickles!

Because I was almost at 29 weeks now Mammy had to have an amniocentesis test done there and then to determine whether I had an isolated heart problem or a more complicated chromosomal disorder.

Such an anxious week it was for Mammy, Daddy, family and friends waiting for those results.

On 6th February 2006 at 30 weeks Mammy and Daddy were given the heartbreaking news that my condition was much worse than doctors first anticipated and that I had Trisomy 18 (Edward’s Syndrome) and they were told that I was not going to survive. Mammy and Daddy were shocked and bewildered. They had never even heard of Edward’s Syndrome. Our lives changed forever that day and my future remained uncertain.

Our time together was precious and Mammy and Daddy loved and appreciated every moment we had left together. I lost my struggle to Edward’s Syndrome four weeks later when Mammy was 34 weeks pregnant. I was stillborn in the Bon Secours Maternity Hospital at 12.50pm on 8th March 2006 weighing 2lb 2oz. I was gorgeous but very fragile. I was delighted so many people came to see me and to offer comfort to Mammy and Daddy in their loss and sadness. Our ‘Mass of the Angels’ at the S.M.A. Blackrock Road was very beautiful and memorable. Mammy and Daddy couldn’t believe the outpouring of love and support which they received and which is still ongoing today from so many people.

Daddy says that I took a shortcut to Heaven and maybe I did but I am never more than a thought or a prayer away and I know that some day we’ll all meet up again. In the meantime, I will watch over all of you from above and I will grow with God and wait for you ‘til then……….

Love,

Baby Michael