|Auntie Sarah, I |
The medical care given to Adam was extraordinary and this team of professionals, against all the odds, saved his life. But as if that wasn't enough, what they gave to us was more than extraordinary medical care. They treated us with respect and compassion - no question was too silly and no question was ever asked too often. They understood our need to know everything we could about Adam's prospects and they compassionately answered every question. They explained exactly what each machine attached to Adam was monitoring and reassured us every time an alarm sounded. The team encouraged us to be involved with Adam's care whenever we could, teaching us to complete his "cares" which is the term given for bathing and changing a baby in an incubator who must be treated with the utmost gentleness. We knew with absolute certainty that if there was anything they could do for Adam, it would be done without hesitation.
|Hello Dr Deshpande!|
Medically, this team of people saved the life of our son and in the process they protected and took care of us in ways we never could have expected. Each and every day this team of people battle impossible odds and however hard they try, they are not able to save every baby who is admitted to the unit. Yet this never stops them from pouring everything into caring for each new child. In the face of NHS budget cuts, the costs involved in running a neonatal unit are staggering. At one point, Chris accidently bumped my wheelchair into one of the unused incubators parked in the hallway and a nurse cheerfully called out to him, "Don't you worry, that bed only costs £22,000; we'll get another one!" Yes, you read that right, twenty-two thousand pounds for ONE incubator.
|Why is everybody laughing? Did I do something funny?|
Many parents after time spent on The Unit offer their thanks by giving a donation, raising money or knitting little clothes for the babies to wear when they have none. We wanted to do something to say thank you for everything the staff did for us and for Adam. So the concept of a sponsored walk was born.
|George on top of The Wrekin|
Chris decided to walk twenty-three miles, one mile to represent each day Adam spent in neonatal. As part of this walk, he climbed The Wrekin twice, the local 1,335 foot hill and walked from there to Shrewsbury Hospital. In the beginning, we hoped to raise £500 - a target that seemed huge. But very quickly, we were offered sponsorship from many different sources, private donations from family and friends, donations from community groups, churches and schools in Telford, even anonymous donations from local people who had heard of what we were doing through various media reports. Chris's office, Capula, offered to match any donations we could raise up to the value of £1,000 and we were overwhelmed.
|Chris and Lynne on the way to Shrewsbury|
Then others started joining in. First was my stepson George, then aged nine, who wanted to do something for his brother so he decided to walk five miles up and over The Wrekin and raised sponsorship of his own to do so. Then two of my sisters, one who lives in England and another visiting from Canada decided to join Chris for part of his walk as did Chris's sister. My brother-in-law even decided to do a 23-mile sponsored walk of his own on the same day in Canada. The sponsorship money kept rolling in and as Chris became more worried about being able to complete the challenge he had set for himself, we were overwhelmed and overjoyed at the amount we were raising.
|Just before Chris collapsed into bed!|
The final total raised for the Neonatal Unit of Royal Shrewsbury Hospital was a staggering £4,289.00 and we are incredibly grateful to all those who sponsored Chris or members of my family for helping us to achieve such an amazing goal. The donations page is still open so if you've been touched by Adam's story and would like to contribute, please visit www.justgiving.com/walkingforadam. Chris keeps talking about doing something else one day so who knows...
If you want to see the posts or publicity surrounding this walk, please click on the label "Walking for Adam".
|With part of the Neonatal team who saved Adam's life|