Luna's story by Nicola Rowett

We have been blessed with two beautiful children, but knew we still had so much more love to give.

We were so excited when we found out we were expecting our third child, but being the third pregnancy we had the attitude of “we’ve done this before and knew what to expect”.

To start with it was no different to my other pregnancies, morning sickness and being tired. I was classified as high risk, but I was told that was because I had a high BMI. Our baby girl was growing and developing fine and there were no concerns.

My Placenta was anterior. I had not had an anterior placenta before, so going into my 20 week scan I hadn’t felt Luna move at all and was very nervous. I was so anxious to hear her heartbeat. It was there, and everything was fine and going as expected. We did have difficulty getting all the scans that were required as Luna was an active baby. She was 23 weeks by the time I had completed the 20 week scan for the doctors to get all the images they needed.

At 23 weeks I was finally feeling Luna move and the doctors confirmed everything was normal and there were no concerns.

I was booked in for a “wellbeing” scan at 28 weeks.

During that time, I noticed I had stopped feeling Luna move. I kept thinking or hoping this was because of my anterior placenta, and maybe this was blocking the movement.

I did raise this on a phone consult where I was asked if I had experienced any bleeding or pain – which I hadn’t and wasn’t given much advice or clarification.

I did have a bad feeling going into the 28 week scan, I knew within minutes of the scan starting something wasn’t right. The doctor said she could not find a heartbeat and I was advised to go to hospital.

Once at the hospital we waited for another doctor who did another scan and confirmed there was no heartbeat. The doctor went through our options, whether I wanted to be given medication to bring on labour, or if I wanted surgery which would have meant no more children.

At the time I just wanted it to be over and wanted surgery- I didn’t want any more children if I couldn’t have my baby. After discussing with my husband, we decided to try the medicine to bring on labour and deliver naturally.

They gave me a tablet to take to start the process and told me to come back the next morning. They said to ring if anything was progressing overnight. It didn’t and we were up at the hospital on Sunday at 10am.

From there was a slow process. I was taken to my delivery room and from there it was an hour before anyone came and spoke with me.

It was around 12pm before the midwives provided more medicine to bring on labour, as they were only giving me half dosage every 3 hours it was slow. I opted for a morphine drip to help manage the pain.

Things started to move, and the pain was intense from 9:30pm. At 11:01pm on Sunday 20th June 2021 I finally gave birth to our baby girl Luna. She was 32cm and 725 grams.

The doctors think Luna passed away 1 week before I delivered. This was the most heart breaking and emotional thing I have ever experienced. Holding my lifeless baby girl, tears streaming down my face, trying to remember everything there is about her.

I remember my husband just staring at her, tears in his eyes. He didn’t want to let go of his baby girl. He just sat there holding her.

Luna has my nose, she looked so much like our eldest daughter Sadie. She would have been cheeky like her brother Jonah. We spent a few hours with Luna, crying and talking to her before the nurse took Luna away to the cold cot.

The next morning, we had our immediate family come up to the hospital, they had time to meet Luna and give her cuddles. I remember just wanting to leave and to be home with Sadie and Jonah.

When they hospital discharged me, it hit me I couldn’t leave. How could I just leave my baby girl at the hospital, how is she not coming home with me. Leaving was another heartbreaking experience. I remember walking out and feeling like everyone was looking at me. I was walking out with a box, sobbing. Walking passed all the new mums and their babies and the mums waiting to deliver their babies.

The days that followed were a roller coaster, I was able to go up two more times to see Luna and said our final goodbye. We celebrated Sadie’s 5th birthday three days later, and mine two days after Sadie’s, in the middle of grieving and organising Luna’s funeral.

I think of how special it is having Luna, Sadie and my birthday all in the same week of June.

The days after all blurred into one, we don’t have any reason as to why Luna died. My blood test result came back fine, and Luna’s autopsy gave us no answers. Luna was healthy and developing fine, and then died. That is torture, knowing our baby girl was healthy and there is no reason why she couldn’t be with us.

Written by Nicola Rowett – Mum to Luna