When primary school teacher Allison Lewis fell pregnant last year, she and her husband Chad couldn’t have been happier.
But at just 6 weeks into the pregnancy Allison began to experience pain and was referred by her GP for a scan. It was at this early point that Obstetrician, Susan Winspear of Newcastle Private Hospital, informed Allison that she was having twins.
Despite some gruelling morning sickness, the next few months of the pregnancy were fairly smooth, Allison attended monthly scans at the hospital with pleasing progress. At 24 weeks things took a different turn.
“I remember sitting in the waiting room with Chad and talking about how well things were going. Literally moments later my obstetrician told us that my cervix was shortening and that I was to leave work that day for total rest,” said Allison.
With the risk of pre-term labour high, Allison spent the next two weeks in bed while her family rallied round to support.
At 26 weeks Allison had a worrying bleed and was again admitted for scans. Just 3 days before Christmas she was told she needed to stay in the maternity unit at Newcastle Private Hospital (NPH) so she could be carefully monitored until the babies were born.
“Every week was a milestone, the midwives updated a white board to track every week I passed.The NPH staff were amazing and kept us really well informed, answered our concerns no matter what or when we we raised them, I felt like we were in really good hands, I kept praying I would reach 28 weeks, then 30,”
Allison managed to reach 32 weeks and 4 days before labour began.
“That night I knew something wasn’t right. My obstetrician took more scans and saw i was starting to dilate, the babies were on their way,”
Allison and Chads daughters were delivered by Cesarian section, weighing just 1380 grams and 1490 grams.
Having endured weeks of scans and waiting, the next 6 weeks could have been even harder for Allison and Chad with daughters Quinn and Piper to stay in the NPH special care nursery but the staff at the hospital made what could have been an extremely difficult time much easier.
“Going home without the girls was definitely the hardest part but the NPH maternity staff were amazing. It had never occurred to me before how hard these people work, the maternity unit became like an extended family.”
“I was allowed to have time holding the girls everyday and shown how to bath them and begin feeds when they were able.”
8 weeks on and the girls have grown to weigh in at 3 and 3.5 kilos, they are home and doing well.
“I’m loving every moment of being a mum and cannot thank the hospital enough.”