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From the Independent, May 13, 2008 

Choosing a name for our second child was hard but we finally settled on the name Isaac, which we especially liked because it means “he laughs” in Hebrew, and every parent wants their child to be a smiley, happy person. Ironic that choice was to be – for Isaac will never smile, blink or even frown. 

When I walked into hospital to have a caesarean (Isaac was in the breech position) little did we know what a journey we were about to begin. Surgery was uncomplicated, and our first few hours with Isaac were relaxed and beautiful. Me, my husband and our perfect baby son were left in peace for hours before being transferred to the ward. Isaac’s brother came to meet him a few hours later and, other than worrying about whether I would be able to see the last episode of Life on Mars that night, all seemed fine. That all changed as my favourite programme was about to start.

By 9pm that night, Isaac had still not fed properly and we started to be concerned. As he had still not fed sufficiently, every other hour we were woken to try to feed, and in between that time poor Isaac had a needle in his foot (eight times in total) to check glucose levels. When no amount of prompting could encourage him to feed, he was taken to special care at 3am and I was left alone, with no baby to cuddle, in a ward full of crying babies and feeding mothers. It took five days before we could go home and, even then, no one knew why he was having problems feeding.

The consultant paediatrician decided that Isaac should have some genetic tests to see if any specific problems could be identified. Investigations continued and we had two agonising weeks to wait to see what the tests revealed. We cried with relief when those tests came back negative. This relief was, however, short-lived. Although Isaac was feeding slightly better, I still instinctively felt something was wrong.

Entire article here.

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