On the 20 November 2018 we gave birth to our much anticipated and loved baby girl. We didn't know what Poppy’s gender was, so it was bitter sweet to hear the words, “It’s a girl! “

I knew how badly my older daughter wanted a sister and her dad had said she was a girl all along. I wasn’t so convinced.

Poppy was born at 34 weeks. I knew that day/night that something was wrong, very little to no movement. I went to the hospitals to be put on the CTG machine Poppy's heart rate was ok sitting around 160 but she had a few dips when I was having Braxton hicks. These were not uncommon for me I had a severe case of polyhydramnios (this is extra amniotic fluid) and I was measuring very large for my dates. They could not find a reason for the polyhydramnios in my case.

Healthy babies heart rates are usually all over the place, normal dips and spikes. This shows the baby is active then resting. Poppy had no spikes so it showed she wasn’t moving. The midwife thought that this was enough cause to call in the on call obstetrician. My CTG results were described as having; ‘several abnormal features’,’ un reassuring’, and ‘not normal’ (midwives are always very well trained at reading these machines) , The obstetrician came in and had a look over the CTG results and said, "Well the results are not perfect but I don't think that the results are cause for an emergency" and he was confident to discharge me.... I was a bit shocked I thought I would be admitted to have on going monitoring till things improved or didn’t. I said to the obstetrician, “I still haven't felt my baby move" . The obstetrician suggested to go home and have a “Moro” bar and if I was still concerned in the morning to come back. I felt so un reassured. But they are trained in this right? They wouldn’t discharge me otherwise?. I later found out that one of the lovely midwifes who was caring for me was so uneasy about the decision to send me home, she documented her concerns and spoke with other people.

That whole night my partner and I lay there with our hands on my huge belly. We think we may have felt a kick, but that may have been wishful thinking.

The next day was my partners first day at his new job. I said it was probably nothing to worry about but could I have the number to his new job and then I headed back to the hospital. As I drove to the hospital I had a horrible feeling wash over me panic, fear, anxiety, hope but not hopeful? I knew this was not good. I could feel a hard lump maybe Poppy’s bum? I pushed firmly on this thinking ‘If you were alive you would move!’ You know about baby loss but this wouldn’t happen to you? I arrived at the hospital and was put on the CTG machine again. They started to move the monitors around I knew. The only sounds it was picking up was my racing heart and my sobs. My amazing midwife arrived as an emergency scan was being booked to confirm the worst, she said we needed to call my partner. I couldn’t do it I said let’s just do the scan first. We headed to the scan. This confirmed dear wee Poppy’s heart had stopped beating. We both broke down. She said we needed to call my partner again. I was frozen and numb, I could not break his heart as mine was. I wanted to protect him from this un bearable pain but there was no way to. This was his first child he was beyond excited for this. I asked her to make that call, this was something I couldn’t do.

Obstetricians are paid the big bucks to make the hard calls, they won't always be the right ones. They make many good ones too more good than bad. But still nobody knows our bodies like we do.

I’m writing my story to raise awareness around movements and how important they are, just as instincts are. If you find yourself in a similar situation make sure your voice is heard! Make sure you are reassured. If not don’t leave.

We don't know why she passed her autopsy was unexplained.

Our little heart breaker Poppy Sunshine a name that will never be forgotten a baby that only knew love and warmth a baby that was so wanted. her memory will always live on in so many hearts. We miss her so much.