Abigail Yashim watched her unborn baby’s heart take its final beat during a scan and thought she would never again feel such an unbearable pain.
But she had to keep strong as her baby, Zion, was a twin. Zoe, from Nottingham, was born a few days later at 26-weeks-old. For Abigail, her husband Jeremiah, and their young daughters, Samantha and Joan, their world continued to be thrown into turmoil as Zoe’s health continued to deteriorate. But tiny Zoe was a fighter.
“We were told so many times that she wouldn’t make it, but we kept going and refused to give up.” said Abigail of Nottinghamshire. “We came home from hospital just before her first birthday and was referred to Rainbows. I was ready to accept any kind of help. I was put in touch with a Family Support Nurse who was so nice and helpful.”
During her year in hospital, Zoe had a Tracheostomy and Gastrostomy and she is fed through a tube. She also has very weak muscles and endures a lot of physiotherapy.
“During my pregnancy with the twins, I felt completely exhausted and had high blood pressure,” said Abigail. “At 23-weeks pregnant, doctors realised Zion was very sick. One night, I was struggling so much. I woke and could feel one twin wasn’t moving. A few hours later, while having a scan, I watched my baby’s heart take its final beat. I just didn’t know what to do or how to react. I felt like I was in space unable to respond. I literally saw her heart stop beating.”
Then Abigail became very ill and was advised to give birth to Zoe in order to save her own life. “Two weeks after her sister had given up and I was emotionally drained, I gave birth to Zoe via a C-section,” she said. “It was a very strange time. I was scared and sad. I didn’t know whether to cry or scream. I was just there.”
For the family, life has been a struggle and they have all benefited from the support of our charity. Zoe, who is now two-and-a-half, simply loves our hospice and our staff.
“Rainbows has taken care of us so well,” said Abigail. “When you see people who are so nice, you know they will look after your child with kindness and sincerity. I knew that I could relax and the first night we stayed at Rainbows, I couldn’t wait to get to bed so I could actually sleep. That was the first time I had been away from Zoe but I had confidence that they would look after her. There was always someone there by her side making sure Zoe was ok.
“Rainbows has also been really beneficial for my other daughters as they take part in activities at the hospice and they know there are people around them who care and understand.
“Sometimes this life is so unpredictable, I learned to try my best, even if you don’t know the end result. Zoe makes me so happy, she is so resilient and always smiling.”
Rainbows has also been really beneficial for my other daughters as they take part in activities at the hospice and they know there are people around them who care and understand.