Written by Teddy's mummy and daddy, Kelly and Gary Boyle:
"Teddy’s life was short but filled us with a lifetime of love. He was the strongest, bravest person we have ever known - a fighter, even before he was with us until his last breath. Outwardly perfect, unfortunately, inwardly, so seriously ill, so much so that we still have no definitive diagnosis as to what happened.
Our journey began a couple of years ago when were advised we may have difficulties conceiving naturally, after unsuccessful Clomid treatment, the next step was ICSI. Teddy was the only surviving embryo of 12. After the egg implantation Kellie’s health deteriorated, so much so that she was admitted to hospital where she spent 6 nights, hyper-stimulation, a side effect of the treatment, this, whilst very worrying for Kellie was, however a good sign ‘medically’, at this stage of the treatment process it was an indication of early pregnancy.
We were pregnant, after 5 months of nausea, a relatively straight forward pregnancy ensued with a due date of the 20th January 2020. Teddy was so comfortable in his mummy’s tummy we had to speed up his arrival; we were given an admission date of the 27th January for Kellie to be induced.
Kellie endured what the mid-wives described as a ‘textbook’ labour, Teddy was born, 8 pounds 8 ounces at 02.23am, 28th January, Gary cut the chord and Teddy let out a cry, he was laid on mummy’s chest for a short period, he didn’t make another noise and the mid-wife lifted him, took him to the resus bench for a little help, at this point there was absolutely no panic, we were completely reassured that this was in fact, normal procedure and we had our beautiful, healthy baby boy.
The number of medical professionals in the room increased over the next 5 minutes, we were then advised that Teddy would be taken to SCBU for observation and that we would see him very soon. Time passed and the phone rang, following the conversation, Gary perceived a change in the demeanour of the staff, he, unbeknownst to Kellie, began to feel that this was something more serious, he called our families who swiftly arrived.The consultant called to the room and advised they believed Teddy had a heart problem, they were waiting on the arrival of the ‘travel team’ from the Neo- Natal unit in the Royal to take Teddy to Belfast for a cardiology scan, if this scan revealed their fears, he would be taken to Dublin or the UK for surgery. Shock would not do justice to the emotions that overcame us. Gary was asked if we would like to get a blessing for Teddy, the true realisation of the situation came to light. Around 6am we met our son; in the elevator down to see him, his name was chosen. We met the travel team and were left in no doubt the seriousness of Teddy’s condition, it was explained to us that he may not survive the journey.
Teddy was blessed and on his way to Belfast where, all being well, we would reunite with him.
Kellie discharged herself and we were on our way to the Neo-Natal unit in the Royal. Teddy against the odds, made it and was now in the best possible place to continue his care; the next 48 hours were critical. Teddy’s condition was not heart related but an ‘unexplained collapse after birth’ at this point. It did not fall into any of the 3 major categories of babies generally being unwell: heart structure, troublesome labour, or infection. His case was extremely complicated, all his main organs were affected, and his blood acidosis levels were unreadable. As early as Wednesday 29th January we were advised that some of his symptoms were pointing towards an acute ‘Metabolic Mitochondrial’ diagnosis of which there was no cure, we were completely heartbroken. The Royal became our home, we stayed with Teddy over the next 2 weeks as he battled through every adversity & several ‘crashes’, he was the most talked about baby in the whole of the Royal. There were brainstorming sessions at his incubator side with specialist Consultants from every field trying to find solutions to the symptoms he was presenting.
He received the best care imaginable, both those who cared for Teddy and those who were not directly involved in his care, we are forever grateful. All of their hard work, dedication and love for Teddy was clearly apparent, even allowing us to bend the rules allowing Teddy to meet his immediate family; everyone went over and above to look after us.
Memories of bath time, changing nappies, kissing, touching and holding him we will cherish forever, Teddy held on to our fingers every minute we were with him, he knew his mummy and daddy’s voices when we spoke following us with his big dark eyes from side to side. Outwardly he looked so prefect, he was even pulling at his wires and tubes, it was difficult to understand our reality at the time. Teddy passed away, sleeping in Kellie’s arms, surrounded by his family at 01:09 am on 11th February. We will always treasure the time we had with Teddy and he will live on forever in our hearts, he is our greatest love and we grieve for him in everything we do. The hardest part of losing Teddy is everything Teddy has lost out on and the amazing life he deserved to live. We are hopeful of getting a definitive diagnosis and answers for our forever baby Teddy.
‘You are My Angel, My Darling, My Star, my love will find you were ever you are’.