Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Our Lovely Daughter Shouldn't Be Here! SHATTERED IVF MUM HAD OP TO GET RID OF 'DEAD' BABY ... WHO LIVED

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Our Lovely Daughter Shouldn't Be Here! SHATTERED IVF MUM HAD OP TO GET RID OF 'DEAD' BABY ... WHO LIVED

Article excerpt

Byline: KATY SIMPSON

THIS is Alexandra, the baby who refused to die.

After spending thousands of pounds on IVF treatment over a heartbreaking five years, Donna and Neil Caldwell crumbled when doctors told them they could find no heartbeat at just six weeks.

They were told the pregnancy had failed, and with a heavy heart the couple, from South Shields, reluctantly agreed to go ahead with a procedure to clear the womb and prepare her body to start the IVF cycle again.

But the procedure at Gateshead's Queen Elizabeth Hospital removed only womb lining.

The "dead" baby was in fact clinging on for life and still growing.

Grieving Donna, 33, and Neil, 43, had no idea the baby they longed for so desperately was, in fact, still with them.

One month after the procedure stunned doctors found that Donna was still pregnant. But the couple's joy was quickly overshadowed by the horror of thinking what the baby had been subjected to.

Following the operation - a procedure which can also be used in abortions - Donna was prescribed antibiotics, painkillers and appetite-suppressing medication.

She later realised she also had a night drinking alcohol, went on a sunbed and spent a day lifting heavy boxes at work.

But against all the odds, little Alexandra Lydia May Caldwell refused to let go of life.

And to the amazement of her disbelieving parents and doctors, Alex was born a healthy 8lb, a bonny sister to seven-year-old James, who was also conceived through IVF.

Although they are thrilled to finally have the second child they always dreamed of, Donna and

Neil cannot help but feel overwhelmed by guilt and anger.

Cuddling her precious nineweek-old daughter, Donna told the Chronicle she is tortured by the thought that Alex might not have been with them.

Donna, who owns L'Amour bridal shop on Boldon Lane, South Shields, said: "It's always at the back of my mind we aborted her. …

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