It was November of 2015, when Millie Smith and partner Lewis Cann found out that they were expecting twins daughters.
As the British couple were happy to welcome their twin daughters, few weeks later things changed terribly, as the doctor stated that only one of the babies would survive due to a fatal condition.
“During the scan, the doctor didn’t say anything. I was very excited and loved seeing the little babies, but she was silent. Both Lewis and I immediately knew there must be a problem,” Millie Smith said.
One of the twins had anencephaly. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) shared that 1 in 4,600 babies in United States are affecting from this condition, where the baby couldn’t develop a brain and skull. They stated that “almost all babies born with anencephaly will die shortly after birth.”
As they were aware that they will lose one of their babies, they wanted to proceed with the pregnancy, as the situation might had a chance of affecting the other baby.
The couple named their twins Skye and Callie.
“We knew that Skye needed to have a name before she was born,” Smith shared. “Knowing she would only survive for seconds or minutes, I wanted her to be named during that time.”
For chosing the name Skye, Smith said, “was somewhere we knew she would always be, that we could look up at the sky and remember our baby.”
On the 30th of April, the babies were born through a C-section. “When the girls were born, they both cried. This was a huge moment, as we were told that Skye would not make a noise or move,” Smith said, which she spent three hours with her daughter before she passed away.
“We were cuddling Skye when she passed away. This was the worst moment in our lives. I have never ever felt heartbreak like that before. But I am proud that she fought for so long to spend time with us.”
Callia was put in the NICU.
“Most of the nurses were aware of what had happened, but as time passed, people stopped talking about Skye. After about four weeks, everyone acted as though nothing had happened, meaning the families around me had no idea about our situation,” Smith said.
“None of the other parents knew what had happened or anything about Skye. The comment was completely innocent and more out of humor…They weren’t to know that I did at one point have two.”
“But the comment nearly broke me. I ran out [of] the room in tears and they had no idea why. I didn’t have the heart to tell them what had happened. A simple sticker would have avoided that entire situation.”
Then Smith came up with the idea that she needed to create something to speak for the parents who lost their newborns. She made a poster for NICU, a purple butterfly. It meant that one or more babies in a set lost on the birth or short after birth.
“I chose butterflies, as I felt it was fitting to remember the babies that flew away, the color purple because it is suitable for both boys or girls,” Smith shared.
“Ultimately I will never be able to stop this from happening but the more support groups we can set up and put things in place like the stickers the better it will be. It’s the hardest thing anyone has to deal with,”
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