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Jenna's story

“It was so important for us both to be together for this baby – our little rainbow.”

Within 24 hours of being born, Brodie Ward took his first flight. After being born by emergency caesarean at Grey Hospital, Brodie was starting to develop a fever. For his parents – Jenna and
James – it was awful.

“It was so dramatic and traumatic. Our first baby – a little girl – had been stillborn. So having our second baby rushed over to Christchurch – well, it was just horrible.”

NICU staff flew from Christchurch to pick up Brodie and Jenna while Jenna’s sister drove James over to Christchurch.

“It was a horrible drive for him. He arrived in Christchurch at midnight – luckily he had a cousin in Christchurch so went to stay there, as there was nowhere at Christchurch Women’s Hospital for him
to sleep.” Meanwhile, Brodie was in NICU and Jenna was being cared for on Level Five at Christchurch Women’s Hospital. Brodie stayed in NICU for 30 hours until antiobiotics started working, and then he
transferred to be in Jenna’s hospital room with her.

“The hospital was so full, so busy. So we didn’t ask if he could stay, and he had family in Christchurch, but it would have been 100% better if he had been there. Managing a baby at night after a caesarean is really difficult.” Jenna says the care she received from the team at Christchurch Women’s Hospital was amazing, but the whole experience could have been so much better if James had been able to stay alongside them.

“Not being able to stay together sucked a bit and it was a bit hard for me emotionally but there was no other choice really. I guess after our first, our daughter, was stillborn it was so important for us
both to be together for this baby – our little rainbow.”

Jenna is supporting Māia Health Foundation by sharing her story, as she knows the difference a specialist lie-flat maternity chair will make.

“It would have been amazing for us. I want other families to have that – to be able to stay together. The difference will be huge.”

For more information about Māia’s Maternity Campaign click here

To gift it forward now, click here

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