Losing Lachlan was devastating but his spirit lives on in Lily
A young mum was devastated when a premature birth led to the death of one of her twins.
Cheryl O’Donnell delivered little Lily and Lachlan Finnigan at just 25 weeks after she was referred to Wishaw General for specialist treatment.
The 32-year-old had been diagnosed with pre- eclampsia at 21 weeks and warned that she wouldn’t be able to carry to full term.
Despite successfully giving birth to the twins, who weighed less than two pounds each, the tots were so premature that they y faced a battle to survive.
After a brave fight, Lachlan an tragically died just five ve months later.
Cheryl said: “It was s heartbreaking. Totally y heartbreaking.
“At the beginning it was s actually Lily that me and my y partner Gordon were most st worried about because she e seemed to be suffering from m a lot of complications.
“But she just got stronger r and stronger while Lachlan n didn’t.
“They both had to battle e through so much after they y were born and it was 100 0 days before we were even n able to hold them for the first rst time.” time”
After 15 weeks, Lily was well enough to go home but Lachlan never gained the strength to leave hospital. He passed away in February this year.
Cheryl said: “It was a really hard time for us but the staff at Wishaw General could not have been better.
“They helped us make some of the hardest decisions imaginable when Lachlan wasn’t responding to treatments and we had to decide whether it was worth putting him through any more.
“Losing Lachlan was terrible but Lily is doing so well now because of the care she received at Wishaw General and she is keeping Lachlan’s spirit alive.”
On September 11, Cheryl and Gordon, from East Kilbride, released balloons at Lachlan’s grave in memory of the tot and in celebration of Lily’s first birthday.
Cheryl said: “Originally it was meant to be a small thing but we actually ended up with over 100 people there celebrating with us.
“We had a cake with Lachlan and Lily’s names on it – it was gorgeous.”
In honour of World Prematurity Day on November 17, Cheryl is raising funds for Wishaw’s Neonatal Unit.
She is currently training to be a beauty therapist and plans to p host a “p “pamper day” at the ho hospital on Friday for pa patients and staff.
The beauty tre treatments, including m massages, manicures an and pedicures, will be fre free of charge with any do donations made going tow towards the hospital.
S She said: “I want to giv give a pamper day to he help the mums in the un unit because I know how horrible it can be and how difficult it is to be there.
““And I really want to g give back because I cann cannot tell you just how supportive the neona neonatal team at Wishaw is.”
Cheryl and Gordon started a Facebook blog called A Premature Journey to help keep a diary of the twins early months and raise awareness of premature births for other families.
The pamper day is not the first time Cheryl has raised money for Wishaw’s neonatal unit, having taken part in the Kilt Walk in April and raising over £3000.
She said: “We smashed our target and I’m so thankful to all our friends and family who donated.”
Together Mum Cheryl with Lily and, right, the birthday cakes Above Little Lachlan who lost his fight for life
Kilt walk success Cheryl and Gordon after the Kilt Walk