Wednesday, 4 July 2012

So Miss Olive is 3 months now. I wanted to kick off the blog with her story up until now.
Eddie and I were gifted with two beautiful children - a boy, Jaxon, who is 6 and a girl, Meisha, who is almost 5. Everybody told us we were blessed with the pigeon pair and 'you don't want another!' But we did. I always wanted 3 children, so we decided to have our last baby.
I discovered I was pregnant on August 1st 2011 - the day before Eddie's birthday. So for his birthday I gave him a card, and signed it from 'Kizzie, Jaxon, Meisha and Baby #3 Due April 12'. He was absolutely stoked! We have stuck the card in Olive's baby book.

The pregnancy went OK - as well as a pregnancy does when you don't particularly enjoy being pregnant. Got the heartburn, the sciatica, the rib pains, the tiredness, morning sickness, grumpiness, along with some bonus tachycardia. But out of all 3 pregnancies, Olive's was the most enjoyable.
We found out at our 20 week scan we were having another girl and from then on, she was affectionately nicknamed Chinamoon Berry. This was her name throughout the entire pregnancy, and she even has a little suit with it printed on the front from her Aunty Amz.
I had a planned cesarean section with Olive, due to 2 previous cesars. It was scheduled for April 3 2012 at 38weeks 5days, which is a bit earlier than when I had the other two.
The day before, I had still had this hideous cough that I hadn't managed to get rid of. I was so worried they would bump me another week because of it, so went to the hospital to ask the obstetrician. After a lot of muck about, we were told to just come in the next morning as planned, but that we may also get bumped because they were so full up! Nooooo!

The next morning, we did as planned and turned up at 7.30am. We were nervous and excited to meet our new little baby but worried we would get bumped to another day.

We went in and start getting prepped almost immediately. Today WAS the day! I had Mum there as an extra support person (Mum is a midwife - I can’t have a baby without Mum!). After what seemed like a lot of mucking around, I finally got wheeled into theatre and they started the process.
At 10.06am, our baby was pulled from inside me and held up for me to see. IT WAS A GIRL!! She didn’t sqwark like I expected her to, and because of the drugs etc I was in a bit of shock…..
Mum and my midwife took her over to the table and her apgars were 9 and then 10. She had some odd marks on her head so Mum called the paediatrician. Three minutes later my baby crashed. She stopped breathing and went blue, floppy and unresponsive. Her heart rate dropped, and they started resuscitating her. An urgent call was put through to the paed.

As they were resuscitating her, they turned her over and saw what looked like tumours all over her tiny back. Both Mum and my midwife thought she had crashed because of this, and that whatever was on her back was attacking her body, and killing her. With the help of the paeds they managed to stabilise her and clean off the vernix (there was a lot!) for a better look. Baby was taken to SCBU, with no skin to skin contact between her and I, and I was taken to recovery.
I lay in recovery for about half an hour, with empty arms. I wanted my baby. I made Eddie and Mum go with our little girl and my midwife, God bless her, stayed with me and held my hand the entire time. She tried to distract me with silly talk and it worked for the most part….but all I wanted was to meet my baby girl.
Eventually, they took me back to my room and on the way they wheeled me into SCBU to meet this wee precious. She was lying in an incubator with no-one holding her or touching her, just loads of people staring at her. In a room full of tiny and sick babies, she was definitely the healthiest looking - she was 8lb15oz!
The consultant informed me she had a Giant Congenital Melynocytic Nevus…a bathing trunk nevus.
This meant nothing to me at the time, I was just so so thankful she was alive and breathing. Apparently she had crashed simply because of her delivery - it was nothing to do with her 'condition'. She was handed to me and I attempted to feed her but with little success.They soon wheeled me back to my room where I waited for someone to bring me my baby.

Five hours (and a lot of urging from Eddie and I) later, my new, third love was brought to me. The relief I felt when I finally held my little angel is inexplicable. I was so worried she wouldn't bond with me, because it had been so long. But if anything, it was the opposite. She knew right away who her Mummy was, and how fiercely I wanted to protect her. From that moment on, she would turn her head whenever she heard me...she would calm as soon as she heard my voice. Even now, if she spots me across the room, she watches to make sure I am looking at her!

I managed to get feeding established soon after birth, and my milk came in on day 2.
When the drugs had worn off a bit and I was a bit more coherent, the consultant came to speak to us. He told us our daughter had a Giant Congenital Melanocytic Nevus in her bathing trunk area. It is basically a giant birthmark. It covers about 70-80% of her back, her wee bottom and wraps around her front. She has 4 scalp nevus as well as one on her arm and one on her leg. Since her birth she has had smaller ones, known as satellites, appear on her legs, and just yesterday I found 2 on her face, and today 2 on her arm.

Sometime in the first trimester, when the melanin was being distributed, it basically went a bit hyperactive in one area. There is no rhyme or reason as to how it happens, it just does. I like to think of this part as a tiny bit of magic, sprinkling itself through my wee girl's body.

She is a rare 1 in 500,000 who have the Giant nevus. The doctors here do not know a lot about it, and a lot of the advice they gave us in the early days was guesswork on their behalf. I think I am as educated, if not more, than any of the 10 plus doctors who came to see Olive for 'medical research' when she was born!
It shouldn't affect her everyday life. She has a slight increased risk of melanoma, but we are often told that risk is exagerated, and isn't as high as thought.
I have had my cry, about my girl not being as I expected, but I am so thankful that she is ok...that she is alive and kicking and that this is effectively 'just cosmetic'. That term does undermine it, I feel in a way. Because this does change Olive's path. It makes it that wee bit harder than any of ours. Eddie and I hope to raise her just as the other two, and with the mindset that it is just part of her, but not what defines her.
We have amazing (and I mean AMAZING) friends and a family who are as protective and loving to our children as us, and who I know will be a big input into Olive's and her brother and sister's upbringing.

Olive was given her name from a list of about 25 possible names. We went through each one, and felt she deserved a strong name, because of her rough start. As soon as we stopped on Olive, we knew it was the one. She was given Marie, in honour of my beautiful Nana Marie, who passed when I was pregnant with Olive.

So, in a long winded nut shell, that brings us to now. Olive is 3 months old, and thriving. She is a happy and healthy wee girl. She sleeps between 8 and 11 hours at night (bless her little cotton socks!). She is smiling, and lifting her head well and is even on the verge of laughing!

As for the medical side, we have seen the paediatrician and the paediatric dermatologist. We will see the paed derm every 6 months for monitoring to make sure Olive is progressing and that there are no changes to her nevus.

So this is her journey......


  1. Olive is beautiful :)

  2. love you Olive .xxxx love dave lavina crystal and river

  3. What a wonderful way to tell Olive's birth story. It is such a unique experience us Nevus mom's go through having our babies. As startling it is when we first learn of the condition is so amazing that most kids are otherwise completely healthy kids. I'm so glad to see someone else tell their birth story on their blog! I really think it helps new moms who might feel alone.

    1. Oh I missed this one too! I apologise! Yes, I felt it was something I needed to talk about. I think a lot of nevus Mama's need to tell their experience because it can be quite a traumatic experience. I am off to have a good look at your blog! x