We are very sad to share the news of the death of our sweet and wonderful
baby girl Imogen.
Imogen was born at 28 weeks gestation in a state of good health, but
weighing only 500 grams. To look into her huge, penetrating, intelligent
eyes was to fall in love with a unique and fiesty little girl. And all of
us who have loved her together have hoped and prayed for her to grow up as
our most ardent desire. And she tried as hard as ever anyone could to do
just that. Beating bacterial infections, pneumonia and all the hardships of
prematurity. But she couldn't grow fast enough and the ventilator that
eased the huge burden of breathing with such tiny lungs slowly destroyed
those very lungs. Making, in the end, her need for oxygen more than she
The last time we weighed Imogen she was 860 grams. Growth, but not enough
new lung tissue to reduce her ventilation. Instead Imogen was caught in a
spiral of worsening Chronic Lung Disease as the pressure of the ventilated
air scarred her lungs, requiring ever more pressure to inflate her lungs,
causing more damage and so on...
In her 75 days Imogen had some wonderfull times. Watching all her friends
in the New Born Care Centre; listening to her Daddy reading stories;
wearing beautiful outfits sent from all over the world by her friends;
holding hands, snuggling; sitting outside and listening to the rain; and
taking a bubble bath.
After some nearly fatal episodes it was clear on Wednesday that she was
tiring and only had a short time left. Rather than have her experience the
suffering of an acute episode, perhaps without us there, we decided instead
to withdraw support on Wednesday afternoon. Karin and I both got to hold
Imogen for 2 hours, we then gave her a bath (with bubble jets from the
oxygen hose). We then took her off all the machines and Dr John hand
ventilated her while we took her into a nice quite room and sat with her on
the balcony awhile. Karin held Imogen and we all held hands as her tube was
removed. She slipped away fairly quitely apart from some last gasps....