20th April 2023

Showcase Saturdays

Greg Johnston

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Tommy’s Story

We are proud to share Tommy’s story with you… Tommy’s family are very special to Team Evie – his dad Marc is part of our events team and his mum Kate has helped us with various PR jobs over the years. Both Marc and Kate helped and supported Team Evie before Tommy was born, so we were incredibly proud to be able to support them on their journey in a number of ways. Kate has kindly written Tommy’s story, which you can read here:

My pregnancy with Tommy was tricky from the off but I did put a lot of this down to it being my second with much less time to relax! The sickness lasted throughout and towards the end – at only 6 months – it felt as though I could not physically grow any bigger. After several trips to West Cumberland Hospital, I was told they would be transferring me to Sunderland where they had a Neonatal Unit in case I did go into labour…

It was a good call and one I will be forever grateful for.

Our Tommy River Skillen was born at 30 weeks weighing a teeny 2 pounds 12.5 ounces on the 25th June 2019, much earlier than his anticipated 2nd September due date! I cannot convey our gratitude to all the staff at both hospitals– earth’s incredible angels who ensured Tommy’s safe delivery and who gave him the very best start to his life.

On our return to West Cumbria our transition ‘back home’ to Whitehaven Special Care Baby Unit was made more comforting with the Team Evie Parent Pack. With all the essentials a new special care parent needs including a pair of Mini boos that Tommy and I each swapped to maintain comfort when we had to be apart. The newly renovated family rooms provided copious cups of tea in a modern and homely environment.

The fabulous portable libraries meant Tommy’s big brother Robinson could read to him whilst he was still in his incubator, this involved Robinson in Tommy’s care and created some sense of normality. It also provided Robinson with some age-appropriate books to entertain him during those trips to hospital that must’ve been quite scary and daunting for him.

So thank you Evie and your amazing legacy, for the comforting resources that really did make a huge difference not to mention all of the specialist equipment and staff training that your charity funded. A charity close to our hearts and one we will always champion.