Two years ago Sofia Valentina was born. She had been due on January 30th, but she seemed to have inherited an Italian nonchalance about arriving on time from her father. We went to the hospital at 8am on Monday February 11th 2008 and I was induced.
I thought it was going to be one of the most (if not the most) wonderful days of my life. A day I would look back on with extreme happiness. It turned out to be even worse than the most frightening nightmare I could have imagined.
Due to hospital incompetence (the coroner’s future verdict was the very damning ‘gross neglect’) and the use of the unlicensed drug misoprostol (although we’ll never be able to prove it contributed), Sofia was born flat. She needed nine minutes of resuscitation to get her breathing (the neonatal crash team stop after ten minutes if there’s no response). She suffered severe brain damage and needed help breathing.
Two years ago was the very worst day of my life.