It’s all uphill for pre-term babies, says Georgina15/11/2011 01:18
By Breda Heffernan
GEORGINA Ahern has spoken of the fear she felt for her twin sons after they were born two months premature.
She and husband, Westlife’s Nicky Byrne, are now proud parents of healthy four-year-olds Rocco and Jay.
However, like thousands of parents of pre-term babies born in Ireland each year they went through a rollercoaster of emotions as they kept an anxious vigil by their incubators.
“They were eight weeks early but they were very well,” said Georgina.
“The hospital and the nurses were saying ‘they’re fine, they just need to grow’. I’m thinking ‘are you sure, are they OK?’”
The daughter of former Taoiseach, Bertie Ahern, was speaking as she took part in a ‘Spinathon’ for charity Irish Premature Babies, of which she is patron, at MU gym in Malahide, Dublin, last night.
The event saw dozens of supporters cycle in relays to cover a total of 657 miles — the distance between all the neo-natal intensive care units in the country — to highlight the lengthy journeys some parents of premature babies have to undertake when their child is transferred to Dublin for specialist care.
The charity wants to see parents of premature babies given emergency accommodation in maternity hospitals.
“Like any other mother you have anxieties, and then you have this on top of it,” said Georgina.