Hi my name is Sam, I am originally from the UK and have been living in Australia for 11 years now.
Last June 2017, whilst 9 months pregnant, I was struck down in agony whilst packing to move to our family home in preparation for the birth of our daughter. I felt like I was having a stroke as the right hand side of my body went numb and I felt like I was having a heart attack. I called 000 and went to hospital still walking.
My daughter’s father came from work about an hour later, and as he got up to get me a drink I was struck again with agony 10 times worse, I was in agony feeling as though I was in an electric chair and being set on fire at the same time, I have no other way of explaining it but I was sure I was about to die and was worried about my baby. This attack lasted 15 minutes and when it was over I was paralysed from just above my belly button down and absolutely petrified, what was happening to me?
I had 2 further ruptures after that, five in total.
The next day after an MRI it was found I had an undiagnosed AMV in my spine (an abnormal cluster of veins wrapped around my spinal cord) which I would have been born with as it forms in utero. I have never had any symptoms and have led an active and adventurous life. My 9 month uterus had put pressure on an artery in my groin and that pressure had met this AVM and ruptured it into my spinal cord paralysing me permanently. I was told in utter shock that I would never walk again and that they would have to deliver my baby via C-section.
My daughter River was born on the 8th June and completely healthy, the moment I held her in my arms everything from the past 12 hours or so just drifted away, it was incredible.
In the process of this journey my partner, River’s father, left as he couldn’t cope so I lost my little family as I knew it and the home I had been packing for and so excited to move to while I was pregnant. I moved here to Brisbane to be with River’s father and I know nobody here, I have no family in Australia.
Over these past 11 months it has been very lonely being a single mother in a wheelchair and I’d so very much love to see my family in the UK again, it’s been 7 years since I have seen any of them. I lost my father and my grandfather within the 3 months before River was born, so after a horrendous 2017 I need family more than ever. I am not able to fly there and my family can’t afford to come here either.
So any contribution no matter how small, towards me seeing them again would be so greatly appreciated.
Thank you for your time reading a little about me