A young mum whose baby boy was stillborn last month wants to help other parents going through similar heartache.
Ashley Stevens’ son Noah Webster was stillborn at Ninewells Hospital on January 21.
Ashley had spent a month in Ninewells because of concerns about her pregnancy.
She was admitted to hospital on Christmas Eve before going into premature labour.
Ashley then suffered placenta abruption (when the placenta separates early from the uterus) and tragically little Noah didn’t survive.
The 23-year-old, from Douglas, said: “On January 21 my beautiful baby boy Noah was born sleeping after appearing very quickly but after a long fight to stay inside.
“The heartache and pain is unexplainable and no parent should have to endure that pain.
“Sadly, it is something that is very common and so close to home.
“My beautiful boy weighed only 1lb so finding clothes to fit properly was a real struggle.
“He was delivered six days before he would officially have been classified as a stillborn baby but to me he was perfect.
“I got to hold him and spend time with him in hospital afterwards and that was a great comfort.
“I was lucky enough to find a lovely dressmaker who is a family friend who altered a babygrow and burial gown for my angel.”
Ashley, who has a daughter Harper, 4, said it gave her a great deal of comfort to know that Noah was buried in a beautiful outfit at his funeral on January 31.
Now Ashley wants to make sure that other parents of babies like Noah can also have the comfort of burying their children in specially-made outfits.
She said: “I want to raise enough to buy outfits or have them made for angel babies taken too soon.
“This is so every mummy and daddy can get the chance to dress their precious babies at least once.
“My aim is to raise enough funds to buy outfits or have them made for babies gone too soon, for a range of gestations from Noah’s size and upwards as it is difficult to find the clothes to fit.
“I believe it will bring a little comfort at such a devastating time, as it did for me being able to dress my baby like you do with any newborn.
“I also hope that by doing this I can raise awareness of the heartache and devastation felt by parents who lose babies in this way.
“This has been an incredibly upsetting experience and I want to do all I can to raise awareness and also to do something for other people who find themselves in the same situation as me.
“If anything I do helps other people then it will be a very fitting tribute to Noah.”
Ashley’s actions will also benefit charity as she looks to give something back.
She added: “I will also be donating some of the funds to a charity called Remember My Baby.
“It is an amazing charity which offers to take photographs of your baby and your family to capture precious memories at such a devastating time.
“I’m asking for donations of any size from local businesses, large or small.
“I will also be holding a charity night in memory of Noah.
“I am planning an auction and hope to raise as much as possible to buy clothes for other babies and also to help raise awareness.
“I hope a lot of people support my cause.”
*To donate to Ashley’s fund, visit gofundme.com/in- memory-of-noah-webster.
3,000 babies arrive stillborn each year, but causes are not known
In the UK, about one in 225 pregnancies ends in stillbirth – when a baby dies in the womb after 24 weeks gestation.
Noah was born at 23 weeks, so was not medically classified as such, but for Ashley the trauma is all the same.
According to charity Tommy’s, more than 3,430 babies are born sleeping every year.
In many cases when a baby is stillborn no cause can be found.
The death of these babies remain unexplained, which can be particularly hard for grieving parents who want to understand what has happened to their child.
About half of all stillbirths are linked to complications with the placenta.
It is possible for the placenta to separate from the womb before the baby is born.
This is called placental abruption and can lead to stillbirth.
Placental abruption can be caused by a blow or impact to the stomach, or it could be linked to a condition such as pre-eclampsia or intrauterine growth restriction (IUGR).
Sometimes placental abruption occurs without any clear reason about why it has happened.
The placenta provides food and oxygen for the baby when they are in the womb, connecting the baby to its mother’s blood supply.
It’s essentially the baby’s lifeline, crucial to growth and development.
If the placenta doesn’t work properly, the baby won’t receive enough nutrients or oxygen and will fail to grow or develop.
Tommy’s funds research into the causes and prevention of miscarriage, premature birth and stillbirth.