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Top of the tots; New baby joy for selfless mum who carried girl she knew would die to save other kids; EXCLUSIVE.

Byline: Emily Hall

A MUM who carried her dying baby to term in the hope of giving other sick tots a chance of life has revealed she is expecting another little girl.

This time last year Hayley Martin was preparing to give birth to Ava-Joy.

Heartbreakingly, the little one had been diagnosed with a fatal condition halfway through the pregnancy.

Hayley and her husband Scott were told they could opt for a termination. Instead they decided to go ahead with the birth - so Ava's organs might be donated to desperately ill babies.

But Ava, who survived for 96 minutes was underweight for a donor and died in her parents' arms.

Now Hayley has revealed she is 32 weeks pregnant and is due to give birth just 13 days after what would have been Ava's first birthday.

And she plans to train as a bereavement midwife to help others in similar heartbreaking situations.

Hope

Speaking to the Sunday People, which first revealed her incredible story, Hayley said: "There has been such pain for us as a family this year.

"But I couldn't be more overjoyed to be carrying this baby. She's a gift.

"It's not been all sunshine and roses, though. Any pregnancy after loss is nerve-racking as you're waiting for something to go wrong. Every kick, I can't help but think about Ava, who should be here with us."

The baby will be called Harriet, with middle names Hope and Ava in memory of the sister she will never know. She weighs 4lb - and all tests have come back normal.

Harriet is due to arrive by planned caesarean on January 21 at Hull Royal Infirmary - the same hospital where Ava was born on January 8 this year.

Ava had bilateral renal agenesis, which means she had no kidneys. It is always fatal. Hayley and Scott had learned of her condition when they went to find out the sex at her 20-week scan.

They were told she would slowly suffocate after birth and that a termination would be the most appropriate action.

But in an incredible show of personal strength, the couple decided to carry her as far as possible in the hope she could donate her organs. They were devastated when she was born weighing around 50g below the 2.5kg minimum for being a viable donor.

The couple later found Hayley had a hernia from her previous caesarian - and the surgery to fix it would stop her carrying another child.

Scott, 31, said: "We were in no rush to try again. After Ava I thought I didn't want to try any more. I couldn't take the heartache. But it was now or never and we decided to give it one more roll of the dice.

"We knew we wanted another baby - and here we are."

The couple also have children Kiowa, eight, Layla, six, and Oliver, three. Hayley, 31, said because of their experience with Ava, Harriet's scans had been brought forward.

She said: "Instead of waiting until 20 weeks they allowed us to have one at 16 weeks check there were kidneys and a bladder, which there were.

I couldn't more there's "I could have passed out from happiness."

She hopes her experience willinvaluable in her as a midwife. "It's not only to be there for the good times, but for when women want someone there who has been through what they're going through. So when I say 'I understand,' it's because I've lived it."

" The couple, from Hull, say they from having had Ava lives. Scott said: "I find easier to talk to people now. She taught me how feel a lot more than previously. I was shut off to certain things."

Hayley added: "I've suffered from anxiety all my life and let things hold me back.

"Ava made me realise need to make the most of what you have - to love with all your heart and not waste a moment wondering, 'What if?' "

feedback@people.co.uk

I couldn't be more overjoyed, there's been such pain this year

CAPTION(S):

POIGNANT: Harriet's 12-week scan, left, and Ava's photo sits above family stockings

TRAGIC: Ava lived for only 96 minutes

NEW HOPE: Our story a year ago, left, and pregnant Hayley with her family
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Publication:The People (London, England)
Date:Dec 23, 2018
Words:707
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