I'm 39 weeks pregnant today. If this baby doesn't decide to make his own way into the world before then, they will break my waters for me on 8 June. If that does nothing, I have been told they can't induce me (because of my previous c-section) so I will be going under the knife on 9 June.
Whatever happens I will, in three weeks' time, be a mum of four.
And there's nothing I can do about it. It is going to happen. So I've got to that twingy, twitchy stage, where every niggle, whether it be in my pelvis or my patella, feels like a sign of labour. And where I'm starting to worry about all the stuff that can go wrong, all the stuff they can't scan for, all the stuff over which I have no control. The stuff that might do awful things to my baby. Or to me.
But the thing is, I, and my baby, are so lucky. He is going to be born (hopefully, unless it all happens very quickly), in a modern hospital with all the advantages of western medical care. If I have to have a c-section it will be in a clean operating theatre, with modern anaesthetics and a highly trained surgeon. I hope to breastfeed, as I have the others, but if I can't, the water I will use to make up his formula will be clean and germ free, and even then I have electricity and a kettle with which to make doubly sure.
His chances of survival at birth and in his first week are 992.4 in 1000. His chances of getting to 1 are 995.5 in 1000. His chances of getting to 14 are 99,988 in 100,000*.
This is not the case were he born elsewhere in the world. Worldwide, 955 children in every 1000 reach their 1st birthday. In Angola, only 720 children do. That's 180 children in every thousand who don't make it to the age of one.
Every year, more than 8 million children under five die worldwide from diseases that we know how to treat or prevent, such as diarrhoea, pneumonia and measles.
How can we not be doing everything in our power to stop this?
In January, Save the Children launched its most ambitious campaign to date, No Child Born to Die.
Save The Children is focusing on the provision of vaccinations and healthcare workers to save those 8 million children. In June there is a meeting in London hosted by David Cameron and attended by other world leaders. Save The Children aims to make as much noise as possible to ensure the funding shortfall for vaccinations (4.7 billion) is met by all the donor countries - to fully fund vaccines for every child in the world.
So why am I writing this? Because you can do a little bit to be part of this campaign.
Please sign the petition and consider joining in the crafty meme – :
2. Blog about it and include details of the campaign and the petition. But be quick! The petition closes on 29 May.
3. Tag 8 friends.
Like Muddling Along Mummy, who tagged me, I know that tagging and memes can feel like one of those things you really don't have time to do (and I apologise here to anyone who's tagged me in the past and I haven't got round to doing anything about) but memes really can build awareness in a short space of time for important causes like this one.
No child is born to die.
And with that, I tag (and you may already have done it, in which case, apologies):
Pants with Names
Mum's Gone To
Motherhood and Anarchy
Notes to Self
*All taken from the Office of National Statistics Statistical Bulletin Childhood, infant and perinatal mortality in England and Wales, 2009. I can't say I enjoyed reading this, but it was sobering to compare it with the global...
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