Ollie lives with his mum Charmaine and dad Neil and his younger brother Alfie. Ollie has Quadriplegic Cerebral Palsy as a result of a traumatic birth.
“I was 12 days past my due date when I went into hospital,” Charmaine says. “Everything was fine at first. After several hours I was in a lot of pain. When the midwife came in to check me and Ollie everything changed. She couldn’t find Ollie’s heartbeat and hit the crash button—immediately all sorts of people descended on my room.”
Ollie was born at 6.12am, 13 days late. “I could hear Neil and my Mum crying but I couldn’t really take in what was going on.”
Ollie’s parents were told that he had severe brain damage and would not survive. He was christened and the tubes that were keeping him alive were removed. But Ollie held on.
Neil and Charmaine were introduced to two Jessie May Nurses who were able to help with making plans to take Ollie home to pass away. He was able to go home at two weeks old and against all the odds, continued to survive.
This situation continued for the first six months of Ollie’s life. “We just sat by him 24 hours a day watching him breathe. After six months we made a decision that we weren’t going to sit and watch Ollie die but we were going to do our best to ensure that he was going to have a good quality of life.”
Their decision was a turning point. Ollie’s daily routine is complex and exhausting, so the regular visits from their Jessie May nurse are a lifeline. “Taking Ollie out is quite often a major exercise. So we use the time to do the simple everyday tasks that we simply don’t get the opportunity to do.
“Ollie loves Andy (his Jessie May Nurse) visiting and as we live near the beach Andy will often take Ollie there. Andy also spends time with Ollie finger painting or doing other things – he loves his visits.
“Where would we be without Jessie May?
“Life would certainly be a lot harder. Knowing that Andy and others are there to support is such a comfort – Jessie May Nurses are lifesavers to my family.”