Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner.

‘I don’t know if I’ll make it but daddy really needs you. You are so very loved’: Gravely-ill mum’s letter to newborn baby as she fought for life

© Andrew CawleyAshvine, fully recovered, kisses her baby daughter Ashika Evie, who was born six weeks early
Ashvine, fully recovered, kisses her baby daughter Ashika Evie, who was born six weeks early

A young mum who became desperately ill after giving birth has told how she wrote letters to her newborn daughter and husband telling them how to go on if she did not pull through.

Now recovered and cuddling her daughter, Ashvine Ashok, 31, spoke of the terrible days after Ashika Evie was born prematurely last month.

Ashvine developed a dangerous ­complication of pregnancy where the placenta fails to deliver, leaving her at high risk of infection or bleeding to death.

Doctors at the Princess Royal Maternity Hospital in Glasgow fought to keep her alive while they planned major surgery. Meanwhile, Ashika was rushed to the hospital’s special care baby unit after arriving six weeks early at 4lb 7oz and needed help feeding.

In a room, just off the operating theatre, Ashvine was being constantly monitored by nurses in case she started to haemorrhage. The young mum, a radiographer from Glasgow, said: “I was monitored constantly and a midwife checked my blood pressure and looked for any signs that I was ­deteriorating. Blood transfusions were on standby and I feared I was dying.”

Ashvine was given a constant ­infusion of antibiotics to prevent the danger of ­infection that can come with an incomplete birth. The operation to remove the ­placenta comes with significant risk to the mother’s life.

© Andrew Cawley
With husband Ashok and baby Ashika at home in Glasgow

“I had worked with patients in theatres at Glasgow Royal Maternity – which adjoins the Princess Royal – now I was one of them,” she said.

Fearing she wouldn’t survive, Ashvine describes her desperate need to write touching letters to husband Ashok and Ashika. She said: “I told my husband Ashok to bring our daughter up well.

“I felt a real need to write to them both, telling them of my feelings as I face the real risk of not surviving. Ashika’s letter was to be opened when she grew up, when she was 18 or 21.

“I told her how her dad and I met, fell in love and married in Sri Lanka. I wanted her to know how she was ­conceived six months after we ­married and how much she was loved and wanted. The pregnancy had been ­fantastic. I was the happiest I had ever been as I carried her to 34 weeks before she was born. I wanted her to always look after her dad.

“I will keep the letters to remind me that they are part of my life story and remind me how grateful that I survived.”

Ashvine says that her obstetricians had explained the risks of surgery, the risk of haemorrhage was considerable but they would work hard to save her womb and allow her to go on to have more children if she wished.

© Andrew Cawley
Newborn daughter, Ashika

The ­surgery was a success and she has now recovered. “I put my trust in them and they saved me,” she said. And, since her ordeal early last month, Ashvine and Ashika have returned to their Glasgow home.

Placenta accreta is a rare but ­increasing serious complication of pregnancy when the placenta grows too deeply into the womb and refuses to be delivered in the normal way after the baby arrives. It affects up to three in 1,000 mums. But it almost always strikes those who have had previous babies delivered by caesarian section.

However, the condition rarely affects first-time mums like Ashvine. “I want other mums to know that if they do develop this that there is hope and indeed life, afterwards,” she said. “I don’t know if I will have another child but I will always be ­grateful to the doctors and nurses who gave me a chance to see my ­ beautiful daughter grow up.”


From the letters

To baby Ashika

I don’t know if I will make it but I want you to know that your dad really needs you.

I had a wonderful pregnancy. You are a very loved and wanted baby

To husband Ashok

I am frightened I won’t survive but I want you to stay strong and raise our daughter with love and care. She is very much loved