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We've never been home: Nathan's story

August 17, 2022

Guest blogger: Joy

It’s been a difficult journey.

Nathan was born with a congenital heart defect. He’s got three or four issues wrong with his heart. Because of all those complexities, he had to stay in the neonatal intensive care unit. 

We never knew what it was to be in the intensive care unit or to have a patient there. I saw the ward filled with so many children, and we just burst into tears.

We were told that he wasn’t going to make it and all we could do was just cry. 

It was hectic and incredibly traumatic.

But we got told at the hospital that there was an accommodation called Ronald McDonald House Charities UK, with a House based in Manchester.

We were sent over to the House and my partner Patrick brought our twins along, Elienai and Eliedad.

He told me that the atmosphere alone in the House is just serene. It just makes you settle in.

Our twins have been coping every day because they are able to stay at the House and Nathan is allowed to come over from the ward and we all get to see his nice, warm smile. 

The House makes you feel like there is absolutely nothing to worry about and doesn’t make you feel insecure as if they’re doing you a massive favour.

It’s enabled us to have a routine together. We’ll go over to the Royal Manchester Children’s Hospital in the morning and bring him over to the House and it’s just so pleasing to see all my family together. 

Ronald McDonald House Charities UK has created a space for the children so that they can bond. It also has created somewhere where the staff as always there for you if you need them. They will ask you “Do you want to talk?”, “How is your son?”, “Are you okay?”. I feel relief any time I talk to them.

And seeing them and the nurses do the things that they do for Nathan just makes me feel like I can do it, and give back.

I’m doing a master’s in Children’s and Young People’s Nursing. I’m now in my final year.

It’s been nearly two and a half years since we came to Ronald McDonald House Manchester. We’ve never been home, the House is like home to us. To be honest, we virtually don’t miss anything, that’s the truth. 

I want to plead with you out there to support Ronald McDonald House Charities UK. They need your support to help families, especially like us, who haven’t been home in years. 

We really appreciate everything that they have done and continue to do. Thank you Ronald McDonald House Manchester!

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