The eight-day-old baby lies peacefully in his mother’s arms. His tummy is full, his nappy is clean, he is warm and comfortable – without a care in the world.
But when he is old enough, his parents will tell him of the drama that surrounded his birth and the unthinkable tragedy that followed.
Jamie Lee Pienk (27) and her husband, Quintin (27), may be basking in the glow that follows the birth of a baby but the house is shrouded in sadness.
“It’s terribly difficult,” Jamie Lee says. “We don’t actually know what to feel. On the one hand we want to be happy because we have a new little one in our home, but on the other hand we’re raw. So it’s really up and down.”
Quintin (27) puts his arm around her.
“Our lives will never be the same again,” he says, rubbing his beard.
“How do you celebrate a new life when you’ve just lost one of your children?” Jamie Lee asks.
That child is six-year-old Dylan, their eldest son, who died three days after little Aiden arrived in a road tunnel on their way to the hospital.
The couple, who live in Moot, Pretoria, are battling to make sense of it all. The loss of Dylan, Jamie Lee says, is like a flower got picked “when it wasn’t anywhere near ready to be picked”.
JAMIE Lee was 39 weeks pregnant last month when she experienced a sharp pain. She was at home with Dylan and their second child, Jayden (2), and didn’t pay much attention to the pain. Labour-like sensations in late pregnancy are common – they’re called Braxton Hicks contractions, or false labour pains, and are a forerunner for what’s to come.
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15 October 2020