Couple's joy on daughter's first day of school after nine miscarriages, ectopic pregnancy and death of first child
A couple who suffered nine miscarriages, a ectopic pregnancy and the death of their first child sent their "little miracle" off on her first day of school on Wednesday.
Noreen Thompson said there were tears as she sent her little girl, Ellianna (5) off to Murroe National School, Co Limerick.
"She enjoyed it, a few tears when she got into the classroom but other than that she was great," proud mum Noreen told Independent.ie.
"We’re very proud, I think there were more tears from me than there were from Ellianna, it was a hard step leaving her go," she said.
Noreen and her husband Ger said they went through a lot of pain to get Ellianna to this point, having seven miscarriages as well the death of their little girl Kayla before Ellianna came along.
"Even to this day, I still don’t believe she’s mine, my sister has to say to me that no one is going to take her.
"I think it’s because I went through so much heartache, mentally and physically. It was a hard road to get where I have today," Noreen said.
Noreen had two more miscarriages after the birth of Ellianna, before deciding to stop trying to have more children.
Noreen has wanted children from a young age and spoke about how difficult it was at times.
"I used to have tears, when I was pregnant with Kayla, my niece was pregnant along with me, and there wasn’t much time in the difference between us.
"Then when I lost Kayla and my niece’s little boy was born, and every stage he goes through, it makes me think of Kayla and what she’s missing," Noreen said.
She also described the heartache she went through after losing her first daughter.
"At one stage I gave hope on everything, how could they test me this much after all those years and then give me a baby and take her away from me.
"Elliana gave me faith again," she added.
Noreen, who is a stay-at-home mother, spoke about watching her daughter grow.
"When you bring your child home from hospital you’d be wishing there life away, waiting for their first steps and their first words.
"But now she’s gone to school I want her to stay my little girl for ever," she said.
Ellianna, described her as "mad as a hatter", enjoyed her first day of school.
"The excitement was great when she came out, she said ‘oh mam I love my teacher’," Noreen said.
Noreen gave some advice to those struggling to have children.
"Don’t ever give up hope," she said.
"Give yourself a cut-off point, it was starting to drain myself mentally, that’s why I said I wouldn’t try again after 40," she said.