A Little Fermanagh Angel
Pure Love - beautiful video of baby Faith who lived for 15 days with anencephaly passes 2 Million views
The beautiful and poignant story of a baby girl from Co Fermanagh who surprised doctors by living 15 days after birth with anencephaly has gone viral, with more than 2 Million views on social media so far.
Baby Faith Wilson is the star of the powerful video testimony from her parents, Joanne and Phillip Wilson, who describe their baby girl as their "little warrior princess".
Filmed in the nursery they had prepared for little Faith when she was 12 days old, the couple's love for their baby girl - who is cradled in their arms throughout - is profoundly beautiful and moving. It has been viewed 1.1 million times on Facebook and almost 900,000 times on You Tube.
See the video here:
"She's only been here 12 days and she's done more good and spoke to more people than I've ever done in 31 years," said dad Phillip. "It's amazing."
"I never thought we would get to be a Mummy and Daddy home with her," mum Joanne said. "You needed to be strong and she has been so strong throughout this."
"We were able to create so many memories .. We went to the beach and picked shells and wrote baby Wilson. Just simple things," the proud parents said.
They had been told not to expect that Faith would live beyond birth, even though studies show that most babies with anencephaly do, in fact, live to have even a brief time with their families.
Joanne says of the birth: "It was long but both of us were very calm. I didn't hear anything when she first came out, but then we heard that cry and it was magical ... Phillip just turned to me and cried and said 'we have a baby girl'".
Faith was the couple's first baby and their family and community rallied around to wrap them in support so that they could ensure that every moment of their little girl's life was filled with love.
Joanne and Phillip also found that baby Faith confounded doctors in more ways than one.
"We've got to do so many nice things, we've got to feed her with a syringe and she's actually taken more each day. Doctors were very much against me feeding her, they said these babies don't feel hungry but she pouts those wee lips and she smacks them and she does tell us when she needs something," Joanne shared.
The video was posted by support network Every Life Counts, who provide support and information for families where baby may not live for long after birth.
Amongst the many supportive messages on Facebook was one from another mum who said: "Thank you for sharing. My anencephaly baby is due in June. This gave me a much needed boost of faith. Thank you ."
Other messages praised the Wilson family for their courage, love and inspiration and admired beautiful baby Faith.
Vicky Wall of Every Life Counts said that it was an honour to film the testimony to such an amazing little girl, and said that it was vital to recognise the importance of every baby's life, and that the heartbreaking loss of a child was eased for many parents by sharing the love felt for baby and the significance of the time shared before and after birth. We endeavour to show that these babies are, in fact, compatible with life and love and that the precious time parents get with their babies is forever cherished. We, as an organization, worry that parents feel that there is no support to continue with a pregnancy of a sick baby, because stories like Faith's are given enough attention.
"Baby Faith's impact on the world is profound and deeply felt," she said. "We hope her video continues to help other families because, like all these very special babies, she has lit a light that brightens the darkness and comforts those most in need."