In the words of her proud mum, tiny newborn Grace O’Neill is “amazing”.
The tot became the fifth living female generation of her family when she arrived into the world on July 5.
Her birth, in the maternity unit at Wishaw General, was a day her proud mum Nicola Harvey thought she would never experience.
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Nicola, from Motherwell, had been told she wouldn’t be able to have children.
The 33-year-old told Lanarkshire Live : “She is a wee miracle.
“I never thought I could have any babies. It’s really amazing that she is here.”
Nicola, a beautician, was being tested for breast cancer after finding a lump, and was also attending haematology as she had problems with her blood.
“I was still going through tests from the breast clinic and I was starting to think it was hormonal,” she explained.
“Then I went to the gynaecologist and she said I should go and do a pregnancy test and phone her back.
“I just thought, ‘they have told me this can’t happen’. I was going off my head because I was thinking, ‘she knows this can’t happen, why is she even telling me to do this?’.
“But she was right.
“They had thought it was something quite serious and it just turned out to be Grace.
“I thought last year that I was dying and here we are.”
The joy that Grace’s birth brought to the family has since been tempered by the recent death of her great great gran, Annie Maxwell, who passed away last week, aged 95.
Thankfully, the eldest and youngest generations of the family did get to meet each other.
Grace’s gran is Diane Harvey, 55; her great gran is Janet Kennedy, 76; and top of the tree was great, great gran Annie
“We all live within less than five minutes of each other in Motherwell,” said Nicola.
Nicola has battled illness most of her life, she has MS and never kept well throughout her teenage years. She also suffered the loss of her dad to suicide 12 years ago.
“Grace is just what’s been needed in the family after years of trauma,” said Nicola.
“But her birth has also brought up feelings, as my dad is missing all of this. He has a wee bench just near us with his picture on it, so I’ll take her up there to tell her stories about him.”
Born three weeks before her due date, Grace weighed 5lbs 3oz, but is already starting to fill out.
Nicola is still getting to grips with her new normal, adding: “I had tried for so long.
“They told me it would be very hard to conceive on my own so I had given up trying, and here she is.
“The birth was a lot easier than I thought it was going to be but she has turned day into night for me at the moment.”
Grace’s dad, Aaron O’Neill, already has two boys – Aaron, seven, and Reece, 17 – but the 34-year-old is just as delighted
Nicola said: “Aaron Jnr. just can’t get enough of her, even when he’s not here he is texting and asking, ‘how’s my sister?’.
“The whole family are delighted. Everybody is, it’s been so overwhelming the amount of people that have been coming round with cards and gifts – I can’t believe it.
“There’s so many people I’ve known for years through my job, and they all know my story.
“I think she’s the most-loved wean in Motherwell.”
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