James Spence (pictured) was fighting for his life in a coma while his son was born, made a miraculous recovery just two days after being visited by his newborn
A first-time dad who was fighting for his life in a coma while his son was born, made a miraculous recovery just two days after a visit from his newborn.
James Spence, 25, suffered two bleeds on the brain following a devastating road traffic accident in July.
At the time his partner, Charlene Pope, was 38 weeks pregnant and gave birth to Carter shortly after the crash.
Charlene, 29, from Southmead, Bristol, is convinced that taking Carter to meet his dad helped James to wake up.
The mum-of-two, said: ‘I was worried our baby wouldn’t meet his dad. But I think that taking the baby over helped him come round.
‘I was a bit worried that they’d miss out on bonding as well, but the bond the two of them have is really special. You should see the way James looks at Carter.
‘He’s a walking miracle. It’s a happy ending as he is now at home and we are enjoying our little family together.’
His partner Charlene, 29, from Southmead, Bristol (pictured with James and their baby, Carter) is convinced that taking Carter to meet his dad helped James to wake up
Motorcyclist James was placed in an induced coma at Southmead Hospital on July 29 after the crash.
He suffered frontal lobe brain damage, a fractured skull, two bleeds on the brain and a bleed around the brain.
Charlene, who is also mum to Jaya, eight, was spending ten hours a day with James in the Intensive Care Unit.
She even went to see him after her labour was induced on August 7, a week before her due date, at Southmead Hospital.
She said: ‘Every chance I got I went over to see him – even right after my waters had been broken.
‘They never told me how critical he was until afterwards, because of how heavily pregnant I was. They played it down and kept telling me he was stable.
the mother-of-two who is also mum to Jaya, eight (pictured with her arms around James, left, and Charlene, right), was spending ten hours a day with James in the Intensive Care Unit
‘But it was tough on all of us. I would be there from 10am until 8pm, right through visiting hours. My daughter spent a lot of time staying with my mum.’
Charlene gave birth to baby Carter August 8, and took her newborn son to meet his dad the same day.
She said: ‘I took him over in one of the NICU prams as soon as I was told it was okay.’
Just two days later, James came round from his coma, and got to meet his son.
Charlene said: ‘For the first week or so he had slight amnesia, so every time he woke up from a nap or something we had a photo of Carter to show him and we had to remind him.
‘He was really unsteady on his feet at first too, so I wouldn’t let him hold Carter for too long.
For the first week James had amnesia and was really unsteady on his feet, but now appart from scars he is back to normal
‘He would pace up and down the ward for hours, because his brain was telling him he wouldn’t be able to walk again.’
After two more weeks in the intensive care unit, James was moved onto a ward to recover and he was discharged to go home on September 1.
Charlene said: ‘We’re just like a usual family again now. When I think about it all, it feels like ages ago.
‘Apart from the scars on him, he’s pretty much back to normal.’
She added: ‘I am so grateful to the staff who worked so hard to make sure he was in a stable condition.
‘They were so comforting and I was always reassured he was in good hands. Because of them, I have a brilliant future to look forward to.
‘We have booked our wedding and will be getting married in November 2018, as it’s made us realise how life could be cut short in a blink of an eye.’
The couple have since booked their wedding and will be getting married in November 2018
Ben Walton, adult clinical lead for major trauma at North Bristol NHS Trust, said: ‘Rehabilitation for major trauma patients starts the moment a patient enters our hospital.
‘An important part of rehabilitation is regular communication and contact with loved ones.
‘James’ remarkable recovery was not only down to the fantastic care he received here at Southmead Hospital, but also regular visits and encouragement from his partner Charlene and their son.
‘We were more than happy to arrange for newborn baby Carter to visit his father, and we wish the family all the very best for the future.’