Some people say Charlotte should never have been born, but she had different ideas. An inspiring story for anyone who has ever asked 'why was I born?'
When you hear the story of how I came into this world, you could say I was destined to be here. Few people can say their mum was sterilized and still managed to become pregnant.
And if that wasn’t enough, medical professionals told my mum to have me aborted. They warned her, “You should consider an abortion. If not, you’ll have a baby born with serious birth defects.”
How strong my mother must have been to ignore their advice and follow her heart - even though it was extremely difficult for her to do so.
On the 10th July 1986, I was born into the world.
I’m so thankful that my mother and father gave me the opportunity to experience life.
My Mother Calls Me “Special One”
Nine months into my life, it looked as if I wouldn’t survive. I was diagnosed with a serious condition known as intussusception. The doctors tried to save me; my tiny stomach was pumped, they did all they could. But still, it seemed there was no hope for my survival.
My time on this earth was coming to a quick end. Things looked so bleak, my mum called the priest to have me christened before I passed from this world.
The ‘Miracle’ That Saved My Life
What happened next, I believe wasn’t just coincidence. One of the nurses taking care of me saw me struggling, fighting for life. That nurse on duty, on that very day, had already been through a similar medical emergency with her son. She saw the despair on my mother’s face. She stepped forward, “I’m not giving up hope. Let’s pump her stomach one last time. Let’s just try, one last time.”
Her efforts succeeded! Thanks to that nurse; her care, persistence and determination, as well as the experience she herself had suffered with her son, I was alive.
I’m so thankful to that nurse, who tried one more time, and saved my life.
Life Lessons as Tragedy Strikes
When I was just three years old, my brother, Kevin, who was ten at the time, was diagnosed with terminal cancer. I spent much of my early childhood tugging on my mother’s arm, desperate for the attention she was unable to give.
Instead of playing childish games with my big brother, I was travelling with my mother to the hospital, attending nurseries and creches within the hospital. I tried to make sense of why mummy couldn’t always be there. I tried to make sense of why my brother looked so skinny and fragile.
Kevin’s last wish was to be able to pass at home with his family. In the last few weeks of his life, my brother was brought home to die. He died at thirteen years old.
Watching my brother battle with cancer for three long years, then experiencing his loss impacted my life terribly. I saw the agony my mother and father faced with the loss of a beloved child. I suffered the trauma of a little girl who lost her big brother. Our family would never be the same again.
While my experiences as a child were traumatic, I am thankful I got to see and feel the real love a parent has. I witnessed the sacrifices they made and the stress they endured for the life of their child. And I’m thankful for my brother, Kevin. It’s because of him that I learned empathy very early in life and understand the pain of loss and loneliness.
It’s because of him that I learned empathy very early in life and understand the pain of loss and loneliness.
Attending school wasn’t easy for me.
All the teachers and students at the school knew the history of my brother. A memorial garden was dedicated to him and it was amazing to know my brother made a lasting impact on everyone he met. I was proud of him, but I was constantly reminded that he was not there with me anymore.
I was suffering. I lacked confidence. I hadn’t developed friendships like the other children. I worried I wasn’t good enough. I was different.
Then the bullying started.
So, I convinced my mum to let me change schools. I wanted a chance for new friendships and new beginnings. I made some friends, still I never really fitted in. I got to know the feeling of not belonging anywhere.
Still I am thankful for my life experiences. I choose to believe that everything that happens to us in life can be seen as a lesson. A lesson that we learn in order to grow as a person. I believe our life experiences, both good and difficult, prepare us for our “something greater”.
I believe our life experiences, both good and difficult, prepare us for our “something greater”.
My mother had been sterilized and yet I was conceived. My mother was told to abort me, but she chose to give birth. A nurse saved my life, when all hope was lost. The loss of my brother Kevin, and my subsequent childhood challenges taught me much about life, as did the lessons I have learned through adulthood.
My experiences have shaped me so that I can experience something greater.
Why Was I Born? For My "Something Greater"
My genuine love and interest in people, led me to study Psychology. Eventually, I found myself working in a hospital emergency department. I’d spent so much time in hospitals as a child. And now, here I was working in one as an adult. The life lessons continued.
I saw people come into the emergency department; their lives are turned upside down in an instant. I saw an increase in the number of women dealing with serious issues. I open-up Instagram, Facebook. What do I see? A constant glut of photos that emphasize the need for a perfect body, clothes, partner, money and fancy car in order to be happy. This message is impacting so many young people and women.
There is a message portrayed by the media – that women must be beautiful in order to be successful or look a certain way in order to be accepted. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
With positive role models and influences we can each help change the way people think and feel about themselves and what they believe to be important to them. To spread this message to all women is my “something greater”.
You Were Born For a Reason
I was born for a reason. I believe you were born for a reason. We are all sent into this world for a reason. We each have a purpose in life. We must figure out what it is that we are meant to do and who we are as individuals.
To all the mothers and women who are facing challenges today. I know how it feels to constantly doubt yourself and worry that you are not good enough, constantly overthinking and analyzing everything.
I hope my story resonates with you and shows you, that no matter what darkness you face, there is light on the other side. Although it may feel like you can’t overcome your struggles right now, I hope my story will help you to rise up, learn from your experiences, overcome and discover your “something greater.”
Charlotte is a mindset confidence & life transformation coach for women.
"I provide women with the right tools and strategies to learn to become unapologetically themselves. discovering their self -worth and learning to love themselves."
If you’d like to know more about Charlotte’s work and get involved with her please contact her at www.charlottelewington.co.uk/