Nov 24, 2014

The Miracle in the Drain. The Last Week of November.

It just wouldn't be right to begin this post with a breathless summary of everything I did at the weekend to escape the heat with Toddler SSG.
Not when a 7 day old  newborn baby boy  was found 2.5 metres underground in a storm water drain (allegedly pushed in there through the opening seen in the photo above) near the M7 early on Sunday morning - the day it was forecast to hit 44C in the west.  Miraculously, the baby was found
crying but clinging to life and the storm drain was empty of water.

It is alleged the baby had been there since Tuesday.  It took seven adults to remove the lid of the drain to find him, wrapped in a hospital blanket and in distress.  He was transferred immediately to hospital and has survived.  Two of his rescuers (a father and daughter who were on a bike ride) have visited him in hospital, bearing gifts of clothing and blankets.  

After a check of hospital records, the baby's 30 year old mother has been arrested and charged with attempted murder.  She was due to appear in court today and will be in custody until at least Friday.

This woman must have been driven by extremely desperate circumstances and I'm not writing this post to speculate on what these circumstances may have been nor to cast judgement on her.  I just find it incredibly sad that this could happen in a country with first world medicine, widely available contraception options and financial assistance for struggling families.  But it's obviously not as simple as all of that for this mother.

Perhaps this case could be the impetus for the introduction of some kind of policy for the safe and responsible emergency care of newborns whose parents feel the need to abandon them.  A 'no questions asked' law for when a newborn is left in an emergency department or other public place and perhaps having this issue addressed as part of antenatal care for all women.  Even a number of who to call or what to do if you're feeling like doing something extreme.  Perhaps have the information written somewhere in the antenatal information women are given when they book into hospital and make the information available online.  The more avenues the better.  

Something more needs to be done to protect the innocent and vulnerable when their parents are in no state to do so themselves.

Sorry to have begun on such a sad note, but at least a potential tragedy was averted by the kindness of strangers.  That little baby was destined to survive his traumatic start to life and those cyclists and their helpers were at precisely the right place at precisely the right time.

It's officially the last week of November.  And while work seems to be winding down, the rest of your life seems to take up the slack and you find yourself with a billion things that need to be sorted out by year's end.  I've been desperately flicking through my desk calender trying to find (extra) free days for things like car servicing, Santa photos and house maintenance related jobs.  And the hairdresser.  Can't be entering the silly season with bad hair.

Home delivery of almost everything has also been initiated in my bid to find more time.

My Priceline order arrived in record time, hitting my doorstep this morning after a late Thursday order time.

You can get almost everything online except Daiso.  So I still had to pop in on Saturday to get a pump pack to convert some sachets of unused baby bath oil into a shower gel for me.  I love the scent of Johnson's bedtime bath.  It's a comforting scent of lavender with that baby powder muskiness wafting through.  A nice change from the richly scented adult shower gels.

How did you cope with the heat on Sunday?  Living in fear of a threatened 42C maximum saw myself and everyone in the local government area congregate at our local aquatic centre.  I got in early for some laps but by mid morning, the place was pumping.  There were children everywhere, whooping in delight and splashing through the various children's areas.  We left around lunchtime to make way for the wave pool fanatics (the activity pool gets its wave machine turned on at lunch and it dizzy work trying to stand or swim when the waves kick in).  There's nothing like wet hair and that coolness you get from being in the water for ages to help you deal with the heat that little bit better.

I was grateful for the mid afternoon rain though.  It really did take the heat out of the day and paved the way for a wonderfully sleep friendly Sunday evening to ease us into a busy week.

We're back at daycare for our second orientation morning tomorrow.  It's forecast to be a very pleasant 24C maximum, perfect for some outdoor play.

I'm all set on the water bottle front.  I've got Toddler SSG a mini me version of my favourite drink bottle because they are much sturdier than the soft plastic Nuby sippy cups he has for at home.

So far, so good.  Toddler SSG has been toting his drink bottle around the house like a new best friend and together they've reached shelves neither were ever meant to see.  Now, if only his wide brimmed sun hat was as inseparable a friend.


  1. I think it's impossible not to feel something with that story of the poor little baby - parent or not! One thing I am thankful for though, is that we are in an incredibly lucky position here in Australia. There is always someone who can help, if it's not extended family or friends, there are even 24/7 helplines we can call when that crazy question we can't answer gets to us all "why won't my baby sleep?!". I agree though that more could be done. More publication of what is there - we are so blessed with so many supports, but not everyone knows or reaches out. We can always do more to help those who don't reach out, for whatever reason.

  2. I felt so sad when I heard about the baby abandonment. Can't think about the baby crying. Could the new born really survive since Tuesday??
    Toddler SSG is very busy! Make sure he wears his hat! ;D xx
    Stinking hot here, too.

  3. I agree re: the baby.
    A bit of stormy weather in melb...

  4. The incident made the bbc morning headline news here as well. There are just so many questions...

    On a lighter note - i forget about johnson and their scent. You are right - everything else is just soooo heavily scented that it might be a nice repreve.

  5. Don't worry - daycare will sort his hat issues out. We had a hat hater and within three weeks she wouldn't leave the house without it.

  6. Oh my that poor newborn. As a Mum myself, I find it extremely hard to understand why anyone would want to dispose of a child in this way. Thank goodness the little one made it, against all odds and will now hopefully, receive some love and attention he deserves. If you find the secret to the sun hat remaining on the toddlers head in this heat, please let me know. I'd love some assistance on that front :-) x

  7. That baby simply has an angel watching over him. How tragic that the mother felt that was the only option.


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