Happy yet destroyed – In the name of Thiago – Day 239


I’m going to try something a little different again tonight. Hold your horses don’t worry, I’m not going to allow Bulldog to guest edit again. That way lies pain and plenty of references to a time of my life that I’m probably best not to put back in the public domain. The Christmas trees on Eastbourne’s memorial roundabout have never been quite the same. Anyway, yet again I digress.


To today. I was asked by one of the neonatologists at Royal Stoke University Hospital if I would like to write something for their Facebook page to help them publicise my walk and, I suppose, to just create some positivity when there often only seems to be darkness. I was happy to do this of course but Christ alive, doing it has absolutely knocked the stuffing out of me. I feel completely broken again. So the following was what I wrote for the hospital and will be your blog for tonight. Enjoy.


The photos on this page are of a very special little boy called Thiago Gibbs. Thiago was born in our hospital in February 2019 to two wonderful parents Chris and Angélica and died in Birmingham Children’s Hospital in November 2019. We want to tell you about Thiago for three reasons really.


Firstly, Thiago lived his tragically short life with such wonderful positivity and really broke hearts both here and in Birmingham. He was a beautiful boy and left an incredible, lasting effect on his parents. Thiago had all his surgery in Birmingham but all his pre and post-surgery care here at Royal Stoke. He was a very well-known and well-loved little boy. His life though short, is definitely worth celebrating as he brought everyone so much joy!


Secondly, Thiago’s mum Angélica is one of our own here at Royal Stoke. We have such extraordinary admiration and respect for Angélica, as she is a paediatric intensive care nurse and has gone back to work after Thiago’s sad passing and is now using her experience positively in her professional environment. She is an incredible woman.


And then thirdly, we are so happy and proud to support Chris and celebrate what he is doing to fundraise for our hospital and Birmingham Children’s Hospital. Chris, who by his own admission is not a particularly athletic chap, is walking from his home town of Eastbourne to the main entrance of our hospital over four weeks starting on Saturday 19 September, ending at our main entrance at around 3pm on Friday 16 October.


Let’s help Chris and Angélica create a legacy for Thiago and at the same time put some more pennies in the NHS pot by donating to his cause at www.virginmoneygiving.com/ChrisGibbs9 If you would like to get involved, Chris would be so thrilled to be joined by people on the way. It will of course be a very emotional time but Chris has always said, ‘the more the merrier’.  So, if you’d like to get involved, send Chris a mail on chrisgibbsfreelance@hotmail.com and he’ll be happy to let you know more.


And one last thing: Chris is a very talented writer and has been blogging about his experience as a grieving Dad daily since January. Yes, that’s right every day since January! Regardless of whether you’ve ever been through a loss like Chris and Angélica or not, you’ll certainly identify with some of Chris’ experiences. It’s a painful, yet joyful read.


Yes that was it, none of which will necessarily come as any surprise to any of you but a handy reminder of why I’m here doing what I’m doing. We’re in this together friends.


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