CamdenNewJournal

The independent London newspaper

My miracle baby by Lisa Connell, the woman that brain doctors said could never be a mother

07 March, 2016

A BEAUTICIAN suffering from a brain tumour has defied medical predictions that she would never get pregnant and has revealed how she is due to give birth to a “miracle baby”.

Lisa Connell, who grew up in Lorraine Court in Farrier Street, Camden Town, said the baby due next month – which she has already decided to call Ruby – had fulfilled “her deepest wish”.

The 36-year-old said: “I was told I couldn’t conceive. It’s just an amazing feeling and I’m just so excited. I really feel like I was born to be a mother. The house is already full up with baby stuff. It really is what I’ve always dreamed of.”

Ms Connell discovered she had an inoperable brain tumour four months into her last pregnancy in 2006. 

She lost the baby and top consultants said getting pregnant again would dangerously boost levels of a menstrual hormone that had caused her tumour to swell. Sessions of powerful radiotherapy were also thought to have killed off her eggs. She was told she could die within months.

But last summer, Ms Connell became pregnant despite being on the contraceptive coil. The news came as she was in the process of having a permanent sterilisation. 

The pregnancy worried doctors and she was told to consider an abortion, but she chose to wait until the three-month scan to see if it had affected her brain tumour. Happily, she was given the all-clear and has recently seen the baby for the first time in a “4D scan”.

Ms Connell said: “I would never advise someone with a brain tumour to get pregnant. That’s very important. But my story shows it is possible.” 

Ms Connell grew up in her grandparents’ flat in Farrier Street and attended Rhyl Primary and Camden School for Girls. 

In her mid-20s, Ms Connell began campaigning for people with brain tumours and attracted the attention of the national media with her Rent a Date for Charity scheme, which raised funds by auctioning off dates with celebrities. 

A trained hairdresser, her work has attracted celebrity admirers, including Colleen Ramsey, wife of Arsenal midfielder Aaron Ramsey, who recommends her HD Brows eyebrow treatment.

Baby Ruby is named after Ruby Owen, a three-year-old with a brain tumour who died in 2013. 

The baby will be delivered by caesarian-section on Ms Connell’s birthday. The father is another hairdresser, Dean, and the couple met on a blind date.

Ms Connell said: “I’ve always felt that everything happens for a reason and the fact that Ruth is going to be born on my birthday just makes me believe that even more.”

Ms Connell has set up a new north London support group where people affected by brain tumours can enjoy “fun and informal meetings”.

You can find details on lisaconnell.com.

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