Miracle Martha is ready for secondary school
SHE'S a miracle. And on Wednesday Martha Hurrell begins a new chapter in her life which she so easily may not have reached.
For she was given a one per cent chance of survival of being born intact, when she was delivered premature at just 23 weeks.
Weighing 1lb 4oz with a "no resuscitation" order on her, she was so tiny that mum Helen Fisher's could fit her wedding ring around the top of her leg.
Now, on the verge of starting in year seven at Rednock School, it's hard to believe that when she was born on March 29, 2001 she had translucent skin, sealed-over eyes and flaps for ears.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, May 26 2013
"She was officially discharged by the hospital five years ago," said Helen, 40, who gave up her job teaching at Oakridge Parochial school to care for Martha.
"When she started at Dursley primary, her immune system wasn't up to where it would normally have been and of course, mixing with other children, she caught everything going.
"She had a 50% attendance record for the first two years but the school was really good, and I home tutored her too."
Martha has left Dursley CofE Primary School with very good SATS results and aspires to be a vet.
She adores animals, particularly riding her pony, and showing her grandfather Bill Moon's pedigree cattle.
A few nerves are jangling at starting a new school but excitement largely outweighs anxiety.
"It will seem a bit strange at first," said Martha, 11. "But I am looking forward to it. I have had a day at school already and met my form teacher who is really nice.
"I'll be there with my friends too."
Helen had no hesitation in sending her to Rednock.
"I had three choices and put Rednock, Rednock and Rednock down," she laughed. "A lot of parents have children going through the school and they have done really well. They have strong links with parents and that's really important."
Even though she's a perfectly healthy child, whenever a cold bug goes around, Helen is on her guard.
"I go on amber alert when she gets a cold," said Helen.
"She will be okay but it might take her a longer time to recover. Her lungs are okay but she's not going to be a marathon runner."
She's already been through the mill – one consultant later told Helen he believed Martha would die after she was born. She's been through heart surgery, followed by a long period on 100%oxygen too.
Her earliest memory isn't of hospital, or being poorly though.
"Just before I was in reception at primary school The Citizen took my picture and did an article," she said.
"I had to put my uniform on for the picture, just like today."