How baby's brush with death inspired Bath mum to write novel
When her baby son was struck down with meningitis, Cath Weeks felt isolated and angry.
It took her some time to come to terms with her child's brush with death.
Now seven years later, the mother of two from Odd Down has drawn on her feelings to write a novel highlighting the loneliness that she endured – and the resilience that got her through.
The Mood Ring follows the story of a mum who is accused of child abuse, and is intended to reach out to parents.
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Mrs Weeks, 41, said: "I'm pretty hardy but the experience when Wilfie was ill shocked me.
"During the long process of finding my feet, I realised that many parents struggle when things go wrong, and feel intensely isolated and under-supported.
"I wanted to write a book, not about child illness, but a gripping drama that would highlight the loneliness that many mums feel.
"I chose the subject of being accused of child abuse because it was the worst possible scenario that I could think of, and the most dramatic backdrop."
During her pregnancy, Mrs Weeks had severe pre-eclampsia and spent most of her time in and out of the Royal United Hospital being monitored.
She went into premature labour at 32 weeks, but due to a lack of incubators at the hospital, was given a powerful drug to stop the labour.
Mrs Weeks and her husband Nick, who is 42, were then sent to Dorset County Hospital, where incubators were available, but she ended up giving birth back at the RUH at 35 weeks.
When Wilfie was ten days old he developed meningitis, and septicaemia, and was in intensive care for a month.
He is now a healthy seven-year-old, attending Widcombe Infants School.
Mrs Weeks, who also has a five-year-old son Alex, said: "I see this as a success story, as things could have been so much worse.
"Despite its dark subject matter, The Mood Ring is bright and hopeful in outlook.
!The story was intended to reach out to other parents – not to bring anyone down."
The Mood Ring is available on Kindle, though there are plans for it to be released as a paperback by Christmas.
It can also be downloaded from www.amazon.co.uk.