When Graham and Carolyn Sparks left the maternity unit last Christmas Eve, they were devastated.
Carolyn had given birth to their baby girl Mia-Faith but the tiny tot was stillborn at just 29 weeks and three days into the pregnancy.
This Christmas Eve will be a different story as the couple, and son Keiran (7), get a glimpse of their new “miracle baby”.
In the summer Carolyn was amazed to find out when was pregnant again and on Christmas Eve she is having a 31 week scan to check the progress of the baby girl she is expecting.
The festive season is going to be bitterweet for the couple who are still coming to terms with the tragic events of last Christmas but are looking forward to a new year and a new baby.
Carolyn, of Northway, Whitby, said: “It is going to be so emotional and bittersweet.
“When they gave us the date for Christmas Eve I wasn’t sure about it but Graham said we are getting to see our daughter in a good way this time, rather than with Mia when she was born asleep.”
The couple are being given extra care by doctors at Scarborough Hospital to keep a track on the new baby - who the couple have found out is going to be a girl.
Carolyn is going for weekly blood tests with the midwife and having extra ultra-sound scans to check the baby’s progress after being deemed high risk as she had pre-eclampsia previously.
The condition occurs when there is a problem with the blood supply between mother and baby. It leads to the deaths of around a thousand babies each year.
However, the signs so far are good and the pregnancy has already passed the point where Mia had to be delivered early after dying in the womb.
Carolyn is promoting a ‘Count The Kicks’ campaign and wears a wrist band with notches on so that she can record the number of times the baby kicks in a day.
The normal amount is ten but she is kicking at least 12.
Graham said: “It was quite emotional and I actually went to work with a lump in my throat that day.”
Carolyn added: “I was panicking all day and actually went to the hospital that day because I thought there was something but there wasn’t.”
The new baby will have Mia’s room which had already being lovingly decorated but it was only last week that Carolyn said she could bring herself to buy things for her.
She said: “I am so pleased it’s a girl. I don’t think I could have got rid of her clothes or changed the room.
“For the first three months I was frightened thinking something will go wrong and I couldn’t buy anything. But it was only a week ago that I thought this is silly - I can’t keep thinking what if? This is a miracle baby.”
The family are determined to put the events of last Christmas behind them and enjoy it.
Graham said: “Christmas Eve would have been her first birthday so it is about Mia.
“We will release balloons and have a card and cake but Christmas day will be about Keiran and we start looking forward. We want lots of smiles, lots of laughter...and lots of chocolate.”