Young American

Three months ago, my husband and I were on holiday in the USA from London, en route to my brother’s wedding in Vegas, when I was taken to Cottage Hospital and a week later delivered my beautiful boy Alexander Hill (aka “Big Al) prematurely at 26 weeks. He weighed in at two pounds, two ounces.

A pretty traumatic experience. My husband and I moved into the Best Western next to their Natal Intensive Care Unit, where we have stayed ever since.

Santa Barbara is, without doubt, one of the friendliest cities we have been to. From Earth Day to summer solstice, at the restaurants and the theaters, we have seen some fabulous sights and met absolutely lovely people along the way. We eagerly awaited Thursdays to pick up your newspaper so we could plan and decide what to do for the week ahead. It has helped make the whole experience a lot easier, keeping us busy and entertained between visits to our son.

However, our greatest gratitude is to all the nurses and doctors we met at Cottage Hospital. We have made lifelong friends and we will always remind Alex of the wonderful American people who saved his life and made ours a lot easier. We will miss them all so much and can never repay them for looking after our family and making the whole experience manageable and positive.

By the time this is published, we will be on our way back to London with our American son, now weighing seven pounds, two ounces. However, we will never forget the kindness we have found in this small and wonderful city, and can’t wait to come back when Alex is older to show him the very special place where he was born.

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