Young parents were left devasted after both their sons died weeks apart from the same rare disease.
Charlie (29) and Sharon (23) Corcoran lost their brave boys, Charlie Jr (3) and Noah, who was just six hours old, to polymicrogyria – a genetic condition which causes abnormal development of the brain – in June and July last year.
Young Noah was diagnosed with the condition in the womb and died six hours after his mom gave birth to him, with his brother Charlie Jr following him less than four weeks later.
The devasted couple from Wembley in England has now spoken out for the first time in a bid to raise awareness of the disease.
"Noah broke our heart into bits, and Charlie took away whatever was left,” a devasted Charlie said.
"Ever since we have been existing rather than living, we're empty and feel like different people, we're just trying to get through each day.
"I feel like I'm staggering through life.
"The hardest thing is not having our boys and having to try to live without them."
Sharon added: “We'll never be the same again.
"Whenever I think 'I don't want to be here' I think ‘I need to fight for them’.
"It's very lonely, there are reminders of the boys everywhere.
"Having kids again is a difficult prospect to think of.
"If I could say one thing to them it would be that I love them, I'm proud of them and thank them for being our boys."
Charlie Jr, who was born in June 2015, was diagnosed with the rare condition at just three weeks old.
In December 2017 the couple found out that Sharon was pregnant again but were quickly dealt a cruel blow after doctors told them their unborn baby had hypoplastic left heart syndrome – a combination of several abnormalities of the heart and major blood vessels, according to Standford Children.
They were also told that baby Noah had polymicrogyria, which meant the mom-of-two was forced to undergo an emergency caesarean section at 32 weeks.
Doctors told the couple that Noah would most likely not survive the birth. Despite battling for his life, Noah died six hours after he was born.
The heartbroken couple returned home to be with their brave three-year-old where they spent a precious few weeks with him.
Tragically, two days after his third birthday, Charlie Jr’s health began to deteriorate and he was rushed to hospital before passing away on July 4 – just 23 days after Noah's death.
"We were always told Charlie Jr wouldn't be able to live a normal life or walk or talk,” Charlie explained.
"But he brought so much to our life, he had so much character about him and had a spark that could light up a room.
"Two days after his birthday we went back into the hospital because his breathing had become a struggle.
"We knew deep down it was going to be his final time. We spent two days in the hospital holding him and playing music to him.
"On July 4 we knew how bad he was getting and we rang all our family and friends and told them we weren't sure if he had much longer left.
"I was holding him in those final moments. I was telling him it was OK to go, we didn't want him to suffer anymore and that he could go and be with Noah.
"Right before he passed away he made two sounds like he was trying to say something, and then he took his final breath.
"We knew he was gone, we were in bits,” the dad said.
The couple has since been tested to ascertain who the carrier of the genetic condition is but didn’t get any conclusive results.
They’re currently unsure whether they’ll be able to have any more children without passing on the disease.
Charlie and Sharon have recently started a GoFundMe page for Northwick Park Hospital where Charlie Jr was cared for.
“We have to keep going on and try and get through the day,” Sharon said.
"It's why we're raising money on GoFundMe to see if some good can come from this.”
Source: Magazine Features