On the week Heidi Range was revealed as Tommy's 2018 Sensathon Ambassador, the former Sugababes opened up to HELLO! about her bittersweet start to motherhood. The singer, who was born premature, had been worried the same would happen to her own daughter. Thankfully she had a 'wonderful' birth with Aurelia at the same hospital where the Duchess of Cambridge had her children. It was only when she returned home that she ran into serious problems with breastfeeding. After being diagnosed with mastitis, the condition worsened and she contracted sepsis.
The singer, who is supporting Tommy's Baby Charity attempts to raise £500,000 for research into miscarriage, stillbirth and premature birth through baby sponsored sensory classes this month, said: "When it came to feeding her, my milk never really got going. I was so upset."
Heidi welcomed her daughter with husband Alex in January
Heidi found herself in an exhausting regime of feeding every three hours for two hours at a time and trying to express extra milk. In constant agony, she messaged friends to ask if it was normal. "I was a first-time mum, I hadn't been through this before so thought 'everyone said breastfeeding would be hard, maybe this is just how you feel,'" she said.
The midwife diagnosed the singer with mastitis; where the milk ducts become blocked, inflamed and infected, and suggested she go to the doctors for some antibiotics. But it was thanks to an eagle-eyed health-visitor who realised her infection was much more serious. "I was in so much pain, shivering and going delirious but I thought it was just because I was so exhausted," said Heidi, 33. "It was only when the health-visitor saw my symptoms and spotted a rash that she said 'I think you've got sepsis, you need to get to hospital.'" She was taken to Chelsea and Westminster hospital where blood tests confirmed she had the potentially dangerous infection and she was put on a drip for four days to fight it.
The singer said she had a 'wonderful' birth
Even though she was seriously ill, Heidi's main concern was still her tiny daughter. "I remember looking at Aurelia while I was sick in the hospital and saying to Alex, 'I'm so glad this is happening to me and not her.'" Talking about her work with Tommy's she said: "Modern medicine is a miracle. I know how lucky I am to have a healthy and happy baby, I'm just glad I can do my part to help."
Pick up the new issue of HELLO! out on Monday for the full interview and more photos. For more information visit www.tommys.org/sensathon.