Cuddling her toddler son, Katy Bassett looks the picture of health – and happiness.
But when she was pregnant with Evan, three, it was a different story… for as a mum to be, she became so ill with anorexia, she and unborn Evan almost died.
Terrified of getting fat, shockingly her weight plummeted to just four stones. It meant Mrs Bassett had to be tube-fed to keep her and her unborn son alive. And after Evan was born early at 30 weeks, her ‘pregorexia’ left her too frail to care for him herself until he was 14 months old.
Today, with Evan in her arms, Mrs Bassett, now 30 and fully recovered, says: ‘Evan is a little miracle. Every day I just look at him and feel so grateful he’s healthy.
”I feel so guilty because I know my dieting put Evan’s life in danger. But at the same time although realistically I knew that pregnancy would make me put on weight naturally, I felt revolted at the thought of getting bigger.
‘Now I am also thankful to him – because ironically although getting pregnant sparked my eating disorder – it is Evan who cured me. I knew I had to get well if I wanted to be a proper mum.’
Yet, the fact she even conceived Evan is incredible. Katy had first suffered a bout of anorexia in her teens and doctors believed that would have rendered her infertile.
Katy didn’t properly recover from the first bout until aged 18 she met husband James. With his love and support she put on weight and aged 27 and a healthy 9 stones the couple wed.
She believed her anorexic days were firmly in the past. But then three months after their wedding, she discovered she was pregnant.
The couple were thrilled – they had intended to adopt – but as the pregnancy progressed Katy began to worry about getting fat. Shockingly she lost so much weight she collapsed and was rushed to hospital. A blood test revealed she and her unborn baby were starving to death and she was put on a drip.
As she couldn’t face eating, she remained in hospital being fed by tube. Then at 30 weeks she developed a life threatening infection in the tube and baby Evan had to be delivered early.
Thankfully weighing 3Ib 10oz Baby Evan was fine but while he thrived, she was still unable to eat. Eventually she was transferred to an eating disorders unit where she remained until Evan was 14 months old.
It was a heartbreaking time as husband James was forced to care for Evan fulltime and she was only allowed to see her baby once a week.
But it was Evan who pushed her to get better. She says: “One day I was changing his nappy and suddenly felt upset I wouldn’t be changing it again for a week. In that instant I knew If I wanted to be a normal mum and care for him myself, I had to force myself to eat.”
Finally when Evan was aged 14 months and weighing 9 stones, she finally came home. She has since put on another half a stone and now she and James are thinking of having another baby.
Although Katy’s story has already appeared in some magazines, she wanted to raise further awareness. To gain the most coverage possible, her story was placed with the DAILY MAIL’s website MAILONLINE and she is now to appear on television.
We will keep you updated!