Doctors told Lucy Lintott, 25, her body couldn’t cope with pregnancy and childbirth.
But as she cuddles her baby son LJ, born on Thursday (13 Feb) she’s delighted to have proved them wrong.
"I promised Tommy that I could do this, that we'd both make it - the baby and me," she said. "He's told me how lucky we are and how proud he is that I kept my promise."
Lucy said “her world came crashing down” when she was 19 and she was diagnosed the incurable condition that that mainly affects people in their 60s and 70s, and is almost always fatal.
Little LJ arrived at Aberdeen Maternity Hospital at 7am on Thursday.
Lucy described the emotional moment she cuddled her baby for the first time. She said: "When he came and they put him on my chest I just started bawling my eyes out. They were such happy tears. He is pretty perfect.
"It is still very surreal. Now I understand what people say about the love you feel for your baby. I can't really describe it. I just want to do everything for him. I'd do anything for him."
Weighing 7lb 3.5oz at birth, little LJ is, according to Lucy, “doing amazing” and the couple hope to take him home in the next few days.
Lucy, who now relies on a wheelchair after being diagnosed with MND six years ago, said: “Tommy and I are a team. I would not have come through the pregnancy or the labour without him.
“There are not a lot of people who, after their partner has given birth, have to look after her and the baby and go into that knowing that they are going to have to do that.
“He is always protective when he needs to be. God knows what he is going to be like with our son. I feel sorry for the kid!”
Courageous campaigner Lucy – who has been dubbed The MND Warrior – has raised nearly £200,000 towards finding a cure for the shattering condition, despite knowing any breakthrough may not come in time to save her own life.
She said: “I always felt selfish because I wanted to be a mum. I felt like, am I being greedy because there are other people out there with terminal illnesses and it is not even an option for them?
“And I feel selfish, too, because at the moment this is a terminal illness and I may not be around as my baby boy gets older. I’d be leaving Tommy as a widower.
“But then I remember that our son is already getting a better start to life because he has parents who love him and love each other, and he has four amazing grandparents.”
Lucy was diagnosed with MND – a progressively disabling, untreatable and incurable disease – when she was just 19 and studying business at the City of Glasgow College. She had plans to work in hotel events.
She and Tommy met in their teens as pupils of Milne’s High School in Fochabers, in Moray – they later fell in love.
They have been a couple for 14 months and knew early on they wanted to be parents.
Lucy revealed: “Our baby was planned. In January last year, I went to see my doctor to find out if I could have kids.
“That was because when I was first diagnosed my sister asked the neurologist, and he said that my body wouldn’t be able to cope with it.
“That destroyed me a little bit, just because ever since I can remember I have wanted kids and wanted to be a mum, which is one of the most natural things.
“So I kind of knew it was more of a ‘no’. But with me being five years on at the time, with my MND not progressing, and getting into a serious relationship with Tommy, I wanted to know where I stood, and I wanted Tommy to know where he stood as well. It was better to find out.”
Lucy initially spoke about the prospect of pregnancy with her neurologist after diagnosis, before then being referred for an appointment with an obstetrician on May 23 last year.
“She gave me the go- ahead,” Lucy said. “I was so happy. I messaged Tommy straight away. The obstetrician was amazing. She had to research other cases to see where my MND was. There have been only five or six cases in the world o f w o m e n w i t h MND, w h o have either given birth or had a Caesarean section. Some of them had already been pregnant, and then they were diagnosed and had the baby.
“Tommy and I had to discuss potential complications, but between January and May we had talked about it every week. It wasn’t a rushed decision.
“What I didn’t know when I went to see the obstetrician was that I was already pregnant. We had got engaged on the Friday, May 17, last year and it looks like we conceived the following week. Although we were trying, I didn’t expect it to happen that quickly.
“We did a pregnancy test one morning before Tommy went to work and it lit up straight away. Our parents were the first to know but we put it on social media three months later when I was 18 weeks’ pregnant. Everyone was really chuffed.
“My mum and dad, like any parents, were scared. Tommy was scared as well. What worried them was that they could lose me. The doctors did not know what the outcome would be with my MND. So they took precautions. They did their research and put plans in place. I was scanned every four weeks.
“I wasn’t scared about the labour because it was out of my control and I have great doctors who have put in the work. But I was scared that, as a result of it, Tommy might lose me and I could lose him. I do not want to leave him.
“We are positive people, but we are also both realistic. It’s not as big a risk for me as it for Tommy. He can lose me. He is the one who has to deal with the aftermath if it had gone badly.
“I hope for the best, and I hope that the research being done will bring results. It is a race against time for me, but it’s not so much about that. I know that 5% of cases are inherited, so if my son gets it, I want there to be a cure for him, and for others.
“Since Tommy has come into my life my outlook is a lot different. Before I was scared of the future, whereas now, with him, I am stronger. Some people go a whole lifetime and never find this love with someone.”
Relieved and proud, Tommy said: “Lucy has had a rough time and endured a 15- hour labour and a bad bleed but she was incredibly brave. There are no words to describe the relief of seeing her safe – that’s the most important thing.
“I will feel more relaxed when all of the medical checks are complete and she is home. I am incredibly
I don't see MND, I just see Lucy
Lucy's partner, Tommy Smith, has spoken of his overwhelming relief that she and baby son LJ are safe and doing well. “I don't see MND, I just see Lucy, the girl I love. She's amazing,” he said.
The welder from Fochabers, whose proposal last year was captured in a moving video when Lucy was surprised with a ring while posing for photographs at a charity function, said the couple's happy arrival only encourages them to appreciate every moment together.
He said: "When we became serious about one another Lucy had already had MND for four-and-a-half years. When you love somebody, it's unconditional, whether they have an illness or not.
"The MND is not at the forefront of my mind or the forefront of the relationship. If we based the whole relationship around MND it would be a pretty doom-and-gloom scenario.
"I don't see Lucy as the award-winning fundraiser with MND. I just see Lucy the way she is - the girl I love. She is amazing.
"A lot of people, especially at the start of our relationship, came away with, You know she's got MND and she's not going to be around for ever.'
"But we both knew something was missing in our lives. We have found that thing everyone looks for in somebody else. We completely adore each other. And we found it at a young age - some people go their whole lives without that.
"So if I was to get five years with Lucy, I would rather have five years of the absolute best, than to have found it and walk away and wonder what I could have had.
"And now with the baby, it shows that what we have found is right. Her legacy will carry on through him. He is part of Lucy and me together.
"We would rather focus on the time we do have than be negative about the time we don't have."
Lucy wrote a bucket list of 45 things after she was diagnosed (below). Becoming a mum wasn’t on the list.
I’ve always had things I’ve wanted to do ‘when I got older’. Many of them simple things that people do everyday without thinking twice. I always meant to get to them but life got in the way. It wasn’t until my friend and old scout leader, Dougie asked me for my bucket list, that I sat down and wrote everything down. Before I knew it, I had 45 things I wanted to do.
Looking at it 4 years on and I wish I’d done some of them sooner. Others show me how young I was when I first wrote my bucket list. It reminds me how far I’ve come and how much growing up I’ve done since being diagnosed.
1. Take my first horse riding lesson
I loved taking my first horse riding lesson. I was slightly scared and nervous at the start, but by the end I felt comfortable on the horse. Once I realised that I wasn’t going to fall off.
2. Visit Paris
I found Paris beautiful, I enjoyed doing everything touristy especially seeing the Mona Lisa. My french classes at school finally came in useful.
3. Walk/canoe the Speyside Way
Twenty one of my friends and family hiked The Speyside Way as a fundraiser. We managed to raise around ten thousand pounds for MND Scotland. It gave me the fundraising bug.
4. Raise £100,000 for MND
I wanted to do my part to help find a cure for MND. I genuinely can’t believe I hit this target 2 years into my diagnosis. Thank you to everyone who’s contributed over the years.
5. Make Pottery
I love getting my hands dirty and something always told me that pottery would be my cup of tea. I was right, I found throwing clay very therapeutic. This is one item that should be on everyones bucket list.
6. Swim with dolphins
I swam with dolphins in Dubai, personally I wouldn’t do it again in captivity but I’m so glad that I did it.
7. Swim with sharks
8. Be a bridesmaid
9. Help organise a meaningful event
I organised my 4 years diagnosed ball. I can honestly say it was the most stressful thing I have ever done. However, I’m so grateful that I pulled it off. Having family and friends around me to celebrate fighting MND for four years was incredible.
Seeing as my favourite food is Italian visiting Italy seemed like a no brainer. The food out there is amazing.
11. Scuba Dive
I’ve been lucky enough to scuba dive in Scotland and the Great Barrier Reef. Both beautiful in there own right. The peacefulness that comes over you when your on the sea bed is like no other.
12. Organise my 21st
Being only nineteen when I was diagnosed, getting to live to my 21st birthday seemed like an accomplishment. I had a masquerade ball with my family and friends to celebrate. Looking forward now and I can’t wait to reach 30.
13. Pass my driving test
14. Meet Miranda Lambert
Country music is a big part of my life. It’s my everything. In just three minutes a song can change my mood. I love the community that comes with the music. I love that every artist is a song writer and a storyteller. Meeting one of the artists who made me fall in love with country music and everything that comes with it was surreal.
15. Ride in a hot air balloon
16. Visit McCall, Idaho
The summer before I was diagnosed I had the time of my life working as camp councillor in McCall. I made friends for life and I’m so grateful I was able to go back and see them all. McCall and my American family will always have a big part of my heart.
17. Be a zoo keeper for the day
AMAZING! The animal lover/ child in me were in their element. To be so close and to feed so many of my favourite animals was incredible.
18. Ride a Segway
Once I built up the confidence on the Segway, I could have given mall cop a run for his money.
19. Go to one more festival
20. Dye my hair
I never thought I’d dye my hair until it was grey! I just never felt the need to. Now I don’t think I’ll ever be without highlights.
21. Get a tattoo
I have the quote “Never let the fear of striking out, keep you from playing the game” on my ribs, to remind myself to not let my fears and doubts hold me back. I can honestly say that it was the most painful experience of my life… I cried.
22. Set off on a road trip not knowing the destination
Being the control freak I am I wanted to go somewhere that I hadn’t planned or researched. The Wiseman’s took me on a road trip to the Harry Potter train at Fort William. It was perfect.
23. Go zorbing
24. Ride a quad bike
25. Visit Stonehenge
I thoroughly enjoyed Stonehenge we got up early and did the VIP tour where you can go in the middle of the stones. It was so surreal to be somewhere that I’ve only ever seen in photos.
26. Ride in a helicopter
I managed to do this over the White Cliffs of Dover. I even got to fly it.
27. See a volcano
28. Make a difference to a person’s life (a strangers)
I realised early on that this is the most important item on my bucket list. So I’ve decided never to cross it off, but to underline it so I keep doing it.
29. Help someone complete something off their bucketlist
30. Build Olaf the snowman
Being a huge Disney fan, building Olaf was obviously something I had to do.
31. See an Opera
I went to see my first opera in London and it was incredible. The power of the singers voices where unbelievable I can’t believe they don’t use microphones.
32. See a musical
My first musical was Wicked, since then I’ve seen a lot of musicals but none of then compared to Wicked. If you go to see any musical see Wicked.
33. See a ballet production
It’s amazing how quickly time goes by when your mesmerised by someone dancing. I have so much admiration for ballet.
34. Throw a coin into the Trevi fountain
I managed to go to Italy without even thinking about checking if the fountain was open (who closes fountains?). Which meant I needed to go back to Italy to do this. I can now say I’m one of the millions who’ve seen the Trevi fountain with and without water.
35. Have my Tarot cards read
I’ve always been curious what’s said when your having your tarot cards read. I’m not 100 percent sure I believe in everything that I was told but who doesn’t like knowing that their future is good.
36. Send a message in a bottle and get a reply
I still can’t believe that my bottle made it all the way to Sweden.
37. Plant a tree
I have now planted two trees. I just wanted to know that out there, there is a tree alive and producing oxygen because I took the time to plant one.
38. Bake a soufflé
Coming from a family of chefs and cooks, I wanted to try and make one of the hardest desserts.
39. Be brave enough to sky dive
40. Become a regular at a business
Working as a waitress I’ve always loved the customers who I saw regularly and building up relationships with them, that I wanted to do that for someone else. Hitting the gym 4 times a week has allowed me to become friendly with the staff there.
41. To go back stage at a concert
42. See the white cliffs of Dover
They are just beautiful
43. Walk along the Jurassic Coast
I loved Durdle’s Door.
44. Drive in cinema
45. Take a photo after completing each item on my list