When teenage mum Karys McHattie was told her new baby boy would not survive unless he was given an immediate blood transfusion, her world collapsed around her.
Terrified she was going to lose him Karys just howled.
She said: “It was awful and then came the worst 24 hours of my life, when he was taken away from me to the special care baby unit for treatment.”
That saved the 19-year-old’s newborn son Hudson’s life so Karys is using a unique way to thank the hospital and pay staff back for everything they have done for her and her baby.
A couple of months after Hudson was born, Karys competed in her first teen beauty pageant in Perth.
Despite never having entered such a contest before, she won the title Miss Royal Perth.
She has been competing ever since, using the platform to raise funds and highlight the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit‘s work.
She is also currently gathering and donating knitted baby clothes for the youngsters there.
Karys has won her way through to the national final of the Royal UK Miss Pageant, to be held in Manchester.
She said: “If I win that I will go on to compete in Orlando in Florida, taking Hudson with me and being able to take the work at Ninewells to a worldwide audience.
“Royal UK Miss pageant is not your typical pageant.
“There is no scoring on beauty or physical attributes and girls and women can compete at any age, size or marital status.
“Each finalist is encouraged to get involved in their community and has the option to support a charity of their choice.
“The unique rounds promote life skills such as public speaking, formal interview techniques and resume writing.
“The system promotes a sisterhood and family feel with everyone being so supportive of one another.”
Karys explained up until a month before her due date in November 2019, her pregnancy had gone well, despite doctors warning her baby was small.
Four weeks before he was due, Karys unexpectedly went into labour.
“I got to Ninewells where Hudson was delivered normally at 1.04am, weighing 4lbs 4 ozs but apart from being small everything seemed ok.”
After being with him up until the following afternoon, doctors realised there was a problem.
“I thought he looked a little jaundiced and told the nurses.
“They took him for tests and decided that his haemoglobin was low and had low platelets and would need a blood transfusion if he was to survive.
“It’s thanks to the doctors and nurses at the unit that Hudson is now a bouncing and thriving little boy and I will be eternally grateful.
“If I can do this to thank them and raise awareness and funding then I am delighted to be able to do so.”