Nobody knew I was carrying a baby
Nicola hadn't realised she was even pregnant until she gave birth to a baby boy all alone in her flat.
"It is 1am on October the 31st 1990. I leave work feeling completely ghastly. I drive home and start to shiver. I am totally out of control. Some five or maybe six hours later I give birth to a baby boy. I am in my flat and all alone, he is alive and well and perfectly formed.
I have not shared my pregnancy with anyone. I have put it at the back of my mind praying in vain it will go away.
As the hours drift past I feel resignation weighing heavy in my heart. Day moves into night and I look into the eyes of my son. He is not just my son, he has a dad and I have to show him this special boy. I make a decision. I can't hide things any longer. I have to take responsibility. This baby is real, he's here to stay.
I wrap him up and drive the short distance to where his dad lives. I walk through the kitchen door holding my precious bundle in my arms. What can I say? I just have to tell the truth. I blurt out, "I've had a baby".
Two midwives and an ambulance crew turn up. They examine our boy, and he weighs in a healthy 7lbs 14oz. Off to hospital we go.
A complete bloody circus follows - visitors, presents, laughing, crying, tears of total disbelief. I am utterly overwhelmed. As I sit on the bed holding my baby I am full of happiness, pride and total fear. How the hell am I going to cope with all of this?
We name him Robert, a midwife carries him out of hospital. In my arms a five foot teddy bear, a full size rugby ball and half the contents of Mothercare.
Robert is now 14 and every birthday we celebrate Halloween with a full on party. We all sing happy birthday with gusto. I look at my son, he's tall and proud, it's all OK. He's a top banana."