Saturday, September 28, 2013

Another September Baby

I started getting sick Wednesday night, September 11th. I had just had a check up with my Midwife earlier that day. I was 15 weeks along and my baby's heart beat was strong and all was well. When I went to bed I was shaking with the chills but didn't think too much about it. I woke up around 2:30 in the morning and could not stop shaking. I went out on the couch, drank something warm and curled up in a blanket. I threw up around 3:30 and then was able to sleep for the rest of the night.

On Thursday, the 12th, I woke up feeling weak and so hot! My husband stayed home from work to take care of me. I slept a lot and ate and drank little.
On Friday, my husband stayed home in the morning and then went in for half a day of work. I felt like I was on the mend.

On Saturday I was feeling quite a bit improved but still weak and tired. My stomach hurt and some undesirable affects of the flu were lingering. My husband hadn't been feeling to great through this all but he held things together and took care of me and the kids, even though it was hard. I went to a Relief Society activity at the church even though I was weak and tired. I was mostly over the flu. While I was there I felt my stomach pains go lower and into my back.
I got home about 3:00 and just laid on the couch. It finally hit me that these stomach pains might be contractions. I didn't think you could feel contractions this early on. They were not braxton hicks contractions. They were strong and I had to breathe through them. I contacted my midwife. She said it sounded like I was dehydrated. That can cause the uterus to contract. That sounded right. So I went to the health food store and got some cat nip tea that she recommended. I drank a quart of it and went to bed early, sure that by morning all would be "normal" again.

Sunday morning came and things were anything but "normal".  I was still contracting every 5 minutes or so. My house was a mess, we were all tired and grumpy. I wasn't sure how we were going to keep this up.
My husband was worried. I still was not too worried about the baby but began to wonder if I should be. I thought my baby would be just fine. I thought that even thought I was sick, my body knew how to take care of my baby. My husband had been in contact with my sister and two sister in laws. None of them saw any need to worry too much. But he wanted to call a nurse hotline. He talked to them and then they talked to me. They thought I should contact a doctor right away. I thought they were probable over reacting. I decided I would call my midwife again if the contractions didn't stop soon. I hated to keep bugging her and especially on a Sunday.

My husband wisely ordered me to bed around noon where I lay sipping on another quart of cat nip tea. After about 30 minutes of laying down I felt something, something wasn't right. Something was coming out of me. I got to the bathroom as quick as I could. I felt something bulge and pop and come out of me. I screamed for my husband. I thought I was going to look down in the toilet and see my baby. I screamed again for him. I yelled something about the baby, I can't remember what I said or exactly what happened as I was in the bathroom. My husband ran in and saw my panic and immediately called 911. There was no blood. There was never any blood. And there was no baby in the toilet. Just stringy mucus of some sort. I was freaking out for a few minutes at this point. I didn't know what just came out of me but I knew it wasn't right. Then all of the sudden, I remembered. I remembered that I could trust My Heavenly Father and that He would help me through anything that may happen. So I just kept repeating to myself, "It's okay, it's okay. You can trust Him. No matter what happens, it will be okay, you can trust Him." I just kept talking to myself and saying that over and over as I laid back on the bed and waited for the paramedics to get there. It took no more than 5 minutes from the time that my husband made the call. 
Everything after this was very dream-like and strange. There was an ambulance outside out house. My house?! There were paramedics in my room, poking my finger, taking my blood pressure and asking me questions. Then they were putting me on a chair to carry me down all our stairs. Concerned neighbors were watching me like a parade as I was loaded onto a stretcher. I was in an ambulance. I was getting an I.V. Everyone was so calm. Then we were in the emergency room.

My husband got someone to stay with the kids and drove over and meet me there. It seemed like we were anything but an emergency. Everything took so long. We waited and waited for an ultra sound first. There was a heartbeat. The baby was alive! I felt such joy and hope. he was measuring 16 weeks and a few days. But there was little to no amniotic fluid. A baby cannot live without fluid. But I knew that fluid levels could go up and down. I had heard of people having low fluid levels and getting it back up. I had heard of sacks tearing and then repairing themselves. My baby was alive. His heart was beating! But things were still unsure.
Back to our little waiting room we went. To wait more for a doctor to look at the ultra sound and tell us what he thought. They said it would be about a half hour, so of course it was more like an hour. Waiting, waiting. I just wanted to know. One way or the other, I just wanted to know!

Finally another doctor came in to talk to us about the results of the ultra sound. The sack was broken. There was no sack. No fluid. Nothing for my baby. Nothing. This doctor did a vaginal exam too. He was not very gentle. He said the umbilical cord was coming out.  There was no hope, no chance. The baby would have to be delivered. My baby, whose heat was just beating, would have to die.
More and more waiting. Finally a nurse came in. They gave me some morphine for my terrible headache and to help with the contractions. But there was nothing that helped with the contractions. I felt every one. But it did take my headache away and help me relax.
I remember looking at the clock. It was 5:00 pm. They brought in some little blue pills. They were to help me have more contractions. They were to help my baby come out. That was it. That was the end. I felt that as I took them I was killing my baby. Every last ounce of hope that I had clung to left as I swallowed those little, blue pills. I took them and then I cried and cried.

They had told me at 4:30 that it would be no more than 15 minutes until I was up in a room in Labor and Delivery. So of course they got me up to the room around 6:00. They got me all settled in and my angle nurse introduced herself. She was so calm. She was so kind. She was my angle.
So we waited more. I slept very comfortable in between contractions and felt strangely at peace. I knew that I would be okay somehow. Then I woke just before 9:00 pm. I rolled over from my side onto my back. My nurse walked in the room just as I felt something slid out of me. Smooth and gentle and warm, my baby was born. Just like that. No pushing or discomfort.

The nurse held him first and I just looked at him, my husband by my side. Then I got up the courage to hold my little, sweet baby. My baby boy. So small. 3 ounces, 6 inches long. So red. Perfect toes and fingers. Cute little nose. So still. So peaceful. It all felt so peaceful.
After a while the doctor came in and gave me some more of those stupid, little, blue pills to try and help the placenta come out. We did some more waiting. That placenta was holding on strong. There was still no blood. After about an hour the contractions were getting really strong and they were one right on top of the other. They were not letting up. This is when my sisters got there. They drove from nearly 2 hours to be with me. But I was in so much pain that I didn't really do more than squeeze their hands.

They finally decided to take me in for a D and C. What a mercy that was! I was in so much pain, it was such a relief to be put under. When I woke up there was no more pain. I was in a quiet, peaceful room, just me and my baby. He was now wrapped in a soft, little blue blanket. The nurse came in and told me that while I had been asleep another kind angle, a hospital volunteer, came and did foot and hand prints of my baby. As well as little molds of his hands and feet. She left them in a sweet and tiny little box for me. I felt terrible that I didn't get to see her and thank her.
Then the nurse brought my baby to me. I held my tiny, little, blue bundle on my chest for a long, long time. I just held him. I talked to him. I tried to sing to him but my shaky voice couldn't do it. Only tears would come. I held him for a long time. I fell asleep with him on my chest.

When I woke up I called for the nurse to come get him and then I tried to sleep some more. I was at peace there in that room, just me and my baby on a table next to me. I was at peace and I slept.
I woke early that Monday morning. I waited for my husband to come back and take me home. He came around 8:00. The nurse checked us out and I said good bye to my baby. I knew I would see him again. I knew he wasn't gone forever. It just wasn't his time yet. So it wasn't too hard to leave him there at the hospital. It was just a body. His spirit was safe and I didn't need to worry.

My husband and I both cried all the way home. I was so happy to see my two little children waiting for me. They are my little saviors. My reasons to keep going.  I melted into my Mom's arms who had been there to stay with my kids. She was also another angle sent to help me through this whole thing.
So now here we are. Trying to live one day at a time. Trying to be normal, whatever normal is, I don't know. We have received an out pouring of love and help. More angles here on earth, helping us through our sorrow. Many have dropped off dinner or taken the kids. Some have sent flowers and made phone calls and sent messages of love. I have felt strengthened knowing that so many people are praying for us. I am so grateful for all that everyone has done. My burden has been eased by the love I have felt.

I also feel that my loving Heavenly Father helped to prepare me for this through a book that I have been reading for the last several months. It's called The Gift of Giving Life. It has shifted my perspective on so many things and in so many ways. There are many essays in the book and many women share their stories on life and birth and death and many things. I have learned much and felt much as I read it. It helped me to think about miscarriage and shifted my views on it. Of course I didn't know before that I was going to lose my baby but I knew that if I did, I would be okay. I knew it would be hard still but I knew it would be okay. And I am okay. My heart hurts right now like it rarely ever has but I know that I will be okay. I know that a loving Heavenly Father has a plan for me and my life. I know that He doesn't make mistakes. I know that I will not pass through any sorrow that will not be for my benefit and growth. I trust that my baby will come again. I feel that strongly. I have not lost him. I just have to wait and be patient until he comes to me again.

But this still hurts. It hurts bad. Just when I was getting over the first trimester yuckiness. Just when I was starting to tell people. Just when I was about to post about the pregnancy on my blog. Just when I was really starting to show. Just as I was getting excited to start feeling my baby move and kick inside of's all over. Just like that. It's hard to come home and see all the maternity clothes I was getting ready to wear. It's hard to erase the numbers on the calendar that would tell how many weeks along I would be with each passing day. It's hard to know that I was taking the best and most expensive supplements and I even gave up refined sugar and flower, all for this tiny little creature that I already loved so deeply.
I know that even though this hurts, many have and are passing through much, much greater sorrows. Some that will not get better with time. I am grateful that I was not farther along or full term. And while that doesn't comfort everyone to think like that, it helps me to put my sorrow into perspective and keep my chin up.

What was the cause of this miscarriage, or still birth as the hospital termed it? I don't know. I wasn't drinking enough. I didn't rest enough. I should have called my midwife sooner. I should have called a doctor sooner. I should have eaten more. I should have taken more care not to get sick. I should have done something different or better. But in the end, it doesn't really matter. I might actually feel worse if I knew the cause, if it was something I did. As much as it hurts, I feel that this was just Gods plan. It was just meant to be. I don't know that things would have turned out any differently no matter what I did or didn't do. My husband told me that when we were waiting for the paramedics to show up he started towards me to give me a blessing that the baby would be fine, but he didn't feel like that was the right thing to do and he turned back around. If God wants a baby to live and be born, they will. If it is not time yet, or not meant to be, it won't happen. I believe in that with all my heart. I don't think this was a mistake. If God had wanted by baby to live, He could have made it happen. I don't know why my baby had to die but I find peace in knowing that someday, I will know.
Since this was God's will, I know that He will be with me, to help me through. I have that promise from Him. I have felt His presence very strongly. I know that He knows me. I know he is aware of my pain. He counts my tears. He will not leave me alone. I also believe and have felt that the very angles of Heaven are with me. They bring comfort and peace. I feel strength in knowing that.

I am grateful for what I have learned about the sacrifice and atonement of the Savior as I went through this pregnancy and miscarriage. The only way that a spirit can enter into this life is through the body of a woman. That is the only way. There is no other way for life to enter this world. The only way for us to go back into the presence of our Heavenly Father is by joining ourselves to Christ. By accepting His sacrifice and doing our best to keep His commandments we can be forgiven of our mistakes. That is the only way. Only one way into this life and only one way back to the Fathers presence. Our Savoir suffered for all of us. He felt our pains and sorrows and knows our hearts. He suffered for those who would accept His sacrifice and follow Him. He suffered for all those that would not accept His sacrifice. Some women sacrifice during pregnancy and labor and are rewarded with a healthy, pink baby. Some sacrifice and are left with empty arms in the end. But no sacrifice is without meaning and purpose. It all serves a purpose in the end. This experience had given me a deeper love and appreciation from my Savior. It has given me a deeper desire to try to be a better person and to try harder to do all that my Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ have asked of me. If Christ could suffer so much for me, I can also do this little bit of suffering.
I don't need anyone to give my advice or try to say words of comfort. I don't want to hear that I am still young and can try again. That doesn't really make me feel better. All I need is a hug, an I love you, I'm sorry, I'm here for you. That will do. I will be okay. I know each day and week will bring more peace and healing. The day will come when I will have the courage to try to bring this baby into the world again. I pray for the faith and strength to try again. I am scared that I will miscarry again. But I know that it's all in God's hands and I pray I will have the strength to endure whatever comes in my future and to put my trust in Him. Knowing I can trust in Him is the main thing that keeps me going.

So my sweet baby, I say to you, I love you. I am sorry and I hope you didn't suffer. My heart and arms will ache for you until the day we can finally be together. 

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

Exciting News!!

We have a 4 year old in the house!!
We are all pretty excited to have recently celebrated Spencer's 4th Birthday. How does the time pass so quickly? He is such a smart and fun little boy. He teaches me daily what life is really all about. I am a blessed mother to have this little one as my son!

So we went out and took some pictures. It was crazy hard to get a picture of this little cutie smiling AND looking at the camera...nearly impossible! I did get one or two I think that we might be able to hang on the wall.


Is he cute or what?!!!